The Pierre family, an Indigenous family, once lived in what is now downtown Summerland. Today, Pierre Drive is named in honour of the family. (Photo courtesy of the Summerland Museum)

The Pierre family, an Indigenous family, once lived in what is now downtown Summerland. Today, Pierre Drive is named in honour of the family. (Photo courtesy of the Summerland Museum)

Pierre family played role in Summerland’s history

Downtown Summerland was once Penticton Indian Reserve #3

Summerland’s downtown once was Penticton Indian Reserve #3.

The reserve was a cattle ranch and farm operated by the Pierre families. The Antoine Pierre family home was located close to today’s museum. The Johnny Pierre home was located near present day Washington Avenue.

In 1886, Johnny Pierre settled what is now downtown Summerland and used water from Eneas Creek to irrigate crops of hay and potatoes.

READ ALSO: Pierre family settled in Summerland in 1886

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In the 1890s, both families lived at the George Barclay home on Victoria Road. Later, Antoine Pierre assisted with the development of the Dominion Experimental Farm.

Johnny Pierre worked for William Ritchie’s lumber company and sold lumber to the municipality of Summerland. The Pierre family’s Okanagan name was quel quel sta.

The two brothers also worked in orchards owned by James and William Ritchie.

In 1904, the Penticton Indian Reserve #3 was exchanged for land adjacent to Penticton Indian Reserve #1. The Penticton Indian Reserve #3 became West Summerland, or what is today known as the downtown core of Summerland.

The Pierre family’s connection to Summerland continues today as Pierre Drive is named in honour of the family.

In addition, the Pierre Roundabout has been suggested as the name for the roundabout near St. Stephen Anglican Church, which is near to the family’s land.

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