Collection Storage Gets $60K Renovation

Narrow passage in our storage

Narrow passage in our storage

This winter has brought great news for our artifact collection.  For those of you who’ve never had a behind the scenes tour, the Port Moody Heritage Society maintains a collection of over 20,000 artifacts in our basement storage.  The basement is divided into our vault storage at the east end and the annex storage at the west end. The vault storage was renovated almost ten years ago and contains our smaller artifacts, textiles and archival material.

Artifact overload

Artifact overload

This year we will undertake a $60,000 renovation of the west side of the storage which currently hold our larger items. This will give us approximately 40% more storage space and allow us to continue to collect new artifacts. The renovation will include:

  • new compact shelving units on the north and south walls
  • new picture storage systems
  • the creation of a new work space for staff, volunteers and guest researchers
  • new storage for program materials and costumes
  • A plethora of program materials

    A big thank you to Heritage Canada for their contribution of $25,000 toward the project. And to the City of Port Moody for matching Heritage Canada’s funding with a $30,000 contribution. This funding goes a long way to giving our facility the capacity to preserve items of importance to Port Moody’s history for many years to come.

    Newspaper Collection is a Wealth of Port Moody History

    Port Moody Advance Newspaper

    Port Moody Advance Newspaper
    Since its earliest days, newspapers have played an important role in chronicling Port Moody’s local history. Last year, many of the museum’s newspapers were sitting in a closet, anxiously waiting to be properly catalogued and put in the museum’s collection. Sorting through the newspapers proved to be a substantial task but that was only the first step. Within these stacks of newspaper was a veritable treasure trove of information waiting to be discovered.

    This summer our Collection Assistant, Bronwen Bird took on the task of going through each newspaper and pulling out key words from important stories and entering them into the museum’s database. With this completed, it means that if you wanted to find an article about Port Moody’s first ambulance, the database would show you that the December 20, 1957 edition of The Advance newspaper has an article that may contain the information you seek. Now there are over 1000 newspapers that have searchable terms!

    Among these 1000 newspapers are a variety of publications that have covered Port Moody over the years. These include:
    Port Moody Gazette – 1883 – 1887
    The Advance – 1936 – 1960s.
    The Herald (a.k.a. The Coquitlam Herald, The Herald Enterprise, Sunday Herald) – 1960s – 1980s.

    Even with all these papers, we did not have copies of all the newspapers that covered Port Moody. Working with the Port Coquitlam Heritage Society and their Community Archives, Bronwen was able to find more information from three of the earliest newspapers: The Coquitlam Star (1911-1915), The Coquitlam Times (1917-1918) and the Coquitlam-Moody News (1925). Using these resources, Bronwen created additional databases for each paper and printed out articles of particular importance.

    After nearly a year, the museum’s newspaper collection that was once a mountainous pile in a closet is now a historically valuable force to be reckoned with. All together the papers comprise the history of Port Moody from 1883 to the 1980s with few gaps in between. This collection and Bronwen’s hard work has already proved its worth in the information it has provided in the creation of the history book the Heritage Society is currently working on. Having these databases available to research an aspect of Port Moody’s history will be a valuable asset for years to come.

    Those Aren’t Dinner Plates

    1914 BC Auto License
    1914 BC Auto License

    This 1914 BC Auto License Plate can be found on display at the museum

    British Columbia had been issuing automobile license plates for only ten years when this one had been struck — or in this case, printed.

    The car itself had not existed long and they were already driving around on the roads of BC. The first license plates were issued in 1904, although cars had been in BC since 1890. ( The plates have changed since then and so have the cars and roads. The purpose for them remain much the same.

    Early ones from 1904 to 1912, while looking very much like smaller versions of modern ones, were made of leather. This 1914 one and the 1913 one were made of heavy metal with a porcelain coating. Latter ones were lithographed flat steel plates. Embossing methods used currently and enamelling processes were not as advanced as they are today. During times of metal shortage like during times of war, only one plate was required per passenger vehicle. At times plates were issued on a yearly basis. At other times — such as the current time — decals or tags allowed plates to be used for longer periods with the tags indicating the current year.

