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Fort George, B.C.: A pictorial and descriptive album setting forth the present development and future… Natural Resources Security Company, Ltd 1912

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Array theN&tur&I Place tbTrade - at
the Junction of QilBousandh Miles
of JV&vidable Waterways.
heJYuh of the Railroad Systems
of Central British Columbia.  #
Port George, b.c.
A Pictorial and Descriptive Album setting forth the Present
Development and Future Prospects of Central British Columbia's
Natural Trading and Distributing Centre.
" If you can't go to see for yourself, use
the   Camera's   eye   to   find   the   facts"
Compiled and Issued by the Publicity Department of the
Natural Resources Security Company, Ltd.
G. J. HAMMOND, President
Head Office: 606-615 Bower Building, Vancouver, B.C.
After September 1st,  1912:
Fort George, British Columbia Tel. and Cable Address:    NARESCO"
Code: Western Union
Natural Resources Security Co.
PAID-UP CAPITAL,  $250,000
GEO. J. HAMMOND, President
Fort George    -    B.C.
Branch  Offices:
Owners and Dealers in Town and City Properties, Town-
sites,  Subdivisions,  Farm  Lands (wholesale and retail),
Coal Measures and Timber Limits
in British Columbia and Peace River
T. H. BROWN, General Manager R. E. A. YOUNG, Assistant to President
O. O. HOLMGREN, Secretary S. A. CATER, Accountant
JOHN RIDINGTON, Publicity Foreword
XNTEREST in Central British Columbia—its agricultural,
business and industrial openings, and its investments—is
today so general, not merely throughout Canada, but in the
United States and Britain, that I feel sure a welcome awaits this
little book.
The camera is today almost a substitute for travel. Photographs give clear and correct impressions of scenes and districts to
men who by reason of time or expense cannot investigate personally
the places concerning which they desire information. To meet this
condition, I have had prepared this Album, which will give to
those who study it truthful and interesting information concerning
the development of Inland British Columbia, almost the last and
certainly one of the most rapidly growing of the new sections of
this continent, and beyond question one of the richest and most
varied in its natural resources.
The interest in Fort George, the commercial centre of British
Columbia's Inland Empire, is founded on the general public appreciation of two or three fundamental facts. In the first place, it is
the centre of a natural waterway system over 1,000 miles in extent.
The mighty Fraser, swinging around the northern end of the Gold
Range, a little above this point, abruptly changes its course from
northwest to due south. Here, too, is the confluence with the
Nechaco, the Fraser's most important tributary. The Nechaco and
the Stuart link up a series of splendid lakes that together form a
chain of communication unequalled anywhere on the continent,
except by the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence. Thus Fort George
commands cheap water communication and distribution to almost
every point of the compass.
The second fundamental factor governing Fort George's future
is a consequence of the one already named. Just as the natural
waterways focus at this point, so must the railways, for in a
mountainous country like British Columbia, railway surveyors must
follow the river and lake edges in order to get easy grades. For
this reason, Fort George will be the Railway Hub of Inland British
Columbia. Eleven railways are either chartered or building into
this region, and every one of them touches Fort George. They are
as follows:
Grand Trunk Pacific transcontinental, to reach Fort George
in the fall of 1912.
Pacific and  Great Eastern, bonds guaranteed by the British
Columbia    Government,    to   build    from    Vancouver   to
Fort George in three years.
British Columbia and Dawson, from Fort George through to
the Peace River country, cash subsidy from the Dominion
Edmonton   and   Dunvegan   and   British   Columbia   Railway,
under construction.
Pacific Northern and Ominica Railway.
Edmonton, Yukon  and Pacific Railway.
Canadian  Northern  Railway.
Vancouver, Westminster and Yukon.
Pacific and Hudson Bay Railway.
Pacific and Peace River Railway.
Pine Pass Railway.
Just as in ancient times "all roads led to Rome," so all present
and   future   railroads   in   Central   British   Columbia   lead   to   Fort
George.    Their builders cannot evade or escape this, for it is due
to  a  natural  condition.    The  topography of the country  makes  it
impossible for them to do otherwise.
Another factor that underlies the future of Fort George is the
fact that it is the gateway to the rich Peace River district—the
country about which people are beginning to talk, just as fifteen
years ago they were beginning to talk about Saskatchewan. The
Peace River is the last opportunity of the people of this continent
to get rich and cheap agricultural land. It is a land where wheat
—the finest wheat grown—averages from 25 to 45 bushels to the
acre, and peavine, redtop and other nutritious cattle feeds grow
to the height of a horse's back.    To this rich country,  as soon  as
Page Three Foreword—continued
it gets transportation, will set in one of the historic land rushes
of modern days. Already the advance guard, hundreds strong, are
spying out the land and selecting for themselves its choicest acres.
This great region contains, according to evidence given before
the Senate of the Dominion of Canada, 60,000,000 acres, and of
this immense area 40,000,000 acres is reported as first class agricultural land. Wheat grown in this rich country took the championship of the world at the Philadelphia Exhibition in 1876, and
again at the World's Columbian Exhibition of 1895. Climate and
soil combine to make the conditions for grain-growing ideal, and
for mixed  farming the conditions  are  equally favorable.
Nor are its agricultural possibilities the only natural riches of
which the Peace River can boast. There are vast timber and pulp
forests, and apparently limitless supplies of coal and limestone.
On one particular asphalt claim the official government estimate
gives the number of tons of asphalt as 1,400,000,000, while all
indications point to the Peace River being one of the world's
future oil fields.
Into this rich district three railways are now under present
or immediate construction. The Canadian Northern is building
from Edmonton through Athabasca Landing to Dunvegan. The
Edmonton, Dunvegan and British Columbia Railway, running south
of Lesser Slave Lake, is under agreement with the Alberta Government to start construction immediately. The Pacific and Hudson
Bay will go through Fort George into the Peace, and on to Fort
Churchill on Hudson's Bay. These roads will link up at Fort
George with the Grand Trunk and the Pacific and Great Eastern
through the Pine River Pass, and their construction is one of the
immediate certainties of railway building.
