Nicol, Eric (Vancouver)

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Title: Vancouver: The Romance of Canadian Cities Series[edit]

Doubleday & Company, Inc. Garden City, New York. 265 pp.

An article entry in the category: Chronology-Sources

Milestone Tags[edit]

Urban planning | Built form | Land use | Development | Politics & governance | Transportation | Infrastructure | Institutions | Demographics | Economy | Events | Region | Senior governments | People | VCPC

Content Summary[edit]


In an updated version of the 1970 book, Eric Nicol outlines the development of Vancouver from its earliest development to present-day. In humorous detail, Nicol recounts the various era's of Vancouver's past, framing the events that shaped the city.


Introduction: The View from Here
1. The Setting

Geological child of the last ice age
Intimations of humidity and other climate
The rain forest, the gentle predators
2. Exploration: A Saga of Inadvertence 1791-1862

The Spanish but not the main
Captain Vancouver investigates the inlet for Northwest Passage
Moody and the Royal Engineers
The Plumper finds coal
The Three Greenhorns buy some property
3. The Oldest Families

The Squamish and their ancestry
Experience with the white explorer
Way of life and vitality born of the potlach
4. Placenta of Sawdust 1862-1875

Sue Moody's mill, and Captain Stamp's
The "aggregation of filth" that was Gastown
Gassy Jack and the Deighton House
The town of Granville welcomes the lumber ships
5. Umbilicus of Steel 1876-1886

The G.G. drops in
Confederation and plans for the railway
Cinderella Vancouver and the two ugly stepsisters, Port Moody and Victoria
Election of the first city council
6. The Fire 1886

Origin of the holocaust
The city explodes in flames
Recovery from shock, and City Hall a tent-out
7. The Phoenix Arisen 1886-1888

First, a fire department
Then hospital, schools, police
L.A. Hamilton and the inspired notion of Stanley Park
8. The Romance of Real Estate 1888-1890

The Opera House as a pride
Oriental riots for shame
The building boom, and the C.P.R. Hotel
The holy water
The Beastly Electric
9. Port of the Wider World 1890-1913

The Empresses grace the All-Red Route
The new commerce, and the old racial prejudice
The Klondikers prime the pump
Beginning of a university
Edwardian airs, travelers' impressions, and the cloud no bigger than a lady's glove
10. Marching to a Distant Drum 1914-1918

The Komagata Maru affair
Troops go overseas
Opening of the Panama Canal
Veterans return, and woe to the conquerors
11.Janet and the Money Tree 1919-1929

Prairie gold rolls west
New home for U.B.C.
The Janet Smith Case
L.D.'s finest hour, the greater Vancouver
The luxury of repentance comes too late
12. Mecca for the Mendicant 1929-1939

The Crash, and the bum defined
Mighty Mouth McGeer to the rescue
The blow of the abdication of Edward VIII
Tincanners and the Post Office riot
Pier D in flames, smoke over Europe
13. Dit, Dit, Dit, Dah 1939-1946

First casualty of WWII: butter
Air raid precautions
The loss of sawdust
Pearl Harbor, the blackout and the darkness of despair for Vancouver's Japanese
V-E Day Cocktail
The Greenhill Park explosion
War, brides, and Vancouver re-evaluated
14. Onward if not Upward 1946-1959

The Diamond Jubilee
Gerry goes home
A show called Fred
Tuts, P. & O. and the B.E.G.
The B.C. Lions and other problems of survival
Flynn died here
15. A Touch of Megalopolis 1960-1970

The Beastly Electric slain by the many-headed Hydro
Hurricane Frieda, and fresh wind at City Hall
The New Gastown
Mall and Sea Wall
16. Discovery the Second

The options: the garden city gone to greed, or the finding of beauty that is wise

Links to other online pages about this source[edit]