The Great Hall at the Museum of Anthropology — Photo courtesy of Museum of Anthropology (Facebook)
Vancouver's history can be traced back 8,000 to 10,000 years ago when the Indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest Coast made this area home. The area's rich plant and animal life sustained them for thousands of years and gave plenty of nourishment and materials to thrive.
The craftsmanship used to make things served more than just providing function for early settlers' needs. Each piece, whether it be for potlachs, storing goods, or a Totem pole, was made with meaning, thought and intricate design. Our tour for the day is going to start at the Museum of Anthropology where you can get up close and admire many artifacts that have been made by Canada's First Nations people. In fact, they have about 6,000 objects!
After you have spent some time wander through the Museum of Anthropology, our next stop will be at Spanish Banks. This is the spot where Captain George Vancouver met with the Spanish captains Valdez and Galiano. The Spaniards made it to Vancouver before the English, but you can see that both nationalities have influenced the names and places of Vancouver and British Columbia. It's quite fitting that English Bay waters meet up with Spanish Banks! After you've soaked up the view from here, it's time to make your way to downtown Vancouver.
An Evening at Spanish Banks — Photo courtesy of Natasha John
Simon Fraser was a fur trader and explorer and came to Vancouver in 1808 and in 1827 The Hudson Bay Company built a trading post on what was named the Fraser River. This became the first non-First Nations permanent settlement in the Greater Vancouver Region. This brings us to the corner of Granville and West Georgia Street where The Hudson Bay Company (now called The Bay) has been since 1893. The Bay is one of Vancouver's and Canada's premiere department stores, and they have great sales too!
Gastown's Beloved Steamclock — Photo courtesy of Natasha John
Now, we're going to head down to Vancouver's oldest neighborhood, Gastown. The area got its name from Gassy Jack, a British man who opened up a saloon for forestry workers and locals loved it. It became so popular that the name Gastown stuck. There's a monument of Gassy Jack, who is conveniently standing on top of a barrel of booze, at the corner of Water and Carrall Street. While you're in the area, you may as well pop in to one of the many restaurant and bars in the area and swig one back in honor of old Gassy Jack.
Although there is so much more that has gone into making up Vancouver's history, this is just a little taste of how Vancouver came to be what it is today.