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A Bibliography on Local Government in
British Columbia - Continued
History of Local Government
Urban history is one of the most developed of academic disciplines
that deal with cities in Canada, and municipal governments have
received a fair amount of attention in this body of literature.
Two periods of time have been assigned particular significance in
the general Canadian literature: the turn of the century and the
1930s. Important factors in the earlier era were the growth of
cities and changing ideas about the proper scope of government, both
of which led to increasing demands for services and an emphasis on
technical expertise as the solution to many problems. In addition,
it was said that local government concerns were more a matter of
administration than "politics", a term which often had
connotations of corruption and cronyism when used by reformers. The
idea that local politics should be non-partisan was reinforced, and
parallels were frequently drawn between the board of directors of a
company and a city council. "Honesty" and
"efficiency" were the watchwords of the reformers.
The second era of particular importance to local governments was
the Depression. Up until that time unemployment relief had been the
responsibility of municipalities and private charities. Since there
was no way that local governments and charities could cope with the
mass unemployment of the 1930s, the responsibility for the problem
shifted to the provincial and federal governments. This was a key
step in the shift away from social services being provided by local
governments, and with it an extremely important policy area slipped
from local control.
Other general themes which are found in the B.C. literature
include: the influence of large companies on the way cities
developed, most notably the influence of the CPR on the Vancouver
area; the influence of geography on settlement patterns; and in
terms of the structure of governments, a gradual increase in
inter-municipal co-operation to deal with area-wide problems, and
the assignment of an increasing number of functions to local
governments as popular demand for government services rose. A
related theme is a gradual loss of autonomy. The provincial
government may have allotted more tasks to local governments,
thereby broadening the scope of local government in one sense, but
at the same time the provincial government has exercised closer
supervision over municipalities.
The number of historical works which deal solely with local
government issues is extremely limited. The list below includes some
works which only briefly touch on government issues. See also
section 9B, on the history of planning in British Columbia.
A. General Canadian Works
Artibise, Alan F. J. and Paul-Andre
Linteau. The Evolution of Urban Canada: An Analysis of
Approaches and Interpretations. Report no. 4. Winnipeg: The
Institute of Urban Studies, University of Winnipeg, 1984. Very
Higgins, Donald J. H. Local and Urban
Politics in Canada. Toronto: Gage, 1986. Chapters 2 and 6. See
pages 56-59 for B.C.
Magnusson, Warren. "Introduction: The
Development of Canadian Urban Government. " in City
Politics in Canada, ed. Warren Magnusson and
Andrew Sancton, 3-57. Toronto. University of Toronto Press,
Rutherford, Paul, ed. Saving the Canadian
City: The First Phase, 1880-1920. Toronto: University of
Toronto Press, 1974.
Tindal, C. R. and S. Nobes Tindal.
Local Government in Canada. 2nd ed. Toronto: McGraw-Hill
Ryerson, 1984. See Part A.
Weaver, John C. Shaping the Canadian City:
Essays on Urban Politics and Policy, 1890-1920. Monographs on
Canadian Urban Government, no. 1. Toronto: Institute of Public
Administration of Canada, 1977.
B. Works about British Columbia
Andrews, Margaret W. "The Best
Advertisement a City Can Have: Public Health Services in Vancouver,
1886-1888." Urban History Review 12 ( Feb. 1984):
Andrews, Margaret W. "The Emergence of
Bureaucracy: The Vancouver Health Department, 1886-1914," Journal
of Urban History 12 (Feb. 1986): 131-55.
Andrews, Margaret W. "Epidemic and Public
Health: Influenza in Vancouver, 1918-1919." B.C. Studies,
no. 34 (1977): 21-44.
Armstrong, Christopher and H. V. Nelles.
"Suburban Street Railway Strategies in Montreal, Toronto, and
Vancouver, 1896-1930. " In Power and Place: Canadian Urban
Development in the North American Context, ed. Gilbert
A. Stelter and Alan F. J. Artibise,
187-218. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press, 1986.
Barman, Jean. "Neighbourhood and Community
in Interwar Vancouver: Residential Differentiation and Civic Voting
Behaviour." B.C. Studies, no. 69-70 (1986): 97-141.
Double issue also published as Vancouver Past: Essays in Social
History, ed. Robert A. J. McDonald and Jean
Barman. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press,
Baskerville, Peter A. Beyond the Island: An
Illustrated History of Victoria. Burlington, Ont.: Windsor
Baskerville, Peter A. "Finance Capital and
the Municipal State: The Case of Victoria, British Columbia,
1910-1936. '' Studies in Political Economy 21 (Autumn
Breen, David and Kenneth Coates.
Vancouver's Fair: An Administrative and Political History of the
Pacific National Exhibition. Vancouver: University of British
Columbia Press, 1982.
Cain, Louis P. "Water and Sanitation
Services in Vancouver: An Historical Perspective." B.C.
