Phil and Anna Daykin,: Lightkeepers at Race Rocks 1889-1891

Phil Daykin and his wife Anna were the lightkeepers at Race Rocks from January 1, 1889 to April 23rd, 1891( Cadieux papers say he started July 03, 1889?) The Daily Colonist of the time does not have any information about them being at Race Rocks, however from April 17, 1891 to July 19, 1912, he was the lightkeeper at Carmanah Point Lighthouse which had just opened on September 15, 1890. Mrs. Daykin died there in 1906. There they encountered many incredible and tragic events from shipwrecks to untimely deaths of friends and family, some of which I have represented below.
These references are possible because in December, 2008, the Times Colonist with the cooperation of The University of Victoria made the archives for the first 50 years of the newspaper available on line at
The British Colonist 1858-1910
May 6, 1889 News of Coal near Carmanah Point reported by Daykin ( He has secured a large section of land in the area.)
December 3, 1892 Daykin reports serious trouble among the Indians of the Nitnat Tribe
April 6, 1893 Daykin and his two sons assist two officers who secured wreck of the Michigan
October 3, 1893, Phil Daykin searches for his son Ted and a friend drowned while fishing at Nitnat.
January 3, 1894 Invited to Carmanah for New Years, Norman Friend drowns
September 20, 1894 Phil and Anna Daykin’s son William is second one to die.
January 14, 1896 Saved from the sea.Crew of the Janet Cowan Arrive by the Louise after stayng with Daykin.
January 15, 1896 Wreckage of the Janet Cowan and need for lighthouse on Bonilla Point
Aug 22, 1896 A missionary writes a biased article on the potlatch which infuriates Phil Daykin
Sept 19, 1896 Phil Daykin writes his opposition to the missionary’s letter.
October 4, 1896 a methodist missionary opposing Daykins comments on the potlatch
December 18, 1897 The shipwreck Vesta: Phil Daykin and his son are involved in the rescue .
January 13, 1898 Mr. Daykin has lost faith in the telegraph system so will take back to the lighthouse some carrier pigeons for any news of importance
December 19, 1899 Daykin forwards money from Indians for assisting the white people.
January 10, 1900 Daykin gives report of ship wreckage.
June 12, 1900 A letter from Daykin complaining about the telegraph service from Carmanah
February 15, 1902 Canned salmon washed ashore with bouy of the Red Rock. awaiting to see if it reaches Liverpool or was it wrecked.
Nov 6, 1900 Daykin reports finding the station boat from Cape Flattery, later two men are found dead at Cape Beale
January 26,1906 Lifebuoy picked up by Daykin on the beach at Carmanah
January 27,1906 Phil Daykin with crew trying to help wreck of the Valencia
January 30, 1906 Narrow escape if an unknown Bark near Carmanah reported by the “energetic” lightkeeper Daykin
March 9, 1906 –Investigation into wreck of the Valencia
April 11, 1906– Mrs. Daykin dies and her body is transferred to Victoria for burial
November 9, 1906 Daykin finds wreakage of American fishing schooner “Surf Duck”
File on Shipwrecks at Race Rocks
More  Archival entries
Go to the HISTORY INDEX for Race Rocks
Proceed to: CONTEMPORARY HISTORY- 1975-present
For photographs of the Light station in the early years go to this file: