Friday, March 11, 2011
It is one of four federally-owned buildings on a site known as Block 15. This building looks like it is divided into three parts - a base which is made of rough faced stone and smooth brick; the shaft is shown by shallow brick pilasters with segmented arches on the upper floors and finally a prominent cornice suggests the capital of a column. The steel frame and reinforced concrete was a modern construction technique unique to Vancouver at the time. (The Great Fire of 1886 was still fresh in some people's minds I guess.)
As I have said before there are mosaics around the city and some of them tell the story of this beautiful city. Like this one.
Far away in a town called St. Julien in Belgium there is a piece of Vancouver buried there and watched over by a statue called the Brooding Soldier.
The story goes like this: In the Second Battle of Ypres, where chlorine gas was released on French and Canadian troops, the Canadians - who were fighting for the first time as a nation instead of a British Colony - proved themselves equal to any fighting force. Especially a Lt. Donald Bellew of the British Columbia 7th Battalion, the Duke of Connaughts Own Rifles.
On April 24, 1915 the enemy was 100 metres away and the reinforcements destroyed when Lt. Bellew and another soldier decided to fight it out. The other soldier was killed and Bellew wounded but he kept firing until the ammunition failed. Then he took a rifle and smashed his machine gun before being taken prisoner.
Bellew survived and when he returned to Vancouver he read in the newspaper that he had been awarded the Victoria Cross.
The Canadians paid heavily for their sacrifice and the corner of earth on which this Memorial of gratitude and piety rises has been bathed in their blood. They wrote here the first page in that Book of Glory which is the history of their participation in the war.
I hope you find the beauty around you.
TAGS:Vancouver, Karen Magill, Customs Examining Warehouse, David Ewart,The Brooding Soldier,Lt. Donald Bellew,History,St. Julien,Belgium,Victoria Cross,