The Minister of Public Works is reported to be “naturally irritated at the imposition and misrepresentation” in a petition for a Post Office in Vancouver, “that to a great extent such a petition is fraudulent, many of the [supposed 1800 citizens’ signatures being those of ] children and persons not in British Columbia”. Council forms a committee to look who prepared the petition and how the irregularities occurred.

This transcript was made in 2015 by Transcribimus volunteers Margaret Sutherland
and Joy Marie Vasquez
and sponsored by Arnold Silber

original handwritten minutes here

City of Vancouver Archives
Series 23-A Volume 3 pages 264-275

[volume 3 page 290]

Vancouver Feb 17th 1890

The Council met on Monday February 17th 1890 at 8 P.M.

Present His Worship, the Mayor and Aldermen, Browning, Carroll, Garden, Horne, Fox, Sentell, Costello & McLeod.

The Minutes of last meeting were read and adopted.


From J. A. Russell enclosing Monthly Report of Vancouver Free Reading Room. Referred to Finance Committee.

The following petitions for street improvements were received and read and referred to the Board of Works.

1. J. B. Newcomb et al for the sidewalking of Howe Street between Drake & Pacific Streets.

2. From B. I. Short et al for the sidewalking of Burrard Street from Nelson to Davie.

3. From Henry Hopkirk et al for the sidewalking of Howe Street.

4. From James Blair et al for the sidewalking of Howe & Nelson Street.

5. Mary Forbes et al for the grading of Jervis St.

From John McKie praying that certain trees lying and standing on Beach Avenue be removed. Referred to the City Engineer.

From the City Engineer reporting upon the grade of Cordova St. Referred to the Board of Works.

[volume 3 page 291]

From E. G. Prior Esq. M.P. acknowledging receipt of communication re Dry Dock. Filed.
From A. E. Beck Solicitor for Austin Bucknall asking payment of $300.00 for clothes destroyed in quarantine. Referred to Board of Health.


Finance No 4

The Finance Committee met on Friday February 14th 1890.

Present Aldermen Browning, Garden, Fox and Costello.

We beg to report:

1. That the following accounts have been examined and are recommended for payment:

Crowder & Penzer, Coal $33.75
Thos. Dunn & Co. tags etc. 45.70
C. P. Tel Co. 9.20
J. Miller Stamps 21.00
H. Hemlow, et al Assessment 200.00
M. A. Harvey, Livery 8.00

The Minutes of the Board of Health, Police Committee and Board of Works were considered and are hereby confirmed.

Sgd. J. M. Browning, Chairman

Moved by Alderman Garden, seconded by Alderman Costello. That the Report of the Finance Committee be adopted. Carried.

[volume 3 page 292]

Police No 2

The Police Committee met on Thursday Feb 11th 1890 and Saturday Feb 15th 1890.

Present Aldermen Costello, Carroll, Horne, Sentell and Mason at the first meeting and Carroll, Costello, Mason and Sentell at the second meeting.

We beg to recommend:

1. That the following accounts be paid:

VanVolkenburgh & Bro. Meat $16.90
John Scuitto, Supplies 53.02
Chas. Nelson, Drugs 1.25
L. W. Lain, Interpreter 5.00
Creamer & Langley, Stove 42.00
M. A. Harvey, Livery 7.00

2. That John McLaren be appointed Chief of Police at a salary of $100.00 per month to date from the 1st of Feb 1890.

3. That V. W. Haywood be appointed Sergeant of Police at a Salary of $80.00 per month.

4. That Joseph Gibson, Thos. Crawford, John H. Grady, J. W. Johnston, A. C. Stewart and Samuel North be appointed on the regular police force at a salary of $60.00 per month respectively.

5. That M. G. McLeod, be appointed Jailer at a salary of $60.00 per month.

6. That a Telephone be placed in Chief McLaren’s residence.

7. That the following police requirements be purchased from Wm. Murphy viz:

Seven helmets, five batons, three pair of handcuffs and six police whistles.

Sgd. M. Costello, Chairman

[volume 3 page 293]

Moved by Alderman Sentell, seconded by Alderman Costello. That the Police Report be adopted. Carried.

Health No 3

The Board of Health met on Tuesday February 11th 1890.

Present Aldermen Mason, McLeod, Fox, Horne and Carroll.

We beg to recommend the payment of the following accounts:

R. L. Winch, Supplies $2.62
VanVolkenburgh, Supplies 48.94
John Scuitto, Supplies 61.13
A. W. Draper, Supplies 47.20
W. J. Taylor, Burials 28.00
I. R. Morron, Supplies 50.15
P. Withey, Supplies 19.60
Brown & White, Supplies 23.55
Joseph Brown, Supplies 29.45
Dr. McGuigan, Inquests etc. 20.00
F. W. Hart, Supplies 4.90
Hudson’s Bay Co. Supplies 8.25
Palmer Bros. Supplies .95
Sgd. J. I. Carroll for Chairman

Moved by Alderman Costello, seconded by Alderman Carroll. That the Health Report be adopted. Carried.

Works No 4

The Board of Works met on Thursday February 13th 1890.

Present Aldermen Horne, Browning, Costello and Sentell.

