James Henry Edward Secretan (1854-1926) was a civil engineer who joined the CPR in 1871 and helped survey the route across Canada. After visiting the Cariboo, he was sent to the head of Bute Inlet in 1875 to investigate the possibilities of a route inland up the Homathko River. "These Homathco Canyons were very difficult to negotiate," he wrote, "and many a time I was slung up with a line under my armpits laboriously trying to find room for the tripod of a transit on a narrow ledge of projecting rock, often many hundred feet above the foaming whirling white waters of the stream below. I spent two years on this route." He later worked as a civil servant in Ottawa and published a work of fiction in 1910 that contains a section entitled "The British Columbia" that recounts some pioneering stories of B.C.


To Klondyke and Back (London: Hurst and Blackett, 1898)
Out West (Ottawa: The Esdale Press Limited, 1910)
Canada's Great Highway: From the First Stake to the Last Spike (London: John Lane; Ottawa: Thorburn and Abbot, 1924)

[BCBW 2004] "1900-1950" "Transportation"