A LENS ON VANCOUVER'S PAST
Walter Frost's Holland-America Line (1920-1975)
Vancouver Maritime Museum displayed Vancouver photographer’s images of Holland-America Line vessels in micro-exhibition.
The year 2020 marked the 100th anniversary of the first arrival in Vancouver by a Holland-America Line (HAL) vessel. To commemorate this centennial of Dutch-Canadian trade, the Vancouver Maritime Museum (VMM) hosted a micro-exhibition of ten photographs of HAL ships taken by Walter Edwin Frost.
Walter Frost (1898-1988), a life-long resident of East Vancouver, donated an extensive collection of 13,369 black & white photographs to the City of Vancouver Archives in 1984. The images capture much of the industrial activity of early- and mid-20th century Vancouver with a focus on ships in Vancouver Harbour. The busy waterfront provided Frost with a constant stream of subject matter.
Floris van Weelderen, the curator of the micro-exhibition, discovered Frost’s photographs while chronicling his father’s 1960s sea voyages on Holland-America Line freighters and ocean liners. Floris observed that Walter’s photographs provide a remarkable visual record of the evolution in maritime shipping and naval architecture.
The micro-exhibition also included a model of the Diemerdyk, one of the vessels photographed by Frost, plus HAL ephemera from the VMM collection.