Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Neighbourly Love

These houses are at 148 (the cherry coloured home) and 150 West 10th. 148 is an example of the Edwardian builder style and was constructed in 1907. The original owner was a grocer by the name of Fred Welsh. 150 was built in 1907. 

Now here is where it all gets interesting. The owner of lot 150 built his house directly on the property line. This annoyed Welsh, whose property was vacant. In retaliation, he had his home built to the property line as well, making sure to block the bay windows of his neighbour. There were court proceedings and fights but the dispute was never resolved - as you can see today since the houses are so close together.

Both of these homes were restored by the Davis family for which they were presented the Heritage Canada award in 1981 for preserving the streetscape. The Davis' were also responsible for restoring 140 and 144 - both properties were once owned by Fred Welsh.

This JJ Bean has historical significance due to the location. This coffee shop is at the corner of East 14th and Main Street. At one time, there was a beaver dam here, located on Brewery Creek This created a swamp that extended south-east as far as Fraser Street. The swamp was drained in the early 1900s.

I have written on it before but it bears reminding how important Brewery Creek was to Vancouver and its development.

Brewery Creek was the first piped water supply to downtown Vancouver and to this city's first modern industry - Stamp's Sawmill. And though the area has been radically changed since those days, we should pay homage to what was once there.

When I walk these areas, I sometimes stop and think of what was here before. Now I see paved streets, buses, cars and buildings but it wasn't that long ago that it was all trees, trails, creeks and swamps. If all humans were to vanish today, would the city return to that?

This is 1975 Ferndale, built in 1909 and the first resident was a machinist by the name of Henry Robinson.

Thanks goes to a walking tour pamphlet I received from the Mount Pleasant Business Improvement Area and Bob_2006 at for more information on the houses.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

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