Vancouver History Blog

The Forbidden Vancouver Blog
Forbidden Vancouver on the Radio title image. Photo of a radio sales promotion in Victory Square by Stuart Thomson, 1931. City of Vancouver Archives #99-4143

Forbidden Vancouver on the Radio

Logo for Roundhouse Radio, 98.3 Vancouver

Forbidden Vancouver regularly joins Roundhouse Radio for Throwback Thursdays, 98.3 on your radio dial. Follow the links below to hear about our walking tours and find out about some of the stories that inspired them.

4 Secret Vancouver Beach Histories

Group from Mt Pleasant at Greer’s Beach, 1896. City of Vancouver Archives #Be P98.

Forbidden Vancouver’s in-house historian Lani Russwurm talks to Stirling Faux about some of Vancouver’s little known beach history. It’s more exciting than you might think!

A Boozy History of Prohibition in Vancouver

Dry Squad still seizure, ca. 1917. City of Vancouver Archives #480-215.

Turns out a lot of people know about American prohibition but don’t realize we banned alcohol three years earlier! Will Woods tells Martin Strong all about it.

Lions Gate Bridge

Sculptor Charles Marega with one of the lions he made for the Lion's Gate Bridge in 1938. Photo by AC Kelly, City of Vancouver Archives #1399-400

Sculptor Charles Marega with one of the lions he made for the Lion’s Gate Bridge in 1938. Photo by AC Kelly, City of Vancouver Archives #1399-400

Will Woods talks about how the Lions Gate Bridge came to be. Who knew there’s a lot of politics that goes into bridge building.

Prohibition City

Interior of an unidentified Vancouver bar ca. 1917. City of Vancouver Archives #Hot P54

Interior of an unidentified Vancouver bar ca. 1917. City of Vancouver Archives #Hot P54 (cropped).

Forbidden Vancouver’s Storyteller-in-Chief Will Woods talks to Martin Strong about the birth of Forbidden Vancouver and its themed tours, including The Forbidden Tour, Secrets of the Penthouse nightclub, Mount Pleasant’s Brewery Creek, and much more.

Stanley Park

A man and big trees in Stanley Park, 1902. Photo by Philip T Timms (cropped), City of Vancouver Archives #677-727

A man and big trees in Stanley Park, 1902. Photo by Philip T Timms (cropped), City of Vancouver Archives #677-727

Will Woods takes on Stanley Park history. Logging the park, the real reason for designating it as a park, evicting Indigenous and other communities that lived there, the war against crows, and where all those grey squirrels came from. Keep an eye out for our brand new Stanley Park tour coming this summer!

Lost Souls of Gastown

Sunny Side Hotel at 1 Water Street, June 1888. Photo by RH Gardiner (cropped), City of Vancouver Archives #Bu P371

Sunny Side Hotel at 1 Water Street, June 1888. Photo by RH Gardiner (cropped), City of Vancouver Archives #Bu P371

The Great Vancouver Fire, the Klondike Gold Rush, the murder of John Bray, and the tragic demise of George Vancouver: Will Woods on the true stories behind the Lost Souls of Gastown.

Prostitution in Early Vancouver

Vancouver prostitution history Alice Bernard had this building built at 514 Alexander Street in 1912 when she moved her operation from Shore Street to the new red light district.

Alice Bernard’s brothel she had built at 514 Alexander Street in 1912.

Birdie Stewart’s Water Street brothel, Florence “Mother” Mackenzie’s Dupont Street house of ill fame, and shuffling the red light district around early Vancouver. Will Woods on the city’s early prostitution history.

Deviant Alleys of Early Vancouver

This sign for 34 Market Alley is the only surviving indication that this was once a bustling commercial laneway.

This sign for 34 Market Alley is the only surviving indication that this was once a bustling commercial laneway.

Blood Alley, Market Alley, Beatty Lane, Hogan’s Alley, Shanghai Alley, and Canton Alley. Forbidden Vancouver historian Lani Russwurm talks to Martin Strong about some of Vancouver’s storied laneways.