When the roads are built the products of the rich Peace River
country will come down through Fort George to Pacific tidewater.
If the reader will consult the map, printed on the inside cover of this
Album, showing the distances in Fort George's tributary commercial territory, the geographical facts that underlie this statement
will be at once made plain—especially when the facts are con-
Page Four
sidered in their relation to the early completion of the Panama
Canal. Ton for ton, rail freight rates cannot compete with water
transport. Dunvegan, by way of Fort George, is some 800 miles
from Pacific salt water. From Montreal it is over 3,000 miles, and
of this distance Peace River eastbound produce must be hauled for
1,100 miles—to Port Arthur or Fort William—behind a locomotive.
Will Peace River grain go east to Montreal, four times the distance,
to a sea-going ship, or will it take the shorter, quicker, and much
less costly route via Fort George to the Pacific? No person will
hesitate a moment in deciding that it will take the easy, natural
westward route through Fort George.
And, for precisely the same reasons, the supplies for the Peace
River country will be made from Fort George, through its two
main sea bases—Vancouver and Prince Rupert.
Fort George, in short, occupies the same strategic commercial
location in relation to its own territory as Chicago and Winnipeg.
From the Rocky Mountains east to Lake Michigan—a territory
comprising eight of the largest cities in the Union—Chicago sits
at the gate, and takes toll of all that goes in or comes out. It is
the bung of the barrel—the place where the currents of trade must
pass. North of the International boundary, Winnipeg occupies a
similar strategic commercial position. It is the door through which
every bushel of grain, every hoof of stock, every pound of merchandise raised or required for a territory one-third the area of
the whole of Europe must go or come, and all are helping to build
it up into one of the great cities of the continent.
Similar causes will produce similar results at Fort George.
If—as I have already shown—the products of the rich Peace River
district must come westward to the Pacific, they must flow through
Fort George in one ever-increasing stream, the currents there
splitting, one going straight west to Prince Rupert, the other
straight south down the Fraser Valley to Vancouver. Think what
it will mean when there passes through Fort George the imports
for a rich and prosperous country as large as New York and
Pennsylvania  combined.     Think  of  the   enormous  return   traffic— Foreword—concluded
the varied natural products of this rich region going down towards
the sea. And they must pass through Fort George—it is the
natural, the easy, the cheap, the inevitable route.
Passing on to another phase of Fort George's future commercial
importance, due to its strategic geographical position, consider this:
that its distributing area is as large as the four states of Ohio,
Indiana, Illinois and Michigan. It embraces a territory of about
185,000 square miles. This enormous area becomes impressive
when it is remembered that it is half as large again as Great
Britain, which has a population of 45,000,000; is almost as large
as Germany, with a population of 40,000,000; and is nearly double
the area of Italy, with a population of 35,000,000. This vast area
is absolutely controlled, commercially speaking, by Fort George,
by virtue of its strategic location as to railways and waterways. In
this enormous territory it has not today, and under the geographical
circumstances never can have, any rival. Edmonton, Prince Rupert
and Vancouver are its only possible competitors, and the nearest
of them is over 400 miles away.
Roughly speaking, this territory is three-quarters of a square,
the southeastern portion being tributary to Edmonton by reason of
the service the G. T. P. and the Canadian Northern can give the
district between that city and Tete Jaune Cache. The northern
side of the square is represented by the boundaries of British
Columbia and Alberta, and extends from the 124th meridian
(north of Fraser Lake) to the Athabasca River, a distance of about
450 miles. The eastern side of this square, lapping round Edmonton's distributing territory, is bounded on the south by the 55th
parallel, and on the west by the 120th meridian.
The country that will be served by Fort George is both imperial
in its extent and wonderful in the richness and variety of its
natural resources. When considered in conjunction with its
supreme transportation advantages, it forces those who, like myself,
have given the subject prolonged and careful study, and who have
watched the process and trend of development to this conclusion:
that in a very few years Fort George will be the third city in
British Columbia, and one of the most important in the Dominion.
Around the Indian Reserve, Fort George—bought by the Grand
Trunk Pacific for railway purposes—there are at the present time
within a score or two of a thousand people. They are coming
up from the south by every boat, and also from the east, from
Tete Jaune Cache, where the Grand Trunk, after winding through
the Rockies by way of the Yellowhead Pass, strikes the Fraser.
The movement of settlement on to the farming lands is equally
important in quality and in volume. The sleeping Inland Empire
of British Columbia has at last awakened, and from now on bids
fair to rival, and perhaps eclipse, the inrush of settlement into the
prairie provinces, and the rapidity of development for which they
have established a record.
These conditions carry, as their natural consequences, financial
opportunities that are attracting the attention of investors everywhere. With these opportunities my Company is thoroughly
familiar, for we have been deeply and heavily interested in Central British Columbia for years—we were, in fact, largely instrumental in securing to the district the attention it today receives.
If, as a result of looking over this booklet, you desire further
information concerning the resources and investment opportunities
in Fort George and Central British Columbia, and will communicate with us, our experience, knowledge and equipment are entirely
at your disposal.
Natural Resources Security Company, Ltd.
Fort George and Vancouver, B.C.
July, 1912.
Page   Six General View of Fort George
CHE accompanying view gives an excellent general
impression of Fort George as seen from the north,
across the Nechaco River. The photo was taken from a
point on the Salmon River Road, near Willow Creek, from
high land overlooking the town. The picture shows the
level townsite, gently sloping to the Nechaco and Fraser
Rivers. The town is built on a bench some seventy feet
above the Nechaco, free from any danger of freshet or flood.
The substantial character of the buildings already erected is
plainly visible, and testifies to the energy and faith which
have built up the town to its present condition within a
period of two years. Back of the buildings can be seen the
remains of the timber which once covered the townsite, and
behind this is seen the hills that swing around from the
Nechaco to the Fraser, as it flows to the south. The main
line of the Grand Trunk Pacific will run along the edge of
the Nechaco, on the river's further bank, and will go between
the river and the larger buildings shown in the picture. The
station, according to the ruling of the Dominion Railway
Commission, will be located at a little to the left of the
ground taken in by the picture, while the terminal yards will
extend about a mile to the left, on the low flats at the
junction of the  Nechaco and  Fraser.
