Spillimacheen

Feature Type:Community - An unincorporated populated place, generally with a population of 50 or more, and having a recognized central area that might contain a post office, store and/or community hall, etc, intended for the use of the general public in the region.
Status:
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: Between Invermere and Golden on upper Columbia River, Kootenay Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 50°54'00''N, 116°22'00''W at the approximate population centre of this feature.
Datum: NAD27
NTS Map: 82K/16

Origin Notes and History:

Spillimacheen (Post Office) adopted 3 June 1954 on Columbia River Basin manuscript 44, as labelled on BC map 1EM, 1915; not Spillimacheen (Station) as identified in the 1930 BC Gazetteer. Form of name changed to Spillimacheen (community) 28 February 1983 on 82K/16.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

Settlement and mining activity at Spillimacheen recorded as early as 1864: "A great excitement is raging in this camp regarding new discoveries on several creeks emptying into the Columbia... I yesterday recorded 12 claims on a creek called 'Canyon' about 30 miles below Spillimacheen..." (1 December 1864 letter to J.C. Haynes, Customs Inspector at Osoyoos and stipendiary magistrate & gold commissioner for Kootenay). Post Office opened at this location 1 July 1889, called "Galena" [possibly because Post Office department argued that "Spillimacheen" would too easily be confused with Spallamacheen, a post office opened in 1881 near Vernon?] CPR named their station Spillimacheen (opening date not cited). Galena Post Office re-named Spillimacheen Post Office 19 August 1946.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

Early spelling variations include: Speylumacheen, Spillemcheen, Spillimachene, Spillomochene...

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office