Smallpox! Grandview’s Isolation Hospital

The first Isolation Hospital, known then as the pest house, in Vancouver was just a shack on the Inlet near where B.C. Sugar refinery would soon be built. However, when smallpox -- “the loathsome disease” -- struck in 1892, the shack was quickly abandoned, and infectious disease victims were shuffled off to a temporary camp … Continue reading Smallpox! Grandview’s Isolation Hospital

Meeting Notes: April 2018

It was another lively meeting last Thursday, with a wide range of topics discussed. After introductions, Eric took us through a 1967 Beaver Kit houses brochure. The brochure loudly proclaimed the use of Zonolite insulation which, today, is the cause of much asbestos distress for those seeking to renovate their older houses; We discussed the … Continue reading Meeting Notes: April 2018

What Might Have Been

Anyone who knows Commercial Drive knows Joe's Cafe on the corner of William Street. It is an unprepossessing single-storey flat-roofed structure, not unlike many other similar buildings along the Drive.  This one has been that way since Harry Evans had it built in 1910: Building Permit issued 9th November 1910 Owner: Harry Evans Architect: Townshend … Continue reading What Might Have Been

The House That Wouldn’t Fade

At the last GHG meeting, we reported that Donato Calogero gave a wonderful presentation on the history of his house at 1350 Graveley Street. The research indicates that the house is almost certainly the oldest existing house in Grandview, having been moved twice in its 116 year life. Donato has graciously allowed us to include … Continue reading The House That Wouldn’t Fade

Notes To September Meeting

We enjoyed a wonderfully full and productive meeting last night. There were almost thirty people in attendance, many of them new to the group. They were interested and articulate, and it was great to welcome them all. The following agenda items were covered: Donato Calogero began the meeting with a wonderful presentation on his house … Continue reading Notes To September Meeting

The Growth of Grandview 1901-1915

As mentioned in the report on this month's meeting, I gave a presentation on the growth of Grandview using the data collated in the growing Grandview Database. This post is a brief and attenuated version of that report. In the maps that follow, the following streets are highlighted to allow orientation: It has often been … Continue reading The Growth of Grandview 1901-1915

The Sensational Develoment of Grandview

One hundred and ten years ago today, Grandview was essentially empty of residents with, perhaps, two score of enterprising families staking their claim in what was still mostly scrub and tree stumps. But then Dow & Co became agents for the newly opened sub-division, and they became our first boosters.  This Vancouver Daily World ad … Continue reading The Sensational Develoment of Grandview

Notes For The Early History of Rose And Lily Streets

Lily and Rose Streets are two of the most interesting oddities of Grandview, being “off the grid” of the surrounding streets.  No doubt they were a function of lot-splitting at some early date. In August 1907, well-known local auctioneer J.J. Miller and 9 other local residents wrote to Vancouver Council’s Board of Works in regards … Continue reading Notes For The Early History of Rose And Lily Streets

Tour of St. Francis Church and Rectory

On Thursday evening last, Fr. Eugenio, pastor of the St. Francis of Assisi parish in Grandview, very kindly invited a group of GHG members and friends to the Church on Napier Street where he took us on a tour of both the church and the rectory where he lives. In the early 1920s, Franciscan monks … Continue reading Tour of St. Francis Church and Rectory

James Guinet: A Builder of Grandview

Between 1908 and 1912, during the boom that essentially created Grandview,  James Guinet was responsible for building at least 45 houses in the community, and probably more. But only the barest of facts are known about him.  These are notes for a biography of what might be one of the most important figures of Grandview's … Continue reading James Guinet: A Builder of Grandview

Grandview Subdivision — $300 per lot!

Back in the spring and summer of 1907, Grandview was the hot item both for speculative land investors and working class home-seekers.  Much of the land east of Park Drive (now called Commercial Drive) had barely been cleared; new sub-divisions were arriving on the market all the time. This ad from an East End broker … Continue reading Grandview Subdivision — $300 per lot!

Robertson Presbyterian Church Development

A large part of the iconic 1908/c.1921 Robertson Presbyterian Church (and from 1978-2011 a Fijian Hindu temple and cultural centre) will be demolished to make room for a ten-unit housing development on the corner of Napier and Salsbury. The south-facing wing and the west-pointing lean-to will be torn down. The remaining BC Mills Timber & … Continue reading Robertson Presbyterian Church Development