PR- Seal Cove

Prince Rupert, British Columbia, Canada

Seal Cove

Lat- 55.33
Long- 103.28

Located around the corner from Ritchie Point, and Hays Cove, On Morse Basin

Canadian Fish and Cold Storage Co. Ltd.

A $120,000 Fish Curing and Refrigeration Plant was being established at Seal Cove in 1910

Canadian Fish and Cold Storage Co. Ltd., Prince Rupert
located at Seal Cove
Photo courtesy Grant Walker, CA

It was expected to be open in the spring of 1912, but wasn't until the end of June 1912, when the steam was turned on.

Canadian Fish and Cold Storage Co., Ltd.,
English Company, organized in 1907,
Incorporated in 1908, in BC
Capitalized at $1,500,000, 15 thousand shares at $100 ea.
It was expected to be the largest Cold Storage Plant in the World.
Grand trunk had set aside land at Porpoise Bay for them.
Somehow this was changed to Seal Cove.
Company Executives, Dec-1907

President- Andrew Kelly, of Winnipeg MB
He was also President of the Western Flour Mills Company.

Vice-President-James Carruthers, of Montreal, Quebec
the largest Grain Exporter in Canada, and a Director of the Dominion Bank.

Director- J. W. Stewart partner in the Foley, Welch & Stewart Co.

Managing Director- George H. Collins, of Vancouver

Director and General Manager- Grier Samuel Starratt,
General Manager of the New England Fish Co.
He was involved in the Halibut Industry for 14 years before this

Plant Design
Ice-Making Capacity, 80 tons daily (100 tons in another source)
Cold Storage Capacity, 14,000,000 Pounds
Ice storage capacity, 2,000 Tons
later company became “Rupert Cold Storage”

Superintendent in 1911 was Daniel Lyons

Robert Matheison was the Stationary Engineer in 1911

Grier Samuel Starratt arrived in New Westminster in 1891.
In 1907 he was hired to design, build, and manage this plant.
He managed this plant until 1914, per one source.

Dec 8, 1911, George H. Collins, Manager of the Canadian Fish and Cold Storage Co. Plant at Seal Cove,
Capitalized at $1,500,000.00, was on route to England, passing through Oakland CA,
where he was to call for tenders to build 16 fishing vessels.
500 men were to be hired, None were Japanese!
“White men and Indians” were only ones hired.
Race was a big issue in the fishing industry, back then.

They were to initially have 10 large motor boats.

The warehouse was 781,000 cu. ft. or refrigerated space.
It was constructed of Steel and Reinforced Concrete throughout,
6 stories, (7 stories in another article)
Building 80 X 145 ft. started apr 4, 1911, completed June 27, 1911
It was insulated with a 3 inch Tile and 5 inches of Cork Board.
The floors were covered with a mastic asphalt.
It had supporting pillars from the bedrock below, to the roof.
It had 156 steps alongside one of the 2 elevators.
One elevator for Cold Storage, other for the fish.
July 1911 they were pouring concrete for the Machine Shop,
boiler room, and smoke stacks.
Construction Superintendent George L. Clayton,
was in charge here at that time.
They expected a major business when the GTPR was opened.
Consisted of well built wharves.
Fresh whole fish, unloaded on the wharf,
could be hauled through the bottom floor,
directly into refrigerated rail cars,
if no processing required for an order,
through the wall of doors adjacent to the tracks.
Also a large boarding house was located here.
The GTPR extended their track to the site of the plant.
They used 7 or 8 refrigerated cars at a time.

1918- Mr. T. M. Johnson was General Manager of this Plant

1919- they sold the “Rupert Brand”

Aug 1919 they installed insulation and freezing equipment in the top 2 floors.
This allowed them to freeze 60 tons of fish every 24 hrs,
plus produce 80 tons of Ice at the same time.

A 16 ft plank road was being built from Seal Cove
along 11th ave. to the boulevard, to McBride St., costing $24,500

A Rev W. S. Larter and his wife lived at Seal Cove
By end of Aug 1916, he left Rupert,
He was in charge of the Anglican Church in Smithers,
married with a daughter.
Before Prince Rupert he was in Hazelton

George Collins, Manager of the Canadian Fish and Cold Storage Co. Plant at Seal Cove, returned from England, Apr 1912,
They were building a new Cannery and Fertilizing plant
for $300,000 on the opposite shore of Tuck's Inlet.

Seal Cove School- 8th Ave. E.
Seal Cove Store- Groceries

July 17- E. F. Duby, representing the Emerson Sawmill
interests at Prince Rupert, was busy landing building material at the mill site at Seal Cove.
He was putting in a gridiron, a donkey engine, and derrick.
In a few weeks the erection of the mill buildings will begin.
Half a million board ft of lumber left Vancouver to build this mill.

The Prince Rupert Lumber Company Mill

Owned by J. S. Emerson interests in Vancouver and Portland
E. F. Duby Engineer and Manager
1923 E. F. Duby was also in charge at the Kleanza Mill at Usk.

Albert & McCaffery Ltd was the local agent for the Mill

Oct 1917
R. G. Lowry was at Seal Cove
building a new Fish Packing plant at Seal Cove

Small yards established here for the construction of Boat Hulls
Forms for a concrete boat were being constructed here
the first of its kind in Northern waters.

Prince Rupert Lumber Company Mill was being leased to Vancouver Interests, Mar 1919

Seal Cove Hotel
William J. Quayle, Chef
Boarding House for Prince Rupert Lumber Co.