    There were a number of issues leading to the start of licensing cars and license plates. Early on there were issues with drivers driving recklessly — that’s really nothing new is it?  Drivers were spooking horses and throwing their riders — that’s a bit different unless you replace “horse” with “bicycle” — and running down pedestrians. The drivers generally got away with it because they could not be easily identified. Cars were more for “sport” than for transportation at the time.

    There was a growing resentment towards “automobilists” — as they were called. Governments began regulating them, but owners of these prestige items were reluctant to mark up their shiny, expensive automobiles with painted numbers or tags. The elite car owners did not want their automobiles to look like a common taxi, reducing the car value.

    License plates were a way to get around painting numbers directly on the vehicles. Uniform, cleanly, nicely designed plates were a compromise which was come up with eventually as cars became more common. The whole point was to make the owner or driver accountable for their driving.

    That is something that hasn’t changed that much in a hundred years or so.1914 BC Auto License – A History of British Columbia License Plates

    History of British Columbia License Plates

    Archive: British Columbia Porcelain License Plates

    A License Plate Collector’s Perspective – The Plate Hut

    40 Years of Porcelain License Plates

    Sporting or Recreation Artefacts or Memorabilia?

    Do you have any Sporting or Recreation Artefacts or Memorabilia?

    Are you a sports enthusiast or collector? Were you the athlete of the year in a past life? If so, the Port Moody Heritage Society would like you to bring in your vintage sports and recreation items for use in a temporary display this February and March.

    In celebration of Heritage Week, the Port Moody Heritage Society and Port Moody Heritage Commission are putting together a display of sports and recreation memorabilia. The display will be shown at the Port Moody City Galleria and at the Port Moody Station Museum. All artifacts should be from the 1950s era or earlier and in good condition. Artifacts will be returned to the owner at the end of the display

    If you have sports and recreation artifacts you can loan to the museum for the Heritage Week Community Displays, please contact Rebecca at 604.939.1648 or and help with the success of the community display!

    Heritage Week Events!

    Community Display

    February 10th – 28th

    Daily in the City Hall Galleria,
    Wednesday to Sunday at the Port Moody Station Museum

    Come see sports and recreation of Port Moody’s past at the Galleria in City Hall and the Port Moody Station Museum. Historic photos and artifacts relating to the theme of sports and recreation will be on display. Participate in our community display by bringing your vintage sport or recreation artifacts to the Station Museum.

    Contact Rebecca at the museum at 604.939.1648 or for more information.

    Community Display Opening Night

    February 15th (Mon)

    Open House 7-8:30pm at the Port Moody Station Museum

    See what locals have to offer in the Community Display at the Port Moody Station Museum. Local recreation historian Don Cunnings will give a presentation on the history of sport and recreation in Port Moody and the Tri-City area. Light refreshments provided. Admission is free.

    Contact Rebecca at the museum at 604.939.1648 or for more information.

    Silent Movie Matinee

    February 14th (Sun)

    2-4pm at the Port Moody Station Museum

    Miss the slapstick and corny puns of early cinema? Come by the Port Moody Station Museum for an early Valentine’s Day treat. See a variety of silent movie shorts featuring well known performers. Fee is $10 per person, free to Heritage Society members.

    Contact Rebecca at the museum at 604.939.1648 or for more information.

    Antique Appraisals

    February21st (Sun)

    1– 3pm at the Port Moody Station Museum

    Have a treasure you think is invaluable? Well known local appraisers Al Bowen of Bowen and Associates Appraisers and Ray Stonehouse of “Great Canadian Collectables” on St. Johns Street will be available to appraise your items. This year’s focus is on sports and recreation artifacts and memorabilia. Cost is $15 for two items.

    Contact Rebecca at the museum at 604.939.1648 or for more information.

