PLACE NAMES: Montrose and Myncaster

Montrose was named for a place in Scotland, but its origin isn’t completely straightforward.

Montrose was named for a resort town in Scotland. It was formerly known as Wood’s Flats.

Montrose was named for a resort town in Scotland. It was formerly known as Wood’s Flats.

One hundred twenty-seventh in an alphabetical series on West Kootenay/Boundary place names

Montrose was named for a place in Scotland, but its origin isn’t completely straightforward.

According to Tracks of the Beaver Valley and Pend’Oreille, Leon Selk Simmons (1903-84) moved to Fruitvale in 1942 where he operated a garage, which burned down four years later. He also worked for Cominco, and while commuting to Trail, “the idea of developing a subdivision on the 220 acres of stumps and second growth known as Wood’s Flats began to form.” (It’s unclear who Wood’s Flats was named after.)

Apparently Beaver Heights was first suggested as the name for the subdivision, “but the government would not approve this name because too many place names were using the word ‘Beaver.’”

Simmons hired a Trail lawyer, Arthur Garfield Cameron (1882-1965), to deal with the insurance adjustment on the garage fire, whose wife Adelaide suggested the name Montrose, after her husband’s Scottish roots. (There’s some indication her original pick was Rosemont, but that name already belonged to a Nelson neighborhood.) Cameron and Simmons then formed Montrose Homesites Ltd.

The earliest known use of the name is in the September 1949 issue of Cominco Magazine: “Along the new highway to Fruitvale and near the cut-off, many new homes are springing up. This new district is called Montrose.”

Rita Sims explains in Tracks of the Beaver Valley and Pend’Oreille that the name made sense for another reason: “It was covered with brush, some trees, burnt out stumps, and wild roses grew everywhere. At the time I thought that was why the developers were going to name it Montrose.”

Montrose, Angus, Scotland is a coastal resort town 61 km north of Dundee and today has a population of about 12,000. Its BC namesake became a popular bedroom community of Trail and has a population of a little over 1,000.

The Kootenay Free Press of Feb. 12, 1953 wrote: “The booming Montrose community, where a rural delivery postal route failed last year, is now launching a quest for a local post office. The 200 home community is served by Beaver Falls post office about one mile away. Official community request has again gone to the postal inspector’s department under the seal of the progressive Montrose Improvement Association.”

The Beaver Falls post office moved to Montrose on Oct. 30, 1953. The village incorporated in 1956.

MYNCASTER

This stop on the Vancouver, Victoria, and Eastern Railway near the US border southeast of Bridesville was named for Thomas (1862-1892) and William McMynn (1864-1929), who came to BC around 1887 and ran the Harpur ranch. Thomas drowned in Osoyoos Lake at a young age while William went on to become superintendent of the BC Provincial Police.

The earliest known mention of the name is in the Hedley Gazette of Aug. 30, 1906: “Myncaster is on the west side of Myers Creek valley, and its distance from Midway cannot be much more than 17 miles.”

Myncaster’s post office operated from 1907 to 1931. The name is preserved in Myncaster Rd.

Previous installments in this series

Introduction

Ainsworth

Alamo

Anaconda

Annable, Apex, and Arrow Park

Annable, revisited

Appledale

Applegrove, Appleby, and Appledale revisited

Argenta and Arrowhead

Aylwin

Bakers, Birds, and Bosun Landing

Balfour

Bannock City, Basin City, and Bear Lake City

Beasley

Beaton

Bealby Point

Bealby Point (aka Florence Park) revisited

Belford and Blewett

Beaverdell and Billings

Birchbank and Birchdale

Blueberry and Bonnington

Boswell, Bosworth, Boulder Mill, and Broadwater

Brandon

Brilliant

Brooklyn, Brouse, and Burnt Flat

Burton

Camborne, Cariboo City, and Carrolls Landing

Carmi, Cedar Point, Circle City, and Clark’s Camp

Carson, Carstens, and Cascade City

Casino and Champion Creek

Castlegar, Part 1

Castlegar, Part 2

Castlegar, Part 3

Christina Lake

Christina City and Christian Valley

Clubb Landing and Coltern

Cody and Champion Creek revisited

Champion Creek revisited, again

Columbia

Columbia City, Columbia Gardens, and Columbia Park

Comaplix

Cooper Creek and Corra Linn

Crawford Bay and Comaplix revisited

Crescent Valley and Craigtown

Davenport

Dawson, Deadwood, and Deanshaven

Deer Park

East Arrow Park and Edgewood

Eholt

English Cove and English Point

Enterprise

Erie

Evans Creek and Evansport

Falls City

Farron

Fauquier

Ferguson

Ferguson, revisited

Fife

Forslund, Fosthall, and Fairview

Fort Shepherd vs. Fort Sheppard, Part 1

Fort Shepherd vs. Fort Sheppard, Part 2

Fort Sheppard, revisited

Fraser’s Landing and Franklin

Fredericton

Fruitvale and Fraine

Galena Bay

Genelle

Gerrard

Gilpin and Glade

Gladstone and Gerrard, revisited

Glendevon and Graham Landing

Gloster City

Goldfields and Gold Hill

Grand Forks, Part 1

Grand Forks, Part 2

Granite Siding and Granite City

Gray Creek, Part 1

Gray Creek, Part 2

Gray Creek, revisited

Green City

Greenwood

Halcyon Hot Springs

Hall Siding and Healy’s Landing

Harrop

Hartford Junction

Hills

Howser, Part 1

Howser, Part 2

Howser, Part 3

Howser, Part 4

Hudu Valley, Huntingtdon, and Healy’s Landing revisited

Inonoaklin Valley (aka Fire Valley)

Jersey, Johnsons Landing, and Jubilee Point

Kaslo, Part 1

Kaslo, Part 2

Kaslo, Part 3

Kaslo, Part 4

Kettle River, Part 1

Kettle River, Part 2

Kinnaird, Part 1

Kinnaird, Part 2

Kitto Landing

Kokanee and Keen

Kootenay Bay, Kraft, and Krestova

Kuskonook, Part 1

Kuskonook, Part 2

Kuskonook (and Kuskanax), Part 3

Labarthe, Lafferty, and Longbeach

Lardeau, Part 1

Lardeau, Part 2

Lardeau, Part 3

Lardeau, Part 4

Lebahdo

Lemon Creek, Part 1

Lemon Creek, Part 2

Lemon Creek, Part 3

Makinsons Landing and Marblehead

McDonalds Landing, McGuigan, and Meadow Creek

Meadows, Melville, and Miles’ Ferry

Midway

Mineral City and Minton

Mirror Lake and Molly Gibson Landing

Montgomery and Monte Carlo, part 1

Montgomery and Monte Carlo, part 2

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