Mayo Singh Family fonds

Fonds/Collection, 2020_05

Mayo Singh (born 1888 in Paldi, East Punjab, India), arrived in British Columbia about 1906. In 1915, he and 34 others acquired the bankrupt Fernbridge Lumber Co Ltd in Rosedale, near Chilliwack. Soon they acquired a second mill in the area. Then in 1916, with Kapoor Singh, Doman Singh, Sheam Singh, and Juwalla Singh, Mayo Singh formed the Mayo Lumber Company and the Pacific Lumber Company. The Mayo Lumber Company built in Sahtlam a new mill, which began operation in 1918. A community originally known as Mayo, but officially designated as Paldi in 1936, grew up around the mill site (c.f. "Paldi Remembered" by Joan Mayo). Paldi also was home to a number of Japanese workers and their families, unitl the forced "relocations" [and incarceration] of 1942. In the early 1920's Mayo Singh also was active in another local lumber company, the Tansor Lumber Company. In 1928, Mayo Singh and Kapoor Singh, having acquired the interests of their own partners, formed another lumber milling company, Kapoor Lumber Co. Ltd., to operate a new mill in the Sooke Lake area. In 1934, the Mayo mill in Paldi burned; late in 1935 a rebuilt mill opened under the name Mayo Bros. Timber Ltd. At that time, Kapoor Singh left the business. The Mayo sawmill closed in 1945, but Mayo Singh continued to be involved in lumber milling through the Summit Logging and Lumber Co. Ltd., operating a mill between Paldi and Lake Cowichan. Throughout his life, Mayo Singh was significantly involved with assisting the immigration of a number of persons from the Punjab. He and his wife also engaged in significant philanthropy both locally and in the Punjab. Mayo Singh died in 1955. In 2023, Historica Canada released a Heritage Minute depicting the story of Paldi through the eyes of Bishan Kaur as she joins her husband Mayo Singh, in Canada. The Paldi Heritage Minute can be viewed here: