“The Label Unwrapped: The History of Canned Salmon Labels” is the Gulf of Georgia Cannery National Historic Site’s current feature exhibit, which recently opened in May 2019. In this blog series Shannon King, Manager of Audience Engagement, shares some insight into the new exhibit and the colourful stories behind the labels.
Until after the Second World War, most of BC’s canned salmon was sold overseas to Britain and its colonies around the world. One of my favourite labels shows Canada’s most important destinations for canned salmon right on the label!
Overseas Brand Cohoe Salmon is a gorgeous label that features an illustrated map. The land mass of Canada is bright red, while the rest of North and South America are light blue. From Vancouver, a thick red line extends through the South Pacific to Auckland, New Zealand, and ends at Sydney, Australia. From Montreal, another red line makes a trans-Atlantic journey to London, Liverpool, and Glasgow. The label even shows the railway connecting Vancouver to Montreal to demonstrate how canned salmon traveled across Canada before sailing to Great Britain.
This history and geography lesson about the main markets for British Columbia’s canned salmon was brought to you by Anderson and Miskin, Ltd.