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Time Traveller: Salvaging a ship that made 300 trips from Vancouver to Asia

The Empress of Japan, a CPR Steamship that featured a remarkable dragon figurehead, brought passengers, silks and tea to Canada

The Empress of Japan, also known as The Queen of the Pacific, was a CPR Steamship that travelled from Vancouver to Asia more than 300 times, gathering passengers, silks, and tea. After being refitted for service in the First World War, the ship was scrapped in 1927.

The picture above shows the ship being broken up on the Lynn Creek mudflats. The dragon figurehead was saved and put on display near the X̱wáýx̱way village site in Stanley Park.

The original figurehead was later moved to Vancouver Maritime Museum, with a replica put in its place in Stanley Park.

Visit the MONOVA website for more information about the history of the North Shore and to plan your visit to MONOVA: Museum of North Vancouver, now open at 115 West Esplanade in The Shipyards.

Currently, MONOVA: Archives of North Vancouver, at 3203 Institute Road in Lynn Valley, is open for drop-ins on Monday and by appointment Tuesday-Friday, 12:30-4 p.m. Contact:

Navigate culture on the North Shore by using the North Shore Culture Compass.