    New Volunteers

    The Museum welcomes 8 new volunteers who have joined us this fall. We have two volunteers helping to deliver education programs. We have four new volunteers helping with our aretfact collection. These volunteers are continuing the collection project of photographing all of our 15,000 artefacts and updating records. We have one volunteer creating a database for our newspaper collection. We also have one volunteer helping us maintain our Museum photograph collection and taking new photos of our programs, displays and events for promotion. Thanks to these volunteers and the many others who help us to provide a meaningful service to the community on a daily basis.
    If you are interested in volunteering at the Museum, please contact Rebecca Clarke at 604-939-1648 or email

    Harvesting Heritage – Year of the Potato

    Year of the Potato
    by Tom Galanis – museum volunteer gardener

    2008 is the Year of the Potato (the United Nations offically designated 2008 as the International Year of the Potato) and so in consideration of this title, the Port Moody Historical Society grew some potatoes in the CPR heritage garden attached to the facility.

    (image to right Pacific Russett Potato – images courtesy Tom Galanis*)

    To begin with, we’ll discuss some information about the potato.  The potato is a starchy, tuberous crop vegetable from the perennial Solanum tuberosum of the Solanaceae family.  Potato is the world’s most widely grown tuber crop, and the fourth largest food crop in terms of fresh produce after rice, wheat, and corn.

    (image to left Chieftain Potato – images courtesy Tom Galanis*)

    The potato species originated in South America, probably from Chile and Peru – from study of historical records, we know that the Incas grew and ate potatoes.  The potato was introduced to Europe in 1536, (Spanish explorers brought them back from the New World) and subsequently by European mariners to territories and ports throughout the world.  Thousands of varieties persist in the Andes, where over 100 varieties might be found in a single valley, and a dozen or more might be maintained by a single agricultural household. Once established in Europe, the potato soon became an important food staple and field crop. But lack of genetic diversity, due to the fact that very few varieties were initially introduced, left the crop vulnerable to disease. In 1845, a plant disease known as late blight, caused by the fungus-like oocmycete Phytophthora infestans, spread rapidly through the poorer communities of western Ireland, resulting in the crop failures that led to the Great Irish Famine.

    (image to right Russian Blue Potato – images courtesy Tom Galanis*)

    The potato remains an essential crop in Europe (especially eastern and central Europe), where per capita production is still the highest in the world, but the most rapid expansion of potato over the past few decades has occurred in southern and eastern Asia. China is now the world’s largest potato producing country, and nearly a third of the world’s potatoes are harvested in China and India. More generally, the geographic shift of potato production has been away from wealthier countries toward lower-income areas of the world.

    Some production figures show:

    Country 1,000 metric
    tons grown
    China 70,000
    Russia 39,000
    India 24,000
    USA 20,000
    Ukraine 19,000
    Germany 10,000
    Poland 9,000
    Belgium 8,000
    Netherlands 7,000
    France 6,000
    Canada 2,500

    Interestingly, the USA is the most efficient producer of potatoes – meaning they grow more potatoes on less land than the other nations listed here.  This reflects on the  agricultural techniques used by the various countries.

    (image to left Chieftain Potato – images courtesy Tom Galanis*)

    There are about five thousand potato varieties world wide. Three thousand of them are found in the Andes alone, mainly in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile and Colombia. They belong to eight or nine species, depending on the taxonomic school. Apart from the five thousand cultivated varieties, there are about 200 wild species and subspecies, many of which can be cross-bred with cultivated varieties, which has been done repeatedly to transfer resistances to certain pests and diseases from the gene pool of wild species to the gene pool of cultivated potato species.  In Canada, there are about 180 varieties of potato that are registered with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.  The CFIA monitors food products for public safety and to ensure plant diseases are not introduced into Canada during import / export of food products.  As such, these varieties are listed with the CFIA and are allowed to be grown and sold/imported/exported to/from Canada.  The CFIA does recognize that there may be garden variety potatoes grown throughout Canada, but these are not allowed to be put into the market system lest they introduce disease into the potato growing system.  It is possible to register a garden variety potato, and once that is done, then commercial sale of these potatoes is allowed.

