Documents of Early Vancouver


Minutes from January 16, 1888

Transcripts      Original documents

  • City Solicitor gives opinion that Keefer not guilty of breach of contract by buying gravel from Chinese.
  • Amended lease for CPR for Cricket Grounds submitted.
  • Payment of $600 to Keefer Street for gravel.
  • Bylaw introduced to regulate firing of guns, setting off firecrackers and bonfires.
  • Changes to Park Road and Bridge across Coal Harbour.
  • Locks to be put on desks of Aldermen.
  • Public library requests donation for the purchase of books.
  • Advertisement for the position of City Scavenger.
  • Efforts to increase candlepower of Electric Streetlights.

Mayor David Oppenheimer’s speech to Council, January 2, 1888

Original documents

David Oppenheimer’s inaugural speech to Council Jan 02, 1888.  In addition to the existing committees, he established the following:

  • Finance Committee
  • Board of Works
  • Board of Health
  • Police Commissioners

He also recommended the establishment of a P.O. savings bank, a resident judge, a land registry office, an immigration reception facility, additional schools for the north and west sections of the city, neighborhood mail boxes, a city-wide mail delivery system, and the printing of all city by-laws into book format.  He ended by urging all elected officials to attend meetings promptly so as not to waste each other’s time.

Minutes from January 9, 1888

Transcripts     Original Documents

  • Letter from F Munro noting that Keefer has hired Chinese, letter from Keefer explaining.
  • Reports from the Committees established the previous week.
  • Appointment of Council Committee under Mayor Oppenheimer to purchase team of horses for fire engine.
  • Discussion about precautions regarding smallpox

Minutes from January 2, 1888

Transcripts      Original documents

  • First Council Meeting with Mayor David Oppenheimer. Meetings generally Monday 7:30 PM.
  • Standing Committees created – Finances, Board of Works, Fire Water and Light, Board of Health.

You can read the whole text of Mayor Oppenheimer’s speech to Council here.

Minutes from December 30, 1887

Transcript     Original document

  • Fred Munro draws the attention of Council “to the employment of Chinese on the Gravel Contract.” The contractor to be called upon to explain.
  • Mayor M. A. MacLean paid seven hundred fifty dollars, according to By-Law number 53.

These minutes were transcribed in October, 2015 by guest transcriber Chris Stephenson

Minutes from December 27, 1887

Transcript     Original document

  • James Hartney awarded contract to build Park Road
  • Alderman Alexander granted $50 “for the purpose of settling the claims of Indians on the line of the Park Road for bushes and fences destroyed.”
  • “That the City Engineer be instructed to report on the cost of constructing a bridge across False Creek at the foot of Granville Street; the estimate to distinguish between the cost of a fixed bridge and a draw bridge.”

These minutes were transcribed in October, 2015 by guest transcriber Chris Stephenson

Minutes from December 19, 1887

Transcript     Original document

  •  A number of complaints received about (street contractor) William Harkins’ granting of Power of Attorney to Dunn & Co. J. H Wert appreared before council on behalf of Harkins’ employees to report on the situation. Legal opinion requested from City Solicitor.
  • A coal oil lamp to be placed at the corner of Hamilton and Dunsmuir streets, with the City supplying the oil and the residents in the vicinity to light the lamp
  • James Alexander appointed for 1888 to assist the Assistant Commissioner in the Assessment of the City

These minutes were transcribed in September, 2015 by guest transcriber Chris Stephenson

Minutes from December 12,1887

Transcript     Original document

  • City Clerk to enquire about the capacity of P. Fewster’s proposed mill to be built in Vancouver
  • The Board of Works instructed the Chief of Police to have the Chain Gang improve a lane as petitioned by F. Boucher
  • E. Cook awarded contract for plastering and masonry of City Hospital, and the carpentry to James Stanford.  Gas fitting and plumbing contracts not awarded as all tenders exceeded budget

These minutes were transcribed in September, 2015 by guest transcriber Chris Stephenson

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