BMSC Historical Timeline

We respectfully acknowledge that the BMSC is situated on the traditional territory of the Huu-ay-aht First Nations, a Nuu-chah-nulth Nation and member of the Maa-nulth Treaty Society.

HISTORICAL TIMELINE
1000 B.C.E to present

The Huu-ay-aht First Nations have a long and proud history in their traditional territories.

The Huu-ay-aht First Nations have a long and proud history in their traditional territories.

Nestled between the rugged outer coast and Barkley Sound’s protected inner waters, lies the sacred ancient village of Kiix̣in. The Huu-ay-aht First Nations have a long and proud history in their traditional territories. Their history extends back to the beginning of time, and tells of many great people, adventures, traditions..

1800s
1902

Bamfield Cable station constructed

Bamfield Cable station constructed

The Pacific Cable Board (PCB) Cable Station was constructed in 1902, and a second building in 1926, with Bamfield being the terminus of an underwater cable laid between Bamfield and Fanning Island, a tiny coral atoll in the middle of the Pacific.  

1969

Story 1 – Birth of Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre: The search for a site.

Story 1 – Birth of Bamfield Marine Sciences Centre: The search for a site.

Early in 1969, a float plane meandered its way over the convoluted bays of western Vancouver Island’s coast as eager eyes peered from the window. Seaweed scientist Louis Druehl was one of those aboard heading a search committee tasked with choosing the best spot to build a Canadian west coast..

1969

Story 2 – Five Universities: A story of a remarkable collaboration.

Story 2 – Five Universities: A story of a remarkable collaboration.

This is the story of how five universities that in all other respects are competitors — UBC, SFU, UVic, UAlberta, UCalgary — came together to collaborate on the vision, construction and operation of BMSC.

1969

The first biodiversity surveys are conducted.

The first biodiversity surveys are conducted.

Throughout 1969, UBC researchers Dr. Paul Harrison, Dan Pace, Ken Bailey, and others, camped out in the cable station building, conducting the early survey work. There was no power other than possibly a generator. Spooky noises like rushing wind and loud banging noises were heard at night on several occasions,..Read More

1972

The first Field Trip arrives from SFU.

The first Field Trip arrives from SFU.

The first visitors to the Bamfield Marine Station was a field trip from SFU. The week previous to their arrival, on March 14th 1972, the M.V. Vanlene ran aground off Austin Island, providing an opportunity to study the effects of an oil spill on the pristine shores.

1972

The first undergraduate field courses are held at BC Packers in West Bamfield.

The first undergraduate field courses are held at BC Packers in West Bamfield.

The Bamfield Marine Station’s first courses were held at BC Packers in West Bamfield. In the beginning, starting with nothing, “we had to improvise everything,” says Dr. Louis Druehl, who still lives and works in Bamfield.

1972

Construction of the main building labs and offices begins.

Construction of the main building labs and offices begins.

While the ecologists and phycologists carried on with their course work amidst friendly rivalry, construction was taking place at the old cable station site. A ‘penthouse’ for offices was built on the roof as well as a complex seawater system, sewage treatment plant, and backup generators were installed. The wharves..Read More

1973

The Main Building is ready for students and researchers.

The Main Building is ready for students and researchers.

By 1973, the Main Building labs and offices are ready for use, and the first students arrived for their courses that summer.   The top floor became the undergraduate laboratory.   The second floor was divided into cubicles for graduate students, a washroom was converted to a dark room, and..Read More

1980

NATO Seaweed Conference

NATO Seaweed Conference

The participants in the 1980 NATO Seaweed Conference, likely the first international conference held at the Bamfield Marine Station.

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