The Government ferry is upstream about half a mile to
the right of the picture. By this ferry all the traffic to the
north must cross the Nechaco. It is the link connecting
Fort George with the Salmon River district and all the rich
intervening country between this point and the Peace River.
Thus, to get to the railway station the whole of the traffic
must pass through Fort George, which is thereby made its
commercial and distributing centre. An idea of the movement of settlers into the rich agricultural region north of
the Nechaco can be gathered from the fact that during the
present season forty people have been ferried across the river
before eight o'clock in the morning, and that the ferry-
keeper's records for some time prior to this booklet's publication show that between four and five hundred people, and
more than one hundred horses, are the average of the business
done every week by this very necessary public transportation
necessity. Efforts are being made to have the Government
build a bridge across the Nechaco at Fort George, to connect
with the Salmon River road, and with the steady and rapid
increase of traffic the need for this will compel early action.
The new steamer, "B. C. Express," makes her regular run
up the Nechaco and past Fort George to Fraser Lake. The
"B. X." also calls regularly at her wharf at Fort George,
on  her  bi-weekly  trips to  and  from  Soda  Creek.
Page Seven H
Page Eight The Nechaco and the Town™Views Looking Northwest
and Northeast
XF the two pictures on the opposite page were placed side
by side, they would give an excellent idea of that portion of the Fort George townsite abutting on the Nechaco
River, for they were taken from almost the same point—the
roof of the Fort George Hotel, cornering on Central Avenue
and Hammond Street—the camera in the upper picture being
pointed northwest, and in the lower picture northeast.
The upper illustration shows the water tower at the
northern end of Central Avenue, and a corner of the Natural
Resources Security Company's Fort George office. To the
left of the water tower, but not visible in the picture, is
the government ferry, connecting with the road to the Salmon
and Peace River Districts.
The lower picture looks northeast across the Nechaco,
and eastward to the Indian Reserve, now the property of
the Grand Trunk Pacific. In the immediate foreground are
some of the buildings on Hammond Street, and lumber piles
hauled to the sites of buildings about to be erected. The fine
new road parallelling the Nechaco is plainly in view. The
white opening, immediately below the white house in the
middle distance, is the courts of the Fort George Lawn
Tennis Club. The line of trees, just behind the house,
marks the western boundary of the Reserve. Just beyond this
point the land drops to a low flat, made up of mud and silt
brought down by the Nechaco, and barely above the level
of the river. This mud flat is cut up by sloughs and intersected by backwater river runs for a considerable portion of
its area, but with proper filling will make excellent railway
In the distance, over the western edge of the Reserve, can
be seen the contour of the high hill, on the farther or eastern
bank of the Fraser, which is joined by the Nechaco at this
Clearly shown in this picture, also, is the high cut bank—
400 feet to the summit—on the northern side of the Nechaco,
opposite the Indian Reserve. The two illustrations give a
truthful representation of the hilliness of the northern bank
of the Nechaco opposite the Reserve, and the country immediately back of the river, in contrast to the level character
of the Fort George townsite.
The two pictures give a good idea of the immense value
of the Nechaco as a navigable waterway. River steamers
can steam up stream to the western extremity of Fraser
Lake. By going up its principal tributary, the Stuart, access
is gained to other magnificent bodies of water, Lakes Francis,
Stuart and Babine. Traffic from all these waterways, and
others accessible by short portages, will connect Fort George
with transcontinental, sea-base, and other railways running to
practically all points of the compass.
JULY,   1911
Page Ten Fort George Townsite, Looking South
^ETCH development has taken place in Fort George since
the photograph from which this illustration was made
was taken a year ago. The open space on the further side
of the road is today occupied by buildings as substantial as
those shown in the illustration. Proof of this is afforded by
the large picture in the centre of this Album, which more
fully represents the progress made by the town up to the time
this booklet was sent to press.
The picture shown herewith is inserted partly because of its historical value in showing the various stages of
the growth of Fort George, but more particularly for the
comprehensive and convincing proof it affords of the ideal
site possessed by Fort George for the building of a great
city. Its absolute freedom from ravines and gullies, involving municipal works of great expense, is clearly shown by the
picture. In this respect Fort George has every natural advantage over Prince Rupert, Victoria, Vancouver and Seattle
—indeed over every city on the Pacific Coast—in all of
which much public money had to be expended in filling,
cutting and grading, before they were adapted for permanent
civic development. The gentle slope to the Nechaco, and its
elevation of seventy feet above that stream, affords the very
best of drainage, and this advantage is still further emphasized by the gravelly character of the soil. A water supply
of the purest quality is easily obtainable, and, altogether,
nature could not have done more than here to give to enterprising mankind the physical basis for a great city.
The changes that have taken place within the past two
years on the land embraced in the picture on the opposite
page are only the beginnings of greater changes taking place
in the near future. Two years ago this stretch of country
was virgin forest, its leafy recesses threaded but seldom, and
then only by the Indian or the trapper. Today it is a flourishing town, fairly athrill with faith, with courage, and with
optimism. With the impending advent of the railways, its
character will still further change. Where today are
temporary lumber buildings, there will then be substantial
business blocks extending far beyond the limits of present
construction. Prices for business property, already in some
instances four or five times what was paid a year ago, will
have advanced still more rapidly, and Fort George will then
be well on its way towards the realization of its citizens'
ambitions, and its manifest destiny, as the third city of British
Page Twelve
I South Fort George
[OUTH FORT GEORGE, on the Fraser, is a busy
little river town, at its nearest point one and a quarter
miles from the Grand Trunk Pacific, and almost two and a
half miles from the probable station site. Its growth has
been due to its proximity to Fort George proper, and to the
fact that, up to the coming of the railways to Fort George,
all communication with the outer world has been from the
south, by the Fraser River and the Cariboo Road, the original
steamer landing being at the Hudson Bay post.
Something more than a century ago Simon Fraser founded
a "fort," or trading place with the Indians, just south of the
junction of the Fraser and Nechaco. Later, an Indian
Reserve was established between the "fort" and the Nechaco
River. The "fort" did a profitable trade with the Indians.
