Vancouver Asks Victoria for Deadman’s Island – September 30, 1895

Squatters and boats on Deadman's Island 1895
Squatters and boats on Deadman's Island 1895

Council, concerned by press accounts that some individual or entity had asked for Deadman’s Island, wrote to the Provincial Government to ask, “that the Island should be placed under the care of the corporation of Vancouver for the benefit of its citizens in connection with Stanley Park.”

This transcript was made in 2021 by Transcribimus volunteer Anonymous.

Illustration: CIty of Vancouver Archives ST PK P47
Showing Squatters Houses on Deadman’s Island

Original handwritten minutes:
City of Vancouver Archives Series 31 Volume 6
pages 774 – 783

to see or download images of the original handwritten minutes, click on the buttons below (three parts):

[Volume 6 page] 774

Vancouver September 30th 1895.

The Council met on Monday September 30th 1895. Present Acting Mayor Brown, and Aldermen Copeland, Gallagher, Queen, McPhaiden, Clandenning, Sanders, Bethune and McDonald.
The Minutes of last meeting were read, and adopted.


From Joseph Kelly and Fred Jackson complaining that they were not paid in full on the D. K. Campbell contract for laying the new water main.
Referred to the Water + Light Committee

From A. T. Ingram, asking for permission to draw earth from the lane between Comox and Pendrell Streets West of Bute Street.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From Wm Ward reporting on the Electric Lights.

From R. A. Muskett, asking for a road to his house on Fairview.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From L. Barclay etal, asking for the opening up of Grant Street.
Referred to the board of Works.

From T. F. Neelands stating that he deserved to connect with the Sewer but that it was too high.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From Robert Burtwell complaining about people peddling without a license.
Referred to the F. M. + P. Committee

From J. Buntzen Business Manager of the Consolidated Railway and Light Co. Stating that he would change the running of the cars if the City still desired it.
Referred to the Board of Works.

[Volume 6 page] 775

From Mrs. Clara A. Rogers asking for the improvement of Broughton Street at the corner of Robson St.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From G. W. Westbrook asking for permission to erect a hitching post on Cordova St. No 160.
Referred to the Board of Works

From R. S. Forbes, asking for a crossing on the corner of Pender + Jervis Streets.
Referred to the Board of Works.

From C. T. Steward, asking for an extension of 15 days to the allotted time for signing the electric light contract.
Moved by Alderman Gallagher
Seconded by “ Coupland
That the extension asked for be granted.

From Mrs. Brown, and other ladies representing the W. C. T. U. Asking the Council to contribute a sum for the support of a home for young girls arriving friendless in the City.
Moved by Alderman Gallagher.
Seconded by “ McDonald.
That the communication be referred to the Finance Committee.

The following Reports were received and read.

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee met on Friday September 27th 1895.
Present Aldermen Brown, Coupland and Clandenning.

Moved by Alderman Coupland.
That Alderman Brown be appointed chairman protem.

The following accounts were recommended for payment:-
H. M. Henderson’s Salary $6,000

[Volume 6 page] 776

Thomson Bros. Supplies .50¢
Con Ry + L. C. Lights $1617.44
News.Advertiser Advertisements 3.30
A. St. G. Hamersly Law costs 25.75
Innes + Richards, Insurance 100.00


From C. L. Murray, Secretary of the School board giving the amount of insurance on the schools, and the name of the Insurance Agents.
Filed for reference.

From E. J. Cashmore, asking if the City would assist him by a bonus if he would erect a bicycle factory in the city.
Laid over until further information is obtained on the subject.

From Casswell + Co. Toronto, asking the if city wished to continue as a subscriber for the Dominion Statutes.
Resolved that they be informed that the City intends to continue as a subscriber.

From Innes, Richards + Ackroyd asking for the renewal of the Insurance on the Isolation Hospital.
Resolved that the Insurance be renewed with them.

From Mellon, Smith + co handing in cheque for license.