    (image to right Caribe Potato – images courtesy Tom Galanis*)

    Nutritionally, potatoes are best known for their carbohydrate content (approximately 26 grams in a medium potato). The predominant form of this carbohydrate is starch. A small but significant portion of this starch is resistant to digestion by enzymes in the stomach and small intestine, and so reaches the large intestine essentially intact. This resistant starch is considered to have similar physiological effects and health benefits as fiber.  Cooking and then cooling potatoes significantly increases resistant starch. For example, cooked potato starch contains about 7% resistant starch, which increases to about 13% upon cooling. Potatoes contain a number of important vitamins and minerals including vitamin C, potassium,  vitamin B6 and trace amounts of thiamin, riboflavin, folate, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, and zinc. Moreover, the fiber conten
    t of a potato with skin equals that of many whole grain breads, pastas, and cereals. Potatoes also contain an assortment of phytochemicals, such as carotenoids and polyphenols.

    (image to left Green Mountain Potato – images courtesy Tom Galanis*)

    An interesting situation has developed in recent years with potato varieties.  The North American diet has grown to include a fair amount of potatoes grown for either french fry production or potato chip production.  It turns out that some potatoes that are great for eating in traditional methods – boiling or baking – are not so good for producing the best french fries or potato chips.  Snack manufacturers want a chip or fry which is “golden” in colour when fried in oil.  If a potato is high in starch, then when fried it turns a deep brown colour.  Since this is considered unacceptable for snack appearance, it has meant that the major food companies have paid farmers to grow more and more potatoes that bear the desirable ratio of solids and starches for snack production rather than for direct market consumption.   

    In 2008, the PMHS decided to try 18 different varieties of potatoes.  They were broken up into Early Season Potatoes, Medium Season Potatoes, and Late Season Potatoes.  This refers to their time of maturation; normally an early potato is available as early as July, while the late potato is usually ready in September.  Please note that in most cases, we tried to grow anywhere from 4 plants up to 20 plants of each variety.  The number of plants we grew is indicated in brackets after the potato variety name.  For each variety, a general description of the potato is given, plus a small summary of our experience in growing that potato. 

    Early Season Potatoes:

    Carlton (4) – Medium yielding variety; wide adaptability as first early tablestock. Tubers size early to very early across the Canadian Prairies; vines maturity is midseason to late; smooth conformation if harvested early but if left to plant maturity, tubers frequently become oversized and rough with growth cracks or hollow heart. Weak to medium storability; low to medium specific gravity.  Oval shape, creamy white flesh, buff skin.  This potato is good for boiling – it is not a good keeper and sadly our specimens have deteriorated somewhat.   

    Caribe  (4) –  Caribe is a high yielding oblong potato. Excellent storage qualities and great for boiling. High yielding variety; attractive appearance; widely adapted; easily topkilled; grades well with few culls; stores well. High total solids.  Utilization: good for boiling, fair for baking, and excellent for chipping.  This potato is most interesting – the skin colour is violet but the flesh is white.  It grew well in our garden. 

    Pacific Russett  (9) – has a russet skin with white flesh, very shallow eyes. Good yield uniform size. Great boiled or baked. Rated very high in Ontario industry trials for yield and uniformity.  High yielding variety of attractive appearance; good resistance to internal and external defects; medium specific gravity.  Utilization: mealy texture; low after cooking discolouration and low boiling sloughing; excellent for boiling, baking and frying.  The Pacific Russett was a disappointment to grow.  It did develop good sized tubers, but they tended to rot quickly and it is not a good keeper in storage.  

    Satina  (23) – Satina is a new variety developed in response to organic potato growers request for a scab resistant variety potato. Satina is an early, very high yielding fresh market potato variety with high numbers of short oval tubers per plant. The tubers have a smooth yellow skin and yellow flesh color. Satina has long storage capabilities and when cooked or peeled has a high resistance to discoloration.  It was a major disappointment in that nearly 50% of the seed potatoes just did not grow.  However, those that did grow gave an excellent yield, with a nice uniform size potato. 

    Medium Season Potatoes:

    Agria  (8) –  Light yellow skin, dark yellow flesh, shallow eyes. High yielding variety, large tubers. Excellent baker good boiled or fried. Very high yield variety. Large to very large tubers, attractive appearance, only slightly susceptible to internal bruising. Fairly high dry matter content. Long dormancy.  Utilization: relatively firm to floury flesh; free from discolouration after cooking; excellent for baking, good for boiling and frying.  Apparently, can take a lot of sour cream when baked and still be quite dry to eat.    Was very successful in our garden. 

