A Vancouver time travelogue brought to you by Past Tense.
The Tiny Dog Store was a clothing and footwear store that opened in 1895 at 70 West Cordova Street. The name comes from “the smallest dog that ever saw the light of day, measuring but three inches.” The stuffed little dog could be viewed by visiting the store.
Owner Muskett Grossman had a definite flair for publicity. This 1904 photo shows two goats on Hastings Street pulling a wagon advertising a footwear sale. “Have you seen them?” it says. “Seen what? Why! The tan shoes worth 5.50 for 2.25.” In another ad, Grossman explains how he kept his prices so low:
Say, Muskett! You can’t give car fare out of your small profits, how do you sell so cheap? You see, these other merchants have large corner stores, have two salesmen to pay, and over $100 per month rent. I only pay $40, and do my own work. I see, Muskett, you are a worker, a WORKINGMAN’S FRIEND, the man we want in these hard times. We will all give you a call at the TINY DOG STORE.
Like many Vancouver retailers at the time, part of Tiny Dog’s business was outfitting prospectors on their way to the Klondike goldfields. “The Best and Cheapest House in Town for Klondike Outfits! Loggers’, Miners’ and Sailors’ Supplies. Everything you want!” screamed an ad in the St James Newsletter.
Source: City of Vancouver Archives #371-1316