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Introduction

Amazingly, it is now eighteen years since Howard White penned his first Raincoast Chronicles editorial boldly declaring his intention to create a quarterly journal that would place BC coast character on the record, and furthermore, to produce said journal quarterly.

With twelve issues in eighteen years we have fallen a mite short in the frequency department but we have the excuse that the journal evolved into a serial book, then into a full-blown book publishing operation that has now put out well over a hundred individual titles dealing with all facets of life on the coast.

Our success in the character-recording department is harder to measure but we did receive a hopeful sign last summer when editor White was summoned to appear before the annual general meeting of the Canadian Historical Association at Laval University in Quebec City to receive a CHA Career Award "for Raincoast Chronicles and the Promotion of Regional History." The citation read by Professor Paul La Roque of the University of Quebec stated, "For the past several decades Howard White has been a tireless promoter and creator of quality British Columbia regional history. Through his imaginative Raincoast Chronicles and Harbour Publishing he has nurtured and brought into being a remarkable range of work which captures the essence of British Columbia, particularly the coastal region. White has markedly enhanced our knowledge and understanding."

We've received other awards over the years, but there's something about this one that gave all of us connected with
the Raincoast project a specially warm glow.

We're happy to welcome back two of our most popular contributors this issue - Jim Spilsbury and Edith
Iglauer. Jim, the aviation and radio pioneer who co-wrote the bestsellers Spilsbury's Coast and The
Accidental Airline
, treats us to a hilarious account of early logging on Savary Island. Edith returns to the
subject of her bestselling book, Fishing With John, to recount a fishboat excursion she made with her late
husband John Daly to Bella Coola.

Other highlights include "The Gentle Giants of Sproat Lake" by A.M. Feast, an account of the famous Martin Mars waterbombers; a loving testament to the classic wooden seiner Chief Y by Alan Haig-Brown; a breathtaking account by Howard White of a world-record-setting dash for the Langdale ferry in a '73 Volvo; an account of barnacled bush flying by pioneer aviator Gordon Ballentine; and captivating memoirs of early Stillwater by Lillian Lamont Bateman, and of early Gibsons by John Watson.