This week, Maddie Leach and I (Shalon – summer Learning Assistant at the CAG) took a sunny-day road trip to the historic fishing village of Finn Slough (a tiny fishing community established by Finnish pioneers who bought land at Finn Road in the early 1890’s) in Richmond. Finn Slough has been a working fishing community for over one hundred years, and remains an active, historical settlement existing in its natural setting in the Fraser River wetlands. About 30 residents still inhabit Finn Slough, living in wooden houses (both floating and built on stilts) along the river banks. Sadly, it seems that Finn Slough is being threatened with impending development plans which the local residents are protesting. Here is a link to more information about Finn Slough and a petition to help save the village.
Afterward, we jumped in the van and drove to Ladner (also created as a fishing village) on River Road to find the Fisherman’s Co-op Hall , which has operated as a community hub since 1943. Apparently, when Great Northern Railway shut down its branch line from Surrey to Port Guichon in 1929, the rails were removed but the station at the port was left behind. The property was acquired by the Ladner Fishermen’s Co-operative Association in 1943 as a community hall where fisher families could use it for weddings and community events.
Maddie has been spending time thinking about and researching the Fraser River for her upcoming Vancouver-based project. Historically, her projects have interpreted and responded to specific contexts, through processes of inquiry, research and social interaction. You can find out more information about her time spent at the CAG’s Burrard Marina Field House here, here, and here!