Vancouver, BC - Timeline

A History of Vancouver, BC

 

Vancouver BC

In 1792, Captain George Vancouver spends only one day on the site which, almost 100 years later, would bear his name. Today, Vancouver is not only the largest city in British Columbia but also the busiest seaport in western Canada. .

In 1808, explorer and fur trader Simon Fraser reaches the Pacific overland by a river he mistakenly thinks is the Columbia. The river was, nevertheless, named after him.

In 1827, the Hudson’s Bay Company sets up a fur trading post east of Vancouver on the
Fraser River. It's the first settlement in the Vancouver area.

In 1858, the Gold Rush on the Fraser brings about 25,000 prospectors seeking riches.

In 1859, New Westminster is named the capital of British Columbia. At the same time, a colorful character known as "Gassy Jack" because of his gift for gab, opens a saloon and the community known as Gastown grows around it

In 1860, three Englishmen known as the "Three Greenhorns" build an unsuccessful brickyard in what is now the West End.

In 1867, weekly stage service is established between the Brighton Hotel, a popular summer vacation spot which is located just west of the Second Narrows Bridge and New Westminster.

In 1869, Gastown is incorporated as the town of Granville.

In 1884, the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) extends its line westward from the terminus at Port Moody to Granville, now known as Coal Harbour. This decision is very important to the rapid development of Vancouver.

In 1886, the Town of Granville is incorporated as the City of Vancouver (the name was in fact chosen by the President of CPR) . Rate-payers elect M A. McLean, a real estate dealer, as the first mayor of Vancouver. On June 13, the city, with a population of about 1,000 people, is burned to the ground in less than 30 minutes. Rebuilding of the city begans within days.

In 1887, The CPR’s first train arrives in Vancouver, the final stop of a transcontinental run.

In 1889, the original Granville Street bridge is completed.

In 1893, the Hudson’s Bay Company opens its first department store at the corner of Granville and Georgia Streets (it's still doing business today).

In 1897, the Klondike Gold Rush boosts a continent-wide depression of the 1890s. By 1900, Vancouver displaces Victoria, the provincial capital, as the leading commercial centre on Canada's west coast.

In 1898, the Nine o'Clock Gun is placed at Brockton point. (it still signals the time by being discharged every evening at 9:00 p.m. precisely).

In 1908, The University of British Columbia (UBC) opens its doors.

In 1909, the Dominion Trust Building is the first skyscraper built at Hastings and Cambie, (it's still standing). Ferry service begins to West Vancouver.

In 1911, the "Arena", Canada's first artificial ice rink opens to the public.

In 1913, a world-wide depression lasts two years and severely reduces trade and slows railway development. Declining resources also end a provincial mining boom.

In 1920, growth resumes and Vancouver soon replaces Winnipeg as the leading city in western Canada.

In 1925, the original Second Narrows Bridge connects the city with North Vancouver.

In 1926, the Orpheum Theatre opens to the public.

In 1934, Malkin Bowl presents the first performance of the Vancouver Symphony.

In 1936, the new City Hall at 12th and Cambie is completed.

In 1938, the Lions Gate Bridge opens.

In 1939, the Hotel Vancouver is completed.

In 1948, the first television broadcast is received from Seattle.

In 1953, Vancouver's first TV station, CBUT, goes on the air.

In 1959, Oakridge shopping centre, Vancouver Maritime Museum, Queen Elizabeth Theatre and the Deas Island Tunnel officially open.

In 1963, the Port of Vancouver ranks first among Canadian ports in tonnage.

In 1964, the BC Lions football team win the Canadian Football League’s Grey Cup.

In 1970, the Vancouver Canucks hockey team play its first game in the National Hockey League in the Pacific Coliseum at Exhibition Park.

In 1971, the 10km pedestrian seawall at Stanley Park officially opens. Gastown and Chinatown are designated as historic districts by the Provincial Government.

In 1974, the refurbished steam locomotive "Royal Hudson" has its inaugural run.

In 1979, the Vancouver Whitecaps win the North American Soccer League championship.

In 1983, BC Place Stadium opens. The world's largest air-supported Dome (60,000 seats) is the home of the BC Lions football team as well as trade shows, large gatherings, and major star concerts.

In 1985, SkyTrain opens with much of its route being along that of the city's first public transit system, the 1891 interurban.

In 1986, Vancouver celebrates its centennial by hosting Expo 86 on the north shore of False Creek, the largest special category (Transportation) World Exposition ever staged in North America. Sky Train's opening the previous year coincides with this exposition.

In 1994, the Vancouver Canucks hockey team reach the Stanley Cup finals for the second time in twelve years,only to lose out to the New York Rangers. Fans riot in the streets of downtown Vancouver following the loss. The BC Lions football team win the Grey Cup.

In 1995, a new Vancouver Public Library building is constructed in the shape of a Roman Coliseum. General Motors (GM) Place, a new hockey, basketball and entertainment complex opens. The Vancouver Grizzlies basketball team plays its inaugural season. The Ford Centre for the Performing Arts also opens to the public.

In 1996, the Vancouver International Airport expands its terminal and adds a third runway.

In 2003, on July 1, Vancouver is selected as the Host City for 2010 Olympic Winter Games.

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Last Updated January 21, 2007

 

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