HISTORY: Christmas 1916 at the Hume and in the jail

Greg Scott shares some history with his latest column.

Greg Scott is a historian and columnist.

December 25, 1916

Fifteen hundred one-dollar bills formed part of the cash taken in by one Nelson business firm Saturday, in addition to bills of many other denominations and a large quantity of silver. This, it was stated by the manager, went to make up the largest one day’s business ever done by his firm in Nelson.

The general opinion of Nelson merchants Saturday night, after the doors of their stores had closed on the last of the late Christmas shoppers, was that business for the season this year had outstripped all previous records. One grocery store, it was reported, was cleared completely of several brands of holiday goods before 2 o’clock in the afternoon and beginning in the morning a steadily increasing stream of customers thronged the stores until during the late afternoon and evening the extra employees, engaged to cope with the crowd, found it impossible in many cases to serve all the would-be purchasers.

Purchases of fruit, candies, toys and greeting cards were especially heavy and early in the evening many lines were completely cleared out. Last minute purchases of small gifts, at the jewelers and drug stores, also helped to swell the total amount spent in the city Saturday to a most satisfactory sum from the merchant’s points of view.

It was not until long after the store doors had been closed and locked that the weary staffs were able to “call it a day” and go home, as the wreckage in torn paper, empty cartons and boxes, disarranged show cases and shelves called for much time for rearrangement.

December 26, 1916

The newly decorated dining room at the Hume Hotel, with its rich dark walls and inverted lights, presented a brilliant scene last night when a large number of guests sat down to Christmas dinner at the prettily decorated tables.

The new lighting system does away with the old-time glare of exposed lamps, throwing a soft radiance over the room and reflecting back from the cream colored ceiling, bathes the diners in a soft golden radiance.

Rich brown curtains hand at the windows and harmonize well with the walls and white woodwork. The special Christmas dinner, for which table reservations had been made many days in advance, was attended by a gathering which kept every chair filled from six o’clock until nine.

By special request the orchestra which played during dinner was retained for the balance of the evening and an impromptu dance was arranged, for which a number of the guests remained.

December 26, 1916

Warden Jarvis of the Provincial Jail entertained fewer Christmas guests than ever before, there being but 18 against 25 last year and the day passed off with less revelry than usual at Yule Tide, when the everyday rules and regulations are turned to the wall. This, it was said, was due to the small number of young men in confinement and lack of individual talent.

As usual the men were served the regular Christmas dinner at midday, with roast turkey, plum pudding and the regular holiday “fixings”.

Rule were relaxed and permission given to everyone to do as they pleased within reason, but few availed themselves of the privilege, and the afternoon passed without any attempt at an entertainment as in former years. Several of the men received gifts from friends which were shared amongst the less fortunate ones, while a number of citizens contributed in various ways toward making the holiday a little brighter for the inmates.

December 28, 1916

Doukhobors at Brilliant will contribute $50 per month to the Nelson District Patriotic Fund and will donate a $5000 carload of jam to the Red Cross Society for the use of soldiers at the front. Grand Forks Doukhobors will give $100 per month to the Patriotic Fund. Peter Veregin, head of the community in Canada, made this announcement yesterday after he signed the Patriotic Fund subscription list at the office of J.D.H. Benson, secretary-treasurer of the fund, at the Imperial Bank.

Doukhobor families at Brilliant are cutting down their personal allowance of jam in order to provide the carload for the soldiers. They agreed to do this at a meeting Sunday at which Mr. Veregin explained the hardship of the soldiers at the front.

Women at the meeting broke down and wept at the recital of losses and hardships and the suffering of the wounded.

 

Just Posted

5 tips for talking to your kids about cannabis

Health officials recommend sharing a harm reduction-related message.

Voters pack Nelson mayoral forum

Candidates answered questions from journalist Glenn Hicks

EDITORIAL: Nelson mayor’s race uninspiring

An incumbent mayor, a former mayor and a clown walk into a forum

Nelson downtown holiday lighting by mid November, city says

But for this year, only on the 400 block of Baker Street

COLUMN: What Wayne Stetski did on his summer vacation

The Kootenay-Columbia MP talks cimate change, farmers markets and Bill C-281

VIDEO: Monday Roundup!

Elections stuff, youth homelessness, WEED!

Private marijuana stores should shut down, Mike Farnworth says

B.C. has approved 62 licences, but they still need local approval

HPV vaccine does not lead to riskier sex among teen girls: UBC

Girls are less likely to have sex now than they were a decade ago

Koreas agree to break ground on inter-Korean railroad

The rival Koreas are holding high-level talks Monday to discuss further engagement amid a global diplomatic push to resolve the nuclear standoff with North Korea.

Flash floods kill at least 7 people in southwest France

Flash floods have left several people dead in southwest France, with roads swept away and streams become raging torrents as the equivalent of several months of rain fell overnight, authorities said Monday.

Trump to visit Florida, Georgia; search ongoing for missing

The death toll from Michael’s destructive march from Florida to Virginia stood at 17.

Canadians widely unaware of accomplishments of famous women, poll suggests

A new poll suggests Canadians have a lot to learn about the accomplishments of some of the country’s most famous women.

Temporary access allowed for residents of landslide-threatened B.C. community

The district says areas of access to the community of about 54 homes could be expanded, depending on advice from a geotechnical engineer.

Joint inspection planned for missing journalist at Saudi Consulate

Turkish officials have said they fear a Saudi hit team killed and dismembered Washington Potst reporter Jamal Khashoggi

Most Read