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Vancouver History: Abbott House

December 17th, 2012 @ 10:09am (PT) by Rebecca Bollwitt

Nestled between the residential towers of the West End you can spot a few heritage houses that have endured for decades. Some converted to apartments or businesses, others preserved in time like Roedde House. One that sticks out, with no other heritage houses remaining in its immediate vicinity, is Abbott House at 720 Jervis Street between West Georgia and Alberni.

Abbott House
Photo credit: Clayton Perry Photoworks on Flickr

The rich built their homes on the bluff above Coal Harbour where Morton had built his cabin. West of Burrard, Hastings turned into Seaton Street, which was known as Blueblood Alley. But the bluebloods soon left for the West End, and then Shaughnessy. Only one Blueblood Alley mansion remains, Henry Abbott’s home at 720 Jervis. [Vancouver Sun]

720jervis
1960 – West Georgia and Jervis. Archives item# Air P91.

Henry Braithwaite Abbott (same namesake as Abbott Street) had his house built in 1899. He was an executive with the CPR who was present in Craigellachie, BC when the last spike was hammered in to complete Canada’s first transcontinental railroad. He was also on the first train from Montreal to Port Moody with Lord Strathcona [source: Vancouver History].

Abbott House, 720 Jervis
Photo credit: nonstopdesign on Flickr

The house (now painted “CPR Red”) has undergone transformations over the years, it was even the original home of the Elbow Room Cafe until 1996. If you do a search for its address you’ll find that it has apartments which are a part of the Residences on Georgia development.

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2 comments

  1. Tamara says:

    So cool! I have often wondered about this house!! Thanks for the informative post!

  2. [...] populated West End we know today. A handful remain, includingRoedde House, Gabriola Mansion, and Abbott House, the only survivor of Blue Blood [...]

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