Alfred C. Wurtele was reeve of Esquimalt and instrumental in the creation of the coat-of-arms.

Coat-of-arms emblematic of Esquimalt

Coat-of-arms was created in 1956 through research undertaken by heraldic authority, Lt.-Cmdr. Alan Beddoe

This month marks the 50th anniversary of Canada’s Maple Leaf flag.

Resolutions were passed by Parliament on Dec. 15, 1964 and two days later by the Senate, paving the way for a proclamation by Queen Elizabeth II, declaring  the new flag officially adopted on Feb. 15, 1965.

Replacing the Canadian Red Ensign which had flown for nearly 100 years, the red and white flag with its stylized 11-point maple leaf, was designed by George F. G. Stanley.

The maple leaf has been used as a Canadian emblem since the 1700s and seemed a fitting choice when the committee formed by then-prime minister Lester B. Pearson made a formal recommendation after months of debate as to what best represented our country.

Esquimalt, too, has its symbols, no more so than in its coat-of-arms (Armorial Bearings) created in 1956 through research undertaken by heraldic authority, Lt.-Cmdr. Alan Beddoe.

Township council asked that the design reflect the story of Esquimalt, including reference to First Nations, the Royal Navy, the Puget Sound Agricultural Company (a subsidiary of the Hudson’s Bay Company) and the Royal Engineers.

The design is made up of many parts.

The central v-shaped section with blue and white wavy lines, symbolizes the ocean surrounded by yellow broom, depicted in gold.

The bird is an  interpretation of the Naden raven, in tribute to our original inhabitants while the vair (fur) reflects the Hudson’s Bay Company. It is flanked by the golden anchor for the Royal Navy and the golden grenade for the Royal Engineers.

The crest, atop the helmet, is a tribute to the Royal Canadian Navy; with a sailor’s hand holding a trident to ward off our enemies. And the motto, “Es-whoy–malth” is an anglicized version of Lekwungen meaning “a place of gradually shoaling waters.”

On Jan. 23, 1957, Lt.-Gov. Frank M. Ross presented the coat-of-arms to the township.

More recently, in 2014, the digital version of the coat-of-arms was updated to conform with the original colour renderings and a new township flag created.

Last month, a new yardarm-style flagpole was erected at Municipal Hall, permitting the flying of three flags concurrently: the Canadian, provincial and township flag.

•••

Greg Evans is an archivist with Esquimalt Municipal Archives.

 

 

Just Posted

Missing: 12-year-old girl last seen in area of Shelbourne and Hillside

Victoria police ask for public help in locating girl

The blind lead the blind at the Pacific Training Centre

Centre specializes in teaching visually impaired people everyday skills to live an independent life

Fewer Greater Victoria residents collecting EI benefits

The number of local EI recipients dropped by 5.5 per cent from January 2018 to January 2019

Sidney woman hosts charity shabby-chic furniture sale

Upcycled and refurbed furniture sells to benefit the Alzheimer’s Society of BC and Crohn’sColitis Canada

Student Voice: Reynolds ReyBots qualify for Texas-sized Robot championship

ReyBots robot met premier, ‘dodged’ the competition

Protective human chain forms around Victoria mosque for Friday prayer

Islanders stand arm-in-arm to show support in aftermath of New Zealand shootings

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

Wildlife activists slam B.C. business, clubs for ‘wolf-whacking’ contests

Chilcotin Guns, Creston Valley Rod and Gun Club and West Kootenay Outdoorsmen Club under fire

‘Families torn apart:’ Truck driver in fatal Broncos crash gets 8-year sentence

Judge Inez Cardinal told court in Melfort, Sask., that Sidhu’s remorse and guilty plea were mitigating factors

Jr. B Cougars advance to both league finals and provincials

Victoria beats Nanaimo 4-3 in Game 6 Friday night to win series

Vancouver Island motorists attempted CPR on victim in fatal Highway 4 crash

Collision took place west of Whiskey Creek; man in his 70s died

Greater Victoria Wanted List for the week of March 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: When do you think the next major earthquake will hit Vancouver Island?

According to seismologists, Vancouver Island is overdue for a magnitude 7 earthquake.… Continue reading

Most Read