Gassy Jack's trunk


Jack Deighton, a British and American sailor, arrived in Vancouver in 1867. He opened the Globe Saloon within 24 hours of his arrival by enlisting the help of mill workers and promising them all the whiskey they could drink as a reward. The Globe Saloon was located near Carrall and Water Street – where Vern Simpson’s statue of Gassy Jack stands today. Deighton’s talkative demeanor earned him the nickname ‘Gassy Jack.’

Gassy Jack’s trunk was recovered by Capt. James A. Clarke when he took over the Deighton Hotel in 1875. The trunk was made about 1850 and has a number of features common to sea chests, including corner blocks which raise the bottom of the trunk off wet surfaces, such as boat decks. The varnished surface is likely aromatic camphor, with multiple scratches and a decorative brass inlay on the lid and front of the trunk which forms a fleur-de-lis in each corner. The wide brass piping around the trunk's edges was known as the kick strip, a feature used to reduce wear and tear on the wood.

Date Range 
c. 1850 - 1875
Place of Manufacture 
probably England
50 cm high, 105 cm wide, 54.3 cm deep
Catalog Number 
Vancouver Public Library, 1993