    Carola (5) – Carola is a sunny yellow potato from Germany that boasts a smooth, creamy texture and exceptional flavor. It is suitable for baking or frying.  Carola has a lovely, sunny yellow flesh with a nice creamy texture making this potato a smooth  one for frying or in German-style potato salad.  Was successful in our garden.   

    Chieftan (4) – Oval to oblong tubers with bright red skin. Shallow eyes with white flesh. Great boiled and for home fries.  High yielding variety, attractive appearance, widely adapted. Undersizing can be a problem if soil moisture becomes limiting. Well suited for washing at maturity. Good storability. Medium specific gravity.  Utilization: good to excellent for boiling, good for chipping at harvest, excellent for french frying; not suitable for processing.  Was very successful in our garden.

    Kennebec (20) – High yielding fast growing variety, widely adapted. Requires close planting (15 to 20 cm between plants) and vine killing to avoid producing oversized and rough tubers. Excellent storage quality. Long dormancy period. High total solids.  Utilization: good to excellent for boiling, baking.   This is a high producing potato with yellow skin and white flesh. It shores extremely well and is great boiled or baked.  It is very popular with growers as there is a high yield per acre for this potato, not so popular with snack makers as it te
    nds to produce dark coloured chips / fries. 
    NOTE: tuber green rapidly when exposed to light. Was very successful in our garden, but sadly still turned green when in storage even though it was dark storage. 

    Sangre (4) – Oval to oblong tubers, dark red skin, shallow eyes, with white flesh. Has a very low incidence of internal defects such as hollow heart and is rated as high in Vitamin C. A good storage potato that is suitable for boiling and baking.  High yielding variety. Medium to long dormancy period. Medium specific gravity. Good storability, good retention of red skin color. Adequate warming of seed (at least 7 to 10 days) prior to planting is essential to obtain uniform emergence. Relatively close seed spacing will help optimize yield and tuber size. Slow emergence but grows rapidly. Tuberization occurs early and tubers bulk at a rapid rate early in the season.  Resistant to second growth; rarely exhibits hollow heart, internal discoloration or blackspot. Adapted to irrigated areas of the west. Moderately tolerant to drought. Tubers tend to develop excessive netting under dry soil conditions resulting in a brownish and unattractive appearance.  Utilization: excellent for boiling and baking; ranks high in taste tests; no after cooking discoloration. High level of vitamin C.

    This one was a failure in our garden, even though the seed was warmed as mentioned above. 

    Yukon Gold (9) – Oval, slightly flattened tubers, yellow, skin light yellow flesh. Tubers can grow quite large and store well. Good for boiling baking and frying.  Medium to high yielding variety of attractive appearance. Large tubers are slightly susceptible to hollow heart. Excellent storability; long dormancy period. High specific gravity.  Utilization: very good for boiling, baking, and french frying; unsuitable for chipping; retains its yellow flesh color when cooked.  Was fairly successful in our garden.  There was some problem with rotting. 

    Late Season Potatoes:

    All Red (13) – Round tubers that are rated as medium to late maturity. This potato has a good yield with red skinned and distinctive red flesh tubers that maintain their color after cooking. It has an excellent flavor and a moist texture.  This one is considered a “specialty potato”, or perhaps a novelty potato.  It was not a success in our garden, although we did get some potatoes from the plants.  The tubers were small, and rather than being a solid pink colour, the flesh was more white with streaks of pink/red in it.  An excellent choice for potato salad or boiling. 

    Banana  (15) –  A late maturing variety with generally, small banana shaped tubers, covered with light yellow skin containing pale yellow flesh. The waxy texture holds the tuber together for fabulous potato for salads. Very high set can be expected. Moderately resistant to common scab.  Yellow fleshed fingerling type potato with a high tuber set of 15 to 20 small tubers per plant. Low yielding variety; medium dormancy period; good storability; medium specific gravity.  Interestingly, this potato has been grown in British Columbia for about 100 years.  It is in demand on the “gourmet” market.  Utilization: semi-mealy texture; very good for boiling, baking and frying; excellent salad potato. Another specialty potato that did not work out very well for us – nearly half the crop succumbed to rot. 

