Sooke Historian Elida Peers has been writing stories about the Sooke region since the 1970s. In 2009 she began a weekly column in the Sooke News Mirror.
Every week since then, readers have enjoyed new historical facts written in Peer’s unique and delightful prose. Stories often focus on an event or geographic feature, but most of the stories focus on people.
“Elida has spent countless hours over the decades interviewing people who have shaped the region and inhabited the area to document their stories and memories. She also connects world events and leaders to our modest location on the southwest coast of Vancouver Island and relates current local issues to times past,” said Doni Eve, president of the Sooke Region Historical Society and editor of the book.
Woven together, the stories create a rich tapestry of life in the region within the traditional lands of the T’Sou-ke, Scia’new, and Pacheedaht peoples, from East Sooke to Port Renfrew, from ancient times to the present day.
“The stories connect readers to the community and people past and present. This, truly, is Elida’s gift to us all – that connection to each other through story,” Eve said.
“A lot of people have told me they look forward to Elida’s column in the paper each week, and they collect and share her stories. Now we all have a chance to have them together in this one-of-a-kind book.”
Stories of Sooke – As told by Historian Elida Peers (Volume One) includes stories and profiles published in the Sooke News Mirror from 2009 through 2016. An additional volume containing her earlier work and the published stories from 2017 through 2022 is underway and will be available next year.
A core group of staff and volunteers, including Eve, Peers, Beverley Myers and Laurie Szadkowski, along with Earthword Creative’s Deb Clay, have been working to bring the book to fruition.
“So many people from past and present are named in this book,” Eve added. “Chances are you’ll find yourself, or people you know, in it.”
Stories of Sooke – As told by Historian Elida Peers (Volume One) will be launched in time for holiday giving, available at Sooke Region Museum. To reserve and pre-order your copy, please drop by or call Sooke Region Museum at 250-642-6351.