Alexander Charles Garrett
The Reverend Alexander Garrett. Wikimedia
(1832-1924) was born in Ireland. He graduated from Dublin’s Trinity College in 1855 and ordained an Anglican Minister in 1859. That year Rev. G. Hills was travelling through England recruiting men and raising money for the establishment of the Diocese in the colony of Vancouver Island. Garrett was accepted the challenge and embarked for Fort Victoria. After a seven month journey Garrett arrived in Victoria Harbour with his family to learn the expected clergy position had been already filled.
Fifteen years earlier before Garrett’s arrival Governor James Douglas, fearing fire, had required the Songhees who had gathered around Fort Victoria to move to where the Delta Hotel is currently located. Garrett was taken with the abject conditions in which they lived. He appealed to the Bishop and permission was given to open a school.
Three years later, during the Smallpox Epidemic of 1862 Garrett and his assistant were the only Europeans to provide aid to the Northern First Nations at their Rock Bay encampment. He lamented that “ they refused with few exceptions to be vaccinated”.