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Visitor's Guide

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THE GISCOME PORTAGE community thrived until the onset of World War I By 1915 the railway had been built on the far side of the river the young men who settled the area began to leave to join the war and transportation was rapidly shifting from river to road and rail travel In 1919 a wagon road was completed from Prince George to Summit Lake bypassing Giscome Portage The Seebach and Huble General Store soon closed The Huble family moved into Prince George and Edward Seebach moved to run the partners freighting business and warehouses at Summit and McLeod Lakes THE PROPERTY was sold to Josephine Mitchell in 1929 She operated the WM Ranch which also functioned as a guest ranch offering Wild West experiences to international visitors After she sold the ranch in 1957 it passed through several owners before the province purchased the property in the mid 1970s for use as community pasture A group was formed in 1984 to save the deteriorating Huble house and in 1986 the Regional District of Fraser Fort George obtained 54 acres of land surrounding the original house and the Giscome Portage trail The Huble Homestead and Giscome Portage Regional Park opened to the public in 1989 Visitor s Guide Hundreds of years ago the Indigenous people of this province established a vast network of trails connecting their territories for the purpose of travel and trade between different nations In this region one trail was particularly useful as it crossed over the Continental Divide and was the shortest route between the waterways flowing to the Pacific Ocean and those flowing into the Arctic Ocean The Lheidli T enneh referred to this route as Lhdesti the shortcut in 1863 John Robert Giscome a black prospector from Jamaica asked a native guide to show him the best route to the Peace River area The guide brought Giscome and his partner Henry McDame to Lhdesti When Giscome returned to Victoria later that year he penned a letter to The Daily British Colonist recounting his travels and describing the trail he had been shown The newspaper dubbed the route Giscome s Portage Despite the article the trail saw little use until the Omineca gold rush started in 1869 Over the next 40 years the trail was used by prospectors fur traders and surveyors to travel to the northern part of the province ALbert and annie huble ALBERT JAMES Huble was born in Oak Lake Ontario The oldest son in a family of eleven children Albert is said to have left home as a young teenager after an argument with his father After years of working in different areas around the country Al took a job with Canadian Pacific Railway in the Kootenays From there it edward seebach is believed he came to the Fort George area around 1902 Edward Andrew Seebach was born in Anne may Hart was born in Havelock Ontario She Fullerton Ontario and was the oldest of eleven married William Copperthwaite and the couple had children There is no record of what brought Ed to three children When Al Huble returned to Ontario to British Columbia but in 1903 two years after he left visit his family in 1910 the marriage between Annie and Ontario he met Al Huble and the two men decided to William had ended and Huble s diary makes mention of enter into a business partnership several meetings between the Hart and Huble families When Annie moved to British Columbia the following SEEBACH WAS known to have been an summer her two oldest children remained in Ontario incredibly hard worker and tough as nails By the time with their grandparents and Ada accompanied her the Huble family moved into Prince George in 1919 Ed mother to their new home The couple welcomed a was living at the store the two ran in McLeod Lake In daughter in 1911 and the family grew by three more 1931 he fell from a ladder while extinguishing a fire daughters and a son After moving into Prince George in injuring his leg so badly it needed to be amputated A 1919 they had another two sons Albert Huble passed year later Ed was admitted to a Prince George hospital away in 1947 at the age of 75 followed by his wife in in a state of dementia he died three days later at the 1949 at the age of 65 age of 46 A Brief History of the Huble Homestead and Giscome Portage oPEN DAILY VICTORIA DAY TO LABOUR DAY yEARS later in 1904 Albert Huble and Edward 10 00 am TO 5 00 PM admission by donation suggested rates Adults 5 00 children seniors 3 00 families 10 00 Illustrations by Kathleen Angelski Seebach established traplines in the vicinity of the Giscome Portage The two men foresaw the location s importance as a transportation route and they pre empted land at the southern end of the trail in 1905 They also set up a store to cater to travelers In 1909 the homestead then part of the community of Giscome Portage became a regular stop for the paddlewheelers that made their way up and down the Fraser River By 1911 there were 27 settlers in the area

