A PROSPEROUS COMMUNITY According to the 1909 provincial assessment records, Summerland was the most prosperous Okanagan community. This section of Shaughnessy Avenue is now Lakeshore Drive. The last building in the row is the Summerland Hotel, promptly built following the founding of Summerland in 1902. The location of the hotel is now the vacant lot across the street from the present day trout hatchery. Next in the row of buildings is Empire Hall with the Summerland Supply Company using the lower floor. Next is the Lakeshore Telephone Office (prior to expansion) and the post office, followed by George McWilliams’s real estate office. (Photograph courtesy of the Summerland Museum)

Summerland was once most prosperous community in the Okanagan Valley

Fires in 1920s destroyed Lowertown businesses

Summerland founder Sir Thomas Shaughnessy and his wealthy business partners were responsible for much of Summerland’s early prosperity.

By 1909, provincial assessments in Summerland were the highest in the Okanagan Valley.

Summerland’s assessment was $1,060,000 followed by Coldstream ($934,618), Penticton ($845,955), Kelowna ($840,660) and Peachland ($305,200.)

Shaughnessy Avenue, now Lakeshore Drive, was the commercial hub of the community at the time.

The last building in the row is the Summerland Hotel, promptly built following the founding of Summerland in 1902. The location of the hotel is now the vacant lot across the street from the present day trout hatchery. Next in the row of buildings is Empire Hall with the Summerland Supply Company using the lower floor. Next is the Lakeshore Telephone Office (prior to expansion) and the post office, followed by George McWilliams’s real estate office.

READ ALSO: Summerland heritage buildings still standing today

READ ALSO: Road between Penticton and Summerland was built in 1909

A few years later, a fire changed the face of the community.

The fire, on March 13, 1922, started from a from a small stove in the basement of Simpson and Gowan’s store and quickly spread through the downtown.

Fire equipment was minimal and as a result, damage was extensive.

The total loss was $70,000 to $80,000.

Several businesses were heavily damaged as a result.

The Summerland Review lost between $17,000 and $20,000 worth of equipment.

Simpson and Gowan’s store lost stock worth $25,000 and a building worth about $5,000.

The W.J. Robinson residence, worth $10,000, was destroyed, as was the Empire Hall building, worth $500.

Stark’s store, in the Empire Building, was also destroyed. It had a value of $1,000.

The Summerland Hotel, across from what is now the fish hatchery, was built in 1902 by the Summerland Development Company. It was destroyed by a fire around midnight on Nov. 14, 1925.

To report a typo, email:
news@summerlandreview.com
.



news@summerlandreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Kelowna mayor outlines city’s economic, public health response amid COVID-19

The city announced a hold on hiring; 90 positions remain vacant and 64 have been laid off

New Kelowna business committed to growing B.C. beverage industry

Liquid Kudos connects BC beverage producers with new markets

Vernon, Kelowna denturists hit hard amid COVID-19

Okanagan denture clinics wonders if they’ll ever be able sustain the sting of pandemic

Kelowna’s Gospel Mission becomes a 56-bed shelter amid COVID-19 complications

Kelowna’s Gospel Mission outreach team will provide meals to those in need in the community

Kelowna production company keeps filming through COVID-19 pandemic

DCD Productions uses drones so crew can keep their physical distance

B.C. records first at-home death from COVID-19, but 70+ hospital patients have recovered

Total of 970 novel coronavirus cases in B.C., with the majority in the Lower Mainland area

UPDATE: Coronavirus concerns prompt event cancellations across the Okanagan

This is a running list of events cancelled across the Okanagan

Helping those at risk, one piece of paper at a time through ‘isolation communication’

Simple paper tool during pandemic making its way across Canada thanks to social media.

‘Back to school, in a virtual way’ for B.C. students in COVID-19 pandemic

Province adds online resources to help parents at home

Man allegedly impersonates health authority official, takes elderly Princeton woman from her home

A man allegedly impersonating an official from Interior Health escorted an elderly… Continue reading

COLUMN: Plenty of online reading options

Libraries are closed due to COVID-19 but downloads are available through Okanagan Regional Library

Canadian COVID-19 round-up: Air Canada cuts 15,000 jobs, 90% of flights

Comprehensive Canadian news update as of 2:30 p.m., Monday, March 30.

Salmon Arm businesses close, adjust in response to COVID-19 crisis

Groups united behind the scenes to support needs of community

Summerland care facility orders reusable masks

Okanagan Valley quilters ready to produce cloth masks if needed

Most Read