This Week in History (1914-1915): Prince George townsite takes shape

One year was all it took for the town of Prince George to establish itself as a thriving business centre in the Fort George area.

The series of photos below shows the development of George Street from March 1914 to March 1915 (with a photo from October 1913 also provided for reference purposes). All photos are taken from the top of Connaught Hill, looking north towards the cutbanks. George Street appears as the central road curving up and around from the southeast corner. All photos appear courtesy of the The Exploration Place E. F. Ted Williams History Centre Artifact Database.

A Blank Slate

Taken in October 1913, this photo shows the Prince George townsite after it had been cleared for the official lot and street-plan survey. The photo provides an excellent reference from which to gauge future development.

Photo of Prince George townsite, October 1913

Twelve Months of Development

March 4, 1914

The rutted dirt road of George Street, running north towards the Fraser River, shows little sign of development save a few buildings at the south end, facing the site of today’s city hall.

Photo of Prince George townsite, March 1914

April 4, 1914

One month later, construction has begun on lots along the east side of George Street.

Photo of Prince George townsite, April 1914

May 1, 1914

Buildings along the west side of George street are now taking shape, including the Prince George Hotel, the large, single-level construction site located furthest south along that side of the street.

Photo of Prince George townsite, May 1914

June 7, 1914

The Prince George Hotel (nearest to centre, directly under the cutbanks) is now complete, and development along the east side is filling in.

Photo of Prince George townsite, June 1914

September 2, 1914

Six month of development have changed the face of George street significantly.

Photo of Prince George townsite, September 1914

March 1915

George Street now presents as a well-established business centre. Prince George was incorporated as a municipality this same month.

Photo of Prince George townsite, March 1915

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