Sponsorship for the 1898 Vancouver City Council minutes is still available.

Transcription is still in progress. To date, transcripts have been made by volunteers Joanne McCormick, Leah Minuk, Lynn Shane, Darlene Ochotta, Sandra Robinson, Gerald Soon, Marie-Claude Tremblay, and Carole Wilson

Click on any headline to see the full transcript of that meeting.


Vancouver Mayor and Council 1898

Mayor:James F. Garden Aldermen:H. J. Painter (Ward 1)Thomas O. Townley (Ward 1)James McQueen (Ward 2)Thomas F. Neelands (Ward 2)W. J. McGuigan (Ward 3)D. McPhaiden (Ward 3)William Brown (Ward 4)C. F. Foreman (Ward 4)Alexander Bruce (Ward 5)W. H. Wood, Jr. (Ward 5) MADDEN, W. D., 2003, Elected Officials of Vancouver, [online],Internet Archive, https://archive.org/details/PAM200372/mode/2upApril 1, 2020

Council for 1897 Wrap Up Business – January 10, 1898

This ship is the HMS Imperieuse from the Fire and Police Committee Report. Officer Butler arrested two runaway sailors from Imperieuse but had to turn in the reward money to the Department. Continue Reading

Council of 1897 Vote Condolences to Templeton Family – January 17, 1898 10:00 am

Shown above is the Templeton home at 1213 Barclay Street. Former Mayor William Templeton had died the previous day, Sunday January 16, 1898. Continue Reading

Council for 1897 Stand Adjourned – January 17, 1898 12:00 pm

Council for 1898 stood adjourned until the following day (Tuesday January 18 1898) to mark the passing away of former Mayor Templeton. Photo shows incoming Mayor James Ford Garden. Continue Reading

Committees formed for 1898 – January 20, 1898

Allan K. Stuart was allowed $10.00 by the Finance Committee for overtime spent in preparing the Klondike Map. Photo shows supplies headed to the Klondike. Continue Reading

Committees Begin the Work of 1898 – January 24, 1898

Committees reported back re Chairman elected and meeting dates established. Finance Committee had decided on suppliers to the City for Wood, Sawdust, Bread, Milk, Meat, Feed and Washing. Continue Reading

Library Board Selected – January 31, 1898

Seven candidates were selected to the Library Board. Additional police Actions of Constable Butler were upheld in arresting a boy while he was at school. Continue Reading

Vancouver Wants Out of the Municipal Clauses Act – February 1, 1898

Council met on Tuesday Feb 1 at 10 pm to authorize the Mayor, Alderman Townley, and the City Solicitor to ask the BC Government to amend the Municipal Clauses Act of 1896 so that Vancouver will be exempt. Continue Reading

Council Disagrees About Taxes Rebate – February 7 1898

Council split vote on the issues of: giving a grant of $250 to print more Klondike folders, and on whether to allow 10% rebate on all taxes paid on or before May 1 or to refer the rebate to the finance committee for decision. Continue Reading

Will Licensed Music Halls Be Allowed? – February 14, 1898

In this 1888 illustration with the Vancouver Volunteer Fire Department, William McGirr and son are pictured within. McGirr, a pioneer in Vancouver later took up as a tobacconist at the Sunnyside Hotel, Gastown. McGirr, a night watchman at the time of these minutes, had his allowance increased to $20.00 by the Police and Fire Committee. Meanwhile, a vote was established on whether to license beer and light wine in Music Halls. Continue Reading

Jail Expansion Approved, Music Hall Vote Looming – February 21, 1898

Jewish section of Vancouver cemetery ca. 1910

Communication received "from the Jews of the city" asking that no permit be issued for interments in the Jewish Cemetery [shown above, ca. 1910] without their written consent. Continue Reading

Gold Rush Traffic Jeopardizes Coal Harbour Safety – February 28, 1898

Council wrote to Ottawa that, "the great rush of gold seekers" had caused such an increase of traffic to and from Coal Harbour that it... "makes it a pressing necessity that the entrance to the Harbour through the narrows should be located and properly marked to prevent accidents." The Federal government had previously promised to attend to it: here Council is trying to hurry up the process. Continue Reading

Colonel Warren Asks for Repairs – March 7, 1898

From Col. F. Warren (picture featured above, biography at end of this page), asking that a pane of glass broken by the Wardmen at his house be repaired, and referring to dangerous condition of part of sidewalk on south side of Robson Street. Continue Reading

Vancouver Supports Letter Carriers’ Demand for $2 per Day – March 14, 1898

Council "endorses the petition of the Carriers to the Government for an increase of pay and also an annual holiday of two weeks without suspension of salary". Council also put an order to McClary Co. for 1,000 enamelled street signs, white with blue lettering, 4.5 inches wide, at 40 cents each. Continue Reading