As is usual, the Hudson Bay was in competition for this
Indian business with "free traders," who established themselves in the vicinity. This was the beginning of the settlement at South Fort George.
As the "fort" was the only trading place for hundreds of
miles it was a regular point of call for the river steamers.
When public attention was first directed to the strategic
location of Fort George, and before the exact route of the
Grand Trunk Pacific had been announced, many of the
newcomers, getting off the boat at the first steamer landing,
settled there, apparently assuming that the future town
would grow around the old "fort." Thus South Fort
George grew.
South Fort George is separated from the Indian Reserve,
recently acquired by the Grand Trunk Pacific for divisional
point purposes, by the Hudson Bay Reserve. Some future
day this Hudson Bay property will be very valuable. It
has always been the policy of this great English trading concern, however, to allow others to increase the value of the
company's property by improving and developing it, and to
wait for many years until that is done before disposing of it.
This has been the policy pursued in Winnipeg, in Edmonton
and at many other cities where the Hudson Bay owns large
city areas. If, as is expected, this policy is adhered to at
Fort George, it means that South Fort George will be
separated for many years by a belt of undeveloped land from
the business section of the city.
Eventually, of course, South Fort George will be part of
the Fort George of the future, but at the present time, and
for years to come, it is and will be some miles from the
immediate business development that will result from the
coming of the railways, for while all of these are building
into Fort George proper, or the Indian Reserve, not a single
line has been surveyed into South Fort George.
The reason for this is apparent when the picture is
studied. The high banks of the Fraser, opposite South Fort
George, make railway building across the river at this point
practically an engineering impossibility. It is for this reason
that the Grand Trunk Pacific crosses the Fraser more than
a mile above South Fort George, and runs across the northern
part of the Reserve along the Nechaco into Fort George
Page Thirteen •pi
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Page Fourteen Upper Fraser River Steamers
j^=N HE peculiar conditions of navigation on the swift, and
V-/ often shallow, waters of the rivers of British Columbia, have evolved a type of vessel admirably adapted to meet
the requirements. They are sternwheelers, of such light
draught, that some are said to be capable of "sailing on a
heavy dew," and yet of great power and speed, to breast
the rapid currents in the occasional canyons. Moreover, the
best vessels of this type plying on British Columbian waters
can offer their passengers comforts and conveniences in striking contrast to the solitude and ruggedness of much of the
country into which they penetrate.
The boats shown in the opposite illustrations are built
principally for freight business. The upper is the Chilcotin,
on regular schedule between Fort George and Soda Creek,
though this year she has made a number of trips up to the
Grand Canyon. The Chilcotin is owned by the Fort
George Lumber & Navigation Company, and, while not as
speedy as some other boats on the Fraser, does considerable
passenger business, and a large proportion of the incoming
freight is brought in by her.
The Distributor and the Operator, shown in the lower
picture, were built at Tete Jaune Cache, the head of Fraser
River navigation, by Foley, Welch & Stewart, the contractors
for the Grand Trunk Pacific, and are used to supply the construction camps between that point and the Grand Canyon.
Until considerable improvements are made to the channel
at the Canyon, it is not considered advisable to navigate the
river here, and the freight is therefore transhipped, and taken
to the smooth water below by means of a tramway. Here
it is loaded on another vessel, which can then steam west
down the Fraser to Fort George, and thence up the Nechaco
to the westward extremity of Fraser Lake, and possibly even
further. The enormous economic value of these natural
waterways is thus illustrated, even during the construction
of the new railway, and their importance will be increasingly
apparent as the country develops, in giving access to rich districts that will by that means be afforded cheap communication with Fort George and the main line.
A melancholy interest attaches to the picture of the
Distributor. In the pilot house can be seen Mr. C. M. Hays,
late President of the Grand Trunk Pacific, who was among
the victims of the terrible Titanic disaster.
Page Fifteen  The Royal Mail Steamer " B. X."
^^\ HIS handsome river steamer, which runs on regular
K*J schedule between Soda Creek and Fort George, is
claimed to be the most up-to-date river steamer in North
It is named the B.X., this being the popular contraction of
British Columbia Express Company, the fifty-year-old institution that operates the best-equipped and longest stage lines
in America. The stage coaches of this company have been
in continuous operation for half a century. By sledge, by
concord coach, by automobile or by river steamer, the B.X.
Company has carried mails and passengers since earliest
British Columbia days, and has long been regarded as one
of the most enterprising and reliable of provincial institutions.
The B.X., the flagship of the company's fleet, is 160 feet
long, with 30-foot beam. She is equipped with steam steering gear and capstan, searchlight, and every device that can
make river navigation speedy and safe.   The boat was espe
cially designed with enormous power so as to enable her to
run the famous Cottonwood and Fort George canyons, and
the B.X. is the only boat that has gone up those canyons
under her own steam, and without "lining" at any stage of
the water.
So far as comfort to its passengers is concerned, those
aboard the B.X. can go up and down the Fraser to or from
Fort George in almost the luxury of an Atlantic liner.
This season the B. C. Express Company has placed
another new steamer in commission, her name being the same
as that of the company. The Express will run from Fort
George up the Nechaco to Fraser Lake, and up the Fraser
to Grand Canyon. In every respect, except size (the Express is a few feet shorter), she is a sister ship to the B.X.,
and fitted and found with the same power and comfort.
The accompanying pictures of the B.X. were taken while
landing settlers at the Fort George wharf this spring.
Page Eighteen America's National Game at Fort| George
j^\ HE engrossing interest of building a city where a few
^X months ago was no sign of human habitation does not
absorb the attention of Fort George citizens to the entire
exclusion of healthy competitive outdoor sports. A tennis
club is one of the institutions of the town, and rifle and trap
shooting are popular recreations, a number of the Fort
Georgians being excellent shots. But no sport can awaken
so general or so keen an interest as America's national game,
and every summer evening some of the young men can be
seen on the diamond, trying to negotiate the puzzling shoots
and curves put across the plate by the local pitchers. At no
time does the interest become so keen as when the Fort
George Club meets that of some near or distant rival. Then
every citizen, irrespective of age or sex, deems it a point of
honor to get out and "root" for their own team, even though
they have not enough knowledge of the game to distinguish
the difference between an outfield fly and the catcher's mask.