1921 and 1923
Seal Cove Pool Room
S. Shimada, Prop

Seal Cove Marine Ways
Laurence Halcrow, Manager
Boat Building and Repairing

A Major World Event passed through Seal Cove in April 1924, and has been virtually forgotten about in this area.

Douglas World Cruisers, Air Service USA, Around the World Flight Landed here at Seal Cove, Apr 6, 1924

2 of the 4 planes, Nelson's “New Orleans” and Wade's “Boston” at Seal Cove, Prince Rupert, Apr 6, 1924
Photos above, courtesy Grant Walker, CA

Note- the First Around the World Flight link here, will take you to my BC Coastal Airline History Section of this web site.
The reason it is here, is their flight plan included Prince Rupert, the only stop in Western Canada.

Prince Rupert, BC, Canada, 3 planes arrived Apr 6, 1924, at 4:54,
Wade arrived at 5:26, they all left to Sitka AK, Apr 10, 1924,
so we know they were in Prince Rupert for 4 days repairing Major Martin's plane.

Per newspaper article Mayor S. M. Newton of Prince Rupert, and other dignitaries, and townspeople attended their arrival.
This was the only stop on Canadian Soil on the Pacific Coast.

Sept 1940
E. J. Ryan Contracting Ltd. started work on a New Air Base located at Seal Cove.
18 Buildings, including a hangar, Hospital Building, Radio Station, Gas Station, and Garage.
Estimated cost was to be $300,000

1945- 1960's at least McLean's Shipyard Ltd. was here

  • Prince Rupert Curling Club
  • Seal Cove Sea Plane Base
  • Seal Cove Seaplane Terminal - ZSW and CZSW
  • Canadian Coast Guard Base
  • BC Forest Service Marine Base
  • BC Air Ambulance Services
  • Helicopter Charter Services

William James Quayle
b- ca 1880, England, age 41 in 1921
d- Nov 30, 1965 New Westminster BC, age 84
buried in Fraser Cemetery, New Westminster
Immigrated in 1909
Shown as a Cook for a Fish Co.
married Susan “May” Quirk, Jan 14, 1909 in Vancouver BC
b- ca 1882, Isle of Mann, age 39 in 1921
Immigrated in 1910
Son- Thomas Richard Quayle
b- ca 1910 in BC
Son- Norman Quayle
b- ca 1911 in BC
son- Clifford Quayle
b- ca 1918 in BC
daughter- Isabella Quayle
b- ca 1912 in BC
Family living at 209 5th st in Prince Rupert, in 1921

Seville Martineau Newton
b- Sept 25, 1862 in England
d- Mar 6, 1933 in Essondale BC, age 70
Mayor S. M. Newton, owned the “Evening Empire” Daily Newspaper in Rupert.
son of Rev. William and Sarah Newton

Laurence Halcrow
b- ca 1889, Scotland, age 32 in 1921
d- June 15, 1962 in Sidney BC
Shipbuilder in 1921
Immigrated in 1910
Mar 5, 1910 he was on Empress of Britain, heading to Nanaimo BC
Shown as a Carpenter, born in Scotland

Everard Forest Duby
b- may 23, 1878 Sarpy Co, NE, US
d- Oct 10, 1936 Seattle, King co., WA
buried in Masonic Memorial Park, Tumwater, WA
married living in Prince Rupert in 1921
both immigrated in 1911
married Glenora “Glenna” Hiatt, Jan 22, 1902, Pierce Co, WA
b- ca 1879, in USA
Father- Millard Fillmore Duby
Mother- Clara Elizabeth Duby

Grier Samuel Starratt
b- 1867 in Colchester, NS
d- Mar 15, 1944, in Vancouver, BC, age 78
son of John Starratt and Janet ?
married Annie Barbara Johnston,
married July 18, 1892, Great Village, Colchester, NS
b- Aug 23, 1867 in NS
d- Jan 8, 1946 in Vancouver BC, age 78
daughter of Gardner Johnston, and ? Wilson.

son Arthur W. Starratt
b- ca 1901 in BC

daughter- Murial Starratt
b- ca 1897 in BC

James Sharpe Emerson
b- Feb 28, 1858 in Ireland
d- Jan 10, 1921 in Vancouver BC, age 62
son of John Emerson and Margaret Anne Sharpe

wife- Jean W. Emerson
b-May 1866 in Ireland

son- John Emerson
b- Apr 1887 in USA

daughter- Margaret Emerson
b- June 1895 in USA

George Henry Collins
b- Mar 12, 1863 in Quebec
d- Aug 6, 1933 in Vancouver BC, age 70
buried in Ocean View Burial Park, Vancouver BC
Shown as a Mining Engineer in 1911
Manager- BC Nickel Mines
Came to BC ca 1883

wife-Amelia L. Collins, nee ?
b- May 1873 in USA
immigrated to Canada in 1895
1911 both living at Seal Cove.

Daniel Lyons
b- Oct 1870 in USA

wife- Adella Lyons
b- Nov 1875 in USA
Living on 6th ave, in PR in 1911

T. M. Johnson
b- 1878, welsh nationality
Oct 1, 1921 he travelled from Rupert to Seattle on the the “Alaska”
Can't find much more on him in a quick search

Seal Cove Sea Plane Base 2005

EXT Links- NOT my sites

Edward John Ryan

Prince Rupert Lumber Co


  • Last modified: 2018/02/20 16:09
  • by dlgent