Studies, no. 30 (1976): 27-43.
Foster, Hamar. "Law Enforcement in
Nineteenth-Century British Columbia: A Brief and Comparative
Overview." B.C. Studies, no. 63 (1984): 3-28.
Hak, Gordon. "The Communists and the
Unemployed in the Prince George District, 1930-1935." B.C.
Studies, no. 68 (1985-86): 45-61.
Koroscil, Paul M. "Boosterism and the
Settlement Process in the Okanagan Valley, British Columbia,
1890-1914." In Canadian Papers in Rural History, vol.
5, ed. Donald H. Akenson, 73-103. Gananoque, Ont.:
Langdale Press, 1986.
Lee, Carol F. "The Road to Enfranchisement:
Chinese and Japanese in British Columbia." B.C. Studies,
no. 30 (1976): 44-76. Includes brief discussion of getting the
Leonard, Frank. "Grand Trunk Pacific and
the Establishment of the City of Prince George, 1911-1915." B.C.
Studies, no. 63 (1984): 29-54.
MacDonald, Norbert. "The Canadian Pacific
Railway and Vancouver's Development to 1900." B.C. Studies,
no. 35 (1977): 3-35.
MacDonald, Norbert. "A Critical Growth
Cycle for Vancouver, 1900-1914." B.C. Studies, no. 17
MacDonald, Norbert. Distant Neighbors: A
Comparative History of Seattle and Vancouver. Lincoln:
University of Nebraska Press, 1987.
Matters, Diane L. "Public Welfare Vancouver
Style, 1910-1920. " Journal of Canadian Studies 14
(Spring 1979): 3-15.
"Mayors of Merritt." Nicola Valley
Historical Quarterly 8 (March 1985): 2-11. Describes mayors,
McDonald, Robert A. J. "The Business Elite
and Municipal Politics in Vancouver." Urban
History Review 11 (Feb. 1983): 1-14.
McDonald, Robert A. J. "'Holy Retreat' or
'Practical Breathing Spot'?: Class perceptions of Vancouver's
Stanley Park, 1910-1913." Canadian Historical Review
65 (June 1984): 127-53.
McKee, William C. "The Vancouver Park
System, 1886-1929 -- A Product of Local Businessmen." Urban
History Review 7 (no. 3-78): 33-49.
Meredith, T. C. "The Upper Columbia Valley
1900-1920: An Assessment of 'Boosterism' and the 'Biography of
Landscape.'" Canadian Geographer 29 (Spring 1985):
Meredith, Thomas C. "Boosting in British
Columbia: The Creation and Rise of Invermere." Urban
History Review 16 (Feb. 1988): 271-79.
Municipal Historical Society, Vancouver, B.C. Your
Worship, Members of Council: Highlights from Municipal Reform
Movements in the Lower Mainland. Vancouver: Municipal
Historical Society, 1980.
Nelles, H. V. and Christopher Armstrong.
"The Great Fight for Clean Government." Urban History
Review 5 (no. 2-76): 50-66. Includes some comments on
submissions to the 1912 B.C. Royal Commission on Municipal
Paterson, D. G. "European Financial Capital
and British Columbia: An Essay on the Role of the Regional
Entrepreneur." B.C. Studies, no. 21 (1974): 33-47. Deals
Riis, Nelson A. "The Walhachin Myth: A
Study in Settlement Abandonment." B.C. Studies, no. 17
Roy, Patricia E. "The Fine Art of Lobbying
and Persuading: The Case of the B.C. Electric Railway." In Canadian
Business History: Selected Studies, 1497-1971, ed. David
S. Macmillan, 239-54. Toronto: McClelland and Stewart,
Roy, Patricia. "The Illumination of
Victoria: Late Nineteenth Century Technology and Municipal
Enterprise." B.C. Studies, no. 32 (1976-77): 79-92.
Roy, Patricia E. "The Preservation of the
Peace in Vancouver: The Aftermath of the Anti-Chinese Riot of
1887." B.C. Studies, no. 31 (1976): 44-59.
Roy, Patricia E. Vancouver: An Illustrated
History. History of Canadian Cities, vol. 3. Toronto: James
Lorimer and Company, Publishers and National Museum of Man, National
Museums of Canada, 1980.
Taylor, John H. "Mayors a la Mancha: An
Aspect of Depression Leadership in Canadian Cities." Urban
History Review 9 (Feb. 1981): 3-14. Includes Vancouver's Mayor
Weaver, John C. "The Property Industry and
Land Use Controls: The Vancouver Experience, 1910-1945." Plan
Canada 19 (Sept.-Dec. 1979): 211-25.
Williams, David Ricardo. Mayor Gerry: The
Remarkable Gerald Grattan McGeer. Vancouver: Douglas and
Please send any comments or questions to Nicola.Marotz@gov.bc.ca
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