When I left the cedar mill, I already had a job to go to, the Hotel Vancouver, the biggest building in Vancouver in those days.
It had 16 stories with a dance hall and a radio station on the top floor; at the ground floor there were convention halls and restaurants.
Together with a young German immigrant Charles and an older white Russian refugee from China, it was my job to prepare for conventions and also do the cleaning up after. It was a never-ending task, just like housework.
The participants of each convention were different in dress style as well as behaviour. The lumber industry seemed to favour the biggest, hardest-drinking fellows and waiters were rolling in carts loaded with whisky. It was more like a tax-deduction social and I always wondered if the skilled workers stayed back running the business.
The mining conventions had a different air: rough-looking prospectors and geologists in jeans or suits and ties mixing in with investors and stockbrokers, most in dark suits and all listening to the specialists in mining and mine finding.
Note from Editor/Daughter: I also worked for the Hotel Vancouver, designing brochures and menus for ongoing events. As such I had access to a lot of Hotel Vancouver material and images and I have pulled this image of the Hotel when it was finally finished in 1939 just in time for the King’s visit to Vancouver.