Staines Island
Feature Type:Island - Land area surrounded by water or marsh.
Status: Official
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: E side of Cadboro Bay in Saanich (municipality), Victoria Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 48°27'06"N, 123°17'00"W at the approximate centre of this feature.
Datum: WGS84
NTS Map: 92B/6
Origin Notes and History:

Staines Island adopted 6 November 1934 on National Defense sheet 415a, Victoria, as recommended by Hydrographic Service, not "Ellen Island" as labelled on British Admiralty Chart 577, 1870 et seq.

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

Origin/significance of the name "Ellen Island" not recorded. Re-named Staines Island by H.D. Parizeau, Hydrographic Service, after Mrs. R.J.Staines, wife of the Reverend Robert John Staines, Chaplain of the Hudson's Bay Company at Fort Victoria, 1849-53. Mrs. Staines, probably the first English woman who landed on Vancouver Island, opened the first school at Fort Victoria, in the early 1850s. See also Staines Point.

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

RE: the wreck of the British bark Lord Raglan: "...This vessel had taken on a full cargo of piling and lumber at Sooke, BC and was outbound for England in June of 1854. Aboard the vessel were the Reverend Robert John Staines and his wife Emma.... The Raglan moved down the strait and rounded Cape Flattery and Tatoosh Island into the slanting rain of a high-velocity southerly gale. Buffeted by tremendous seas, [waves] were breaking over the Raglan's heavy deckload when it was last sighted. By the following day the Lord Raglan had literally vanished from the sea... with all hands including her six passengers... The only clues were some pieces of wreckage that later came ashore on the West Coast of Vancouver Island." (James Gibbs, Shipwrecks off Juan de Fuca, Binfords & Mort Publishers, Portland, 1968, p.24) [note that Emma Staines was not aboard the fated vessel, and returned to England the year after the tragedy according to other histories.]

Source: included with note

"...without asking for a leave of absence from the company, Staines boarded the Duchess of San Lorenzo, bound for San Francisco, at Sooke on or about 1 March [1854]. The vessel, which was carrying a heavy deck load of timber, foundered in Juan de Fuca Strait and all aboard were lost. Some years later the HBC doctor John Sebastian Helmcken remarked that when news of the disaster reached Victoria ' there was a general pity - he was praised or blamed - a martyr or a fool as the case may be, but all nevertheless regretted his end.' Emma Frances Staines sold off the farm stock and returned to England with her nephew in January 1855..." (Robert John Staines entry in DCB Online, Nov 2008)

Source: Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online, published by Library and Archives Canada