The great land-
THE MODERN CITY of Vancouver. This photograph of the Granville district was taken in 1936. Fifty years earlier this site was a small village and a lumber camp, as shown in the illustration at the foot of the opposite page. The first section of Burrard Inlet, on which the city is situated, is five miles long from the channel known as Lions’ Gate to the Second Narrows, on the right of the photograph above. The shores of North Vancouver are two and a quarter miles distant across Burrard Inlet.
VANCOUVER is the commercial metropolis of the Province of British Columbia, and the third largest city in the Dominion of Canada. It is situated on a peninsula, along “a very narrow border of low land”, as Captain George Vancouver described it when he surveyed the shores of Burrard Inlet in 1792. Vancouver juts out into the Gulf or Strait of Georgia almost in the shape of a shark’s head, with the city proper located on the upper jaw and the residential section on the lower. Between the jaws lies English Bay, and curving over on the snout are the nine hundred acres of primeval forest known as Stanley Park.
The story of the birth and growth of Vancouver forms one of the most romantic and striking chapters in the record of modern endeavour. Late in the sixteenth century, Sir Francis Drake, searching for a north-
The next year Captain George Vancouver, commanding the new 340-
PROTECTED FROM THE OPEN SEA by Vancouver Island, the Port of Vancouver is the Pacific terminus of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Ocean-
Mr. William C. Van Horne, Vice-
Late in 1884 Lachlan A. Hamilton, a youthful Canadian Pacific Railway surveyor, stood in a dense thicket, drove a stake into the ground and began to lay out a system of streets. A survey party under the direction of the civil engineer, John W. Stewart, took three days to cut a path, one mile long, through the forest. Within less than a lifetime Vancouver has grown from a settlement in a forest clearing into a thriving city. The city of Vancouver was incorporated by Act of Parliament on April 6, 1886. Some weeks later, shortly after midday on Sunday, June 13, a clearing fire at the far end of the 300 acres of fallen forest got out of control. Driven by a summer gale of such force that a barque in the vicinity was torn from her moorings, the fire raged through the mile length of massed wood, branches and leaves.
CAPTAIN GEORGE VANCOUVER, R.N., who explored the shores of Burrard Inlet in 1792. He was in command of H.M.S. Discovery, accompanied by H.M.S. Chatham, and sailed into the inlet on June 13. This inlet was named after Sir Harry Burrard of the British Navy.
The citizens fled before the wall of fire to the water-
The Canadian Pacific Railway was completed and the first passenger train from Montreal arrived in Vancouver on May 23, 1887. Docks for ocean-
The harbour is divided into several sections. The outer harbour is called English Bay. The central section of the harbour is entered through the First Narrows, soon to be spanned by a lofty suspension bridge. This entrance is called the Lions’ Gate because it is overlooked by two mountain peaks that resemble couchant lions. From this point to the Second Narrows lies the most important section of the harbour, about two and a quarter miles wide between the north and south shores and about five miles long. Across the Second Narrows is a bridge with a vertical lift span. Beyond, the harbour extends eastward for eight and a half miles to Port Moody, and the north arm of Burrard Inlet extends a further eleven and a half miles to the north. False Creek is spanned by bridges.
The Vancouver Harbour Commission, created in 1913, controls the port east of a line between Point Atkinson and Point Grey, at the entrance to English Bay.
The south shore of Burrard Inlet as it appeared in 1886. The sawmills had been established some years earlier, and around them had grown the villages of Hastings and Granville. Skyscrapers now rise from this site, and the photograph at the top of the page shows Granville as an important district of Vancouver in 1936.
Most of the docks and industries of the port are along the north and south shores of the central section of Burrard Inlet. The terminals combine dock, warehouse and distributing facilities. Piers and wharves of modern fire-
There are seven grain elevators along the water-
The eight fish-
The Fish Dock, owned by the Harbour Commissioners, is one of the most modern on the Pacific Coast, and is equipped with smoke-
THE ALBERTA POOL GRAIN ELEVATOR has a capacity of 2,250,000 bushels. There are five loading berths adjacent to this elevator, and grain can be loaded at the rate of 75,000 bushels an hour. The export of grain is one of the most important activities of the port of Vancouver, and 96,872,722 bushels of wheat were exported in the year 1932-
Among the principal piers and wharves Ballantyne Pier, a reinforced concrete structure, has 2,610 lineal feet of berthing, with a depth at low water of 45 feet at outer and 32 feet at inner berths. Lapointe Pier, a concrete structure, has 2,500 lineal feet of berthing, and a depth at low water of 35 feet.
