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Art Williams


Art Williams has been connected with logging and logger’s sports for most of his working life.  Art lived in the Saltair district of Ladysmith on Vancouver Island. After leaving school early he began his career as a journeyman logger. This took him to the rigging crews, boom crews and timber falling. While he was working on the boom crews at Cowichan Lake, he met the Livingstone family (their father, Harvey Livingstone, was a very proficient boom man). Art was very agile on the floating logs - this made him a natural for the log birling events. Art practiced with Harvey and his son and he learned the many tricks needed to stay on top of the log in the water with them. At this time on Vancouver Island, the log birling events were filled with expert log birlers. The Wickheim brothers and the Baikkies to mention a few offered a difficult challenge.

Art got involved in all of the events:  chopping, sawing, climbing and birling - a true all-round competitor. It was very common for him to watch a new competitor and offer his best equipment and advice. Art has assisted many competitors with very successful careers in this sport. He wore black pants and a black shirt for his events.  The next challenge he pursued in logger’s sports was a tree act. He was able to observe many active acts on the circuit at the time such as those performed by Danny Sailor, Ernie Alexander, Kelly Stanley, Malcolm Harper and Hap Johnson. He soon developed his own act and he performed as the “BLACK KNIGHT” for his first couple of years. Then he got the idea to go as “COPPER CANYON SAL " - donning a dress and wig, he climbed the tree and lost his undergarments along the way.  The crowds roared when he needed to perform a handstand at the top of the tree to keep his panties up.

He traveled around the world with his tree act.  In Tasmania Australia, while at a wood chopping series, he performed on a very slim pole on New Year’s Day. When he stood on his head, over he went, trapping himself on one of the guy lines. He was very lucky another climber was present who assisted him out of this very embarrassing predicament - he blamed his misfortune on the after-effects of the night before. At the Pacific National Exhibition. in Vancouver,B.C., his wig got caught in his down pulley and had to be rescued by the Fire Dept. When he met the love of his life and decided to get married, where did they hold the ceremony?  You guessed it, on top of a Spar Tree in Vancouver, B.C!  This event was recorded on national television for many to see. 
Art's vocation was timber falling and was unfortunately injured by a falling object. While recuperating from this incident, he purchased a tree topping company and equipment. This kept him busy for many years.  He then purchased the trapping rights to a large tract of land in the Cariboo area. He now makes his home at Likely. B.C., and welcomes his many friends to stay and enjoy the ambience of the beautiful area that he calls home. He has since retired and is busy with his son and daughter trapping, fishing and wine making. 

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