Mayne Island has been inhabited for at least 5,000 years, according to archeological finds.
For the full story, pick up a copy of Marie Elliott's definitive Mayne Island & The Outer Gulf Islands: A History at Miners Bay Books.
Artifacts dating back to the island's first settlers are housed in the local museum across from the Agricultural Hall on Fernhill Road. The quaint one-room clapboard building was built in the late 1800s as a jail and is open on summer and holiday weekends.
The rich fishing waters at the mouth of Active Pass made Helen Point an ideal spot for seasonal villages utilized by the Cowichan and Coast Salish peoples of the region. The Tsartlip First Nations of the Saanich Peninsula now have territorial rights to the Helen Point reserve.