My great grandfather was Alexander Wetherell Thorne, and I have to admit that I don’t know a lot about him. I do have a lot of incredible things from his life though, including some stunning old photos of Saint John, New Brunswick.

My mother told me snippets about his life over the years, there were photos of him around the house, and I have his cane, but some of my favourite things are his newspapers and his photographs. Most of what I have of his are in storage, which I can’t get to right now, but I started scanning some photos of his this week and I had to share them.

In 1914 he went to war, at the age of 32, and his papers say he was already a newspaper reporter at the time. He served as a lieutenant, and when he got back, he went back to work reporting.

At some point in the 30s, he went on to work at the Maritime Broadcaster, and later, The Daily Citizen. I’m fuzzy on the details, but as far as I know, he was the publisher of the Maritime Broadcaster, and I have two giant bound books of most of his newspapers from that time.

In storage, I have a lot more of his photos, but I finally got around to scanning a few of what I did have right now, and I just can’t get over what Saint John looked like back then.

I grew up near Saint John, and we would visit every so often for shopping and things, but it was a much different place in the 1980s. Today, the city has grown and changed, but it’s astounding to see how busy it was in 1936.

I’ll share more scans when I can, but for now, I hope you enjoy the peek back at the streets of Saint John.

Union St looking east from Charlotte Street, 1936.
Union St looking east from Charlotte Street, 1936.
Looking along Charlotte Street from Sydney, 1936.
Looking along Charlotte Street from Sydney, 1936.

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    1. Hi, Phil. It will be at least two weeks before I can get to where I have documents and more photos stored, and scan some more. I’ll definitely share more here on my blog, and probably in the Facebook group, The Days of Old Saint John.

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