It was on such a game that the accompanying photo was
taken. The keen interest in the contest is testified to by the
number of spectators. Incidentally, the picture demonstrates
that Fort George is not so far removed from fashion's
centres but that its women-folk succeed in keeping fairly
abreast of fashion's latest modes.-
The piles of lumber in the foreground had all gone into
buildings within a month after this picture was taken. The
illustration also gives an excellent idea of the level character
of the Fort George townsite, and of the work done in clearing it of the light timber growth with which it was covered
two years ago. Some of this timber is to be seen in the
right background.
Page  Twenty-two The "Tribune" Office, Fort George
iT^ ITHOUT a bright, snappy newspaper, a young and
vL/ energetic modern community can hardly exist. It
stirs ambition and stimulates activity as does no other intellectual agency, and, when edited with judgment and ability,
not only suggests wise policies, but inspires and evokes the
driving, dynamic moral forces that underlay material and
municipal accomplishment.
Fort George is fortunate in the paper which reflects the
town's ambitions and activities. The Tribune was founded
by John Houston, than whom British Columbia journalism
has produced no more forceful or picturesque figure. Shortly
after his death, it was acquired by Albert Dollenmayer, a
well-known Minneapolis and Washington journalist, and,
after his retirement from active control because of other large
interests, the paper's good traditions have been continued by
Messrs. Playfair & Gordon, the former being business
manager, and the latter shaping the paper's editorial policy.
The Tribune boasts a mechanical equipment unusually
complete when its distance from railway facilities is considered.    It has two typesetting machines, and two of the
most modern cylinder presses, in addition to a platen press.
Though established only a few years, and in a district
hitherto almost as inaccessible as the heart of Africa, the
Tribune is at the present time completing its arrangements
to be issued as a daily, and possibly this will be an accomplished fact before this Album is received by those to whom
it will be sent. All arrangements have been completed for a
complete news service, the Tribune having secured the franchise of the Canadian Associated Press, in addition to having
made all arrangements to cover its own very large immediate field.
With characteristic energy the Tribune has completely
identified itself with the city whose ambitions and activities
it reflects. The best means of keeping posted as to Fort
George, its progress and development, is to read its columns,
and because many people who are interested in Fort George
realize this, the paper's circulation is both large and widely
distributed. If you are interested in Fort George as the
result of looking over this Album, and desire to keep in touch
with conditions there, your best plan is to add your name to
the growing list of the Tribune's subscribers.
Page Twenty-three Some
Many additional residences and business premises have been erected since this picture was taken.     Side1,
period of two years.    The smaller picture is a
re Twenty-four RT  GEORGE,   JUNE,   1912
walks,  telephones  and water  service  testify  to  the  remarkable  progress  made  by  the  young  city  within  a
view looking northeast from  Central  Avenue,  across  Hammond Street
Page Twenty-six Sawmill at Fort George
ONE of the first requirements of a new district is building material with which to erect permanent homes.
Almost the first industry established at Fort George with
the inrush of settlement was a lumber mill, and, with enlargements and extensions as shown in the above picture, it
is still the busiest spot, both night and day, in a busy town.
The mill is now equipped with a thoroughly modern
plant, so designed as to save handling in every possible way.
Frequently it is running for twenty-four hours a day, and
six—and on occasion even seven—days a week, and still it
has hardly been able to meet the demand for lumber. In the
early days of the mill's operation, when as yet there was not
a team of horses in Fort George, it was the usual daily
spectacle to see citizens waiting for the night gang at the
mill to quit work, and the day gang to come on. As soon
as the crews were changed, the waiting customers bought up
every board that had been sawn since sundown the previous
day, and before eight o'clock struck there was nothing but
an increasing pile of sawdust to denote the day's cut at the
mill, the citizens having carried away all the boards on their
backs to their new buildings.
With increased equipment at the mill, such conditions
are now a thing of the past, but that the demand for lumber
still taxes the mill's capacity is attested by the small size of
the lumber piles surrounding it.
Page Twenty-eight Six Mile Meadow, Fort George
TITHE accompanying illustration gives an excellent idea
^ of the rich open land that at intervals occurs throughout Central British Columbia. While the greater propor
tion of the country is covered with timber, of light or denser
growth, here and there the eye is delighted with spacious
open meadows, that form fine natural fields. The luxuriance
of the vegetation in these meadows always causes wonder
and surprise when first seen by visitors unaccustomed to
the fertility of soil and rapidity of growth in British Columbia's rich interior. It is no uncommon sight to see the native
grasses growing to the height of a pony's back, or even
higher. These grasses and native vines are the finest of feed
for cattle and horses, which in a short time become rolling
fat when left to rustle for themselves in these natural
When plowed and put under cultivation these open
meadows make the very best of farming land, and the crops,
either of hay, roots or grain, are remarkable both for yield
and quality. Potatoes usually run about 300 bushels to the
acre. George Ovaska, three-quarters of a mile west from
Fort George, raised 15,000 lbs. on 3^4 acres. A quarter of
an acre of turnips produced 4,000 lbs. The ordinary yield
of timothy hay is three tons to the acre. James Shepherd, of
the Kersley Ranch, last year grew 250 tons of timothy on
less than 70 acres, and up to the coming of the railroads
timothy has been selling at from $65 to $85 a ton. In most
countries oats  are sold by the bushel,  but  the absence  of
transportation facilities up to the present in the Fort George
country has made horse feed so valuable that it has been
sold by the pound. The average yield of oats is from 3,000
to 3,200 pounds to the acre. One of the grain ranches last
season raised 160,000 lbs. of oats. They were sold at 7 cents
per pound, which seems a fairly good revenue for any farmer.
The yields quoted above are averages, and do not represent particularly skilled cultivation or favorable natural conditions. They serve to indicate the average production of
the agricultural district of Fort George.
