SHIPBUILDING on the West Coast began with the construction of the NORTH WEST AMERICA, a 40-ton sloop built by CHINESE workers under the direction of John MEARES at YUQUOT in 1788. The ship was something of a novelty, however, and there was no new construction until the discovery of gold on the FRASER R in the 1850s created a demand for ships to transport miners and their supplies (see GOLD RUSH, FRASER R).

Steamboat Construction

The first ships built at FORT VICTORIA were...

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