Ladysmith (British Columbia)

Ladysmith is one of the older European settlements on Vancouver Iceland, a large island off the west coast of Canada. Its appearance is that of a small town of the early 20th century. The place is 23 km south of Nanaimo and 88 km north from Victoria on the east coast in the Cowichan Valley Regional District.

The small town is best known internationally as the birthplace of Pamela Anderson.


Originally the territory of the First Nation of Chemainus was settled. Since about 3000 BC they live in the Kulleet Bay ( in the Yellow Point area ) at Shell Beach ( opposite the port of Ladysmith ) and the Coffin Point near the Elliot Beach Park. From 1884 their country was increasingly sold. The Chemainus First Nation and their villages Shts'um'inus, Thuq'mi'n and Hwkwumluwhuthun were relocated to modern-day Chemainus Indian Reserve 13, one of four reserves who inhabited the tribe today.

In 1899, James Dunsmuir the place under the name Oyster Harbour to settle the workers of the coal mines in the 19 km northern extension. He also let the railway line from Victoria to expand ago. In 1900 it was renamed after the South African town of Ladysmith, who had been besieged during the Boer War, took place in 1904, the granting of local self-government ( Incorporated ). Many streets in the city were named after British Army leaders.

In 1911 the town had 3,300 inhabitants, including many Chinese, Finns, Belgians and Croats. The largest employers were the coal mines. But the mines were poorly secured, methane gas explosions cost many miners life. On October 5, 1909 such explosion killed 32 men in the pit of extension. It was these uncertain circumstances which led to a long strike in many mines in Western Canada 1912-14. At the same time, the demand for coal began to decline. Thus, the mine was closed in April 1931. Ladysmith lost almost half of its population.

1935 acquired the Comox Logging and Railway Company a portion of the Douglas fir forest of the Rockefellers. In the late 1940s the timber industry employed about 700 people. It was not until the late 1980s, the industrial monoculture could be broken, which had repeatedly exposed to booms and disasters the city, be it coal, whether the timber industry. Oyster fishing and tourism play an increasing role.

The revival of Downtown also began in the 1980s with the exhibition of historical artifacts on 1st Avenue and the transfer Beach. The houses were resurfaced placed information boards, photos of the city from the period of 1890-1970 will be on permanent display. A shop with the equipment of the 50s can be found on the main road, plus numerous artists who have settled here. In addition, the city is now pursuing a policy of reconciliation with the Chemainus First Nation and the Hul'qumi'num Treaty Group, which seeks a contract with the government.


The census in 2011 showed a population of 7,921 inhabitants for the community. The population has thereby increased since the census of 2006, only 5.1%, while the population grew throughout the Province of British Columbia at the same time by 7.0%.


An airport ( Nanaimo, Airport 9 km north), a railway line ( used by Esquimalt and Nanaimo Railway and VIA Rail ) and the busy thoroughfare Trans-Canada Highway ( Highway 1 ) connect the town with the most important centers of Vancouver Iceland and the province.