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Etter's Beauty Salon and Barber Shop

2335 Clarke Street, Port Moody, British Columbia, V3H, Canada

Formally Recognized: 2002/02/22

Exterior view of Etter's Beauty Salon and Barber Shop; City of Port Moody, 2004
Front elevation
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Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2007/06/18

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Etter's Beauty Salon and Barber Shop is a modest two-storey wood-frame false-front commercial building, that stands in a grouping of similar small-scale commercial buildings along Clarke Street, the original commercial and retail centre of Port Moody.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of Etter's Beauty Salon and Barber Shop is associated with the early twentieth century development of downtown Port Moody, the historic area of commercial and institutional buildings located near the conjunction of the railway and the working waterfront. The consistent and distinctive built form of the area dates from the time when Port Moody was developing rapidly as a mill town and Clarke Street was its commercial centre. This building is an important component of the Clarke Street historic grouping and a good example of modest Port Moody vernacular architecture.

Furthermore, this building is of value as a rare surviving example of a 'Boomtown' or false-front commercial building in Port Moody. Built with a raised front parapet to increase the apparent size of the building and provide more opportunities for signs, structures of this type proliferated in early communities throughout the west. The large storefront openings provided maximum glazing to increase display space and take advantage of natural lighting.

Additionally, this site is valued as a representation of the development of local service industries. This site and the adjacent property to the west were originally owned by Peter Onesima Bilodeau (1851-1940), a known New Westminster hotelier. Bilodeau acquired the property in 1913, but waited until 1923 to build this structure, a reflection of the collapse of the local economy prior to the First World War and the gradual return to prosperity during the 1920s. Starting in 1930, the ground floor housed the side-by-side businesses of Harry Lorne Etter (1889-1941) and Florence Ethel Etter; he worked as a barber and she worked as a hairdresser, and they lived in a suite upstairs. Mrs. Etter left in 1940, and the hairdressing business passed through other hands but stayed open until the 1960s. The long-term existence of the beauty salon indicates the preferred location for local services on Clarke Street even after the shift of the main business district to St. Johns Street.

Source: City of Port Moody Heritage Planning Files

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of Etter's Beauty Salon and Barber Shop include its:
- location within the historic commercial core on Clarke Street, amongst other structures of similar form and scale clustered near the rail line;
- siting on the front and side property lines, with no setback;
- commercial form, scale and massing, as exemplified by its symmetrical two-storey height, rectangular plan and regular fenestration;
- front gabled roof with distinctive 'Boomtown' raised front parapet, flush eaves, corner caps and related trim elements;
- construction material, such as wood-frame structure and wooden drop siding;
- recessed central entrance; and
- internal brick chimney.



British Columbia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (BC)

Recognition Statute

Local Government Act, s.954

Recognition Type

Community Heritage Register

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Trade and Commerce

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Shop or Wholesale Establishment


Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Port Moody Heritage Planning Files

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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