By-Law Introduced for Wood Block Paving – March 21, 1898

City of Vancouver business district 1898 map

The streets marked in blue above show where wood block paving was installed. The City Engineer certified that the probable life of the wood block paving would be 12 years and the grading and curbing 40 years. Continue Reading

Fifty Applications Received for Two Firefighter Positions – March 28, 1898

Fifty applications were received for the position of fireman. John McMorran and J.E. Michell were hired at $45.00 per month each. As "the ends of Justice often are defeated" by having no local Crown Prosecutor, Council will ask the BC Attorney General to appoint one. Continue Reading

Vancouver’s Budget for 1898 Established at $404,344.95 – April 1, 1898

Vancouver's expected income of 1898 was $404,344.95. The Police Committee was granted $24,558.16, the Fire Department $21,923, the Health Committee $24,321, the School Board $56,380 and the Board of Works $74,450. Continue Reading

$650 Granted to Children’s Home – April 4, 1898

Council also thanked the C.P.R. for their offer of a piece of land on Granville Street to build a new City Hall. By-laws to fix the tax rates and remuneration for Mayor and Aldermen were also read. Continue Reading

Council Has Questions for the C. P. R. – April 12, 1898

Council wanted to know how much of the construction materials for the new CPR Terminal would be spent outside British Columbia. The soap factory above was on Georgia Street (at that time called Harris Street), a few blocks from the "unsanitary premises" mentioned in the Board of Health report [421 Harris Street]. Continue Reading

Home Phone Approved for the Chief of Police – April 18, 1898

Harry T. Devine appointed temporary Clerk for the City Treasurer's department. New hats were ordered for the police and fire departments. 14 mattresses were needed for the new City Jail, and the police chief requested new mattresses as well for the fire department dormitories. A home phone for the Chief of Police was approved. Continue Reading

Council Reviews Tramway Agreements – April 22, 1898

Council reviewed Agreements for operating tramway service on parts of Hastings Street and Powell Street. They also invited Mr. Treat to put his smelter proposal in writing for the next meeting, and called for tenders for supplying 1,000 feet of hose to the Fire Department Continue Reading

City Bathing Sheds Come Down May 1 – April 25, 1898

City Bathing Sheds caretaker Frank Morgan Caretaker was advised to remove his own building and appurtenances as soon as possible as the City cannot give him any extension after the 1st of May 1898. Photo inscription reads, "In order: English Bay Club | Simpson's Boat house | Denman St. | Bath houses, First pavilion | chute | campers in tents | Indian Reserve" Continue Reading

Police Committee to Investigate Police Court Business – May 2, 1898

The Chief of Police was instructed to make a full report as to all grievances if any referring to Police Court matters. Photo shows typical Vancouver board sidewalk on 7th or 8th Ave. The Board of Works would "examine on 7th Avenue on the first block west of Bridge Street (now Cambie St.) on the north side" to see if such a sidewalk was needed. Continue Reading

Smelter Agreement Will Go To Vote – May 4, 1898

The agreement between Vananda Mine and the City of Vancouver was completed and will go to the electors to vote on as soon as possible. Continue Reading

Police Magistrate Should Not Be In Active Practice – May 9, 1898

"The Committee is still of the opinion that it would be advisable that the office of Police Magistrate should not be held by any Solicitor in active practice and that the Small Debts Court should be held by the Police Magistrate solely and that the fees be paid to the City Treasury and that an adequate salary be granted to the Police Magistrate and that a copy of the above resolution be forwarded to the Hon., the Attorney General." Council also approved the Health Committee's decision that the Cemetery Caretaker be authorized to employ extra help to clear walks in Cemetery grounds and that tenders be called for fencing required there. Photo shows the cemetery with a water tower in the far left background, 189-. Continue Reading

Will Council Fund World’s Champion Rowing Race? – May 13, 1898

Council received many requests to fund the World’s Champion rowing race between Jake Gaudaur and R.N. Johnston. Photo shows the Rowing Club at the foot of Thurlow Street. The Smelter By-Law was reported complete. Continue Reading

Street Watering By-Law Passed – May 16, 1898

Several streets were approved right away for watering: Westminster Av., Cordova St., and Granville St. The City Engineer was asked to look in to watering the cemetery grounds with a windmill. City Council put aside $2000 for July 1 Dominion Day celebrations provided the sum was matched by private donations. Continue Reading

Consuls Want Improvements to Dunsmuir & Howe – May 30, 1898

Japanese consul 1899

The U.S. and Japanese Consuls both complained about the condition of Dunsmuir Street at intersection with Howe Street. Pictured above is the Japanese Consul's residence ca. 1899. The City Engineer was asked to fix the street and the Health Inspector to ensure removal of Rubbish from the lane. Continue Reading

