The history of Bowland's Bay is very closely linked with that of Skead. Bowland's Bay is located on the west shore of Lake Wanapitie. Originally, it was known as Massey Bay after the Massey Bay Lumber Company. However, the settlement was renamed in honour of Abe Boland, the first person to build a house in the Massey Bay area and thereby begin the community.
In 1914, the Victoria Harbour Lumber Company became the first lumber company to establish a mill in Massey Bay. Years later, the Mannly-Chew Company purchased the Victoria Harbour Lumber Company, maintaining operations in the area.
The Mannly-Chew Lumber Company provided accommodations for their workers in the form of simple wooden homes and boarding houses. One of the most well-known of these boarding houses was the Red Onion Boarding House, so-named because of the bright red roofing paper that was visible from across the lake.
Residents of Bowland's Bay were very connected to those in Skead, many of whom had families in the neighbouring community. Children from Bowland's Bay would attend school in Skead, families would travel to the church in Skead for Sunday services, and many of the men were employed at the lumber mill in Skead.
In 1921, Bowland's Bay was home to the very first post office in the area. Newton Cryderman, a local resident, established the post office in his home because he was tired of having to walk to Capreol to pick up his mail. The post office was later moved to the general store in Skead.