Michael Wuensche is a long-time Langley resident, who recently penned his first book, a historical fiction entitled The Untold Stories of Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Michael Wuensche is a long-time Langley resident, who recently penned his first book, a historical fiction entitled The Untold Stories of Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Langley history and imagination combine in debut book

The Untold Stories of Fort Langley is centred around ancient battles in the historic village

A long-time Langley resident spent all his spare time on weekends retelling Fort Langley’s history – with a bit of creative imagination added.

Through his debut novel, The Untold Stories of Fort Langley, Michael Wuensche has tried to uncover some of the less talked about events, happenings, and even battles that took place in Fort Langley many years ago.

As readers flip through the pages of his new book, they will also come across Wuensche’s efforts in filling in some of the undiscovered information with his own creative musings.

His new book’s centre point revolves around the clashes between The Hudson’s Bay Company and an Indigenous clan, a battle that took place on the shores of the Fraser River in Fort Langley.

According to Wuensche’s research, the battle took place in 1837 – when an Indigenous group in the region had power and influence in the area.

Wuensche said that in many instances, just the mere mention of this group’s name and the rumor they were entering into the area would send men, women, and children into the nearby forests, abandoning everything behind them.

He explained that the locals then fought a battle to stop the growth and influence of the force.

Thousands of men were involved in the battle that saw participation from some of the biggest names in Langley history including James Murray Yale and Noel François Annance.

He added that he does not want to disclose all the information. To know the end result of the war, he encouraged readers to read his book.

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Talking about the fiction side of his book, he said readers will find some dialogue between historical characters that are entirely made up – to paint a clear picture. His musings are also designed to allow people to engage with the characters.

“There is very little written about the final battle hence, I took a bit of liberty to play with the imagination.”

Wuensche, a full-time safety coordinator in Langley, said that after scanning several history books, he was able to bring out stories steeped in the history of Fort Langley.

“I tried to get [my] hands on as many history book as possible. Thanks to all the historians, too,” Wuensche commented.

His book has 31 chapters weaved together in what he hopes is an engaging story.

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Wuensche started out by conducting local walking tours to quench his thirst for local heritage and love for storytelling.

Then, shortly after the pandemic hit, he began exploring the history book.

That’s when he went on a journey and dedicated his weekends towards this creative venture.

A couple of years later, he penned his debut work.

Wuensche, 35, wants readers to know that his book does not fall under a typical history book. He said he has tried to keep the language and terminology simple to appeal to a mass audience.

“It is an easy and simple read for all types of readers,” he suggested.

His dream is to become a full-time writer and continue to explore his favourite genre – history.

The Untold Stories of Fort Langley is a self-published work available online through Amazon.

And, for more information, Wuensche said people can drop by his Facebook page, The Untold Stories of Fort Langley.

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Michael Wuensche is a long-time Langley resident, who recently penned his first book, a historical fiction entitled The Untold Stories of Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
Michael Wuensche is a long-time Langley resident, who recently penned his first book, a historical fiction entitled The Untold Stories of Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)

Michael Wuensche is a long-time Langley resident, who recently penned his first book, a historical fiction entitled The Untold Stories of Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times) Michael Wuensche is a long-time Langley resident, who recently penned his first book, a historical fiction entitled The Untold Stories of Fort Langley. (Special to Langley Advance Times)