Four of the Canadian Pacific Railway piers each provide more than 1,430 lineal feet of berthing, and Pier B-
A harbour patrol service and a fire-
THE PORT OF VANCOUVER extends from Point Atkinson and Point Grey to the inland shores of Burrard Inlet, a distance of about twenty miles from the Lions’ Gate. The shaded portions of this map show how the town has developed in size from 1886. North Vancouver is mainly a residential district. The bridge across the Second Narrows was rebuilt in 1934, when a vertical lift-
Dry docks and repair yards are available, and there are various shipbuilding yards. The Burrard Drydock Company of North Vancouver has two building berths for ships up to 10,000 tons. This yard includes a great floating dock of 20,000 tons capacity. It is 556 ft. 6 in. in length and 98 feet wide between wing walls. The main pier is 700 feet long and the auxiliary pier 450 feet long. The equipment includes a 100-
The port of Vancouver is well equipped for supplying fuel oil, diesel oil and petroleum. Lighters are maintained by the companies at suitable places not served by pipe-
There is a marine service station barge in the gasoline marine service station area east of Stanley Park. In addition to the pipe-
There are three freight-
The Harbour Commissioners also maintain a signal station at Prospect Point. This station is manned by ex-
Ships may enter Vancouver Harbour at any state of the tide. Land-
The opening of the Panama Canal in 1915 gave Vancouver the opportunity of becoming a world port. Before this, the distance from Liverpool -
COASTWISE VESSELS of the Union Steamship Company at their piers on the south shore of Burrard Inlet, Vancouver Harbour. These ships penetrate every mountain-
The first western shipment of grain for export from Vancouver was made in February 1909, when 8,000 bushels were loaded for Mexico. After the completion of the Panama Canal, a trial shipment of 99,209 bushels was made in 1917, and the first commercial cargoes, totalling 572,747 bushels, were taken in January 1921. Eleven years later, Vancouver, with an annual wheat shipment of 96,872,722 bushels, and a total annual grain shipment of 105,006,925 bushels, was in the forefront of the grain ports of America.
Eight ocean trade routes radiate from Vancouver: to Europe; to the Orient; to Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, and Fiji; to the Atlantic coast of the United States and Canada; to Central and South America and the West Indies; to California; to South Africa; and to the coastal ports of America.
The port of Vancouver is regularly used by the steamship lines of the world. The Blue Funnel Line, The Blue Star, Canadian Pacific, Furness, Donaldson, Harrison and the Royal Mail are among the important British lines that use the port. Ships may be seen in the harbour flying the flags of the North German Lloyd, Nippon Yuesn Kaisha, Compagnie Generale Transatlantique, Navigazione Libera Triestina, Holland-
The Empress of Japan, 26,032 tons gross, the flagship of the Pacific fleet of the Canadian Pacific Line and holder of the Blue Riband of the Pacific, is the largest liner using the port. Other representative vessels are the motor ship Amerika, 10,110 tons gross, of the Danish East Asiatic Line, on the European service; the N.Y.K. Hikawa Maru, 11,622 tons gross, on the Orient route; the Wyoming, 8,062 tons gross, of the Compagnie Generale Transatlantique; and the Pacific Pioneer, a 6,723-
These ships, and all craft that enter Vancouver harbour, pass through the Lions’ Gate. Near this channel lies the wreck of the famous pioneer ship, the Beaver. Built for the Hudson’s Bay Company, the Beaver was launched at Blackwall, on the River Thames, in 1835. She was 101 feet long and was armed with five 9-
AT THE ENTRANCE OF THE SECOND NARROWS, on the Hastings shore, are the main piers for the coastal vessels sailing from Vancouver. In the foreground are the Canadian National and Union Steamship Companies’ piers. Huge grain elevators rise in the background, and on the left can be seen the lifting span of the Second Narrows Bridge.
[From part 20, published 23 June 1936]
Click here to see the photogravure supplement to this article.