From Walsh bros. Etal asking the Council to submit a By-Law to the ratepayers to authorize the payment of the creditors of Purdy + Williams on the reservoir contract.
Resolved that in respect to the claims of several merchants for compensation by the city for goods supplied to the contractors of the Reservoir, the committee does not believe that the City is and for the following reasons:-

That the security asked for by the City is limited to the completion of the work assigned to the

[Volume 6 page] 777

contractors, and has got nothing to do whatever with labour performed or material supplied:

That it would be a dangerous and pernicious thing for the city to hold itself either directly or indirectly responsible for debts incurred by contractors, and would inevitably result in the withdrawal, of all security for the due performance of contracts and no sane man would become responsible for such indefinite and unbounded amounts as might be furnished to contractors under the head of supplies, and what the individual could not and would not do with safety, the City ought not:

That if such a system of responsibility were to be adopted by the City in this case justice demands that all liabilities incurred by contractors should not be treated alike, and the result would not be difficult to foresee.

For these and other reasons which might be stated the Committee declines to recommend to the Council the submission of a By-Law for the purpose for the purpose named in the communication.

Resolved that the City Clerk be instructed to notify the present holders of contracts for clearing the cemetery grounds that unless they signify their intentions of finishing their contracts by the first of March next that the same will be cancelled and awarded to others.

Sgd Wm Brown
Chairman protem

Moved by Alderman Gallagher
Seconded by “ Queen
That the resolution re Welsh Bros etal be laid over for one week.

Moved by Alderman Bethune
Seconded by “ Clandening.
That the resolution re Welsh bros etal be laid over for one week.

Moved by Alderman Bethune
Seconded by “ Clandening
That the Report as amended by adopted.

[Volume 6 page] 778

Board of Works

The Board of Works met on the 26th September 1895.
Present Aldermen McPhaiden, Sanders and McDonald.


From E. Lindsay Phillips re the opening up of Clark Drive.
Recommended to the early consideration of the incoming Council.

From C. F. Mills etal, asking that 5th Avenue be opened up one block west of Centre Street.
Recommended to be taken up among the first petitions next year.

From W. J. Smith etal asking for a 3 plank walk on Prince Edward Street from 10th to 12th Av connecting with St. Michael’s Church.
Recommended to the Council to have this put down.

From E. B. Morgan calling attention to the unsafe condition of the sidewalk opposite the Byrnes Block.
Referred to the Ward foreman to do what he can with old plank on hand.

Resolved that the plan submitted for an additional story to the brick building being put up by J. W. Horne at Lot 8. B. 8. 196. Cordova Street east be approved subject to being found by the engineer to conform to the requirements, the Fire Limit by-Law.

Resolved that the chain gang be sent on the first opportunity to open land in B. 10. 182

[Volume 6 page] 779

Resolved that the removal of roots etc and the grading of lane in Block 42 a, 200 d be referred to the Ward foreman for attention.

The engineer stated everything was being got ready for the calling for the work on Robson Street.

Resolved that tenders be sent in to the next meeting of the Board which will be held on the 10th of October.

The following accounts were recommended for payment:-
D. Gibbons Barclay Street $214.94
J. Watt + J. Stewart Denman St. 100.
do do Haro St. 68.85
B. C. Iron Works Manhole covers etc 73.36
W. J. Allen Express .75
Champion + White Street Sweeping 40.
Thomas etal Labor 388.75

sgd D. McPhaiden
Acting Chairman

Moved by Alderman Gallagher
Seconded by “ Queen
That the Report be adopted.

Water + Light Committee

The Water + Light Committee met on Friday Sept 20th 1895.
Present the full Board.

Resolved that 600 feet of 22 inch pipe be ordered for the water works department to lay new water main across Coal Harbour.

The Committee met again on Wednesday Sept 25th 1895. Present Aldermen Brown, Coupland, Clandening and Bethune.


From North Vancouver re road to dam.

[Volume 6 page] 780

From Wm. Sully asking for a refund of water rates for Queen and Robinson.
Laid over.

From M. R. Wells asking for a water supply for motor on Westminster Av.
Resolved to let Mr. Wells have a supply for 6 months the same to be paid for by meter.

From T O. Townley etal, asking for an electric light on Seaton St.
Laid over for consideration

The following tenders were received for replacing dolphins in Narrows and building pile bridge across Coal Harbour:-

Palmer + Corrigan Dolphins $222.50
‘ “ Coal Harbour Bridge 5.65 per pile
‘ “ Lumber 13.45 per M. B. M.