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15 Meat Cache 7 Animal Shelter This log building is thought to have been constructed by Al Homesteaders often used raised caches to store meat and Huble for his pigs the shelter is located far enough from the other foodstuffs out of the reach of predators and rodents 1 SalmonValley Post Office house to avoid the smell associated with pigs The building was 16 Garden Believed to have been built in restored in the fall of 2000 The site is currently home to two gardens a small heirloom 1918 this red log structure 8 Craft Staff Cabin flower garden and a larger vegetable garden The vegetable was originally located in Built after the Hubles sold the property this simple log cabin garden is a fraction of the size of Annie Huble s original Salmon Valley and was home is thought to have been constructed and used by ranch hands garden which would have extended onto the riverbanks to Stearns and Gertrude McNeill Stearns ran the post office out of his home from working for the WM Ranch in the 1930s The cabin was She was fond of flowers and maintained a flower garden where the vegetable garden exists today 1923 to 1943 while Gertrude ran the government library restored in 1992 and is used today for storage and taught school out of the same building After the 9 Outhouses see map 17 Water Pump McNeills left in the early 1950s the building passed through Placed on the site of the original cribbed well the water several hands The Huble Homestead Giscome Portage 10 Rabbits Chickens pump draws from an underground spring The animals kept at Huble Homestead during the season are Heritage Society HHGPHS was approached in the 1980s to save it from demolition The building was disassembled and on loan to the HHGPHS for the summer months The Huble 18 Seebach Huble General Store then reconstructed in the upper family would have kept chickens for their meat and eggs Huble and Seebach began parking lot at Huble Homestead 11 Flat Roofed Cabin building a new store in 2 Wheelchair Accessible Outhouse The Flat Roofed Cabin was 1913 to accommodate the see map reconstructed on the original increase in business the two men were experiencing location of the building it 3 Jim Scott Memorial The false front building was replicates The first cabin was Jim Scott was a Regional a beckoning symbol of built by Al Huble and Ed District director who was an civilization to river traffic Seebach when they first came advocate for the park Customers could trade to Giscome Portage around 1904 This cabin served as the their furs arrange to have 4 Wheelchair Accessible Outhouse partners home until they each built a cabin on their own land supplies freighted to see map after which time they used it as a store In 1913 the partners Summit Lake hire a river 5 Welcome Barn guide or buy fresh built a large false front general store and the flat roofed cabin In his diary Al Huble records working on building a barn in became a workshop and guesthouse Al repaired shoes vegetables The twenty seven settlers living in the area could the summer of 1911 After its completion it would have brewed wine and did carpentry in the building Various purchase everything from candy and tobacco to clothes tack hardware and staples such as flour rice and beans been used to house Huble and Seebach s horses and possibly visitors to the homestead were offered a bed in the cabin The General Store was also a place to converse with your some cattle up until the construction of the new barn 12 Picnic Shelter see map After 1915 this barn was likely used as a storage building for Built in 2014 the picnic shelter was constructed at the site to neighbours and fellow travellers and keep up to date on the news of the world A reproduction of the building was the many implements used in the two men s freighting offer visitors relief from the sun and rain completed in 1997 officially reopening the business to the business It was reconstructed in 1987 based on the remainpublic once again ing foundation and historic photographs Today this barn is 13 Huble House 19 Implement Shed see map the starting point for guided tours of the Huble Homestead When Annie and her daughter and is home to a number of informational boards Ada joined Al on the homestead in 1911 they all lived in Al s 6 Large Barn small one room cabin It was in According to his diaries Al this cabin that the couple would Huble cut the logs for his welcome their first child a new barn in January of daughter named Bertha in 1915 he skidded the logs October 1911 The couple decided a larger home was needed used to build this barn for their growing family Al logged the timber for the home in from a nearby stand of the winter of 1911 and began construction of this squared log trees with the help of a home in the spring The large two storey home was built in fellow homesteader Huble the style of an Ontario farm house similar to the ones in which worked on the barn for both Annie and Al would have grown up Al used horses to months and notes his work on the floor in 1916 Presumably this barn housed the haul the cabin he and Annie had been living in for the past year draught horses which pulled Huble and Seebach s freight up to the new house for use as a kitchen Once completed the 20 Warehouse wagons across the Giscome Portage to their warehouse at house boasted a cellar a large parlor and dining room an Huble began work on his riverfront warehouse in 1910 Summit Lake The Huble children recall several stalls office a first floor master bedroom four bedrooms upstairs before travelling to Ontario to visit family Upon his return containing horses and dairy cows as well as a ladder leading and a summer kitchen in 1911 he hauled a large number of logs for a wharf and to a hay loft The barn collapsed due to heavy snow load in 14 Root Cellar completed the project in about June of that year The warethe 1970s and was reconstructed in 1987 Today it is used This underground building was used to store fruits and house would become a regular stop for steamboats travelto house tools and other implements vegetables in the absence of refrigeration ling on the upper Fraser who would use the wharf to load HUBLE HOMESTEAD HISTORIC SITE 20 Warehouse continued and unload freight for people and businesses ranging from the Hudson Bay s Company to individual trappers prospectors and homesteaders Huble and Seebach built a road down to the warehouse and hauled outfits on wagons or carts to their other warehouse on Summit Lake 21 Duck Pond The Huble family raised geese and ducks the ducks in this pen are on loan to the homestead for the summer months 22 Lhukw ba nits unih Fish Camp This fish camp is a reconstruction of a similar camp that was located approximately 2km up the Lhtakoh Fraser River from Huble Homestead The camp was a seasonal settlement that would have been occupied from mid shen summer through early dak et fall while the talukw salmon were running At the fish camp a group of people mostly extended family came to fish for salmon gather roots and berries and preserve their food for the colder months Throughout the remainder of the year Lheidli T enneh would travel throughout their territory gathering resources as they became available In the khui winter they gathered in villages The fish camp project was undertaken in partnership with the Lheidli T enneh First Nation and includes several structures such as a smoke house meat cache canvas tent a lean to common area and a drying rack as well as a hand carved cottonwood dugout ts i canoe 23 Seebach s Cabin This cabin originally built in the 1930s was believed to have been used for living quarters on the WM Ranch Restored in 1992 and used as a trapper s cabin exhibit In 2012 it was relocated from its original location beside the Staff Cabin to its current location on Seebach s pre emption and reopened as Seebach s Cabin 24 Blacksmith Shop A blacksmith shop would have been a necessity for the two men to keep their teams of draught horses shod and their wagons and carts in good repair This building was recreated at the homestead in 1995 based on the information gathered from original photographs Furnished almost entirely with the tools of Prince George pioneer blacksmith John Banzer this building has a fully functioning forge

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