The St. Andrew's and Caledonian Society of Victoria is one of the oldest Societies in British Columbia, established in 1859. We are dedicated to keeping Scottish interests and culture alive now and in the future. We meet on the first Thursday of each month at 7:30 PM, at the Jewish Community Centre, located at 3636 Shelbourne St, Victoria BC, V8P 4H2.
Our social meetings always include a friendly welcome, entertainment and social tea.
1859 at a preliminary meeting to discuss the formation of a society the importance was emphasized by a Major Downey of "judicious management exercised in founding it", and that" great care be taken to exclude everything of a political or sectarian character, Our constitution still bars the discussion of politics or religion in the meeting room.
February 28, 1860, the St. Andrew's Society of Victoria held its first meeting in the police courtroom by the kind permission of Justice Pemberton.
The first "meeting place" was in the No.1 Hose and Ladder Company Quarters at the rear of the Police Station.
1863 – Second Scottish Games, the Caledonian Society, with similar aims to Saint Andrews was formed.
1870 - the two amalgamated to become the St Andrew's and Caledonian Society.
In the 1860s the Scottish games, sponsored by the Society were begun and were held for some time at the Caledonian Grounds, land at that time owned by the Society. The games were considered to be so important to the life of early Victoria that a public holiday was declared for the day on which they were held.
World War 1 it seems that a few women formed themselves into a group to raise funds for the war effort. They were named "The Ladies Auxiliary to the St. Andrew's and Caledonian Society."
In the mid twenties women were taken into full membership in the Society over the years, club groups and other subsidiary groups have been formed in the Society. Up to this time the Society was strictly all male, which was some sixty years.
In 1924 the Society sponsored a Junior Pipe Band, which over the years evolved into the Pipes and Drums of the First Battalion of the Canadian Scottish, led overseas in Ww2 by a member, Pipe Major Marrs.
At various periods in the history of the Society there existed The Rams club, (a men's group): The Senior Ladies: The Calettes, (younger women): a Crib Club: a Drama Club; a Glee Club. Members of the Society began the group that evolved into the Burn's Club, but which no longer functions from its inception the activities of the Society and of its members have been intricately associated with the history of Victoria.
1957 - Sept 19 appears to be the first meeting in Holyrood House, 88 members were present. The Society continued to meet there until building sold and torn down in April of 1995.
The Society has met in Henderson Hall since April of 1995 and as of March 2010, the meetings and social events will be conducted at Victoria United Chapters Hall.