Daniel Francis

Reading the National Narrative

The Hendrix Connection

Feb 24, 2014


Vancouver history buffs are aware that mega rock star Jimi Hendrix had an historic connection to the city. His grandmother, Nora Hendrix, lived here for many years, from her arrival in 1912 until her death at age 100 in 1984. Jimi was raised in Seattle but came north to visit his grandparents regularly and there is now a small shrine to the singer in the city’s East End.

There is an interview with Nora Hendrix in the marvellous oral history, Opening Doors: Vancouver’s East End, compiled by Daphne Marlatt and Carole Itter in 1979 and recently republished by Harbour Publishing.

But I was not much aware of her husband, Ross Hendrix, until I read this article by Jimi’s younger sister Janie Hendrix. Both Ross and Nora became Canadian citizens and both played prominent roles in Vancouver’s small black community.