James (Long Jim) Mcdonald (in vest) at the McDonald Jam Factory, circa 1913. Photo courtesy Ian Mcdonald collection

1919: Police seek horse-stealing teens

Greg Scott brings us five Nelson Daily News stories from a century ago

Dateline March 12, 1919

During the four years of the war, from October 1914, until February 1919, the Kokanee Chapter, Imperial Order Daughters of the Empire raised $8,473.60 for soldiers overseas. The money was secured by activities along various lines, in the shape of concerts, carnivals, dances, teas, tag days, donations etc.

The money was expended in numerous way, as entertaining the boys in Nelson when they enlisted here, supplying them with 1,200 pounds of jam when they went into training at Vernon camp and generally looking after them when they got into the battle-line and making hospital supplies for them when they were taken from the trenches wounded. The articles made and shipped overseas included 1,745 pairs of sox, 439 suits of pajamas, 11,403 trench candles plus surgical equipment, bandages as well as gum and cigarettes. ($8,473.60 in 1919 equals approximately $110,826 in 2019.)

Dateline: March 12, 1919

L. Ferino and H. Sostad, two Nelson boys of 17 and 16 years respectively, are leading the police on a right merry chase. The police hold a warrant for their arrest on a charge of horse stealing. They were last seen when they passed Ymir yesterday. The boys, who were employed in Trail, hired two horses at a livery barn in that city Tuesday afternoon, stating that they were wanted to ride to Rossland. They did not return and give up the horses at the expected time.

About 2 o’clock yesterday afternoon the Trail authorities phoned the Nelson police and found that they had come into the city but had not remained there. Latest enquiries by the city police elicited the information that the runaways had passed through Tamarac, Hall and Ymir and were presumably on the road to Salmo. (On May 19 the boys were tried in Trail with one sent to the provincial industrial school for two years and the other to the provincial jail for one year. At least they didn’t hang.)

Dateline: March 20, 1919

Contracts probably will be let this week for the building of a $25,000 addition to the J.A. McDonald jam and candy factory. Mr. McDonald has formed a $100,000 company with the A. Macdonald Company behind the proposition. Mr. McDonald will be president and general manager, and associated with him are all the A. Macdonald wholesale branches from Vancouver to Winnipeg.

The factory will be one of the largest in Canada and Mr. McDonald stated yesterday that if the ranchers and retail dealers supported the local industry he would be able to employ at least 100 workers the whole year round. The building will probably be of stone. The new part, which is being built as an extension east of the old building on Vernon and Railway streets, will be 120 by 50 feet.

The quality of jam and candy being turned out by the J.A. McDonald Company has increased the demand all over the country to such an extent that without the extension the supply turned out could not possibly meet the demand. ($25,000 in 1919 is approximately $326,000 in 2019.)

Dateline: March 25, 1919

With the last influenza patient discharged, the isolation hospital will close its doors today, according to the report of Dr. Isobel Arthur, medical health officer, at the city council meeting last evening. Dr. Arthur asked the council what should be done with the material, consisting of beds, mattresses and bedding, which were being fumigated and which would have to be removed from the building as soon as possible.

The building, which is the old Kootenay Lake General Hospital, will probably be torn down immediately once it is vacated. Dr. Arthur said it would be advisable to keep in readiness some building as an isolation hospital. The council thought that the better way would be to store the material and then if another epidemic should break out, a suitable building could be secured for the purpose.

Dateline: March 27, 1919

The Daily News is cooperating with the Vancouver World in making plans for an experimental aerial flight over the Canadian Rockies during which two landings will be made in the interior of British Columbia. One will be made in Nelson and the other in Penticton.

According to present itinerary the trip across the mountains from Vancouver will be made by way of the Crows Nest Pass to Lethbridge, thence northerly to Calgary and Edmonton and back by way of Prince Rupert over the Yellowhead Pass. The trial trip over this “rocky road” is considered to be as important in the annals of aerial navigation as was the first crossing of the Alps by airplane during the war.

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