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Aerial Photos of BC from 1940's and 1950's


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#1 MarkP

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 08:35 AM

Recently my father passed away and while cleaning out his place, we came across thousands of aerial photographs of BC. Most of them from the 1940's and 1950's. I've always had a fascination with vintage photos, so I started scanning them and putting them on a web site. If anyone is interested in seeing what Victoria and the Vancouver area looked like 65 years ago, please check out my blog: http://vintageairphotos.com

Victoria Harbour from 1947 is here: http://vintageairpho...com/bo-47-1454/

I'm working on another Victoria one at the moment, it should be up in the next day or so. I've been trying to post a new photo every few days. Be sure to actually click on the images, you'll be able to zoom way in and see a lot more detail. Some of the downtown buildings are fascinating.

Mark

#2 Sparky

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:43 AM

Welcome to Vibrant Victoria MarkP.

#3 cfbnp200e

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:47 AM

These are incredible! The Vic Harbour is great - I can't believe the high-res on photos from the 40's! Can't wait to see future posts. Thanks.

#4 sebberry

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:50 AM

Welcome and thanks for sharing!

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#5 Mike K.

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:59 AM

Are there just the two photos of Victoria, one of the harbour and one of a navy vessel? Or am I missing something?

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#6 MarkP

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:07 AM

There are just the two of Victoria at the moment. I've only got 14 images online so far. I just started. It takes about 2 hours to scan and restore a single image. Most of that is painting out dust and scratches. And with a full time job and a 13 month old....I'm lucky if I can add one new pic every couple of days. :-)

#7 cfbnp200e

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:39 AM

You have your hands full, for sure. Much appreciate the work you're putting in on making these available - a very nice tribute to the talent of your father.

#8 Mike K.

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:47 AM

There are just the two of Victoria at the moment. I've only got 14 images online so far. I just started. It takes about 2 hours to scan and restore a single image. Most of that is painting out dust and scratches. And with a full time job and a 13 month old....I'm lucky if I can add one new pic every couple of days. :-)


Gotcha, thanks for the update, Mark :)

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#9 MarkP

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 08:46 PM

Just posted another Victoria shot. This one has an amazing amount of detail. I could pan around the streets for hours....

http://vintageairpho...com/bo-47-1524/

Mark

#10 G-Man

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:11 PM

^ Wow I never knew just how many buildings we lost when Centennial Square was put in. What a loss!

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#11 sebberry

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:20 PM

I was just looking at that!

Are those fire trucks just to the right of the "Victoria Public Market"? Could that be the old fire hall?

I wonder what Google would do to get their hands on historical images like this to build into Google Earth.

What a wonderful look back, thanks again for your efforts! :)

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#12 Nparker

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:22 PM

What an amazing photo. Such sharp images. Not only could I see a fantastic shot of the old Memorial Arena under construction, but there seems to be some sort of damage to a structure on the roof of the HBC. It's like travelling back in time and standing right there.:)

#13 sebberry

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 09:24 PM

Oh look, the first arena is part way into construction

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#14 Bingo

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 10:40 PM

In the harbour photo you can see the old smokestack from the Empress Hotel laundry as well as the stack from St. Josephs Hospital laundry. The Bapco paint Co. has a large sign advertising Satin Glo. One of those old waterfront buildings on Montreal Street was the netloft for the fishing fleet, which later became a great seafood restaurant called The Net Loft.

In the photo of downtown you can see the original Hudson Bay store before it was enlarged to the East. It was also the transition from streetcars to busses. Both can be seen near the BC Electric depot at the corner of Pandora and Douglas. The tracks seem to be removed from the depot and a new bus is turning out on to Pandora.

You can see the Silver Springs sign on the roof of the old brewery at Government and Discovery.

That might be motorcycle building that people were looking for at Kings and Douglas awhile ago.

City Hall, before the middle of the building was filled in.

In the 700 block of Cormorant those could be old horse drawn milk carts lined up, behind the McGavins Bread billboard.

In the 700 block of Caledonia the building under construction was later occupied by Edwards Welding, before being demolished a couple of years ago.

A Safeway at Douglas and Herald?

The York theatre, now the MacPherson.

A motorcycle with sidecar, just east of the Fisgard Police Station, and a maybe a paddy wagon on the street.

http://vintageairpho...com/bo-47-1524/

#15 Bingo

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 11:07 PM

Are there just the two photos of Victoria, one of the harbour and one of a navy vessel? Or am I missing something?


There is a photo of USS Iowa, one of the largest of the US battleships to visit Victoria.

http://vintageairpho...om/bo-47-1612b/

It had 16 inch guns that could lob a shell 20 miles. In it's early career it could launch planes from a catapult on the rear deck.

The ship has an interesting history and is now a museum.

http://en.wikipedia....USS_Iowa_(BB-61)



#16 Sparky

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 11:10 PM

^ Good work Bingo

#17 aastra

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 07:43 AM

I had a model of USS Iowa back in the day.

#18 aastra

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 08:22 AM

I never knew just how many buildings we lost when Centennial Square was put in. What a loss!


Buildings are blight, don't you know that? The ideal city shouldn't contain any buildings.

#19 Holden West

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 08:35 AM

These are astounding. I know BC Archives has some vintage aerial photos but I doubt they have this level of detail and they sure aren't online and zoomable like these are. This is a major find and I hope there are more to come.

The archives have lots of photos of the main drags--Government, Douglas etc. but hardly anything from the forgotten side streets, which these pictures cover in great detail.

In order to see the maximum detail using Google Chrome, I enlarge the page by clicking the wrench in the upper right of the browser. Then the pop-up window will be full screen. The detail is still crisp at this enlargement.
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#20 Bingo

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 03:47 PM

These are astounding. I know BC Archives has some vintage aerial photos but I doubt they have this level of detail and they sure aren't online and zoomable like these are. This is a major find and I hope there are more to come.


I agree. I spent a few hours zooming around.

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