Steamer James Domville Opens Granville Street Bridge – June 7, 1898

Photo shows Hugh McArthur, Alec McDonald, Charles Milne, Dick Lowe, Ronald Morrison, Jack Dalton and others on the deck of the steamer "James Domville" on its way to the Klondike. At this meeting Col Domville had written the Board of Works to get the steamer James Domville through the Granville Street Bridge.He was informed that the cost of opening the spans to let the steamer through would be $125.00 which he ... agreed to. Note: These minutes are wrongly dated. The actual meeting took place on Monday June 6 1898 and was reported on in the Tuesday June 7 newspapers. Continue Reading

New Contract With BC Electric Railway To Be Signed – June 13, 1898

Council approved a by-law to sign a new contract with the BC Electric Railway Co. Photo shows an early Vancouver street car from the 1890s. Council paid $1,000 to the Public Library and granted $100 toward forming a Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. They also approved putting in a public drinking fountain and trough near the English Bay Bathing Beach Continue Reading

Brick Barn Allowed on Hastings Street – June 20, 1898

E.H. McMillan Ideal Grocery submitted plan for a brick barn to be built at lane by rear of their premises Hastings Street at Lot 11 Block 4 O. G. T. (Shown on this page) Permission granted being in conformity with requirements of Fire Limit By-Law. Continue Reading

John Pace Appointed Cemetery Caretaker – June 27, 1898

From W. H. Livens asked the Board of Works for sidewalk North side of Pender Street, west of PalaceStables (shown in photo). The Board said they would look in to it. Mr. John Pace was appointed Cemetery Caretaker at $60.00 per month. Continue Reading

Brick Kitchen Approved for Wing Sang & Co. – July 5, 1898

Plans were submitted by J. Young for brick kitchen to be built for Wing Sang & Co * on Lot 26, Block 13, DL196, DuPont Street. Plan approved subject to plan being deposited in the City Engineer's Office. This photo from 1901 shows the Wing Sang Co., Mr. Yip Sang with children and family members. Continue Reading

Hospital Nurses “Shall Obey” Miss Pirk – July 18, 1898

Water will be supplied to the Hastings Shingle Mfg Co at the ordinary meter rates on the condition that the company supply and lay the pipe. The Health Committee held a special meeting to inform the nurses and other members of the Hospital Staff be notified that they shall obey the orders of the acting Matron Miss Pirk. Continue Reading

Vancouver Has “No Power” to Authorize Bicycle Parking – July 25, 1898


A. St. George Hamersley, the City Solicitor, gave his opinion that, "the Council has no power to litigate by resolution on any matter that has to be regulated by By-Law" which included the placement of racks for bicycles. Hospital Matron Miss Macfie told the Health Committee she would at once resume duty if she were allowed full authority to hire and discharge nurses. Continue Reading

Council Seeks Power to Remove “Undesirable” Buildings from Stanley Park – August 1, 1898

Stanley Park was currently, “handed over to the Corporation of the City of Vancouver for use as a Park subject to the right of the Dominion (Canadian) Government to resume the property when required at any time and subject to the City keeping the same in proper order”. Council feels that although Vancouver has spent more than $100,000 improving the park, the City lacks, “the necessary powers to evict trespassers, remove undesirable buildings and prevent nuisances.” Council is looking to the Honorable the Minister of Militia and Defence for an order in Council enforcing their authority. Continue Reading

Vancouver to Raise $93,300 for Paving and Grading- August 22, 1898

City of Vancouver to raise the sum of $37000 for wood block paving certain streets and a By Law to raise $56300 for Curbing and grading certain streets A grant of $100 was made to St. Paul's Hospital. Dr R.J. Bentley was appointed House Surgeon at the City Hospital. Continue Reading

A Few Policemen to Be Available for Night Call – August 29, 1898

Council granted the Chief of Police's request that beds be fitted up in the old City Engineer’s office for sleeping quarters for two or three members of the Police Force, "who will be handy in case of a hurried call". Also that uniforms and raincoats be provided for the three newly hired policemen, and additional raincoats for eight more. The Assessors to the City calculate the worth of the various properties and buildings it hopes to acquire for public recreation, those "fronting on the water," the Cambie Street Recreation Grounds, and two blocks in Mount Pleasant. Continue Reading

Council Plans More Recreation Grounds, Direct Steamship Service to San Francisco – September 6, 1898

Council identified twenty four properties it would like to expropriate for public recreation purposes, and the price it would be willing to pay for each property. Council memorialize the Board of Trade in the City of Vancouver to cooperate with the Council of the said City of Vancouver to endeavor to have such arrangements made with the view of having direct booking and reception of passengers by the Pacific Coast Steamship Company’s vessels at Vancouver for San Francisco. Continue Reading

