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"You don't have to be a Scotchman": Sport and the evolution of the Vancouver Caledonian games, 1893-1926

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Thesis type
(Thesis) M.A.
Date created
The Vancouver St. Andrew's and Caledonian Society (VSACS), which included a number of the local klite, initiated its Caledonian Games soon after the city was born. Understanding that spectators were drawn largely by sports events, the VSACS began promoting these as the feature attraction, and by the early 1910s the Games were one of Vancouver's foremost track meets. World War One stalled the Games' progress, but in the 1920s the VSACS promoted them as a vehicle of city pride and development, resulting in the Games' inclusion in the Greater Vancouver Exhibition. The organizers had succeeded during an era when similar events across North America were in decline by promoting the Games as an athletic event rather than an exclusive celebration of Scottish cultural identity. That the city's annual booster fair bore a distinctively Scottish imprint nevertheless suggests much about the nature of "British" cultural identity and hegemony in early Vancouver.
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