Upstarts & Outcasts Victoria's Not-So-Proper Past by Valerie Green
The popular view of Victoria's genteel history—all aristocratic colonists and Royal Navy dances—is about to be exploded. Yes, there were wealthy and well-born settlers, but the city's pioneers also included madams and murderers, seamstresses and saloonkeepers, who would never have been seated at the dinner tables of the upper class.
But all these people, upstanding citizens or impudent criminals, made their mark on the life of the little settlement perched on the Pacific; the New World meant a fresh start for everyone.
In Upstarts & Outcasts, Valerie Green has collected a rich variety of stories, including those of Arthur Bunster, the bombastic brewer; Soue Kee, the laundryman who served the fleet; Ellen Timmens, the disgruntled housemaid; Mr. Badger, the butler with bad feet; and Stella Carroll, the bawdiest of the many brothel owners—to mention just a few of the fascinating characters of Victoria's early years.
Victoria may not have been as prim and proper as legends have it, but it was much more colourful!
We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada
through the Canada Book Fund (CBF), a part of the Department of Canadian Heritage, the Canada Council for the Arts and the BC Arts Council.