We saw the Arts and Crafts Building on the 500 block of Seymour Street in an earlier post. It was built in two stages; the first phase was designed by Thomas Hooper for Evans and Hastings and constructed by Norton Griffiths Steel at a cost of $45,000 in 1911, during the city’s first really big boom. In 1927 R T Perry was hired to add another three storeys, which he achieved without dramatically altering the building’s style. Subsequent restorations of the building have also respected the original design far more than in many examples.
Evans and Hastings were printers and publishers, sometimes printing books privately published by the author. They had been around in the city for a long time; in 1890 Thomas Evans and Thomas W Hastings bought the printing business of Robert Mathison, the first printer in the city, and renamed it to reflect the change in ownership. Among the wide range of printing jobs that Evans & Hastings could handle were promotional portrait photographs. Thomas Hooper had his printed by the company in 1910. The company operated from 641 Hastings Street before moving to Seymour. Thomas Evans lived up the street in the 700 block of Seymour; Thomas Hastings in the West End.
When this 1924 Vancouver Public Library image was taken there were a number of tenants on the upper floors of the building. Daly & Morrin Ltd (manufacturer’s agents for drapery) and Cluett Peabody Co (shirt manufacturers) were on the second floor while on the third floor were the Dominion Map and Blue Print Co (still in business today as Dominion Blue) and The Multigraphers, Henry Levy, who supplied chemists, Arthur Smith who was another manufacturer’s agent, the McRoberts Optical Co and Percival W Thomas who was an assayer and chemist.
Later, Evans and Hastings were taken over by the Wrigley Printing Co with premises on the 1100 block of Seymour. Today the building still holds its value as an office building, sold in 2013 to an offshore investor for over $15 million.