The seeds of Lumby's history and culture were planted thousands of years ago when fish and game drew the Okanagan and Shuswap people to the upper reaches of the Shuswap River.
The region's heritage encompasses the story of trappers, gold prospectors, Chinese miners, farming, forestry and mid-20th century counter-culture.
Trapper Donald McIntyre is credited with one of the first sightings by a European immigrant of the meadow where Lumby now stands. After hacking through the dense forest undergrowth, McIntyre is said to have been so overjoyed by this clearing in the mountains that he fell to his knees and declared in his native Gaelic, "This truly is the Mountain of Peace."
The romance continued with the discovery of gold in Cherry Creek (now Monashee Creek) near present day Cherryville, 29km/18mi east of Lumby. From 1863 prospectors and miners made their way to the area to work the gravel creek beds for gold and silver. The largest nugget reported weighed in at 241g/8.5oz. At one time, half the residents of the area were Chinese miners.
Pioneer settlers recognized the potential of the White Valley and began to preempt land for farms. One of the first arrivals set up a sawmill and forestry related activities have been important to the local economy ever since. A store was built in 1891, the townsite was laid out the next year and eventually named for Moses Lumby, the government agent in Vernon.
Learn about Lumby's history and development through a downtown mural tour. Stop by the Lumby Visitor Centre for locations and background on each of the more than 30 historic images. Area residents were responsible for completing some of the murals while renowned muralist Michelle Loughery painted others.
Lumby Arts & Culture
Lumby's murals are an obvious indicator of the local artistic spirit. The region surrounding Lumby and including nearby Cherryville has been a haven for artists and artisans since the counter-culture days of the 1960s. Drive between the two communities and stop at studios along the way. Roll into Cherryville and there's no chance of missing the Cherryville Artisans' Shop, Gallery and Marketplace. If the murals covering the cottage walls aren't enough of a clue, the sculpture garden and giant mushroom umbrellas should do the trick.
Staff at the Lumby Visitor Centre can provide directions to studios and give advice on hours of operation or contact information for making appointments.