The Cariboo Gold Rush Journey Cariboo Gold Rush People Section- Women
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Catherine Schubert

Nellie Cashman

Sarah Crease

Agnus McVee

Hurdy Gurdy Girls


Sarah Crease


Sarah Lindley Crease was born on November 30, 1826 in Middlesex, near London, England.

Sarah Crease was the eldest daughter of Sarah Freestone and Dr. John Lindley.

Sarah's education consisted of instruction in domestic skills by her mother, and a governess to teach her more formal instruction.

She had a passion for art and was given lessons by Charles Fox, a colleague of her father. Charles gave Sarah instruction in watercolor, copper engraving, and wood-block printing.
Sarah Crease

It is because of Sarah's interest in the arts, and the words in Sarah's letters that we are allowed to imagine what her travels up the Cariboo Wagon Road may have been like.

Sarah was known as "Totty" to her family and friends, a childhood nickname that she retained all her life.

On April 27, 1853, after a 5 year engagement, and many, many months of seperation, Sarah Lindley finally married Henry Crease, a lawyer who also dabbled in several business ventures.

Henry Crease experienced much financial difficulty during their marriage. In 1858 Sarah and her three children returned to live with her parents, which was not an unusual situation for women at this time.
Henry Crease

Sarah grew up dependent on her parents, in particular her father for finacial support.

Henry Crease left for Canada to find a prosperous income. By April 12 1859, Henry Crease was living in New Caledonia (British Columbia) and awaiting his family to meet with him.

On September 5, 1859, Sarah with daughters Mary, Susan, and Barbara, in addition to a maidservant boarded the Athelstan in England.

Sarah Crease arrived in Victoria on February 23, 1860.

Henry Crease was appointed Attorney General and the family moved to New Westminster. Later, when he was appointed as a judge, the family moved back to Victoria.
Crease children

By 1872, Sarah Crease had given birth to 3 more children.

In 1880 when Sarah accompanied Henry on his travels to the Cariboo, the eldest were adults, able to care for themselves, and the two little ones were still completing school studies.

Sarah and Henry left for the Cariboo and travelled there three months. Her journal indicates a gentile woman's travel along the Cariboo Wagon Road.

Sarah notes in her journal on 13th Sept. Monday

A little rain before starting. Most lovely drive today-through most peaceful looking country-rolling Downs-grazing cattle-& smiling lakes. saw several Prairie chicken.
Blue-Tent, or Wright's Ranch
Henry shot one. Scenery very beautiful and often English looking as we neared Lake La Hache. In one of the turns of the road came suddenly upon a fine Bald eagle and two fish hawks. Henry hit both, but only broke the wing feathers of one, noticed plenty of ducks on the lakes. Stopped the night at "Blue-tent" a wretched dirty, delapidated house-and poor miserable-looking young wife-with dirty barefooted children. Swept out our wretched bedroom after our hostess had, as she said "fixed it up". Removed the blankets and used our own. Henry caught some fish for supper-Bread and butter-no sugar in house. Dairy only decent. Wright the husband young and active looking."

In February 1905, Henry passed away at the age of 82. Henry and Sarah had been married over 51 years. On December 1922, Sarah Crease died at the age of 96.

Last updated 31 August 1998.
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