Mill Bay was established in the early 1860s, twenty years after Victoria was founded. Many of the settlers arrived on the HMS Hecate that came to the Cowichan Bay area from England.
The Bay was the location of a power generating station for Henry Shepard’s sawmill. An American industrialist named W. Sayward turned the mill into one of the major industries in the area.
Cowichan Lake was too far into the wilderness at the time, but eventually logging spread into that area as well. The Bay is located on the southeast shore of Vancouver Island, 42 km north of Victoria, 19 km south of Duncan.