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British Columbia pre-war cars that have survived


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On 10/19/2020 at 6:15 AM, PFindlay said:



Going back to the Silver Brothers' cars ... Here are two pictures that Peter Trant has contributed.  They were taken by Ed Aveling and give a good idea of what the Pierce Arrow touring looked like when the cars were retrieved.






Are you able to identify the guys in these photos?

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11 hours ago, 13White said:

Are you able to identify the guys in these photos?

On the bottom picture that's Bert Beaton on the far right and John Welch in the white sweater in front of him.


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Great thread , just read from start , interesting stories and wonderful early cars .

Always catches my  interest when I read of ‘finds’ .when i drive , walk anywhere and see dilapidated barns , garages overgrown or abandoned lock ups and shacks , I yearn to look inside to see and discover a long forgotten gem of a car.

thanks to all posters 

Edited by Pilgrim65 (see edit history)
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On 9/9/2020 at 9:39 AM, PFindlay said:

Here is a B.C. car with a great story involving an eccentric spinster, a parrot, and a Chinese gardener.  


This 1911 Hupp-Yeats electric was purchased in Victoria by James Keith Wilson, manager of the bank of British Columbia and real estate developer.  He had built a mansion on Burdett St. in Victoria and lived there with his wife Mary and daughter Victoria Jane Wilson.  Victoria Jane's closest companion was her parrot named Louis, which she had received when she was 5 years old.


Keith Wilson was extremely protective of his daughter and bought the Hupp-Yeats for her.  Victoria Jane was very shy and it was an attempt for her to get out and around a little, safely accompanied by Louis, of course.   Apparently it was a short lived experiment and the car was driven very little.


Victoria Jane lived in the mansion long after her parents died, along with Louis and an assortment of other birds.  The Hupp-Yeats remained in the garage.  Upon her passing in 1949, it was discovered that she was worth about a half million dollars and her will stated that Louis was to remain in the house under the care of her Chinese gardener, with a $200 per week stipend.  Basically, her money went to charity but her property, including the car, went to Louis.  This arrangement continued until 1965 when developers finally won out.  Louis died in 1967 at the age of 105, still in the care of Wah Wong, the gardener.


I'm not sure how or when the car changed hands but it is now at the Reynolds-Alberta Museum in Wetaskiwin, Alberta.  Maybe someone else knows the rest of this story.


Here is a link to the story of Victoria Jane and Louis:  http://evelazarus.com/wah-wong-and-the-parrot/


Below are pictures from 1949, in the garage, and current.






Here's a little item I found about the Hupp-Yeats ... it was advertised for sale in the HCCA Gazette in December, 1949.  This would have been shortly after Victoria Jane's death.  I wonder if there was no buyer, or if the Parrot's lawyer put a stop to it all?  Also interesting to note that it was believed to be a 1914 model and only had 39 miles on the odometer.



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Hi Peter,

That car was purchased by Lou Holker..I had a invite to copy the photos of the extraction of the car but Brian (lou's son) passed suddenly before I could visit him.


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  • 4 weeks later...
On 10/23/2020 at 2:14 PM, 13White said:

It wasn’t too long before Ram McGladrey had the remains of a 1905 Oldsmobile Light Tonneau. It was very rough, basically the bare engine and rusty frame. But Dad had to have it, and soon the Caddy was gone and the remains of the Olds was in the garage. The Cadillac was traded for the Olds. Dad did restore the Olds; it was Canadian built and is now in the museum in its birthplace; St. Catharine’s Ontario. 




I found this article by Ram McGladrey in a 1968 HCCA Gazette.  It tells his story of recovering the Oldsmobile so I thought I'd add it to the record here.




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