Post Office and Store

Nine miles S.W. of Victoria. Indian for “smets-shosin,” meaning smelling of oil.

Established 1-4-1881, closed 1-8-1891, reopened 1-7-1896, closed 1-4-1899, reopened 1-9-1903, closed 2-4-1906, reopened 1-1-1909, closed 11-7-1973.

Post Masters and Mistress of Metchosin

John Parker Jr. 10-3-1871
Mrs. R. Gleed 1-4-1881 31-7-1891
T. Stothard 1-7-1896 31-3-1899
S. A. Clark 1-9-1903 1-4-1906
T. G. Stothard 1-1-1909 21-12-1910
C. A. Wasden 2-1-1911 5-7-1912
E. H. Casey 1-9-1912 8-10-1913
A. D. Hardie 10-12-1913 18-10-1919
Captain R. C.
29-11-1919 4-1-1921
A. D. Ellwood J.P. 17-2-1921 31-5-1957
J. K. Robinson (acting) 1-8-1957 31-7-1958
Mrs. E. 0. Stansall 1-6-1958 1-6-1968
Mrs. E. M. Boyd 1-6-1968 4-6-1971
Mrs. C. Waterman 4-6-1971 11-7-1973
Final closure

The list of postmasters shows how frequently changes were made, owing to the blatant patronage policies of the time. Anyone holding a government position expected to lose his job if the government was defeated. This would seem to explain the many changes, but it is not known why the post office was closed from time to time.

John Parker Jr.
John Parker Jr.

John Parker on the 10th of March in 1871 received the appointment of Post Master of Metchosin. Since he lived in Rocky Point it is not known whether he did the post office business on horseback while delivering mail or if he actually had a post office in a corner of his home. For years he ran the express between Victoria and Metchosin: “Metchosin Mail. The contract for carrying mail weekly to Metchosin has been awarded to Mr. John Parker for the sum of $300 per annum.”

Mrs. R. Gleed
Mrs. R. Gleed

In 1881 the first post office in Metchosin was opened in Mrs. Gleed’s house, she being the first post mistress. The post office was certainly situated in the Gleed house on Rocky Point Road during Mrs. Gleed’s and Mr. Stothard’s tenure.

It was in 1911 that a separate store and post office was built next door to the Gleeds by a Mr. and Mrs. Wasden from Texas (also spelt Watson). In the official listing he is C. A. Watson. From then until 1957 the post office was housed in that same building, enlarged from time to time.

Mr. A. D. Hardie (related to the Leeming family) ran the store and post office for 6 years and Captain Barrington-Foote for 2 and Mr. A. D. Ellwood for 36 years, until 1957. With his retirement the store was closed and the building taken down. The gap by the roadside is still apparent, across the road from St. Thomas’ Roman Catholic Church. Mrs. Stansall, who officiated for 10 years, housed the post office in her own home next door. Mrs. Boyd, farther along Rocky Point Road, also had it in her house during her 3 years of service. Then Mrs. Waterman, who lived just around the corner on Walpole Road, presided until the final closure in 1973.

The Gleed Home, site of Metchosin's Post Office
The Gleed Home, site of Metchosin's Post Office

Source: Footprints. Pioneer Families of the Metchosin District, Marion I. Helgesen editor