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Clockwise from top: Downtown Vancouver as seen from above False Creek, The University of British Columbia, Lions Gate Bridge, a view from the Granville Street Bridge, Burrard Bridge, The Millennium Gate (Chinatown), and totem poles in Stanley Park) is a coastal seaport city in Canada, located in the Lower Mainland region of British Columbia.
The explorer and North West Company trader Simon Fraser and his crew became the first-known Europeans to set foot on the site of the present-day city.
In 1808, they travelled from the east down the Fraser River, perhaps as far as Point Grey.
The Fraser Gold Rush of 1858 brought over 25,000 men, mainly from California, to nearby New Westminster (founded 14 February 1859) on the Fraser River, on their way to the Fraser Canyon, bypassing what would become Vancouver.
the first European settlement in what is now Vancouver was not until 1862 at Mc Cleery's Farm on the Fraser River, just east of the ancient village of Musqueam in what is now Marpole.
The family name Vancouver itself originates from the Dutch "Van Coevorden", denoting somebody from the city of Coevorden, Netherlands.
The explorer's ancestors came to England "from Coevorden", which is the origin of the name that eventually became "Vancouver".
From that first enterprise, other stores and some hotels quickly appeared along the waterfront to the west. By 1887, the Canadian Pacific transcontinental railway was extended westward to the city to take advantage of its large natural seaport to the Pacific Ocean, which soon became a vital link in a trade route between the Orient / East Asia, Eastern Canada, and Europe.
Gastown became formally laid out as a registered townsite dubbed Granville, B. Europeans became acquainted with the area of the future Vancouver when José María Narváez of Spain explored the coast of present-day Point Grey and parts of Burrard Inlet in 1791—although one author contends that Francis Drake may have visited the area in 1579.
Vancouver has the highest population density in Canada with over 5,400 people per square kilometre, and Mexico City according to the 2011 census.
Vancouver is one of the most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities in Canada according to that census; 52% of its residents have a first language other than English.
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