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Ymir postcard nabs $90

Latest look at local items selling on eBay.

A bird’s-eye-view postcard of Ymir ca. 1905 drew seven bids and sold for $90 Cdn recently.

It shows the town at its peak, with a long line of false-fronted hotels and stores, as well as the old Wildhorse Creek bridge, and in the beautiful old hospital in the distance. Only a few buildings depicted remain, including the Hotel Ymir and Ymir Palace Inn.

The seller was in Victoria.

Ymir postcards are fairly hard to come by. One other copy of this card sold in 2006 for $57 US.

• A matted photo showing a holiday crowd outside of the Crown Point Hotel in Trail, sold for $51 US.

A note on the back suggested it may have been taken on July 1, 1901.

The Crown Point was built in 1895 and still stands, but doesn’t look much like it did then.

The seller was in Aldergrove.

• A signed copy of Jim Wardner’s autobiography that once belonged to a former Idaho governor, sold for $247.50 US.

Wardner was a classic mining prince, who seemed to show up in every burgeoning camp in Canada and the US, including those of West Kootenay.

He was one of the discoverers of the Bunker Hill and Sullivan silver mines in the Coeur d’Alenes, and both Wardner, Idaho and Wardner, BC are named after him — as are Wardner Street and the Wardner trail in Kaslo.

The book, published in 1900 and titled Jim Wardner of Wardner, Idaho is inscribed to W.J. McConnell, one of Idaho’s first senators, and the state’s governor from 1893-97.

One chapter is dedicated to Kaslo and another to Rossland.

In early 1892, Kaslo was “as brisk and sparkling a little mining town as one could wish,” Wardner wrote.

On a whim, he and another mining man bought a hotel for $5,000. The secured a liquor license and renamed the house the Coeur d’Alene. According to journalist Randall H. Kemp, “Wine flowed like water the first evening, and, the writer believes, is still pouring in quite a healthy stream.”

In 1895, Wardner also organized a syndicate of Montreal capitalists to invest in Rossland real estate.

The entire book, which further details Wardner’s adventures in South Dakota, Arizona, California, and Nevada, is available for download online at archive.org. Facsimile copies can be had cheap, while an original will typically set you back $50 to $100.

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