Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Fantastic Fifties

This is Professor Edward Odlum's house at 1710 Grant Street. The photo was taken in the early 1900s.
And here is the house today. Or what you can see of it through the vegetation outside.

Today I am looking at the book Vancouver, A History in Photographs by Aynsley Vogel and Dana Wyse. I am going to let you know about Vancouver in the 1950s.

We went through the Great Depression and suffered with the limitations and hardships of World War II. Now it was time to enjoy life again and the fifties the rewards of progress.

The Burrard Building was the first modern sky scraper in the city - the first high rise to be built in Vancouver since the late twenties -and it was followed a year later in 1957 by the BC Hydro Building at Nelson and Burrard.

Both of these buildings were soon joined by a wall of towers behind them. They multiplied! LOL

Our population was growing as well. Thirteen percent of the new residents to Greater Vancouver settled in the city whereas the suburbs saw an increase of 87 percent. The suburbs doubled in size by the end of the fifties.

Vancouver's couples settled comfortably into their suburban houses and continued the post-war baby boom. The family drove to the new invention, covered shopping malls. (Park Royal in West Vancouver was built in 1950 and is Canada's first covered shopping mall.) 
1867 East 6th. In the hundred years since this house has been built, the original Edwardian-style structure has been somewhat disguised with additional alterations.

Televisions replaced radios as cornerstones to the new 'family' or 'rec' rooms. Popular American culture now flooded into new homes in the lower mainland.

Vancouverites watched the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II on Bellingham's KVOS since the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation - CBC - would not air locally until 1953.

Progress brought a renewed interest in the cultural live of Vancouver. New public projects such as the Maritime Museum, the Vancouver Public Aquarium, the main branch of the Vancouver Public Library and the Queen Elizabeth Theatre appeared in the city.
The triangular gable is typical of this style and there was probably a sleeping porch on the second floor. That appears to have now been filled in as was the full-width front porch, which would have been cut in below the second floor. It looks like the little pediment over the front stoop was added later.

The city hosted the British Empire Games in 1954. We constructed an Olympic-size pool and the 30,000-seat Empire Stadium. 

The highlight of the games was the 'Miracle Mile' in which two men ran a mile race in under four minutes. The first time in history that had ever been accomplished.

There is a statue of the two runners at Hastings Park and I wrote on the race and showed the statue in this 2010 entry.

A building permit was issued to C. Farmer - who built the house - April 14, 1910. C. Farmer also got permits for 2159, 2163 and 2169 on the same day.

Thanks to the Grandview Heritage Group for the information on the home. The organizers of the group put signs up every year to let residents know which houses are 100 years old this year.

I hope you find the beauty around you.

, , , , , ,,


  1. Such epic beautiful pictures. I love this.

    1. What a nice thing to say! Thank you. And thank you for taking the time to read and comment.