Not the graffiti, garbage, broken windows and vandalism that eventually ruined one of Calgary's historic pioneer treasures — this disgrace falls on successive provincial governments that would allow this travesty of neglect to take place.
"It's totally disgusting. I am really frustrated," says Norman Willans, whose namesake grandfather built the beloved old barn in Fish Creek Provincial Park.
At least, the old barn was beloved.
Now, the majestic handbuilt log structure, for so long a picturesque landmark of the popular provincial park, is gone — demolished by order of Alberta Parks after years of apathy and neglect made the circa 1910 barn too dangerous.
"Due to public safety concerns, Alberta Parks will be dismantling and removing the Willans Barn at Shannon Terrace in Fish Creek Provincial Park," reads the official notice.
"Public should be aware that construction equipment and trucks will be accessing the site during demolition, removal, and reclamation."
It's all over now, and nothing of the barn remains.
The city's development appeal board has rejected a proposal to build a large duplex next to one of Calgary's earliest residences, a Gothic Revival Cottage-style house with a wrap-around verandah and dormer windows next to the river in Inglewood.
The Major Stewart House in Inglewood was built in 1885 by its namesake, an early settler in the Calgary area.
Stewart was a rancher, businessman and served as a sergeant in the North-West Mounted Police.
The owner of the vacant lot next to the historic house filed an application to build an infill-style duplex.
But the plan as it currently exists was rejected by the appeal board Tuesday, overturning its original approval by the city in August.
Pamela Heard is a native Calgarian and currently is the Executive Director of Calgary’s Prostate Cancer Centre. She also serves as a Director on two non-profit boards - Alberta Ballet and Strathcona-Tweedsmuir School. Pam has held senior management positions with for profit and not-for-profit organizations over the last 25 years. Pam has a Master’s Degree in Western Canadian History from the University of Calgary. She worked in heritage planning for the City of Calgary Planning Department in the 1980’s, and helped to develop and execute the City’s first heritage evaluation system. Pam has served as a member of the Calgary Heritage Authority since 2013.
Nikolas Marsall-Moritz is an engineer at Read Jones Christoffersen, specializing in the restoration and repair of structures and building envelope assemblies. Encountering several projects involving historic buildings in the course of his career fuelled an interest in the preservation of these structures. This interest became one of the focuses of his Master’s degree in Engineering from the University of Calgary and has led to a desire to become more involved in local preservation efforts. Nikolas has served as a member of the Calgary Heritage Authority since 2013 and is the current Treasurer.
The following properties were evaluated or re-evaluated for addition to the City’s Inventory of Evaluated Historic Resources in September and approved by the CHA at the October board meeting.
Baird (Millar) Residence (1912) – 635 29 AV SW (Elbow Park) Re-evaluated as a City Wide Historic Resource
The Baird (Millar) Residence is an exceptional symbol of Calgary’s pre-WWI boom as it transpired in the context of Elbow Park. (Symbolic Value, Community Significance)
The building is an excellent example of many of the features typical of residential Arts and Crafts architecture and includes features which are unique to Calgary in this style. The building is associated with a number of prominent Calgarians, including First World War flying ace Fred McCall, alderman Frank Freeze, architect James M. Stevenson, and musicians Frances Miller and Wilfrid V. Oaten.
Church of the Redeemer (1905) – 218 7 AV SE (Downtown) Re-evaluated as a City Wide Historic Resource
The Church of the Redeemer is among the finest and most substantial examples of Gothic Revival style architecture in Calgary. Inspired by the smaller parish churches of rural England, the exterior features buttressed sandstone walls, pointed-arch windows and steep parapeted gable roofs. The Church of the Redeemer has been integral to the cultural, spiritual and social life of Calgary. Since that time it has been the home and place of worship, for a congregation that first met in November 1883. Many of these congregation members also constituted the community’s most well-known business and civic leaders. The Church is an important Anglican institution being the seat of the Diocese of Calgary, since 1889 when the Calgary diocese was established. The church is known as one of the most significant landmarks in downtown Calgary. Its impressive Gothic design, and long-standing role in Calgary’s cultural fabric – combined with its visibility along Seventh Avenue, the primary transit corridor in downtown Calgary – lend the church this landmark status.
Glenwood Manor (1928) – 904 Memorial DR NW (Sunnyside) Re-evaluated as a City Wide Historic Resource
The Glenwood Manor built in response to renewed demand for housing and luxury in the late 1920s, and its splendid and well-preserved construction and details typify the success of that period in Calgary’s history. It is a prominent and excellent example of Eclectic Georgian Revival architecture, with unique Spanish and Arts and Crafts influence. It is associated with notable Calgarians who resided there, particularly in the early portion of its history. Oil mogul Samuel Nickle, City Councilors Pansy Pue and Elaine Husband, Industrial Coordinator of Calgary Power Ltd., Captain E.H. Parsons, and notable businessman Lou Doll all lived in Glenwood Manor.
Teskey Residence (1909-1912) – 1510 1 ST SE (Beltline) Evaluated as a Community Historic Resource
The Teskey Residence is symbolic of the earliest development in Victoria Park (Beltline), reflective of its original upper-middle class population and the mixed-use makeup of the neighbourhood. The Teskey Residence is a detached square two-storey residence in the Queen Anne Revival style, characterized by its red brick cladding with sandstone detailing and high hip roof with cross-gable dormers.
St. Cecilia’s Roman Catholic Church (1974) – 321 90 AV SE (Acadia) Evaluated as a City Wide Historic Resource
It is highly valued for its design, incorporating Modern and medieval church features during an era of liturgical change in the Catholic Church. St. Cecilia's Roman Catholic Church is valued as an extraordinary example the Expressionist style, combined with aspects of early Christian architecture. It is valued through its use of local labour, expertise, building material, and rare use of concrete dome construction. It is valued as a tangible representation of its strong, vibrant, volunteer-driven, and socially cognizant parish community.
Calgary Heritage Events
Below is a listing of heritage events happening throughout the city. We are always happy to include the events of other organizations in our monthly newsletters. We only ask that you have them to us by the end of each month. Events can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mark the Date!
The Commonwealth Association of Museums is holding a pre-roundtable tour of indigenous heritage sites in Southern Alberta June 19-20, an Indigenous Heritage Roundtable June 21, and an international symposium on Heritage and Nation Building June 22-23, 2017.
Explore the role of museums and heritage organisations in creating and promoting a national identity with colleagues from throughout the Commonwealth during Canada’s sesquicentennial year.
The Commonwealth Association of Museums is a Canadian not-for-profit corporation that supports museums and museum workers throughout the Commonwealth, with a focus on Commonwealth values, such as human rights and social justice, and the UN sustainable development goals.
For further information visit our website, or to volunteer on the local arrangements committee contact the Secretary-General Catherine C Cole in Edmonton at CatherineC.Cole@telus.net.