•February 21, 2017 • 1 Comment
The town of Girvin was named after John Girvin, a contractor for many railroad stations west of Winnipeg. The railway preceded the village, built during the 1880s by the Qu’Appelle, Long Lake, and Saskatchewan Railroad and Steamboat Company. Settlement of the area started around 1902. The post office opened April 1st, 1905 and a school followed the same year. A restaurant, lumber yard, butcher, hotel, bank, livery, and blacksmith soon followed. Girvin had three grain elevators by 1915. It was incorporated as a village in 1907. The pump house, constructed in 1906, provided water for horses hauling grain into town. It is the only pump house in Saskatchewan and has been recognized as a Municipal Heritage Property since 1994. Girvin’s population peaked in 1926 at 151. In 1941 it had 93 residents; in the 1950s 140 citizens. Decline began in the 1960s. The school closed in 1970. By the 1980s the only business was a gas station and garage. In 2004 the skating rink collapsed. Today there are twenty residents with no businesses. Girvin relinquished its village status on December 19th, 2005.
•January 25, 2017 • Leave a Comment
The CPR Bridge in Saskatoon was completed in June of 1908. It is nineteen and a half metres high and 341 metres long and includes a pedestrian walkway built in 1909. It is a truss bridge made with steel, wood, and concrete. Preliminary plans were to have a lane for vehicular traffic, but this was later removed from the project.
•January 14, 2017 • Leave a Comment
During the winter break my brother Mike and I embarked on a day trip to our grandparents’ former farm. Along the way we stopped in at Old Geo’s Antiques in Whitewood. George owns a two and a half story house built in 1885. I believe there are seventeen rooms in the house and at least five staircases. We stepped in and George invited us to tour his house stuffed with antiques of all kinds – bottles, radios, lamps, First Nations pipes and tools, food tins, spinning wheels, telegraphs and more. In addition there is a village of about 20 buildings on his property. Being it winter, we only stopped in at the saloon. We spent about two hours looking around and chatting to George. Over 24,000 visitors have been to Old Geo’s. He has been featured in Prairies North magazine, Beijing Cosmopolitan, and other publications.
•January 8, 2017 • Leave a Comment
I am an avid reader and enjoy reading a variety of books. Usually I am drawn to non-fiction books but do like a well-written novel from time to time. Here are a few books on my reading list this year:
Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television – Jerry Mander
The Nightingale – Kristin Hannah
Iwo Jima – Bill D. Ross
The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
In Search of April Raintree – Beatrice Culleton Mosionier
An Astronaut’s Guide to Life on Earth – Chris Hadfield
Nature – Ralph Waldo Emerson
•November 24, 2016 • Leave a Comment
I came across this school a few years ago on a winter photo trip. Searches of various local history books and historical school websites have proven fruitless concerning its name and past. Judging by its appearance I’m guessing it closed in the 1950s or 1960s. The school is located about ten kilometres north of Pense, east of grid 641.
If you know any information about this school please leave a comment.
•August 18, 2016 • Leave a Comment
American White Pelican
Location: Wascana Waterfowl Display Ponds
– A baby pelican may eat up to 150 pounds of fish before they are nine weeks old.
– The plate or projection on the pelican’s bill is shed after the breeding season.
– Pelicans never carry food in their bill pouches.
– They have a wing span of 8 – 10 feet, amongst the top ten in the world.
– Pelicans can live over 16 years in the wild, some live to be 25.
•August 11, 2016 • Leave a Comment
I discovered that the Port of Big Beaver had closed a couple years ago. Last year during my trip to the Big Muddy area I took a few pictures of the border crossing. The Canadian side closed April 1st, 2011. The Americans did the same nearly two years later – January, 25th, 2013. The crossing averaged only three vehicles a day and was not feasible to stay open.