    Bellisle (4) – High yielding variety of attractive appearance; performs well under organic production practices; highly resistant to bruising and skinning; good storability; high specific gravity.  Utilization: excellent for boiling and baking; good for french frying; very suitable for small package trade.  Was very successful in our garden.  Is another very dry potato that can “suck” up a lot of sour cream or butter. 

    Bintje (20) – Pale yellow skin on a long oval tuber with a yellow flesh. Heavy setting, the thick skin makes this a good storage potato. Excellent all purpose potato with fairly dry texture.  High yielding, widely adapted, suffers very little from magnesium deficiency. Tubers keep fairly well (do not sprout early), have low starch content, are not subject to blackening of the flesh or second growth.  Utilization: excellent for boiling, baking, and french frying; good for chipping.  Was a major disappointment in our garden as nearly 70% of the seed potato did not grow.  What did grow gave good yield however. 

    French Fingerling (17) – Late maturing oblong tubers with a red skin and light yellow flesh.  It has the waxy texture characteristic of most fingerling varieties. It grows well and sets fairly heavy.  Another specialty potato, and it was a major disappointment in our garden.  Nearly half the crop rotted away before maturity. 

    Green Mountain (4) – All round fantastic potato for home gardeners. Perfect for french fries, baking and boiling. High yielding variety; stores well; well suited for washing after two months storage; grows well in light soil.  Utilization: excellent for boiling, baking, and french frying; unacceptable for chipping. 
    REMARK: excellent variety very well suited for home gardens.  And this one was a total bust for us, it just didn’t grow, which says something about our home garden growing abilities!

    Russet Burbank (4) – Also known as the Netted Gem.  Medium to high yielding variety, attractive appearance, washes well at maturity. Long dormancy period, stores well. Requires a uniform moisture supply and long growing season to produce maximum quality tubers and to prevent knobbiness and second growth. To produce large tubers, plants must be spaced 30 to 45 cm apart. High total solids.  (Netted Gem) Long cylindrical tubers with white flesh, heavy netted russet skin. Very good storage, good all purpose potato.
    Utilization: excellent for boiling, baking, chipping, and french frying.
    Was quite successful in our garden, grew well, and keeps well. 

    Russian Blue (13) – This late maturing, dark blue skin and dark blue flesh variety has round to oblong tubers. A very heavy setting, large plant that should be spaced at 12 inches or more in an effort to get it to maturity by fall. The flavor is remarkably normal for such a distinctively visual variety.  An interesting potato to grow – when digging it up , one must sift carefully through the soil as it difficult to see the tubers – they are so dark they don’t show up in the soil.  This one was a disappointment in the garden as nearly half the crop succumbed to rot.  What did grow gave us excellent sized tubers.

    And that is it for potato varieties in the CPR garden at the Port Moody Historical Society Museum.  We hope you enjoyed the display, and of course, understand that as opposed to the grocery store where only 4 or 5 varieties of potato are sold, there are actually many different types of potatoes available to grow and eat.


    * All images courtesy of Tom Galanis

    Harvesting Heritage

    Colourful Carrots and Titanic Tomatoes!

    by Tom Galinis – museum volunteer gardener

    The growing season is drawing to a close at the Port Moody Heritage Society Garden.  Here is a short overview of some of the crops that we grew this year.

    For 2008, we tried several different varieties of carrots  – not so much for their size or shape but for their colour!  Yes, indeed, we tried to grow a white carrot; a purple carrot, a yellow carrot, and finally a red carrot. 

    The result you can see in the picture below.  The white carrot grew quite well, and in fact we discovered that it did not like sun – just like the potato.  Those parts of the carrot that were exposed to sunlight turned green.  Otherwise the carrots were quite uniform in size and interestingly very bland in flavour.  Perhaps pigment in fruit and vegetables helps flavour them as well.  The purple carrots didn’t come up purple – they came up ORANGE!  Who knows what happened there, but flavour wise they were quite tasty, just like a carrot.  The yellow carrot grew well, and tasted exactly like regular orange coloured carrots.  The red carrot did not turn out as brilliant red as predicted.  Flavour wise, it was rather sharp, sort of tart flavour, not exactly like a carrot taste. 

