Recent Submissions

  • C.A.F. soldiers and a machine gun 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    Calling in the C.A.F. to quell the riots and stop the strike did end the disturbances for the most part. Hundreds of miners were arrested and martial law was declared in the district. The presence of the C.A.F. caused even ...
  • The Civil Aid Force arriving in Nanaimo 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    The Civil Aid Force arrived in Nanaimo in August 1913 and stayed throughout the fall and winter. In this photograph, the force is seen arriving at Nanaimo.
  • John Bowser reading the Riot Act 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    Special police were sent from Vancouver to quell the disturbances, but they were repulsed by the rioters at the Nanaimo wharf. Finally John Bowser, the Attorney-General, was asked for military assistance. Here he is seen ...
  • Destruction at Extension (slide 10-17) 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    The rioting miners caused wholesale destruction in Extension. Property of the coal mining companies was also destroyed. Coal cars, equipment, and large piles of coal were burned.
  • Destruction at Extension (slide 10-16) 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    The rioting miners caused wholesale destruction in Extension. The rioting miners had intended to attack only homes of the "scab" labourers who would not join the union. As the riots grew in intensity, however, many other ...
  • Destruction at Extension (slide 10-15) 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    The rioting miners caused wholesale destruction in Extension. They burned many homes to the ground.
  • Nanaimo Free Press headline #2 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1912)
    The main issue in the strike of 1912-13 was the union recognition. Dunsmuir and other coal companies were determined not to recognize the unions. The miners were just as determined to gain union recognition. The strike ...
  • Nanaimo Free Press headline #1 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1913)
    The bitterness against the Dunsmuir mining interests culminated in a major strike which shut down all the mines in the district. The strike started in Cumberland in September 1912 and soon spread to Extension and other ...
  • The Wellington Inn, Wellington 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1889)
    The town of Wellington was originally located farther north and west of the present community. When the Wellington mine closed in 1900, most of the buildings including houses, stores, churches, and a large hotel were ...
  • Miners at Extension 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1900)
    As with the mine at Wellington, the Dunsmuir mine at Extension was the scene of major mining disasters and labour strife. In 1901, 16 men died in a mine fire. In 1909, 25 were killed when an explosion ripped the mine. ...
  • Coal mine at Extension 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1895)
    In 1895, a major Dunsmuir coal mine was opened at Extension. The Dunsmuir empire at this time was headed by Robert Dunsmuir's son, James. Like his father, James Dunsmuir was the richest man in the province. He expanded the ...
  • The Wellington Mine 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1883)
    Robert Dunsmuir began building his fortune after he discovered coal at Wellington in 1869. Three Royal Navy officers provided the capital to develop the mine. By 1883, the Wellington Mine pictured here was producing so ...
  • Robert Dunsmuir 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1852)
    Robert Dunsmuir began working for the H.B.C. coal operations in 1851. He moved to Nanaimo in 1852 and supervised the relatively small coal mining activities of the company. His son Alexander was the first white child born ...
  • Commercial Street, 1912 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1912)
    This photograph was taken from the corner of Commercial and Bastion Street about 1912. The large building in the centre of the photograph was constructed on the site of the "Nanaimo Free Press" building and next door to ...
  • The Nanaimo Opera 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1888)
    The Nanaimo Opera was opened in 1888 and was the scene of many visiting and local theatrical and musical events. The building was later incorporated into the Windsor Hotel.
  • The Nanaimo Court House 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1897)
    Nanaimo's impressive Court House was built in 1897. It was designed by F.M. Rattenbury, a leading architect who designed the Legislative Building and Provincial Library in Victoria.
  • The Wilson Block 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1891)
    The Wilson Block was built on Commercial Street in 1891 and later was known was the Wilson Hotel. It was gutted by fire in 1930. Just left of the Wilson Block is the "Nanaimo Free Press" building. The paper was founded by ...
  • Nanaimo harbour, c. 1920 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1920)
    Nanaimo's harbour has always been a centre of activity and source of revenue for the city. Coal was, of course, the most important commodity to pass through the port. Nanaimo was also a major distribution point for the ...
  • The Windsor Hotel 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1887)
    Construction on the Windsor Hotel was begun in the mid-1880's at the corner of Front and Bastion Street. Over the years, the hotel has seen many additions and restorations. The Windsor became the Plaza and later the Shoreline ...
  • View north on Commercial Street, 1910 

    Unknown author (Electronic version published by Vancouver Island University, 1910)
    As the coal production increased in the 1890's and after the turn of the century, Nanaimo's population grew steadily. Many permanent structures were built along Commercial, Church, Bastion, and Wharf Street. In this ...

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