[volume 3 page 294]

We beg to recommend:

1. That the following accounts be paid:

Thos. Dunn & Co. Supplies $17.58
Godfrey & Co. Supplies 29.85
H. A. Berry & Co. Drayage 7.45
R. C. P. Mills Coy, Supplies 357.36
S. T. Tilley, Supplies 38.15
Tye & Co. Supplies 23.12
W. C. Muir, Lane in Block 9, 196 41.80
Peter Dubois, Labor 6.00
A. W. McDonald, Robson St. 83.10

2. That the present pound keeper be notified that his services will be no longer required and that applications be called for a pound keeper who will be required to enter upon his duties as soon as possible and that he be required to provide himself with a horse and devote his whole time to his duties.

3. That the claim of H. Connacher for payment for lumber purchased for sewers be not recognized.

4. That the claim of Messrs Foster & McLeod for payment for a sidewalk laid on Pacific Street be not recognized as they promised by letter to pay for the same.

All petitions for street improvements were laid over until the Estimates were complied.

Sgd. M. Costello for Chairman

Moved by Alderman Sentell, seconded by Alderman Carroll. That the Report of the Board of Works be adopted. Carried.

[volume 3 page 295]


Moved by Alderman Horne, seconded by Alderman Browning. That $300.00 be placed to the credit of the Vancouver Branch of the Mainland Association to defray the expenses connected with the collection of voters for the Provincial Voters List. Carried.

Moved by Alderman Horne, seconded by Alderman Carroll. Whereas the City of Vancouver has at its own expense built and equipped an hospital according to the best modern methods and engage, and pay a suitable staff of servants, nurses and attendants thereto and have secured the services of a proper Medical Staff who daily attend to the patients in said hospital.

And whereas said hospital is used extensively by the inhabitants of a large Section of Country outside of the Vancouver, many of whom are unable and do not pay anything for the care and attendance afforded them while in said hospital.

And whereas the City of Vancouver has two large and expensive fire engines with two fire brigades consisting of a large membership of which all are regularly paid, also four horses and all the necessary hose and other equipments required to successfully combat the ravages of possible fires.

Be it therefore resolved by the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of Vancouver in Council assembled that the Legislature of the Province of British Columbia be respectfully requested to make a grant of six thousand [………………..unreadable] hospital

[volume 3 page 296]

at Vancouver.

And be it further resolved that said Legislature be respectfully requested to grant the sum of one thousand dollars in aid of the Vancouver Fire Department.

And be it further be resolved that a copy of this Resolution signed by the Mayor and City Clerk be forwarded to the Hon. the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia. Carried.

Moved by Alderman Browning, seconded by Alderman McLeod. Whereas the press of Victoria and Vancouver has published reports from its correspondents in Ottawa, stating that in a petition sent to the Minister of Public Works respecting a site for the post office in this City and which petition purported to be signed by 1800 individual citizens, persons competent to do such a thing, it has been discovered that to a great extent such petition is fraudulent, many names of children and persons not in British Columbia being inserted.

And whereas it is also stated that the said Minister is naturally irritated at the imposition and misrepresentation that has been attempted upon the Government for the purpose of influencing its action.

And whereas such a state of things is calculated to prejudice this City in the view of the
Government while it puts the citizens as a whole in a most unfavourable light before the people of the country.

And whereas the citizens of Vancouver to do anything possible to protect the interests and good name of the City. Therefore be it resolved that this Council

[volume 3 page 297]

appoint Aldermen Garden, Costello, Doering and mover and seconder a committee to investigate the subject of such petition to ascertain who drew it up, circulated it, and obtained the signatures to it, and by whom it was completed and forwarded to Mr. Mara M. P. for presentation to the Minister of Works and report the finding to Council as early as possible, with a view to the Council making such explanation to the Department as it may deem desirable or expedient in the premises. Carried.

Moved by Alderman Costello, seconded by Alderman Garden. That the following account for labor be paid:

P. Atkinson et al $93.00 Carried.

Moved by Alderman Costello, seconded by Alderman Garden. That the following Park accounts be paid:

P. Fewster & Co. Feed $4.00
E. B. Makill, Meat 3.35
Crowder & Penzer, Feed 11.20
John Scuitto, Feed 5.25

Moved by Alderman Fox, seconded by Alderman Sentell. That Architects for the Market Building be notified to proceed with the erection of the clock tower as per plan submitted to the Board of Works and accepted by them. Carried.

Notice of Motion

Alderman Carroll gave notice that he

[volume 3 page 298]

would introduce the following resolution on Monday the 24th inst:

“That whereas large areas of valuable unimproved and unoccupied land in this Municipality are held for speculative purposes and are being increased in value by the improvements made for business and residential purposes.

And whereas said lands held as aforesaid are not producing a fair proportionate share of
Municipal income and are assessed for much less than other lands in the same locality owned by those who make improvements on their lands and thereby adding to the permanent wealth and growth of the City.

Therefore be it resolved that this Council procure legislation without delay to amend the Vancouver Incorporation Act and Amending Acts so that this Municipality may be enabled and empowered to levy municipal rates and taxes on lands alone and to have discretionary powers to levy taxes and rates on improvements made on lands or to exempt such improvements from taxes or rates whatsoever.

The Council then adjourned.

I. M. Horne, Chairman

Thos. F. McGuigan, City Clerk

Post office petition draws Dominion Government wrath – February 17, 1890