Artist(s): Harold Lyon

Logging With Oxen

Mural Routes Member(s): Chemainus Festival of Murals Society Completed: 1983

Dimensions: 18.3m x 3.7m (60’ x 12’)

Best Viewed: From Waterwheel Square, on the north side of Coastal Community Credit Union.

“Historical Series #7: Logging With Oxen”

Around 1898, oxen were the main form of power in logging, where good timber was available. “Large, well-equipped outfits used twenty to twenty-four oxen. These were divided into two teams: one drawing the logs from the bush to the road, while the other and stronger team was employed in skidding the logs to the water. Crude roads were built and small logs embedded skillfully athwart them at 8-foot intervals. These were the skid-roads over which the oxen drew the logs to the sea.” (R.I. Dougan, from Cowichan My Valley).

Since the ox’s hoof has a thin shell, the oxen were carefully shod with thin, half-moon shaped iron shoes. The job of shoeing the oxen was done on Sundays or after hours by the “teamsters”, with assistance from a young helper, the “greaser”.

(Please drop by the Chemainus Visitors Centre to buy your Official Mural Guide. Proceeds from the sale go to the Chemainus Festival of Murals Society).

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Where to Find This Mural

Location: 9781 Willow St, Chemainus, BC V0R 1K0, Canada Get Directions