In 2014, I had the good fortune to join my parents on a boat cruise through the Broughton Islands, in BC Canada. Part of this journey brought us almost to the Northern Tip of Vancouver, Island, Canada. One of the last ports before ships left civilization for their Alaskan Pacifica Oceanic Cruises, can be found at Port McNeill. Just a quick ferry ride East was little Malcolm Island. This is the location of one of the last Sointula and Finnish Civilizations on the West Coast. Though the community doesn't exist as it once did, much history can be learned from this place.
Eager to frequent the homebase of a Finnish Bakery, I stumbled upon the remains of one of the last historically Finnish Settlements in North America. I was fortunate to be able to walk the island in great weather, visit the cememtery, and learn of the writings and hopes and dreams of those who began life away from the mines, here, on Malcom Island.
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It was once stated that SEVERAL Finns left Finland to begin new Utopias in America. Whether to Minnesota or littered up and down the West Coast of America, many communes began as immigrants hoped to begin new lives in a very different way. What was unique about these utopias was their structure of communal support, their Live Off the Land, and Help Your Neighbor ideas.
The Sointula at Fort Bragg began in ...