Royal Bank-188 Carson Ave - Quesnel, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member ScroogieII
N 52° 58.538 W 122° 29.798
10U E 533800 N 5869678
Quick Description: Opened for business in 1928, this was, for many years, the Quesnel branch of the Royal Bank of Canada.
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 9/13/2020 5:24:12 PM
Waymark Code: WM134GZ
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member Weathervane
Views: 1

Long Description:
Royal Bank-188 Carson Ave.
This stately brick structure was originally the Royal Bank, built in 1928, the year of Quesnel's municipal incorporation. It housed a bathtub that was used by the public and is now displayed in the Quesnel Museum.
From the Historical Marker at the Building

Work on the construction of the bank building commenced in mid August of 1928, with completion following in mid December of 1928. Buildings seem to have been quicker and easier to build a century ago, when less technology and fewer power tools were available. The Royal Bank remained in the building until the early 1970s. The branch continues in operation in Quesnel in a newer building at 201 St. Laurent Avenue.

The following series of newspaper articles follow the progress of construction on the building.
Tenders are being asked for by the Royal Bank of Canada for the erection of a one-storey brick building, on the property owned by the bank on the south-west corner of Reid and Carson streets. The building will be approximately 21x62, and the entrance will be at the northwest corner. There will be a basement under the rear half of the building, in which will be situated the vault. There will also be safety deposit boxes for customers at the rear on the main floor.

The roof will be flat and sloping, and there will be an 8-foot lane on the west side. The bank will be a notable addition to the town's business places, but the decision of the bank to build is the main consideration, as they thereby demonstrate their faith in the future of the town and district.
From the Cariboo Observer, July 7, 1928

Work is steadily progressing on the new bank building, on the corner of Reid and Carson streets, the excavation being finished the latter part of last week, and work on the walls now being in progress.
From the Cariboo Observer, August 25, 1928

The Royal Bank is now installed In its new premises on the corner of Carson and Reid streets, having moved this week. The new bank is a decided ornament to the business places of the town, and customers of the bank, as well as the bank officials, will appreciate the new quarters.
From the Cariboo Observer, December 15, 1928



These articles happen to have been published by the newspaper which now occupies the former bank building, the Quesnel Cariboo Observer. When established in 1908 it was known as the Cariboo Observer, having added the "Quesnel" in 1972 when the paper was moved to Quesnel from Fort George, its original and long time home.

No longer an independent newspaper, the Observer is one in the stable of six area newspapers operated by the Black Press Group. Outside the area, Black Press publishes dozens of newspapers in British Columbia, Alberta, Washington, Hawaii and California. The Observer continues to publish a print newspaper and has added an E-Edition, as well.
Royal Bank-188 Carson Ave.
DESCRIPTION OF HISTORIC PLACE
The Royal Bank Building is a stately single storey brick building constructed in 1928 located on one of the most prominent and publicly visible locations on the southwest corner of Carson Avenue and Reid Street in Downtown Quesnel, BC. The historic place includes the building and the parcel of land it occupies.

HERITAGE VALUE
The Royal Bank Building is located in Downtown Quesnel which is the commercial and administrative center of the city. While not in its original form, the building is a physical reminder of the people and businesses that shaped the development of Quesnel.

The building is named for the Royal Bank. The bank has had operations in Quesnel since 1918 when it merged with the Northern Crown Bank located in a lean-to attached to Telesphore Marion’s store on Front Street. The Royal Bank opened its new branch in this building in 1928. For more than thirty years it was the only banking facility in Quesnel. The building became affectionately known as the ‘House of Commons’ because of the bank’s manager Ray Commons. He joined the Royal Bank when he was a young man and worked at various locations in the Province. Ray and his wife Mabel arrived in Quesnel in 1939. Ray became very involved in community activities and businesses. He served on the Hospital Board for six years and was involved in curling and golf organizations in the city. He was transferred to Nelson, BC after serving the citizens of Quesnel for twenty years.

The Royal Bank Building was purchased in 1972 by the City of Quesnel. The City used the building as the library until 1977. Since 1986, the building has been the Cariboo Observer Building. J. B. Daniel relocated the newspaper operation from Fort George to Quesnel. The first edition of the Cariboo Observer printed in Quesnel was on August 29, 1908. The paper was a staunchly conservative voice until 1917 when it broke away from political affiliations. The Cariboo Observer became a politically independent paper that took a strong stand on issues concerning Quesnel. The James Reid Estate General Merchants, Occidental Hotel, and Hudson’s Bay Company were the only three advertisers in the Cariboo Observer in its early days. The main item of interest for the paper was local social events and the beaver trade. When land opened up for sale in the area, many people advertised their property in the Cariboo Observer. It remained the only publication in Quesnel until the Cariboo Digest began in 1945 and then the Quesnel Advertiser in 1952.
From the Quesnel Heritage Register
Photo goes Here
Official Heritage Registry: [Web Link]

Address:
188 Carson Avenue
Quesnel, BC
V2J 4C5


Heritage Registry Page Number: Not listed

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