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Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Ross Bay Cemetery

The light was just beautiful this evening at the cemetery.  It was a perfect evening for photo tour.


Victoria's Ross Bay Cemetery opened in 1873 to serve the burial needs of the growing city of Victoria, BC, Canada. Overlooking Ross Bay, it is 11 hectares in size (27.5 acres) and has almost 28,000 interments. Not just a burial ground, it serves as a park and restful get-away for many people.

After Fort Victoria was founded in 1843, a small graveyard was opened at what is now the southwest corner of Douglas St. and Johnson St. In 1855, a new cemetery was opened, the Quadra Street Cemetery, now known as the Old Burying Ground (or Pioneer Square).

As the Quadra Street Cemetery was filling up, the city looked for a good location for a new, larger cemetery. The original site the city chose for Victoria’s new cemetery was 47 acres just outside the city near Ogden Point. The land was given to Victoria’s Cemetery Trustees in 1872 and was to have 12 acres cleared for use right away. Many people opposed this site, including Dr. J.S. Helmcken. They said it was too valuable to use for a cemetery, and it was a health risk because it was on the city’s windward side. Taking the protests of the citizens to heart, the city sold some of the land. It then bought 13 acres of cleared land at Ross Bay from Robert Burnaby (the man for whom the municipality of Burnaby would be named) for $300 per acre. By October 1872, the site was being laid out and drained, and by the following March, plots were being offered for sale. The cemetery was named Ross Bay Cemetery because it is beside Ross Bay. The bay was named after Isabella Ross who had purchased the land.

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