Council Debates the Utility of “Dolphins – September 26, 1898

Council debated the utility of dolphins (man-made berthing or mooring structures that extend above water level) in the Narrows. Council argued the Government was in charge of navigation matters and therefore the proper parties to erect dolphins to aid navigation. Alderman Townley moved that the Mayor, and Alderman McQueen and himself be a committee to go into uniformly naming streets and report particulars to the Council. Deputy Minister of Marines and Fisheries acknowledged letter on the subject of English Bay foreshore rights, and stated that when the city has acquired the lots to which a foreshore is desired, the question of dealing with the foreshore will be taken up. Continue Reading

Stempel Fire Extinguishers Offered to Council for Purchase – October 3, 1898

The B.C. Agent for the Stempel Fire Extinguisher asked the City to purchase a number of fire extinguishers (pictured here) at $20.00 each. L. J. Cody complained that two boxes of cigars claimed to be stolen from him and recovered by the Police were emptied while in the possession of the Police. A By-Law was introduced to amend the Trades License By-Law so as to prohibit Sparring Exhibitions, practising as a Clairvoyant, Fortune Tellers, Spiritualistic Medium or professing to foretell the future by any occult means. Continue Reading

Curfew Bell Contemplated for Vancouver – November 14, 1898

The owners of Doering and Marstrand Brewing Co wrote to the Board of Works re the condition of Dufferin St at Scotia Street. Pictured are the employees of their brewery in Mount Pleasant. The Police and Fire Committee will consult with other cities as to their use of a Curfew Bell. Continue Reading

City Supports Plan for Steamers North and South from Vancouver – November 21, 1898

Council supported in principle Captain Edwards and Frank Richards' request for exemption from taxation of certain proposed wharves, buildings etc and free water for a term of 20 years, provided they establish steamer service as they propose. Board of Works received a letter from Wong Leong & Co, asking permission to erect a small corrugated iron building for a cool house in the rear of their store at 20 Dupont St. Photo shows the south side of Dupont St. in 1907. Continue Reading

St. Paul’s Church On The Move – November 28, 1898

The Vancouver Pet Stock Association granted use of the Market Shed December 20 - 23. Letter received from W. A. Mace asking permission to move St. Paul’s Church to corner of Pendrell and Jervis Streets.Permission granted. Council did not approve the Water and Market Committee's suggestion that D. Madison be retained as diver for $200.00 Continue Reading

YMCA Building Reports Library “In Unsafe Condition” – December 5, 1898

 W.B. Ross complained about certain members of the Police Force pulling his whiskers. C.B. Macneill, agent for the YMCA building, reported on the unsafe condition of the portion of it building which is used as a public library. The Street Railway Co [will] be permitted to construct a Street Railway on Davie Street on the same terms as those contained in the Agreements for Robson and Pender Streets. Continue Reading

Vancouver Library Premises Confirmed “Unsafe” – December 12, 1898

Council granted to the Free Library the balance of their yearly budget. However, the premises [151 West Hastings, in the Y.M.C.A. building] "now leased by the Corporation of the City of Vancouver as a Free Library" from the Credit Foncier Co., "have upon examination being found unsafe and that they [Credit Foncier| be required to take such steps and make such repairs as may be necessary for the purpose of rendering the said premises safe. Continue Reading

Officer McKeown’s Name Cleared – December 19, 1898

Officer McKeown was shown not to have been intoxicated of being intoxicated on the evening of November 9th as accused by T. F. Robinson, nor was he even on duty. All salaries due to be paid Jan 1st will be paid before December 25th. Continue Reading

New Hospital Rules Sent to Medical Staff – December 20, 1898

This transcript was made in 2023 by Transcribimus volunteer Carole Wilson Source: City of Vancouver Archives Series 31Volume 8 page 595. [dflip id="8408" ][/dflip] [Volume 8 page] 595The Council met on Tuesday December 20th 1898 at 11 A.M.Present Aldermen Painter, McQueen, Neelands, McPhaiden, McMorran and Brown. Moved by Alderman McQueenSeconded by " McMorranThat Alderman Brown be appointed Chairman.Carried.Moved by Alderman McQueen.Seconded by “ McMorran,That the Council go into Committee of the Whole with Alderman Brown in the Chair to consider the Hospital Rules.Carried.The Rules were considered Clause by Clause. Moved by Alderman McMorranSeconded by “ ForemanThat the Rules in reference to the Medical Staff as amended be forwarded to the House Surgeon for submission to the Medical Staff with a request that an answer be given by Tuesday the 27th Dec. whether the staff approves of the amendments or not.The Council adjourned.Thos. F. McGuiganCity Clerk