The District of Mission
Upon arrival in the City of Mission one is immediately struck by its natural beauty. Mission is positioned against a backdrop of majestic mountains, natural lush landscapes and of course the Mighty Fraser River which flows right past this scenic community.
The first inhabitants of the region, the Stó:lō, (People of the River) once traveled the Fraser River in large cedar canoes. They often traded wind-dried salmon, fruits and other goods with their “neighbors” from the coast and the interior of British Columbia.
In 1861 a French Oblate Priest selected Mission for the site of St. Mary’s Indian Residential School, which included a church, workshops and a grist mill. Shorty after the arrival of the “Oblates” local farms began to become established which included diary, poultry, hog farming, grain, fruit, berry and vegetable production.
Twenty years later the establishment of the railway brought a lot of attention to Mission and spurred a period of rapid urban growth which included the “Great Land Sale” of 1891. Mission also caught the attention of the hydro electric companies thanks to the considerable lake and forest resource which in turn created a prosperous logging industry.
The area from the Stave River to Hatzic Lake was first incorporated in 1892 as the Municipality of Mission. In 1922 the “Village of Mission” was incorporated, which became the “Town of Mission” in 1957. On November 3, 1969, the Town of Mission and the Municipality of Mission amalgamated to become the current “District of Mission”.
“Mission has retained its keen sense of history which is evident in the heritage buildings of its historic downtown core and hinterland. More recent additions to the historic mosaic include Westminster Abbey, Hatzic Rock and the Fraser River Heritage Park. Planned rejuvenation of the Fraser River Waterfront will ensure that history will continue to be an important part of Mission’s future.” Excerpt taken directly from the Mission.ca