Ninety-second in an alphabetical series on West Kootenay/Boundary place names
A recent installment in this series on Healy’s Landing, a remote settlement on the Duncan River, stated its namesake, Jack Healy, was still alive as of 1922, but the date of his death was unknown.
While details of his passing remain a mystery, a recently-discovered photo in the Nelson Daily News of Jan. 29, 1938 reveals Healy was still kicking as of that date.
The caption reads: “Healy’s Landing to most folks is ‘farthest north’ on the Upper Duncan, though Hall Creek is 12 miles further up. Left to right are shown Jack Healy, the famous pioneer; another pioneer, Jack McPhail, now passed on; Miss Maud Healy, niece of Jack Healy, who for 40 years has hunted and trapped fearlessly; and Kenneth Pond of Nelson, on a trip up to Hall Creek with his father to look at the Red Elephant group. Mr. Healy went home to Ireland a couple of years ago to live, but a year ago he came back to his ‘little gray home in the west.’”
There are a lot of Hoodoo place names in BC — creeks, glaciers, lakes, mountains, cliffs, and rivers — but there’s only one Hudu Creek and Hudu Valley, between Fruitvale and Ross Spur.
According to the book Beaver Valley & Pend d’Oreille, “Sid Ross owned most of the land in the Hudu Valley [and] employed quite a few of the local residents and several Japanese as fallers. Over the years five Japanese fallers were killed due to the danger of falling dry snags; hence the name Hudu Valley: a bad place to be.”
Two Japanese fallers died in logging accidents around Salmo, one in 1910 and another in 1922, but both worked for the Kootenay Shingle Co., not Sid Ross.
According to the BC Geographical Names database, Hudu Creek first shows up on a 1915 map of the Kootenay, Osoyoos, and Similkameen mining divisions.
In addition to the creek itself, which flows into Beaver Creek, the name is perpetuated in Hudu Creek Road.
This phantom Slocan Valley townsite was first mentioned in the Spokane Spokesman Review of Jan. 27, 1898: “Dan Hanlon has completed his cabin on the Anniston mineral claim on the first north fork of Lemon creek. This is the site of the concentrator which will be erected early in the spring. The probabilities are that a town will also soon spring up. Huntingdon has been selected as the name for the place.”
Two days later, the Slocan City News ran a nearly identical note, but added James Gross was Hanlon’s partner. Huntingdon was never mentioned again and the origin of its name is unknown.
It wasn’t the same place as the Lemon Creek townsite, also known as Summit; nor Lemon Creek Siding, also known as Lemonton and Del Monte. But it might have been the original name for the town of Oro. We’ll get to them all in due course.
Previous installments in this series
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The unique area offers numerous opportunities both at the lake and in the neighbouring communities