Discovery Island

Feature Type:Island - Land area surrounded by water or marsh.
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: Off Oak Bay, just E of Victoria, Victoria Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 48°25'31''N, 123°14'16''W at the approximate centre of this feature.
Datum: NAD83
NTS Map: 92B/6

Origin Notes and History:

Adopted 1 May 1934 on National Defence sheet 415a, Victoria, as labelled on British Admiralty Chart #1911, 1849 et seq.

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

"Named after Captain Vancouver's ship the Discovery, probably by Captain Kellett, HMS Herald, who surveyed a portion of these waters when on the station in 1846. Commander Mayne in his book, page 80, states that Vancouver named the island himself, after his ship, but this cannot be correct as Vancouver did not examine the southeast coastline of what is now Vancouver Island, confining himself exclusively to the continental shore.... The Discovery, in which Vancouver made his ever memorable voyage, was purchased by the British Government from Messrs. Randall and Brent, having been built in their yard on the banks of the Thames in 1789. She was first commissioned on New Year's day, 1790, by Captain Henry Roberts, with Vancouver as second in command, for the voyage she ultimately undertook, but which in the first place was abandoned owing to the Nootka difficulty. Upon amicable arrangement between the British and Spanish governments, the examination of this coast was again taken in hand... The Discovery was recommissioned for this purpose 15 December 1790, with the armed tender Chatham as her consort, the command of the expedition being given to Vancouver, then promoted to commander in the navy; lieutenant Broughton being appointed to the command of the Chatham. The Discovery, ship rigged, was 340 tons burthen, copper fastened, sheathed with plank and coppered. Mounted ten four-pounders and ten swivels, with one hundred and thirty-four of a crew all told (muster book, Discovery.) With the Discovery and Chatham, Vancouver, during the years 1792, 1793 and 1794, closely examined and charted this coast from 30°N to 60°N."

Source: Walbran, John T; British Columbia Coast Names, 1592-1906: their origin and history; Ottawa, 1909 (republished for the Vancouver Public Library by J.J. Douglas Ltd, Vancouver, 1971)