Monday, June 18, 2012

Wonderfully Strange

In January of 1952, a singer by the name of Paul Robeson was en route to a concert in Vancouver. US border officials at Blaine stopped the famed vocalist, refusing him entry to Canada. There had been a concert organized by local unions that had attracted 25,000 Canadians and 5,000 US citizens to the Peace Arch. For political reasons, Robeson wasn't allowed in.
Two Vancouver born actors, Yvonne De Carlo and John Ireland, starred in the 1952 Hollywood movie Hurricane Smith.

1952 was also the year that our city council approved the motion to name certain city streets after golf courses. That is how we got the names: Seigniory, Leaside, Uplands, Bonnacord, Scarboro, Bonnyvale, Brigadoon and Bobolink.

On January 6, 1953 Vancouver's longest wet spell started. It lasted for twenty-nine days!

Ten days later the police raided the Avon theatre on Hastings Street. A production of Erskine Caldwell's play Tobacco Road was being performed and the cast was arrested for indecent exposure.

Juen 3, 1953 saw the first broadcast of a new television station in Bellingham, Washington. KVOS chose a kinescope of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II the day before. Apparently, there is an interesting story behind how the station decided to use this as their debut broadcast but for that story you will have to wait until I write on 1953.

July 9, 1953 was the day that Vancouver welcomed the Davis Cup tournament. This was a world championship and the Vancouver Lawn and Tennis club was chosen as a venue because the Japanese team insisted on playing on grass courts and none were available in the US.

On September 8, 1953 impresario Lily Laverock sent a 14 line bio to the newspapers because she wanted them to get the facts for her obituary correct. She asked that the papers file the information away until her death, which happened 16 years later.

On February 12, 1954 a lady driving a brand new Cadillac became the first civilian to drive over the new Granville Street bridge. It so happens that this was the same person who was the first civilian to drive over the second bridge when it was new in 1909. Widowed in the years between bridge openings, she had a different name but, in 1909, she drove a brand new Cadillac as well.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

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