A fact thoroughly understood by the British Columbian
should never be lost sight of by those thinking of investing
in lands in the interior—only a small proportion of the land
is of the open meadow land, such as that shown on the opposite page. Most of it is timbered, either lightly or heavily,
though through some of this bush fires have run, making
clearing a comparatively easy and inexpensive matter. As is
natural, too, in a hilly country, there is a proportion of
gravelly ridges. The intending purchaser of interior farming lands had, therefore, better assure himself that he is
buying from reliable description if he is unable personally
to inspect the property.
The particular meadow illustrated opposite is six miles
southwest of Port George on the new Mud River road. The
cattle to be seen grazing thereon are part of the Pioneer
Dairy herd, which supplies Fort George residents with fresh
butter, milk and cream.
Page Twenty-nine 4   m
 . . - :	
Page Thirty Wheat Field, Upper Fraser, Near Quesnel
^ikHE field illustrated opposite is typical of the cleared
*£L/ and cultivated bench land along the banks of the Upper
Fraser. It is a portion of the Australian Ranch, and last
year yielded a magnificent crop of wheat. The figure on the
right is J. M. Yorston, the owner of this splendid farm,
and that on the left Mr. W. A. Ryer, a visiting investor
from Spokane.
The land usually rises from the Fraser in a series of
steps or benches. The soil is a deep vegetable loam, in some
cases black, in others a rich chocolate color. Frequently it is
covered with a natural growth of cottonwood or spruce (in
this country an indication of rich soil), but when this light
timber is cleared the older farmers unite in testifying that
the very best of crops grow with minimum cultivation.
Farther north, in the more immediate vicinity of Fort
George, there are much larger areas of good agricultural
land than surrounds any other embryo city on the G. T. P.
line in Central British Columbia. The prevailing popular
impression, that the country surrounding Fort George is
mostly mountainous, affording little opportunity for the
farmer, has been almost altogether dispelled as the result of
investigation. The Nechaco, Fraser, Mud, Willow, Stuart,
and Salmon River Valleys each contain hundreds of thousands
of acres of the very best of farm land, and their settlement
and cultivation are all of the greatest importance from an
agricultural point of view.
Of course Central British Columbia is not prairie land,
and in the hilly districts the percentage of waste land, for
farming purposes, is fairly high, but the country is so enormous in extent that the prospective farmer has abundant
room to pick and choose. The regular, natural phenomena
of the country are observed in the Fort George district,
limiting the cultivable land to the valleys of the rivers and
lakes and the benches above. The good land is not in continuous blocks, as in the prairie country, but in small areas
interspersed between ridges of gravelly soil supporting a
growth of small timber. The fertile areas are extremely
productive. The river bottoms are usually deep loam, rich
from age after age of deposit from the streams. On the
bench lands the soil is usually a whitish silt, with clay subsoil.    This, too, is a very productive soil.
Much of the good agricultural land must be cleared.
Although many large meadows have been cleared by fire,
yet in the main the settler must expect to cut a crop of
cottonwood and brush before beginning to raise potatoes and
oats. The clearing is very light, as a rule mostly second
Page Thirty-c Page 32 missing Page 33 missing Page 34 missing Page 35 missing *SR*Si.'"   '
If II  I Tf^t-^
Page Thirty-six The General Hospital, Fort George
OOUBTLESS to one who instinctively compares this
unpretentious and inexpensive building with the massive and extensive piles devoted to the care of the sick in
big cities, this illustration will be regarded with patronizing
tolerance. But to him who regards it in its proper light, few
illustrations in this Album are more significant or pleasing.
It indicates that Fort George citizens are not absorbed in
the merely material side of city building to the exclusion of
those agencies that brighten life and relieve suffering. The
spirit of the Fort Georgians is well illustrated by the three
first public buildings planned for the future city—a school, a
church and a hospital. An excellent school has been for
months in operation, there are now several churches, and
until larger quarters are needed and the whole of the necessary funds secured, the eight-roomed residence shown in this
picture is the General Hospital. Dr. Cecil Swenerton is in
charge, and his present staff consists of one nurse of the
Victorian Order.
The benefits that the establishment of this hospital have
yielded to Fort George and the surrounding country can
best be left to the imagination of the reader. The risks of
travel and work in a new country are well known—accidents
with explosives, by axe cuts, by falling trees, by wrenches
or falls. In any case of surgical emergency, until a few
months ago, the victim of accident had to be taken to Ques-
nel. Today he finds every attention and comfort at Fort
George. Already a number of major surgical operations have
been performed here, and beyond question several lives have
been saved because of its establishment. Under these circumstances the pride with which every Fort Georgian points to
the Hospital is easily understood, and in fact represents some
of the most praiseworthy instincts that animate humanity.
The building herewith shown will ere long be succeeded
by one more in keeping with Fort George's accomplishment
in other directions. A fund of $15,000 has already been
subscribed for permanent quarters for the Hospital. What
other town of equal age can point to such a record ?
The upper picture shows the B.X. steamer at the Sixth
Avenue dock, on the Nechaco.
Page Thirty-eight Prospectors in the Fort George Country
2j[T must not be supposed that its commercial advantage
^ of location, and its undeveloped agricultural wealth,
constitute the whole of the opportunities that Fort George and
its surrounding district offer the citizen and settler. The
mineral resources of the region are immense, though yet
unestimated, and the timber wealth of the Fort George
district, as of almost all parts of British Columbia, will be
one of the permanent and profitable aids in upbuilding the
future city.
Less than a year ago a prospector named Clarke was
scrambling around the hills west of the townsite, when he
fell over the edge of a small ridge and sprained his ankle.
In his fall Clarke dislodged some pieces of rock, and, while
lying on the ground waiting for the pain to subside, he
examined the specimens. They were manifestly mineralized,
and as soon as possible Clarke located some claims at the
spot and started development work. This was the beginning
of Fort George's mining industry. Many claims are now
According to mining authorities who have carefully
examined the district and have bonded a large number of
claims around Fort George, the mineral formation here is
remarkable, and very rich.    It is practically a mass of gold-
bearing quartz. The rock is of the Uronian formation, and
"kindly," as the experts say. The gold values occur on the
contact of the quartz with the country rock. A whole hill
of this substance appears to be permeated with mineral. As
the quartz decomposes very easily, it will probably be a free-
milling proposition. Assays of samples vary in value from
80 cents to $824 a ton. With adequate railway transportation assured in a short time, and abundance of ore, which
seems also to be assured, these mines should furnish a very
large payroll, and assist materially in building up the city.
