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William

William "Billy" Barker

This bronze plaque set flat in the grass in "Potter's Field" is difficult to find. It was placed here in 1962 after Barkerville became a famous Gold Rush historic site.

Barker- BC Archives Image A-01144 1819-1894
Block: F
Plot: 13 E 16

Miner and prospector

BC Archives Image A-01144

Billy Barker was born in Cambridgeshire, England. He is first mentioned by name in British Columbia on a Free Miners License he obtained in Lillooet in 1859 along with 6 other Englishmen.

On August 17, 1862, Billy made the biggest strike of the Cariboo Gold Rush. Barkerville, the gold rush boom town, was named after him. Billy Barker continued prospecting until the last years of his life but never make another strike like the one at Barkerville. He died in poverty at the Old Men's Home in Victoria.