Vancouver Maritime Museum

The Vancouver Maritime Museum is tucked away in the Kitsilano neighbhourhood of Vancouver. It is near Vanier Park and the Museum of Vancouver.

I had the pleasure of seeing the famous vessel the St. Roch be officially reopened for display. On May 31, 2014, The Vancouver Maritime Museum had an open house with speakers and a children’s choir from Trafalgar Elementary. (I had insider information about the event from the choir director.)

Both inside and out, the museum has artifacts from the long and adventurous British Columbia maritime history. I would try to describe the amazing story of the St. Roch, and why it’s worth preserving, but instead I photographed the plaque and transcribed as follows:

The St. Roch was built in 1928 by the Burrard Dry Dock Company of North Vancouver to serve as an Arctic supply and patrol vessel for the R.C.M.P. In 1942, under the command of Sergeant Henry Larsen, she became the first ship to cross from the Pacific to the Atlantic by the Northwest Passage, having made a 27 month voyage from Vancouver to Halifax along the northern edge of the continent. Two years later she returned to Vancouver via the more northerly, deep water route. Making the east-west journey in only 86 days, the St. Roch was the first ship to complete the hazardous journey in both directions.

If you look at the map of its journey and explore the vessel itself, you’ll understand why this was an amazing feat.

Make sure to look inside and outside the museum. It even has its own yellow submarine!

The Vancouver Maritime Museum may have more artifacts than display space, but even if you have zero knowledge of maritime history, you will leave much more knowledgeable than when you went in.

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