Geo Griffiths Dolphins $12. per pile
‘ “ Lumber 14.00 per M. B. M.
‘ “ Coal Harbour Bridge 4.00 per pile
‘ “ Lumber 11.00 per M. B. M

J. B McPhie Dolphins $438.00
‘ “ Coal Harbour Bridge 5.00 per pile
‘ “ Lumber 14.00 per M. B. M

D. K. Campbell, Dolphins $296.00
‘ “ Coal Harbour Bridge 4.50 per pile
‘ “ Lumber 14.00 per M. B. M

Resolved that Geo Griffith be awarded the contract for the Coal Harbour Bridge.

Resolved that the dolphins at Narrow be not renewed this year.

The following accounts were recommended for payment:-

Clarke + Stuart Supplies $3.00
News. Advertiser Ads 3.30
con Ry + L. Co Lights 1617.44

[Volume 6 page] 781

Hooper etal Labour $854.50

sgd. Wm Brown

Moved by Alderman Gallagher
Seconded by “ Queen
That the report be adopted.

Moved by Alderman Bethune
Seconded by “ Clandening
That the Council go into Committee of the Whole for the selection of parties to fill the positions of Poll tax Collector and Assessor, Milk + License Inspector + Plumbing Health Inspector.

The Acting Mayor was appointed Chairman

The following applications were received:-

Poll Tax collector Assessor

Sm Sutherland, J. A. Coldwell, G. A. Miller, Thos. H. Robon, H. J. Rickard, Arch Roinson, R. H Cooke, M. Ellison, H. A. Bell, L. L. Budlong, D. M. Fraser, J. O. Fleming, W. E. Johnstone, D. J. McPhaiden, + Wm Jordan.

Health + Plumbing Inspector

E. J. Knowdell, C. M. Farmer, A. W. Scoullar, Robert Marrion, John Brenton, chas Peters + H. J. Richard.

License + Milk Inspector

J. McGeer, G. B. Busby, T. H. Robson, E. J. Curran, A McKinnell, R. Frank, F. A. Barnes, G. F. Xpham, F. Kersby, J. L. Brown, H. J. Ricard, J. Greyson, J. Young, c. A. MacKinnon, J. A. Green, G. W. Manning, J. L. Carter, A. Gothard, T. C. Gray, W. Farris, T. P. Stretch, J. O. Flemming, H. S. Jefferson, P. Fewster, W. H. Crammer, A. R. Steacy, J. Brenton, Nicol Allan, Wm McGirr, and W. H. Stevens.

The Committee then proceeded to ballot

[Volume 6 page] 782

After a number were taken it was found that the following received a majority of the votes:-

For Poll Tax Collector + Assessor W. E. Johnstone

“ Milk + License Inspector W. T. Brown

“ Health + Plumbing Inspector R. Morrison

The Committee then rose and reported the election of W. E. Johnstone, J. L. Brown, and R. Marrion.

It was then moved by Alderman Coupland
Seconded by “ Coupland
That the amount received by the Fire, Market + Police Committee for rock be placed to the credit of the said Committee.

Moved by Alderman Gallagher
Seconded by “ Coupland
That it having been stated in the public press in Victoria and Vancouver that some Corporation or Individual has requested the Provincial Government to make a grant of Deadman’s Island as a site for a Marine railway or Dock, this Council desires to protest against any such transfer of the land in question, as not in the public interest, and to call the attention of the Hon. Commissioner of Lands + Works to the fact that several years

[Volume 6 page] 783

his predecessor in office, and the Premier the late Hon. John Robson reached an understanding through the means of the city Representatives in the Legislature that the Island should be placed under the care of the corporation of Vancouver for the benefit of its citizens in connection with Stanley Park and that in accordance therewith the Corporation built a bridge to connect the island with the mainland and that a copy of this resolution be forwarded to the Acting Premier the Hon James Baker, and the chief commissioner of Land and Works the Hon G. B. Martin.

Consideration of By-Laws

Moved by Alderman Coupland
Seconded by “ McPhaiden
That the council go into Committee of the Whole for the consideration of the Wash House By-Law.

The Acting Mayor was appointed Chairman.

A number of clauses were read, after which the Committee rose and reported progress and asked leave to set again.

The Council then adjourned.

W. Brown
Acting Chairman

Thos F. McGuigan
City Clerk