Wednesday, November 16, 2011

1936 Continues

The 'Flying Seven', an all women group of pilots, did their first fly over in November of 1936.The 'Flying Seven Canadian Women Pilots flew out of Sea Island and were the forerunners of a splendid air movement.

On December 1 civic wards were abolished in Vancouver.

On December 2 a pioneer farmer by the name of Hugh Crawford Magee died. He was the first farmer to settle on the North Arm of the Fraser River and took up land in Point Grey in 1867. Magee Secondary School was named for him.

On December 4 the News-Herald gushed over its description of the new city hall. (A sign of the times though. A restaurant advertised in the same edition that they featured 'All White Help')

There was a civic election on December 9 and it was decided that George Clark Miller would be the first mayor to sit in office in the new city hall - it would open on January 2, 193. Miller defeated L.D. Macdonald, C.E. Thompson and former mayor L.D. Taylor.

Also in 1936 our main post office at the Northwest corner of Granville and Hastings had a major transformation. In addition to the lobby being refurbished in bronze, cedar, terra cotta and marble a tunnel was built to the CPR station.

The Lost Lagoon Fountain went into operation.. A left over from Chicago's city fair, we had purchased it. Many citizens objected to the expenditure of $35,000 during the Great Depression.

The Vancouver Police Department had a strength of 350. As of January 1, 2010 the VPD had 389 civilian employees and 1,327 sworn officers.

The Vancouver Fire Department had 368 personnel, 18 stations, 45 pieces of motorized apparatus and one municipally-operated boat. Now the VFD has 20 fire halls, one training academy, two fire prevention officers and 800 employees. In the fleet are 54 heavy trucks, 56 light automotive trucks, two fireboats and over 190 smaller pieces.

The population of Vancouver in 1936 was over 250,000 making it Canada's third largest city. According to a 2006 census our population was 568,000 making us Canada's eighth largest city.

There were 40,000 students in the Vancouver School system and more than 1,200 teachers. UBC enrolment was about 2,000.

Today there are approximately 31,000 elementary students, 25,000 secondary students, 3,000 adult education students, 48,000 students in continuing education programs, 3,000 students in distributed learning programs and more than 15,000 students take summer school programs. (I looked around but couldn't find a number for how many teachers.)

At UBC, the Vancouver Campus, I found a figure of 31,500 undergraduate students.
MGM boss Louis B. Meyer convinced the RCMP to let him  shoot some of his classic movie, Rosemarie, here. Starring Jeannette MacDonald and Nelson Eddy, this is said to have been the first sound feature filmed here.

Three prisoners at Oakalla were hung in one day - a triple hanging. There were also numerous double hangings at the prison that year.

The last vessel to join the West Vancouver Municipal Ferry System was built in 1936. The Hollyburn was sold to Harbour Navigation in 1945 where she became an excursion vessel and she celebrated her fiftieth anniversary during Expo 86.

Our first concert agency, Hilker Attractions, began in 1936. It would run until 1950 and book over 1,000 acts including Yehudi Menuhin, Paul Robeson and Isaac Stern.

A singing quartet by the name of the Hoboken Four performed at the Orpheum theatre as part of a tour by the Major Bowes Amateur Hour. One of the performers was a skinny kid by the name of Frank Sinatra.

David Suzuki was born in Vancouver in 1936.

There are still a few more facts for 1936 but I am running out of room. Saturday Vancouverites go to the polls to elect a new mayor so Monday I will finish my segment on Vancouver Mayors and update with our new one.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

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