Joe Fortes is named “Vancouver Citizen of the Century”

Joe arrived in Vancouver around 1885-1886 when he was about 20 years old. He worked as a bartender but spent many hours at English Bay, taking it upon himself to be THE informal swimming teacher and lifeguard. In 1910 the City of Vancouver recognized Joe as an official lifeguard to be employed and paid by the City. To celebrate Vancouver’s centennial; Vancouver Historical Society formally declared Joe as “Vancouver Citizen of the Century”.
Joe’s story

Image courtesy of Royal BC Museum and Archives