LADYSMITH, town, pop 7,538 (2006), overlooks Oyster Harbour on the east coast of VANCOUVER ISLAND halfway between DUNCAN and NANAIMO. It was founded in 1901 by Premier James DUNSMUIR as a residential suburb for workers at his COAL mine at EXTENSION, 11 km north. It was also a shipping port for coal. It was named for the town in S Africa that was relieved by the British after a long siege during the Boer War; this event occurred while the townsite was being developed and many streets are named...

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