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Around the World in a Dugout Canoe


John M. MacFarlane


The Nauticapedia Project


John MacFarlane is a fifth generation Vancouver Islander whose family came there from California in 1859 for the Fraser River Gold Rush. He has worked to protect and interpret Canada’s natural and historical heritage since 1969 when he joined the Canadian National Parks Service. He is the Curator Emeritus of the Maritime Museum of British Columbia in Victoria BC.

The author of 14 books he was the co-recipient of the prestigious 2020 John Lyman Book Prize of the North American Society of Oceanic History for his book ‘Around the World in a Dugout Canoe’. He is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society (London) and a recipient of the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers. He lives on the central east coast of Vancouver Island. His almost full-time avocation is The Nauticapedia, www.nauticapedia.ca an online nautical history resource which is accessed on the internet more than 4 million times yearly.


Ilustrated online Zoom presentation that lasts about 35 minutes - with whatever time is available to discuss and answer questions from the audience.

I recently wrote a best-selling book "Around the World in a Dugout Canoe - the untold story of Captain Voss and the Tilikum" about a 1901 voyage in a west coast First Nations dugout canoe from Victoria BC to London UK. The canoe was later returned to Victoria and is preserved as part of a museum collection. I give an overview of the people, the places and the incidents that make this one of the most significant small craft voyages of all time.