Colony of the Queen Charlotte Islands

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Colony of the Queen Charlotte Islands
Colony of British North America
Flag of Queen Charlotte Islands
CapitalNone – governance via Colony of Vancouver Island
 • TypeColonial Administration
• 1853–1858
Lieutenant Governor 
• 1853–1863
James Douglas
• Established
• Disestablished
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Haida people
Colony of British Columbia (1858–1866)

The Colony of the Queen Charlotte Islands was a British colony constituting the archipelago of the same name from 1853 to 1858, when it was amalgamated into the Colony of British Columbia.[1] In 2010 the archipelago was renamed Haida Gwaii.[2]

The Queen Charlotte Colony was created by the Colonial Office in response to the increase in American marine trading activity resulting from the gold rush on Moresby Island in 1851. No separate administration or capital for the colony was ever established, as its only officer or appointee was James Douglas, who was simultaneously Governor of Vancouver Island. He was granted a commission as Lieutenant-Governor of the Queen Charlotte Islands in September 1852.[3]

While ostensibly the archipelago was a British colony, historical evidence, such as a seasonal mission of exploration to survey the islands as late as 1859[4] does not support the establishment of a permanent European settlement following the unsuccessful conclusion to the Queen Charlottes Gold Rush in 1853.[citation needed]

Prior to and during its establishment as a nominative British colony, the archipelago was inhabited by groups belonging to the Haida people, which made up the sole population of the ostensible colony.[5]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Sage, W. N. (Walter Noble). "Sir James Douglas and British Columbia". p. 217. Retrieved December 7, 2020.
  2. ^ "Queen Charlotte Islands renamed Haida Gwaii in historic deal | CBC News". CBC. Retrieved December 7, 2020.
  3. ^ Sage, W. N. (Walter Noble). "Sir James Douglas and British Columbia". p. 177. Retrieved December 7, 2020.
  4. ^ Sage, W. N. (Walter Noble). "Sir James Douglas and British Columbia". Retrieved December 7, 2020.
  5. ^ Sage, W. N. (Walter Noble). "Sir James Douglas and British Columbia". p. 100. Retrieved December 7, 2020.
  • Lillard, Charles. Just East of Sundown:The Queen Charlotte Islands.
  • Sage, W. N. (Walter Noble), 1888–1963. 1930. “Sir James Douglas and British Columbia.” B. BC Historical Books. [Toronto] : The University of Toronto Press. doi: [1]

Coordinates: 53°15′00″N 132°15′00″W / 53.25000°N 132.25000°W / 53.25000; -132.25000