George Robinson, Vancouver Island Pioneer

The Passing Of George Robinson

George Robinson's final years were clouded with a fixation that a certain London solicitor owed him a sum of money and intended to cheat him out of it. When George got such a bee in his bonnet, no amount of shaking could dislodge it. He refused to listen to all entreaties and arguments from his family, who had looked into the matter and were quite satisfied no such debt existed. Using many ingenious ways to evade Caroline's watchful eye, he would unexpectedly make for the railway station on his way to London to beard the supposedly defalcating solicitor. After he had done the disappearing act several times, and on two or three occasions had managed to get as far as the City, his family took firm and decisive action. George and Caroline were moved from Hastings to the village of Inkberrow, Worcestershire. Inkberrow had no railway station, in fact it was not serviced by any public conveyance, and the local people were soon alerted not to assist George in leaving the village bounds.

Here at Inkberrow, restrained at last from wandering and comparatively at peace, George Robinson's restless spirit finally departed. He had reached the age of seventy years, in a time when forty years was the median and sixty was none too common. Caroline had predeceased him two years earlier.

The Nanaimo Free Press for March 13th, 1895, carried his death notice and brief memorial:

"DIED. At Inkberrow, Worcestershire, England, on February 19th, 1895, George Robinson (formerly of Nanaimo) aged 70 years."

"DEATH OF GEO. ROBINSON

THE FIRST MANAGER OF THE NANAIMO MINES

"Mr. Thomas Bryant of the New Vancouver Coal Company, has received the news of the death of his uncle, George Robinson, at Inkberrow, Worcestershire, England, on Feb 19th 1895 at the advanced age of 70 years. The deceased came out to this island on the bark Princess Royal from England in 1854 in charge of a number of miners, to open up the coal seams of Nanaimo for the Hudson's Bay Company. Under his direction two mines were opened on what is now called Commercial and Wharf streets, and also the No 3 mine on Front street, directly opposite the Bank of British Columbia building. Mr. Robinson remained in this city for the five years he had engaged with the company, and then we believe, he went back to England. In the early sixties he returned to Victoria where for some years he conducted a photographic gallery in the front of the then theatre on the same site as the Colonist building now stands. He leaves a daughter, Mrs. Cory Ryder, of Chilliwack, and a sister Mrs. Snow, in the province, to mourn his demise. Mr. Robinson will be remembered by the early pioneers, both of Nanaimo and Victoria, for during his residence he took quite an interest in public affairs."

From Victor Ernest's papers we obtain a copy of the statement of George Robinson's estate. Ten percent of the net was to go to Florence Adelaide and a like amount to George Ernest. There was no provision for Edgar.

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