The Salvation Army Families
Charles William "Will" Parker 1896-1916
The Salvation Army helped families with no future in England to immigrate to places throughout Canada and other countries. The Parker family were the first of two families to arrive. They had Lot #2. The family received about 22 acres. 2 1/2 acres was cleared with a modest dwelling, well, outhouse & fruit trees on it, 2 ½ acres partially cleared and the remainder not. Will’s mother, Sarah burst into tears upon discovery she would have to fit her family of 9 into a tiny house consisting of one large room and 2 small bedrooms.
An old log cabin was donated behind Lots 5 & 6 for the Coombs Colonist children to attend school in. Will at age 14 did not attend. He immediately went to work alongside his father farming their land and farming for other Colonists as well. His father was also logging in the area, helping to build the railway linking Parksville to Port Alberni and Will would work with him. Will also hunted and fished to help feed the family.