Cape Scott

Feature Type:Settlement - Any permanently occupied, unincorporated area normally identified by a single name, generally rural, and having a recognizable central focus.
Relative Location: At head of Hansen Lagoon, NW tip of Vancouver Island, Rupert Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 50°46'59"N, 128°20'05"W at the approximate population centre of this feature.
Datum: WGS84
NTS Map: 102I/16

Origin Notes and History:

Cape Scott (settlement) adopted 7 February 1947 on C.3688, as labelled on BC map 2C, 1919. Rescinded 16 April 1970.

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

Named in association with the nearby promontory, Cape Scott, in turn named in 1786 by Captain Lowrie and Captain Guise of the merchant vessels Captain Cook & Enterprise, after David Scott, merchant of Canton and one of the backers of that years' trading expedition to Vancouver Island.

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

Rasmus Hansen established a Danish colony here in 1896, attracting settlers from Iowa, Nebraska and elsewhere. Cape Scott Post Office was opened 1 June 1899, situated on Lot 23, Tp 43. Fierce storms precluded the building of a dock to facilitate loading & unloading of supplies, and only a muddy trail linked Cape Scott with communities to the south. Cape Scott Post Office closed 25 June 1943. Location deserted by the mid-1950s; few buildings remaining, most without roofs according to Forest Service, 1967. See history of Cape Scott settlement in Survey Branch Annual Report 1913, and also Provincial Archives Sound Heritage Series #36, "Dreams of Freedom", 1982.

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

"The Cape Scott country was originally settled by a colony of Danes, brought there by Erasmus Hensen some twenty-odd years ago. They settled about Fisherman Bay, called after Nels P. Hensen, one of the original settlers who engaged in fishing, and the Lagoon, a big tidal inlet running up nearly 4 miles into the midst of the country. Over a mile of dyke was build and a large area was reclaimed for grass land. The Danes built good houses, good roads; they cleared and cultivated their land, and they put cattle on the reclaimed land, and formed a successful colony, but they had no market for their produce. Cape Scott lacks a good harbour. So little by little the settlement dwindled until there were only two or three of the old settlers left. The grass was good and the cattle were thriving, but there ws no way to ship out the beef. The CPR steamers no longer went to Cape Scott. Then Holberg was started (Holberg was a great Danish writer, it will be remembered) by a few of the Danes from Cape Scott, who still had faith in the ultimate success of the district. Holberg, at the end of the West Arm, is the safest port for all of this country up to Cape Scott. A good wharf is about to be built there, and a wagon-road is under construction to the cape. When the road is finished there will be opportunity to ship out the surplus stock of beef and vegtables. Mail is carried to Holberg every two weeks; to San Josef once every month by launch from Hardy Bay, and once from Winter Harbour. This also serves Cape Scott." (Extract from the report of H.H. Browne, dated 21 December 1912; published in Abstracts from Reports of British Columbia Land Surveyors, Vanc Is sec, pp 48-49.)

Source: included with note