Foundries first appeared in Vancouver near the beginning of the 20th century, and saw rapid growth during the past decades. While most are from the era projections being decommissioned over the years, many are still in use today. Walk down any street in Vancouver or the Lower Mainland, and you will encounter many drain covers, fire hydrants, stands a lamppost and street bollards. Many of the public artifacts, examples of successful base for manufacturing once cast metal, still bear the marks of several local foundries now defunct, but many are still in force. Prior to joining Vancouver City of Glass, it was host to a strong base necessary to support industry and development throughout the province of BC industry. Mining was, fishery and forestry primary driver for economic growth, and geographic location offered valuable access to both Vancouver sea routes and newly completed Canadian Pacific Railway. Despite its advantages, however, the city remained isolated from other major economic centers. Even with the finished rail, it was expensive and time-consuming to ship equipment and supplies from Eastern Canada, the US and Britain.
The pattern of boom-and-bust repeated itself during the Cariboo Gold Rush in 1862 and another rushes across the province. But, although prosperity offered volatile gold, silver, coal and lead and eventually copper, zinc and iron to steadier, more resilient growth. By the turn of the century, there were more than 2,000 mining companies in BC. All of them require regular cast metal services for crushers, balls, carts ore and other heavy machinery grinding. Was the first engineering firms smooth opening, use them to service their own contracts and operations. These companies include the BC Iron Works and the Foundry and Machine Works Vancouver City in the mid 1880s. Both companies specialized in saw milling, mining and marine equipment. Letson and Burpee Ltd. also began early start operations in New Westminster before moving to Vancouver in 1887 to 67 years ahead. The company specialized in the design and patenting its own machinery for industry-especially the local fisheries.
The industry cannery seasonal workers many employees in the region, but what contributed to its rapid growth, rather than high demand, was efficient development of machinery-in particular, the Smith Butcher Machine (also referred to as the “Iron chink,” Unfortunately, after The typical Chinese slave it replaced). A typical butcher cleaning and processing up to 2,000 fish per day 10 hours. The Butcher Smith Machine, and Burpee Ltd. Letson and related machine could process 22,000 net and fish in only nine hours. The facilities were casting Letson and Teo Burpee what the company used to manufacture precision metal bearings metal parts of the machine, lever, feeder chains, gears, slitting knife and adjustable cutters.
While war raged in the world, the Canadian war effort good business for local foundries. Records from World War has major contracts for ship-building, shell casings and winches. When the war ended, however, many foundries are struggling to make their services transferred to other industries, and many closed their doors or consolidate with other companies. Still, the rapid increase in the natural resources industry, continued to open new companies, and between 1910 and 1929 began to smooth operations in the province than any other time.
When World War II broke out in 1940, was called again he foundries castings for military projects on a large scale to provide. The Burrard Dry Dock Company of North Vancouver Shore commissioned to build 10,000-ton ship Victory Canadian equivalent to the US-built Liberty ships. During the course of the war, the company has more than 100 freighters-all of which required extensive sourcing from Vancouver foundries.