Coal has been discovered about eight miles west of Fort
George, on the Nechaco River, and, now that the country is
every month becoming more accessible by means of roads,
other and equally important mineral discoveries are certain.
There is a great deal of timber in the rivers tributary to
Fort George, and some day lumbering, already in its early
stages of development, will become as elsewhere in British
Columbia, a very important industry. On the Willow
River there are large areas of fir and spruce, while cedar, a
rare wood in that district, grows with great abundance. The
Upper Fraser is also well timbered, while on the Nechaco,
west of Fort George, are large bodies of splendid fir. This
timber will no doubt be freighted or rafted down the rivers
and manufactured at Fort George.
Page Forty The Chilaco or Mud River, West of Fort George
QO district tributary to Fort George offers finer agricultural opportunities than that drained by the Chilaco
or, as it is as yet more generally known, the Mud River.
It drains a region of rich and very deep loam soil, and the
subsoil is of such a formation that all vegetation grown
thereon is given all necessary moisture from below by means
of natural sub-irrigation. In the region there are already
more than twenty developed ranches, and the inrush of
settlement to fill up this splendid farming section has, during
the present season, been very great. This movement has
been materially assisted by improvement by the Government
of the Mud River Road, one of the best in the whole district.
The largest ranch is owned by Messrs. Cunningham &
Cutler, and is 1,200 acres in extent. The crops grown as
yet are almost wholly of the kind needed for local use—hay,
oats and potatoes—the yields and the prices realized being
both large.
The Chilaco is a beautiful stream, not turbid with mud
as its common name would indicate, but clear and abounding with excellent trout. The name, Mud River, was given
the stream because of a misapprehension on the part of the
early settlers of the meaning of the Indian word, Chilaco.
It is used to signify "a beaver track," or "track on white
mud." The Chilaco abounds in beavers, as well as trout,
and the early settlers, mistranslating the Indian word, gave
the river an English name that suggested the opposite of its
real characteristics.
At this junction of the Chilaco and the Nechaco is
located one of the permanent headquarters of the contractors
for construction of the Grand Trunk Pacific between Fort
George and Fraser Lake. It is also possible that the Pacific
& Great Eastern, the line between Vancouver and Fort
George subsidized by the British Columbia Government,
will come into Fort George by way of the valley of the
Chilaco, paralleling from that point, for the last few miles
of its route, the main line of the Grand Trunk Pacific.
Page  Forty-two Fort George's First Auto
IN a country without railways or roads, and with many
intersecting hills and rapid streams, and of which
much is covered with timber, the circumstances of the case
confine means of locomotion to one's feet. Until recently
this was the case in the Fort George country. The prospector or pre-emptor packed his blanket and personal camp-
kit on his back, and started off into the unknown, climbing
toilfully over "windfalls" or making slow progress along
the edges of lakes and streams. It was natural that settlement under these circumstances should proceed but slowly,
and that good roads were the boon for which the pioneers
prayed most fervently.
The Provincial Government has set itself vigorously to
work to meet this necessity of every new district, and within
the past year has undertaken a comprehensive system of road-
building, with Fort George as its centre. The progress made
can be judged by the fact that towards the end of May a
party of business men inspecting Fort George brought up a
big Winton automobile on the Steamer B.X. and used it to
make business excursions to points in which they were interested, and for going about town.
This was the first automobile that had ever been north of
Quesnel, and on its arrival was surveyed with wonder by the
Indians. At the first explosion of the engine's exhaust on
being "cranked-up," most of them "took to the tall timber."
Their curiosity soon overcame their fear, however, and their
delight was unbounded when the much-amused and pictur
esquely-profane chauffeur took parties of dusky braves and
squaws on the first "Seeing Fort George" auto tour.
The extent to which autos are used in these portions of
British Columbia, where the roads are good, would surprise
persons not familiar with the facts. On the historic Cariboo
road there are twenty automobiles in regular passenger service, and the excellence of the road can be judged from the
fact that the run from Ashcroft to Quesnel (220 miles) has
on several occasions been made between daylight and dark.
This road has been extended to Fort George, but is at the
present time (July, 1912) hardly in condition for automobiles, though wagons have used it for some time. In a few
months, however, the honk of the swift and silent car will be
heard as it rushes through primeval forest wildernesses,
hitherto penetrated only by the prospector and the pack-pony.
This interior trip will be one of the greatest attractions
Canada can offer to the holidaying motorist. Tourists will
come one way across the continent by the G. T. P. or the
Canadian Northern and connect up with the C. P. R. by
the 320-mile motor trip from Fort George to Ashcroft or
other points in Southern British Columbia, with magnificent
scenery every mile of the route and abundance of human and
historic interest to brighten the whole journey.
The party in Fort George's first auto were "Joy" Reynolds, of the B.X. Company, chauffeur; G. J. Hammond
and T. H. Brown, of the Natural Resources Security Company; J. Hill Marsh, of Liverpool, England; W. A. Ryer,
of Spokane, and F. E. Ryer, of Seattle.
Page Forty-three 1
■    1                    M
f     l
:    1
11 J
,   ,5*^ t0Ay .'£
*'<C         <„■
:     ■■
»*■<. -:y-M   tkh-r-r
ff fa
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-':          : .::: :
^p;;j-«:3f?:li'  '"
Page Forty-four Watching the Empire Day Sports
CHE anniversary of the birth of "Victoria the Good" has
always been loyally observed in Canada, and after her
death was still celebrated as "Empire Day"—the great Imperial holiday both of the Mother Country and the Over-
Seas Dominions. The citizens of Fort George determined
this year to be fully abreast of older towns in evidencing their
loyalty and their ability to organize a patriotic demonstration. For that day—the first of the year—the sound of the
hammer was not heard. Settlers and pre-emptors for many
miles around came in to participate in the day's festivities.
