During my visit to the Gulf of Georgia Cannery in Steveston, I was treated to an excellent guided tour by Mark. He was full of knowledge and passion for his job. I learned all about what it was like to work here in the early 1900’s. The Fraser River is the greatest and largest river in the world for Salmon runs. Workers endured 16 hour days with only 1/2 hour break and it was noisy, cold and really smelly in there. Female workers who were on the cleaning stations often had their children strapped to their back as you could only send your children to school if you owned a house in those days. Most workers didn’t because as immigrants they were paying off their head taxwhich started at $ 50 in 1899 and went up to as much as $ 500 by 1905. They packed up amazing 2.5 million pounds of Salmon each season. I learned so much more but don’t want to spoil it for you if you go to visit. What an incredible place and a step back in time.
Photos by Val Diamond, Sep 2, 2011Vodpod videos no longer available.