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The Story

In 1969, Semiahmoo Chief Bernard Charles wrote the following story about the white rock:


Amazing in its size and isolation on the beach, stands the great rock which gave the city its name. Pieced together from fragments of history, the legend tells us that long before the arrival of discoverers Cook and Vancouver, the Gulf of Georgia was ruled by a Sea God who was worshipped by the Cowichan natives.

 The Sea God had a son - tall, handsome and strong - who dwelt with his father in a subterranean cavern not far from the present town of Sidney, Vancouver Island. On the shores of the Gulf and on the original site of Sidney, lived a tribe of Cowichans and their Chief. The Chief had a beautiful daughter whom many young braves wooed. She, however, refused them all.

One day when the lovely princess was bathing in the waters of the Gulf, the son of the Sea God rose to the surface beside her.

As mortal youths had done before, the son of the Sea God fell in love with her at first sight. He seized her and carried her off to his father's mansion, in front of which was a tremendous totem pole of rock, carved with the history of the ocean. 

The Sea God was angry with his son for bringing a mortal, even one so fair, to his kingdom. He refused to give his blessing on their marriage and ordered them to return to the girl's tribe.

The young God, determined to keep his Princess, went with her to her father's home. She said he would be welcome as a son, and in time would rule.

But when they rose from the water and presented themselves before the old Chief of the Cowichans, he too refused to accept them. Like the Sea God, he declared that mortals and Gods should not be wed.

The young man, by now more determined than ever, raised in his powerful arms a huge white rock which stood on the shore. He said to the Princess, "I will hurl this stone over the water! Wherever it falls, there we will make our home and establish our tribe." So saying, he cast the stone far over the Gulf.

High over the islands it went, and as it rose, the son of the Sea God took his bride in his arms, dived into the sea and swam off in the direction of the great boulder.

So swift were his movements that, as the huge rock fell on the mainland shore some sixty miles away, the young God and his Bride rose out of the water beside it.

There, on the shores of a bay shaped like the crescent moon, they made their home, and the mighty Semiahmoo Tribe grew and became famous. After many years the tribe dissolved, but a remnant of that once great and powerful people still lives near the Rock.

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