511 East Georgia Street

511 e georgia

This small retail store used to sit next to the Jackson Apartments that are on the corner of Jackson and East Georgia. It was still standing in 1973 when the picture was shot, although the store looks like it had closed down, and there’s a request to not park in front of the garage door (which had no curb crossing associated with it). The Jackson was built in 1910, designed by E E Blackmore, and the owners were Jim Lim and Ying Lee. It cost $35,000 to build, and the land to the east remained undeveloped for a while after it was built. There were often Chinese businesses in the Jackson’s retail units: in 1920 for example the Wing Ty Lung grocery was on the corner. (It was addressed as East Georgia, although when the Jackson was built it was known as Harris Street).

We assume Jim Lim is the same person who owned a building on East Pender Street; the 1912 street directory identifies only one Jim Lim; he was branch manager for the Carrall Street branch of the Bank of Vancouver. Ying Lee doesn’t appear – although there is a merchant called Ying Kee on East Pender in the street directory that year, and there’s a Wing Lee as well, so we can’t be sure if it’s either of these gentlemen, or someone missed by the directory compilers.

In 1927 the corner store became the Harris grocers, presumably as a reminder of the former street name, and by 1937 Harry’s grocers, with the Italian Worker’s Club was in the adjacent retail space (just showing in the picture). In 1950 the Panda grocers was on the corner, and in 1952 this structure is built – recorded as ‘new store’. However, it didn’t open as a store, but rather W J Mesco operated here as a welder. A year later in 1954, McKenzie’s Linoleum Cement mfrs are in the retail unit on the left, and Superweld Co casting repairs and Excelweld of Canada are in the single storey building Mr. Mesco was running the businesses. Superweld was described as a “New and Guaranteed way of mending cracks in motor blocks and cylinder heads without heat” This could be achieved without stripping or pulling the motor.

We’re not sure how long the structure lasted – it’s been gone several years: today there’s a recently installed garden built by the current owners of the Jackson Apartments.

Happy Birthday!

Image source: City of Vancouver Archives CVA 808-30

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Posted September 29, 2015 by ChangingCity in East End, Gone

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