This highly symbolic mural features two Second World War veterans passing the torch to the younger generation. Passing the torch is from the poem, In Flanders Fields, written by John McCrae in 1915.
This mural depicts the Star Novelty Works bicycle shop at the corner of Oak and Maple Streets at the end of the 19th century.
Charlie Abbott arrived in Chemainus sometime in the 1970s (nobody knows exactly when or why), and wandered into the deep, green forest surrounding this small community where he spent the rest of his life. Old and bent with age, Charlie lived alone in the woods. He came to appreciate and love the forest, its wild inhabitants, and the changing seasons. For the few people that knew of his existence, he was simply called “The Hermit”.
First Chemainus Sawmill 1862 was Verity Dewar’s third mural, one she thought of as a delightful challenge. While she was aware it is very unlikely that the old sawmill was ever as brightly painted as she depicted it, the positioning of the mural wall amongst the lovely dark trees and the shaded pathway within the park led her to be a bit whimsical in the treatment of her subject.
“This was a commission I was thrilled to win, for several reasons. First, the subject was very close to my heart – I have read many books on the First World War and spent hours in London’s Imperial War Museum imagining the horror of it, as well as listening to my grandfather’s memories of his years in the trenches. Secondly, I had wanted to do a Chemainus mural ever since I discovered the town when I arrived from England – and here was one I could really get my teeth into!"
Many newcomers from China worked in the mines at Mt. Sicker. Among them was Shong Hai Chang, who opened a general store before the turn of the 20th century. He called it “Sam Yick Kee” (“three benefits”). The mural portrays the store operated by his son, Ning Chang, (the first Chinese child born in Chemainus, 1913). The street scene illustrates this popular meeting place and focal point for Chinese immigrants supplying commodities and foods imported directly from China. The Changs also operated a piggery and sold meat to local markets.