Feature Type:City - A populated place with legally defined boundaries, incorporated as a city municipality under the provincial Municipal Act.
Status: Official
Name Authority: BC Geographical Names Office
Relative Location: Between North Arm of Fraser River and Burrard Inlet, New Westminster Land District
Latitude-Longitude: 49°15'39"N, 123°06'49"W at the approximate location of the Municipal Hall.
Datum: WGS84
NTS Map: 92G/6
Related Maps:
Origin Notes and History:

City of Vancouver incorporated 6 April 1886. Confirmed 11 February 1936 on 92G/3.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

Granville Post Office opened 1 March 1874; name changed to Vancouver Post Office 1 May 1886 [see also the municipality's own website.]

Source: 17th Report of the Geographic Board of Canada, 31 March 1921 (supplement to the Annual Report of the Dept of the Interior, 1922, Ottawa)

"Vancouver, the growing and prosperous city on Burrard inlet, owes its existence to the building of the Canadian Pacific Railway... Before the railway was constructed a small collection of houses was named Granville, but when it was decided that the Canadian Pacific Railway would make this point the terminus the village sprang into prominence and in 1886 was incorporated under the name of "Vancouver" in honour of the man who ninety-four years before had explored and named Burrard Inlet....." [see Walbran for extensive additional biographical information, Captain George Vancouver's photograph, and a fascimile of his signature, taken from Vancouver's 1794 letter to Kamehameha, King of Owhyhee (Hawaii). ]

Source: Walbran, John T; British Columbia Coast Names, 1592-1906: their origin and history; Ottawa, 1909 (republished for the Vancouver Public Library by J.J. Douglas Ltd, Vancouver, 1971)

Named in 1886 at the suggestion of Sir W.C. VanHorne, then-CEO of the CPR, after Captain George Vancouver, RN, (1757-1798), famous explorer of the Pacific Coast of Northwest America, who had visited these waters 1790 - 1792. Vancouver, of Dutch descent, was born at the East Anglia port of King's Lynn in 1757, and returned to England in 1795 from his historic adventures. He was a broken man, in debt, in poor health, and more scorned than celebrated. He chose Petersham in Surrey as his home and lived there until his death 18 May 1798, age 40. Buried in the ancient churchyard of St. Peter's Church, his grave was later restored and is maintained by a trust from the City of Vancouver.

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

.....Vancouver entered the navy in 1771. In the following years he sailed with the great Captain Cook on the latter's second and third voyages of exploration. In April 1792 Vancouver arrived off the shores of what was to become British Columbia. Sailing through the Strait of Juan de Fuca [sic], he began that detailed survey of the coast which was to occupy him until his departure for England late in 1794. Much of this work was done in small open boats operating at very considerable distance from Vancouver's ship HMS Discovery and her tender the Chatham. Back in England in 1795, Captain Vancouver (who had been promoted to that rank during his absence) devoted himself to preparing for publication an account of his great expedition. He had just about completed reading the proofs when he died on 10 May 1798. His "Voyage of Discovery to the North Pacific Ocean and round the World" was published later that same year.

Source: Akrigg, Helen B. and Akrigg, G.P.V; British Columbia Place Names; Sono Nis Press, Victoria 1986 /or University of British Columbia Press 1997

First train arrived 23 May 1887. At Stanley Park, Parks Canada has installed a National Historic Site cairn "to mark the place where the S.S. Beaver, the pioneer steamship on the Pacific Ocean, was wrecked 26 July 1888." At Marpole Park, a NHS cairn marks "the site of one of the largest prehistoric middens on the Pacific Coast of Canada." At Marine Drive, a NHS monument marks "the place where Simon Fraser of the North West Company ended his exploration of the Fraser River from Fort George, in July 1808." See also the municipality's own internet site. Link through (April 2000)

Source: BC place name cards, or correspondence to/from BC's Chief Geographer or BC Geographical Names Office

"...[Vancouver]...had mapped most of the major inlets and waterways along the continent from Puget Sound north to Alaska.... He had solved the puzzle of the complex and deceptive continental shoreline and plotted everything on his great chart. When Chalres Wilkes resurveyed Puget Sound for the US Navy in 1841, he was amazed at the accuracy Vancouver achieved.... Vancouver's attention to detail and the accuracy of his final map make it all the more astonishing to consider what he missed. Inexplicably, he failed to discover two of the largest and most important rivers on the Pacific coast, the Fraser and the Columbia. Although he did eventually learn of the Columbia before he finished his survey, the Fraser never made it onto his charts. How Vancouver could have missed these rivers while accurately charting hundreds of comparatively insignificant inlets, islands, and streams is hard to fathom. What is certain is that his failure to spot the Columbia had great implications for the future political development of the Pacific Northwest...." (excerpt from "In the Most Faithful Manner: George Vancouver's Great Voyage" by Stephen R. Bown, published in Mercator's World magazine, Vol 4 No 6, November/December 1999, ) [see additional information with "Columbia River" record.]

Source: included with note