BY LORETTA HOUBEN
If you live in the Joyce-Collingwood area you will have noticed the recent upgrades to the Skytrain station, and will be aware that big changes are coming over the next 20 years. I recently filled out a survey from the city asking what sort of shops and amenities I’d like to see along Joyce Street in the near future. I put down my suggestions and then I wondered what used to be here way back in 1914, when Joyce Street was first mentioned in Henderson’s Directory.
Joyce Street was named after Abraham Joyce, a school trustee for Carleton Elementary from 1897 to 1898. I discovered a 1914 map of the Collingwood area in the Vancouver Archive website. By comparing the map with the 1914 directory of street names it’s interesting to note the changes and additions to the area.
For instance, the address for Collingwood Baptist Church is 617 Joyce near Price Road. But anyone familiar with this area knows it is located near Monmouth Avenue and the current address is 4847 Joyce, but in 1914 Monmouth Avenue didn’t exist.
By studying the BC Directories online (1860-1955) sponsored by the Vancouver Public Library, you will become something of a sleuth! The website is easy to navigate. Here is the link: http://www.vpl.ca/bccd/index.php
The 1914 directory lists residents and businesses with names of cross streets. There are names of the early settlers, along with many shops. A few are vacant, but there is a dry goods store near Archimedes, plus a Collingwood Electric Co., a grocer, and a Watson and Wood shoemakers.
Near Euclid there is a physician, three vacant stores, a shoemaker, a meat store, a barber and pool place, a dentist, a druggist and a dry goods store. Near Vanness there is an associated brokerage company, Fraser Brothers grocers, a postmaster, a Collingwood E. post office, a real estate agent, a bank of Vancouver Collingwood East branch, a restaurant, William H. and Son second hand dealer, a tailor, and even a Collingwood Theatre near Wellington Avenue.
Past Wellington there are homes plus Collingwood Baptist Church. I was amazed at the variety of businesses. Joyce Street had it all!
Near the west side of the Skytrain there was the Collingwood East station for the BCER tram that travelled from downtown Vancouver to New Westminster. Near Rupert Street the Collingwood West station was located, and near Boundary and Vanness the Park Street station was located.
These are shown on the 1914 map. There were also quite a few stations near Central Park, along the same track route that we now take on Skytrain to Metrotown Station in Burnaby.
Do you think the residents of Collingwood were better off in 1914? Or do you think that the future of Collingwood will compare to the variety of lifestyle once available here?
Loretta Houben is a longtime resident of Collingwood and coordinates the Seniors Connection section of the RCC News.
Copyright (c) 2017 Renfrew-Collingwood Community News