McNaught Homestead

 

The McNaught Homestead near Beaverlodge was designated a Provincial Historic Resource in 2003. In order for a site to be designated a Provincial Historic Resource, it must possess province-wide significance for either its history or architecture. To properly assess the historic importance of a resource, a historian crafts a context document that situates a resource within its time and place and compares it to similar resources in other parts of the province. This allows staff to determine the importance of a resource to a particular theme, time, and place. Below is some of the historical information used in the evaluation of the McNaught Homestead.

In the spring of 1909, a group of excommunicated Methodists from Ontario known as the Christian Association (or Burnsites after their leader, Nelson Burns) made their way in convoy to the western edge of the Grande Prairie in northwestern Alberta and began to carve out homesteads.  The district along the lower Beaverlodge River was just being surveyed, and this group of 31 settlers came to constitute what would become the first successful attempt at group settlement in the Peace River Country.  They were soon joined by other settlers from Ontario, some of them Christian Association members, some not.  Among the latter was Charles McNaught who, with his wife Eliza, arrived in the district in June, 1911 to visit his brother, Sam, who had settled in the area two years earlier. 

Taken by the country, Charles and Eliza also decided to try establishing a farm there, taking two quarter-sections of land off the Beaverlodge River on NE15 and SE22 TP71 R10 W6 with half-breed scrip, and one on NE25 TP70 R11 off the Red Willow River by homesteading.  They decided to reside on NE15, and so they constructed a log dwelling, a barn, and other structures, and proceeded to work the land.  In 1914, they received title to both NE15 and SE22.

Being at some distance from the more heavily settled areas of the south Peace River Country, the settlers around the Beaverlodge constituted a tightly knit group, most of whom were members of the Christian Association.  Many non-members participated in Association activities.  Though the Association itself would eventually go into decline, due partly to the lack of any formal church structure, the community remained closely connected, with many families inter-marrying.  The children of Charles and Eliza McNaught would remain on the family homestead for years, becoming strong pillars of the community.  Indeed, three of them came to serve as local schoolteachers. Read more

St. Ambrose Anglican Church

 

The St. Ambrose Anglican Church in Redcliff was designated a Provincial Historic Resource in 2008. In order for a site to be designated a Provincial Historic Resource, it must possess province-wide significance for either its history or architecture. To properly assess the historic importance of a resource, a historian crafts a context document that situates a resource within its time and place and compares it to similar resources in other parts of the province. This allows staff to determine the importance of a resource to a particular theme, time, and place. Below is some of the historical information used in the evaluation of the St. Ambrose Anglican Church.

When the Canadian Pacific Railway was extending its survey grade across the southern prairies during 1881-82, a point was made to identify places suitable for the erection of stations and the subdivision of townsites.  One such spot was where the railway was earmarked to cross the South Saskatchewan River at present dayMedicine Hat.  Among the established industries in the area was that of clay products.  Common clay and shale were readily available along the river flats, while ball clay, fire clay, and stonewear clay were to be found in the outlying areas.

       

In 1906, with the population ofMedicine Hatgrowing, the Stoner Land Company, which owned land along the South Saskatchewan River northwest of town, incorporated the Redcliff Brick Company and began to make bricks for the many buildings going up inMedicine Hatand elsewhere along the CPR line.  In 1907, a townsite was subdivided and a water & sewer system was installed near the plant.  With people arriving to engage in the brick industry, and its related service industries, Redcliff was soon incorporated as a village.  With the demand for brick growing, and the red clay off theSouth Saskatchewanproviding an excellent product, Redcliff also continued to grow.  The plentiful supply of natural gas was another inducement for industry as well as people, and Redcliff was referred to as a “Smokeless Pittsburgh.”  In 1912, with its population listed at 3,000, Redcliff was incorporated as a town.  By this time, three major brick plants were in business, along with an iron works, a truck-manufacturing plant, and the Dominion Glass Company.  Read more

Orange Hall, Edmonton

 

The Orange Hall in Edmonton was designated a Provincial Historic Resource in 2007. In order for a site to be designated a Provincial Historic Resource, it must possess province-wide significance for either its history or architecture. To properly assess the historic importance of a resource, a historian crafts a context document that situates a resource within its time and place and compares it to similar resources in other parts of the province. This allows staff to determine the importance of a resource to a particular theme, time, and place. Below is some of the historical information used in the evaluation of the Orange Hall.

The Orange Order was founded in Ireland in 1795 as a fraternal social organization devoted to upholding the cause of the (Anglican) Church of Ireland and exposing and denouncing the purported evils of Catholicism.  It was named for William of Orange, who, with Queen Mary, was King of England from 1688 to 1696.  The Order began as a grass-roots organization, but made inroads into upper-class British Society in the 1820’s, when the King’s brother, the Duke of Cumberland, became a member and was elected Grand Master.  On the whole, with its rituals and penchant for secrecy, it appears to have served as an Anglican counterpart to the Presbyterian oriented Masons.  In time, however, it attracted people from all areas of British society who had strong anti-Catholic feelings.  Read more

Calgary Fire Hall No. 1

 

CalgaryFire Hall No. 1 was designated a Provincial Historic Resource in 2009. In order for a site to be designated a Provincial Historic Resource, it must possess province-wide significance for either its history or architecture. To properly assess the historic importance of a resource, a historian crafts a context document that situates a resource within its time and place and compares it to similar resources in other parts of the province. This allows staff to determine the importance of a resource to a particular theme, time, and place. Below is some of the historical information used in the evaluation of the Calgary Fire Hall No. 1.

The first attempt to provide an orderly method of firefighting in the frontier community of Calgary came with its incorporation in 1884 when a volunteer fire committee was established.  One of its first acts was to acquire a horse drawn wagon for a volunteer bucket brigade.  In 1886, a major fire devastated the downtown and, as a result, most new commercial buildings were made of brick or stone, but these were still vulnerable to internal fires.  A serviceable fire hall was obviously required. 

In 1887, a wood frame fire hall was erected on 122 – 7th Avenue East.  This served the town well at first, but Calgary continued to grow rapidly, and the need for another facility was soon apparent.  It was not until 1905, however, that another fire hall was erected, this being another wood frame structure on 1801 Macleod Trail to serve the south side of the city.  Even this was hardly adequate, for Calgary continued to grow at a frantic pace, its population rising to over 43,000 in 1911.  

In 1911, both Calgary fire halls were replaced with modern brick facilities.  Other fire halls were also soon built in other parts of the city.  By this time, a Fire Department was a part of the civic administration, and paid fire fighters were stationed right at the halls.  Reports on fires were sent in through the newly installed telephone system, and responses were handled by motorized fire trucks with pressurized pumps. 

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