Kuper, Captain Augustus L.
b. 1809-08-16
d. 1885-10-29
Sir Augustus Leopold Kuper explored the Queen Charlotte Islands and eastern coast of Vancouver Island where he surveyed the area and maintained a naval presence after discovery of gold in the vicinity.1
Kuper was born in London on August 16, 1809. He entered the British navy in 1823. He served in England, Spain, and Portugal until he married Emma Margaret in June 1837. Later that year he was promoted to first lieutenant, and became a captain in 1841.2 Kuper then left to serve in South America, the Mediterranean, and Northern Australia before coming to the Pacific on the HMS Thetis between 1850 and 1853.3
A series of areas surrounding Vancouver Island are named after or by Kuper. Kuper Island, named Penelakut Island by the Coast Salish First Nations, is off the coast of Chemainus, British Columbia.4 While surveying the Queen Charlotte Islands in 1852, Kuper also named the Leopold Islands;5 Augustus Point;6 Cape Kuper.7 He named areas of Morseby Island such as Sangster Point after his lieutenant James Sangster;8 Baylee Bay, Percy Point, and Instructor Island after the Reverend William Cecil Percy Baylee - the chaplain on the HMS Thetis;9 Bell Point after the paymaster of the Thetis, John Bell;10 and Rogers Island named after William Rogers who was the clerk and assistant paymaster for the Thetis.11
In 1861, Kuper became the commander-in-chief in China. Two years later, he sailed to Japan and battled the prince of Satsuma to settle disputes between the Japanese nobles and Western nations.12 His return to England in 1865 followed various promotions from rear-admiral in 1861 to knight in 1864 to admiral by 1872.13 He died at home in England on October 29, 1885.14
Mentions of this person in the documents