Tennis and trap shooting tourneys attracted many competitors and provoked  general  interest,  some keen contests
taking place in both of these branches of sport. Some remarkable trick and fancy shooting by a visiting professional
moved the votaries of the traps to admiration, the interest
in the exhibition being manifest by the crowd visible in the
opposite picture. Lovers of the American national game had
an opportunity to become wildly excited at a baseball match
between Fort George and its southern suburb, in which, after
several innings of delirious uncertainty, victory finally
perched upon the banners of the visitors. Dancing and more
domestic amusements rounded out a thoroughly enjoyable
day, and fittingly concluded the first formal celebration of a
national holiday observed at Fort George.
Page Forty-five "
--   I  < H
O O ^
J H g C
< J     o
>< k M
. o w °
< 3 H
H n M
Page Forty-six On the New Road from Fort George to Mud River
XN British Columbia, owing to topography and physical
conditions, transportation must precede settlement. In
this respect this province differs from Alberta and Saskatchewan, where the settler could ride or drive over the great
grassy plains hundreds of miles from highway or railroad.
But in British Columbia, with its lofty mountains, its swift
and dangerous rivers, and its dense timber, practically nothing
in the way of settlement can be accomplished until means of
access to the Province's many rich districts have been provided. The building of roads and bridges to open up new
districts for settlement has been recognized by successive
provincial governments as one of its chief duties, and much
has already been accomplished in this direction. Some of the
roads on Vancouver Island, and the historic Cariboo Road
(until the completion of the Grand Trunk Pacific the only
means of access to the Fort George country) are splendid
examples of the government's roadbuilding energy.
The opposite illustration is a sample of the work the
authorities are doing in the new sections of the Province. It
shows the road from Fort George to the Mud River. Part
of the way it goes through open meadow land, thence through
light timber and, towards the Mud River (where the picture
was taken), through timber of a heavier character.
This road was originally cut by settlers, and was improved by the government. It is well engineered throughout,
the local material making excellent highways. Autos travel
over it at good speeds.
The effects of a good road in opening up and developing
a district is, well illustrated by this Mud River road. No
sooner was it completed than all the choice farming land
within a reasonable distance on either hand was at once preempted. As the road building programme in the vicinity of
Fort George is more fully carried out, other districts equally
productive will be made tributary to the town, and attract
thousands of additional settlers, for whom Fort George will
be both the marketing and distributing centre.
Page Forty-seven F^mi.Pl P67 ^/a.
Postscript--Concerning Ourselves
CO those who have studied the pictures given in this Album of
Fort George views, and who have read the descriptive
letter-press, a few words concerning the corporation responsible
for its publication will perhaps be of interest.
The sphere of action of the Natural Resources Security Company, Limited, is correctly and explicitly indicated by its name. It
was organized to develop and bring to the attention of people of
large or small capital the investment opportunities offered by the
natural resources of British Columbia—resources in which no
province in the Dominion or no state of the Union is richer, nor
than which no money laid out for profit offers surer, safer or more
profitable returns. Agricultural lands in large or small tracts,
timber lands and mineral claims, waterpowers—in these and kindred properties, where the money of the investor is secured by
properly authenticated physical values, the Natural Resources
Security Company, Limited, has dealt for years, with increasing
success to itself and profit to its clients.
The outstanding achievement of the Company, however, and the
one by which it is best known throughout Canada, the United States
and Great Britain, is in connection with Fort George. It has made
the name of the future city a household word wherever newspapers
are read and the English tongue spoken. In the language of the
street it has "put Fort George on the map." A careful and comprehensive study of all the facts and conditions three years ago
absolutely convinced its senior officers that at this point would
arise one of the great cities of British Columbia. This belief they
backed with all the resources at their command, and to convince
others as to the soundness of their judgment they bent their whole
business energy. A publicity and agency organization was created
perhaps unrivalled except by governments or the great railroads.
The criticism of the uninformed and the opposition of the jealous
were alike overborne, and today the faith of the Company in Fort
Paee Forty-eight
George and its future is not only completely vindicated, but has
become almost universal. Hundreds of men and women who at
this Company's suggestion purchased property in Fort George have
ample financial reason to congratulate themselves on their action.
Their confidence in the Company, and the investments it recommends, is not by any means the least of the satisfactions that the
events of the past two years have brought to the Company's management, and at least equals their gratification in finding that
their faith in Fort George was built on a sure foundation.
Fort George and Central British Columbia today offer to investors as good opportunities as ever. The coming of the railways
will open up districts rich in farm lands, in timber and in minerals.
In order to keep in closest touch with these opportunities, it is the
intention of the Natural Resources Security Company, Limited, to
transfer its head office from Vancouver to Fort George, on September 1, 1912. Its removal to the commercial centre of the district
with which it has for years been exclusively and successfully
identified will enable it to advance still more satisfactorily the
interests of the city whose future it foresaw, and which it has
already done so much to realize. In addition, the more direct and
intimate knowledge of local development and investment opportunities it will gain by the transfer will enable it to serve its
friends with still greater success than in the past.
_ The company takes this opportunity of thanking its patrons and
friends for their loyalty and confidence, which it will be its aim
to deserve in continued and even increased measure.
Natural Resources Security Company, Limited
G. J. HAMMOND, President
Head Office :   606-615  Bower Building, Vancouver, B. C.
After September 1st, 1912,'FORT GEORGE, B.'C   THE   TOWNSITE   OF   FORT   GEORGE
Showing also South Fort George, and, drawn to accurate scale, the distance
latter place from the Grand Trunk Pacific
*  r<f'
of the
IOOuuulujul i
3DQonSDaDDDDDDrx ^v^^T ta ^3B|nffla
-innnnnnnnrinnnnnr p^"
RESERVE       jiV„
lIOT 956                  Jl'4
RESE evr
LOT 1133
1.0T  W32 i
,„,„„ —«...——. - .--"MafeSMt*.*: ss«as«3 ™4-"* ~ * """ ■
period of two years.    The smaller picture is a view
Page Twenty-five
re Twenty-four


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