Yesterday and Right this moment: A historic look down St. Paul Avenue

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This week we take a look down St. Paul Street, St. Catharines’ main street, as it looked about the time of the First World War, 1914 to 1918.


This week we have a look down St. Paul Avenue, St. Catharines’ fundamental road, because it seemed concerning the time of The First World Struggle, 1914 to 1918.

Instantly to our proper, on the nook of St. Paul and Backyard Park, we see the signal for Tim & Mac’s Billiard-Bowling parlour, a fondly remembered leisure centre for many years over the last century.

Parked in entrance of Tim & Mac’s we see a horse-drawn wagon, one final vestige of the age of the horse.

Additional down the road, on the proper, on the nook of St. Paul and James, the tall constructing was the headquarters of Financial institution of Nova Scotia. The very spectacular constructing, 4 storeys tall with a glazed terra cotta, neo-classical façade, was in-built 1907 and stood on that nook till the mid-Nineteen Sixties. A contemporary pink brick Scotiabank occupies that very same nook right now,

Within the distance, so far as we will see down St. Paul, the place it curves to the left at Helliwells Lane, we see an enormous industrial constructing that also stands right now. Constructed within the 1860s, for a lot of the twentieth century it was occupied by Bissonnette and Case, clothier. Many would additionally keep in mind one of many constructing’s longtime tenants — the legendary Diana Sweets restaurant.

An eye catching constructing on the left aspect of the road is marked by three tall adornments — pinnacles — atop its two-storey façade. That constructing housed the previous St. Catharines Journal. St. Catharines’ first newspaper, based in 1826, it was a severe competitor to The Customary till it needed to declare chapter in 1920. The previous constructing nonetheless stands right now, although now shorn of its fancy roof-line ornamentation. It’s the constructing whose floor ground now has the Subway sub store as a tenant.

Nearer to us on the left, on the backside of James Avenue, stands a stable constructing, two storeys tall, its façade marked by 4 classical columns. It was in-built 1912 for the Sterling Financial institution (later Customary Financial institution of Canada). It has not housed a financial institution for a lot of a long time now. Throughout my time in St. Catharines I’ve identified it as a jewellery retailer, later as the house of Espresso Tradition. Its present tenant is the Inexperienced Apple Espresso Home.

Instantly to our left, the constructing with the massive arched entrance was the Griffin’s Household Theatre, one in every of two St. Paul Avenue theatres that then bore the Griffin title. That constructing way back vanished from the scene. Right this moment that very same web site is occupied by the northwest nook of FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre.

Another element to notice — coming towards us down the centre of St. Paul Avenue we see the observe of the previous Niagara, St. Catharines & Toronto (N.S.&T.) road railway.

However word additionally the rail spur that heads off to the left from the principle line. It led over to the N.S.&T.’s fundamental downtown terminal, which then stood subsequent to the Griffin theatre proper the place right now we discover the principle entrance to the performing arts centre.

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