Hastings Street Scene (1904)

IMG_6701 1904 CVA 1376-721 - Hastings Street west of Cambie [Street] PTT Photo.jpg

CVA 1376-721 Hastings Street west of Cambie Street, 1904. Philip Timms photo

This is one of my favourite images by Philip Timms. The two ladies (sisters?) in the centre foreground may have been just leaving Paterson Shoe Co. (according to the BC Directory of 1904, that was the shoemaker’s establishment just behind them – what is now the pot-smoking haven, New Amsterdam Cafe). Or perhaps they’d paid a visit to Frederick Buscombe’s crockery shop or B. F. Armstrong, jeweller. The gent in the right foreground might have been into Vancouver Hardware to see what was new; or maybe he had been in Harry Jacobs’ cigar shop to stock up on smokes.

There were also two professional photographers who called the north side of the 300 block of West Hastings ‘home’: Howard King (303) and the Wadds Bros (337). King and George Wadds (along with his brother, David, for a relatively brief period) were principally portrait photographers, and so studio space was essential for them.

Another business on the block, Thomson Stationery was important for the likes of Timms (and other street and landscape photographers) who relied on sales in stationery shops of printed postcards of his photos. Shops such as Thomson’s sold, in addition to stationery, frames, photographic prints, postcards, and books.

I’m showing a couple of portraits by Howard King and the Wadds Bros. below. Philip Timms concentrated his photographic talents on producing street scenes, thereby combining the skills of a landscape photographer (like those of the remarkably able professional photo pioneer, S. J. Thompson, for whom Timms worked before going on his own) with those of a portrait photographer.

ca1900 CVA 586-18 - Chief - Cree Indian, Howard King photo

CVA 586-18 – Chief, Cree Indian [It is a pity that the name of this native chief wasn’t preserved with his image; I’m nearly certain that this is Chief Piapot (Cree/Assiniboine), who lived 1816-1908], ca 1900. Howard King photo.

1909 CVA 1413-4 - Velma Beryl Kipp, wadds bros photo

CVA 1413-4 – Velma Beryl Kipp, 1909. Wadds Bros photo.

This entry was posted in books/reading, Howard King, P. T. Timms, Photographers, postcards, street scenes, Wadds Bros. and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Hastings Street Scene (1904)

  1. gpcox says:

    I suppose this is pretty much what my great-aunts saw when then emigrated from St. Kitts via England to Vancouver.

  2. Sheila says:

    Or maybe the two women in the foreground were coming or going from a doctor’s appointment. The woman on the left seems to have a cast or a brace on her right arm. I remember, even in the 60’s, how my parents would “dress up” to go downtown, my dad in a suit and tie, my mom in a nice dress with matching shoes and bag.

    • mdm says:

      You might be correct! It’s difficult to know if that is an overexposed area or a cast – I cannot see her hand being supported. Your explanation may help explain why the woman on the left has elbow-length gloves on, but her friend/sister doesn’t. Thanks for this.

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