Peterson, Peter A.
Peterson was a native of Denmark who had began work in the Bute Inlet area in 1863 and began employment with Mr. Waddington's road crew for the proposed Bute Inlet trail to the Cariboo gold fields on 23 March 1864.1 He had been one of three survivors of the Bute Inlet conflict, in which Tsilhqot’in men attacked the road crew. He endured a wound to his left arm from a musket shot and many bruises.2
At the time of the attack, Peterson had been camping with twelve other men during their work for Mr. Waddington.3 At daybreak, Peterson heard two shots, and emerged from the tent. He encountered a group of Tsilhqot’in who had begun attacking the camp group. One of the Tsilhqot’in men met Peterson with a blow with the end of his musket. Peterson avoided this attack but was met by another Tsilhqot’in man who aimed his axe towards Peterson, but he dodged this blow. After hiding behind a tree, Peterson was met by another Tsilhqot’in who had shot him in the left wrist with a musket.4 Petersen had been badly injured and entered the nearby river to escape.5 The Tsilhqot’in assumed Peterson had been killed and did not continue shooting.6 Floating down the river, Petersen endured many bruises from rocks at the bottom of the river.7 Petersen met up with other members of the camp who similarly escaped by the river, Edward Moseley and later Phillip Buckley.8 The three made their way to Nanaimo where they received medical attention, and then boarded the Emily Harris to Victoria, arriving on May 11 1864.9
After arriving at Victoria, Peterson made a statement regarding the attack, providing details about men employed, and the Tsilhqot’in involved.10 Waddington consulted his records indicating members employed at various camps throughout the proposed Bute Inlet trail project and corroborated Peterson’s statement who had.11
Mentions of this person in the documents
People in this document

Buckley, Philip

Moseley, Edward

Waddington, Alfred Penderell

Vessels in this document

Emily Harris

Places in this document

Bute Inlet

Cariboo Region

Nanaimo

Victoria

The Colonial Despatches Team. Peterson, Peter A.. The Colonial Despatches of Vancouver Island and British Columbia 1846-1871, Edition 2.2, ed. The Colonial Despatches Team. Victoria, B.C.: University of Victoria. https://bcgenesis.uvic.ca/peterson.html.

Last modified: 2020-12-02 13:40:34 -0800 (Wed, 02 Dec 2020) (SVN revision: 5008)