During 1958, the Canadian Royal Mint issued a special circulation commemorative dollar to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the colony British Columbia in 1858.
Prior to 1858, the area currently known as British Columbia was part of an unorganized area that was simply part of the lands under British North America. By 1857, Americans and British were beginning to respond to rumurs of gold in the Thompson River area.
Almost overnight, some ten to twenty thousand men moved into the region around present-day Yale, British Columbia in search of gold. In an effort to protect land interests and to provide security to existing settlers, the area was converted to a royal colony on August 2, 1858 by the British Parliament and given the formal title of The British Columbia Colony.
The obverse design was based on the original Young Queen Elizabeth II (designed by Mary Gillick). On the outer periphery are the words “ELIZABETH II” and "DEI GRATIA REGINA" a latin term for “By the Grace of God, Queen”.
The reverse, designed by Stephan Trenka and Thomas Shingles, prominently features the image of a Native American Indian totem pole. To the left of the totem pole is the dual date “1858 1958” and to the right of the pole is “BRITISH COLUMBIA”. On the outer periphery are the words “CANADA” and “DOLLAR”.