"a one minute history"
Before European contact the area now known as the City of Abbotsford was inhabited by the Matsqui and Sumas bands of the Sto:lo people. A man known as Old Bovey remembers seeing the "White man with a lot of hair on his face" around 1808. This was Simon Fraser's men who came sailing down the river now called the Fraser. One of the first Europeans to settle were the Maclure family who came to B.C. in 1858 and Abbotsford in '68. One of the Maclure children named Abbotsford after Harry Abbott - the General Superintendent of the Western Division of Canadian Pacific Railway, after they promised to bring the railway through. Abbotsford became more economically prosperous when the Abbotsford Lumber Company was established on a small lake now known as Mill Lake. In 1908 the mill was sold to Arthur and Joseph Trethewey - the latter built Trethewey House close to the lake in 1920. This house is now under the care of M.S.A. Museum (www.abbotsford.net/msamuseum). Before Abbotsford became a city and incorporated Matsqui (meaning in the language of the Sto:lo "a stretch of higher land") and Sumas ("big level opening") areas under its jurisdiction, this area was known as Matsqui-Sumas-Abbotsford. Quite a mouthful eh?
(This history was found in the archives of M.S.A. Museum and the photograph is from their website. Permission received from the Museum to insert here.)