George W. Simpson

George W. Simpson was born in Philadelphia, U.S.A., the son of a Presbyterian minister who had emigrated from Scotland. In search of gold, he went first to California, and then on to the Fraser River bars. Arriving in Victoria in 1859 he was one of fifty men who volunteered to help open up a road into the Cariboo.

While an employee of Harper Brothers he came into the valley, first settling near Swan Lake. He is believed to have brought the first domestic cattle into this part of the country, having driven them from Oregon. He operated a cattle ranch on the property he later sold to Postill Brothers.

He continued to operate the flour mill that he bought from Fred Brent and moved it to a new location further south on the same creek when he sold out to Postill Brothers in 1872. (Brent's Mill is being restored and tours of the mill will be available to tourists) One old map show the name "Simpson Creek" on what was for years known as "Mill Creek." Mr. Simpson used oxen in preference to horses for tilling the soil. He was a studious and well-read man and always carried a well-worn Bible with him on his travels. His sons were George, Tom and Charlie, and his daughter Elizabeth Jane, first married to T. Jones and later to W.P. Swalwell, and another daughter, Mrs. V. Borrie. They were all born in the Okanagan. After he sold the Simpson Ranch, which at that time contained 1760 acres, to Price Ellison, he lived with his daughter Mrs. Swalwell on what is now known as the Dickson Ranch. (The old barn remains, east of the airport. The tobacco barn collapsed about 1995.) He was buried on that property about 1902. (A fenced grave yard remains.)