BLASTS FROM THE PAST JULY 18 – McArthur Centre has its beginnings

Boundary Creek straightened, BC Copper ships to Wales, Rock Creek needs a bridge, The City of Greenwood steamer begins service.

By Al Donnelly

By Al Donnelly

Chronicles of Boundary Country from the pages of The Boundary Creek Times Volume III, No.7 – October 23, 1897

➤ Straightening Boundary Creek Through Greenwood – “MacDonald & Hall finished their contract for making the ditch to divert the waters of Boundary Creek. They have cleared and grubbed the ground 36 feet wide for 817 feet and for the same distance have excavated a ditch 6 feet in depth and 12 feet wide at the top and 4 feet at the bottom. The ditch is in four separate lengths, and gives the Creek a straight run where, there were four bends.”

➤ The Beginnings of the McArthur Centre in Greenwood – “Alderman Moulton-Barrett has decided to erect a large block on Copper Street on a lot now occupied by the Silverbow boarding house. The lot is centrally located and Ald. Barrett has already secured tenants. The block will be a two-story (ed. – amended later to include a meeting hall on a third level) with a 50- foot frontage and running back 60 feet. There will be two stores on the ground floor and rooms on the second flat. Plans have been prepared for a building which will be neat in design and modern in its conveniences.”

➤ B.C. Copper Ore to be sent to Wales – “Vivan & Sons, well-known smelter men of Swansea, Wales, are offering to purchase B.C. ore to be shipped to Swansea. It is asserted that the price offered by this Welsh firm for copper ore is nearly double that obtainable from American buyers. Several consignments of ore are reported to have already been sent forward, and it is decided to at once establish well-equipped sampling works at Vancouver in this connection.”

➤ Rendell & Co. Advertisement – Rendell & Co. had received their early winter shipment of “rubber goods and overshoes” with some of these interesting items: “men’s blizzard rubbers; men’s solid protectors; men’s Manitobas and sandals; men’s duck snag-proof knee boots; men’s snow excluders; and ladies’ pebble leg boots.”

➤ Un-Safe Sidewalks – “The attention of Greenwood City Council is called to the unsafe condition of the sidewalk between Kerr & Flood’s and Olson & Phelan’s establishments on Government Street. The planks are in places so far apart that ladies and children using the sidewalk run much risk of serious injury.”

➤ Rock Creek Crossing – “The increased traffic on the main road between Greenwood and Penticton has made greater the necessity for a bridge across Rock Creek at the town of Rock Creek.

“In summer when the water is low, crossing the stream with heavy loads of freight is a serious matter; but during the fall and spring months, when the water rushes down from the mountains, freighters are in danger of losing their own lives and those of their horses.”

➤ New Steamer – The City of Greenwood – “The new steamer, City of Greenwood, will, on Monday next, commence carrying passengers and freight through the shallow waters of the Okanagan River between Penticton and Okanagan Falls.

“She is capable of carrying 60 tons in the river and draws only 13 inches of water loaded.” Less than 18 months later, the steamer was “burned to the water’s edge” when a stove overheated, resulting in a fire that destroyed the vessel.

➤ Red Mountain Railway Bridge – “The new bridge across the Columbia River at Northport, WA has been tested for traffic. The bridge was tried by backing 3 loaded coal cars and 4 flat cars of stone pushed by a 100-ton engine and a 50- ton engine over from the Colville Reservation side.” (ed. – no names were reported as to who volunteered to man the engines)