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Historical kitties: These 15 adorable photos show cats from Vancouver's past

Trying to take a photo of your cat is not a new activity.

Over the decades Vancouver has not only been home to many people, but also, importantly, many cats.

Our feline friends arrived in Vancouver along with European settlers as they colonized the coast, as pets and working animals catching pests. And while trying to take the perfect photo of your cat might seem like a modern activity given everyone has a camera on them that auto-focuses and has the capacity to take thousands of photos, it's not.

But try doing it with a big, boxy camera that may or may not use film.

While there aren't many photos of people in the area from the earliest days of photography, since it was a complex process with specialized equipment that needed to be sent from other parts of the country (or world), it didn't take long for a Vancouver cat to show up on film (actually, the photo predates film).

In the late 1860s Governor of the United Colonies of Vancouver Island and British Columbia (not the shortest title) Frederick Seymour was arguably the most important person living in the area. When he had a portrait taken, his pet cat is seated on his lap (and looks less than impressed at having to pose).

Over the early years of Vancouver they pop up once in a while in photos; it was difficult to take pictures of them since the equipment was awkward and required longer exposures than today's technology-heavy systems.

However, since photography became popular, people have being trying to capture the perfect picture of their kittens; once photography became simpler and more popular the number of cat photos jumped. The most successful are usually the ones where the cat is being posed, from military units to award winners. That said, cats of history were not always enthusiastic about posing.

To see more of the City of Vancouver's archival collection, visit their website.

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