    We also grew some tomatoes – these are very popular every year.  This year we concentrated on some different heritage varieties as well as the popular eating cherry tomatoes. 

    In the first picture below, you can see some of the larger tomatoes that we tried to grow.  Tomatoes come in both red, purple, and yellow colours.  All of them taste really great.  In the picture below (Tomato 1), the back row left to right is “Striped German”, “Lemon Boy” (it is a yellow/orange tomato), and finally a “Great White” tomato – the skin is yellow, but the meat is rather white in appearance.  In the front row, left to right, we have “Black Prince”, and then the “Mortgage Buster” tomato.

    Speaking of size, how big did your “Mortgage Buster” tomatoes grow?  We had several large tomatos from our vines, here are a couple of pictures showing our final weight results.  As you can see, one of the tomatoes almost made it to 1 lb – it was about 13 ounces.  The other tomato was HUGE though, it weighed almost 2 lbs – 1 lb 10 ounces.  And no, I did not have my finger on the scale to get that result.  We gave the “Mortgage Buster” tomatoes away at the Mother Day’s event in May 2008; I sure hope that they gave you some nice tomatoes. 


    Finally we had some tomato plants that produced smaller tomatoes – two of them came from Michael Muttersbach who regularly contributes to our heritage plant supply.  In the picture below, the two red tomatoes came from him and unfortunately we do not know their names.  The one on the left is most interesting – it matured quite late in the season – at end of September and beginning of October, however the fruit when unripe was mottled with 2 different shades of green (one lime green, the other dark green), and when ripe, had two different shades of red as well – one almost orange, the other darker red.  The other red tomato was bigger and less sweet than a cherry tomato but still much smaller than the regular sized tomatoes.  Finally the yellow tomato is called “Yellow Pear” and it was as prolific as a cherry tomato plant, but the fruit was…yellow and pear shaped. 

    Heritage Restoration Workshop


    Port Moody, BC, May 31, 2008 – A rare opportunity to learn the how to’s of maintaining a heritage home or building. This unique workshop will highlight restoration techniques to preserve and maintain a heritage building.

    Presenter Mr. Don Luxton is well known in the Heritage Conservation field and has been principle of Don Luxton and Associates since 1983. Don has done much to promote heritage awareness and preservation of buildings locally and abroad and is a wealth of information on do’s and don’t’s of heritage restoration.

    “It is essential that, while maintaining a heritage building is important, the appearance and structure are altered as little as possible and additions are sympathetic.” says Jim Millar, Curator/Manager of the Museum. He adds, “Both appearance and structure of these buildings have aesthetic and historic importance within the community. Port Moody has 19 heritage homes and buildings listed on Canada’s Historic Places (, with more being added.”

    Knowing what to restore and what to replace, which features to show off and which you can do without, Don will cover all basis of vintage home preservation. Join us on Saturday, May 31, 2008 from 9:30am-3:30pm and spend an informative day learning many aspects of proper restoration.

    Cost per person $10.00 and lunch is included. Space is limited so call now to reserve.

    Thanks to workshop sponsors: Heritage BC and the Ministry of Tourism, Sport and the Arts.

    For additional information, contact Maud Sanford (Museum Assistant) at the Port Moody Station Museum (604) 939-1648.

    The Royal

    One of the two typewriters on display in the Telegraph Office at the Museum. This one is a Royal – one of the three leading brands which dominated the market of the early 20thcentury along with Underwood and Remington. I believe the typewriter in the image to be a “Royal 10”.

    Some typewriters used for telegraph work only typed in capital letters as telegraphy was only done in capital letters to reduce the number of characters or symbols necessary. This is something reflected later in Telex services and early computers and computer printers.

    Unlike the typewriters that many are growing up with today, for much of the 20th century typewriter were manual and did not require electricity.

    ~ dwpenner sept. 20, 2007