From all of us to all of you, we wish you all the best this holiday season. May you make lots of great memories and share wonderful moments with your family and friends.

 

The History of Calgary’s Edworthy Park

Edworthy Park - Photo by Aduro Photography

Edworthy Park – Photo by Aduro Photography

Each month our Member of Parliament for Calgary Signal Hill, Ron Liepert, sends in a newsletter to our community association.  This month they sent a brilliantly written history of one of our beloved Calgary parks.  I asked for permission to post this story on our blog because, not only is it a great read, but it also highlights the fact that the history of places is just as interesting and important as the history of a person.

Posted with permission from author, Patty Wickstrom, edited by Ron Liepert.


As we celebrate the 150th anniversary of confederation, it is important to reflect on our past. In the Calgary Signal Hill riding, there are several areas with historical significance that I intend to highlight in my monthly report to constituents.

Most of us drive by Edworthy Park on a regular basis while others walk the trails often with their trusted four legged friends. We all enjoy the views but few realize the history of the park.

The area was initially one of the nomadic settlements of the Plains Indians who followed the migration of buffalo. The variety of berries and wildlife, such as rabbits and deer, made it sustainable for life. The cliffs and ravines were considered ideal sites for buffalo jumps, from which the Indians used virtually every part of the buffalo for food, shelter, clothing and tools. Evidence remains of the stones from tipi circles on the escarpment and several buffalo bones were uncovered after heavy rains in 1940.

In the 1870’s European settlers began arriving. Among them was Thomas Edworthy, who at the age of 16 arrived in Calgary in 1883 from Devonshire, England. He became a squatter on part of the Cochrane Ranche lease. He used the land to establish a profitable garden market that supplied fresh fruit and vegetables to homesteaders and crews building the railway. There were abundant springs for Edworthy to use for irrigation but because the water was too cold, he built a reservoir out of sandstone to warm the water. The grass that had supported the buffalo was now used for cattle grazing so the Edworthy homestead was built as a ranch and market named Shaganappi Ranch.

In later years, after discovering sandstone on his property, he operated sandstone quarries for the construction of many buildings in Calgary. After a devastating fire destroyed several significant buildings, the city passed an ordinance requiring buildings to be built out of a more permanent material, which lead to Calgary being known as ‘Sandstone City’. Edworthy’s ‘Bow Bank Quarries’ supplied the sandstone for many of the buildings in Calgary that are still standing today such as Fire Hall #2, Central, Balmoral and Victoria Park Schools, and Knox United Church, just to name a few.

In 1894, Tom married Mary Ross, widow of Alexander Ross who was Calgary’s first resident photographer. Ross photographed the building of the Canadian Pacific Railway as it headed west from Manitoba, and many historic scenes, including the signing of Treaty Number Seven. Mary and Tom Edworthy had two sons, Thomas Percival and George (Sr.). Thomas Edworthy died at the age of 48 from typhoid leaving his wife and two sons to operate the businesses and ranch.

In the 1950’s, part of the Edworthy land was sold and became the community of Wildwood. The family sold the remaining land, 169 hectares, to the City of Calgary in 1962 for the development of the park which bears his name.

So the next time you walk through the park look for remnants of the buffalo jump, the ranch and market or the quarry, all part of the history of this beautiful legacy in the middle of our riding.

Isn’t it time you told YOUR story?

Hats Off to Deirdre and Ian Harris

Calgary Sun, Calgary Herald Deirdre and Ian Harris pose for a photo at a ceremony celebrating the couple's $1 million legacy gift to the Calgary Public Library. Wednesday, July 26, 2017. Dean Pilling/Postmedia Postmedia Calgary Dean Piling/Postmedia DEAN PILING/POSTMEDIA

Calgary Sun, Calgary Herald Deirdre and Ian Harris pose for a photo at a ceremony celebrating the couple’s $1 million legacy gift to the Calgary Public Library. Wednesday, July 26, 2017. Dean Pilling/Postmedia

In the Calgary Herald this morning there was an article regarding Deirdre and Ian Harris and their $1-Million legacy gift to the Calgary Public Library foundation.  Along with the other individuals and companies who have donated, we want to say thank you.  Not because it has anything to do with Capturing Legacies Inc., in fact it doesn’t, but because it is an incredible gift to the world.  Anything that encourages or preserves the stories of every day people is a good thing for humanity.

Much of human history is told by politicians, the media, and people who bend and twist things to suit their needs.  We believe that history should be told by those who lived it!  Our mandate is to capture people’s stories.  Those stories that tell you who the person was, and what their life was like.

One of our first clients, Catherine Mitchell, wrote her life story in four volumes and yet she has no children or family to pass them on to.  Thanks to the generosity of the people and companies that have donated to the CPL’s Shared History Program, presumably everyone will be able to have a permanent home for the physical books that are their life stories.

For the electronic version of Catherine’s story, please visit our self-guided life story application: AStoryNotForgotten.com.  Even better, sign up for you own free account and start writing YOUR story.  If you need help writing your story, please do not hesitate to contact us.  We can help you do it yourself, or alternatively, we can do all the work for you.

Global News Story

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On February 23rd, 2017 David Boushy, Reporter with Global News Calgary interviewed the founding partners of Capturing Legacies Inc.  The piece appropriately titled: “Unique Calgary company ‘Capturing Legacies’ sets out to preserve memories for generations to come” was shown to television audiences at 6pm, 11pm and again the following day on the Global News Morning Show.

The story also highlights the Ed Whalen Story project that we are doing for charitable benefit of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation.  To view the project in progress, you can create your own FREE account on our custom life story project management software where you may also want to start your own life story, or that of someone you care about.

Global News Video & Story

AStoryNotForgotten.com

 

The Calgary Stampede

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Calgary Stampede Parade 2010 (photo by Aduro Photography)

Here in Calgary, Alberta, Canada where Capturing Legacies Inc. is based, we have the Calgary Stampede, an annual event that began in September of 1912.

Running for 10 days each year and starting with a massive parade in the downtown core, it is known as “The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth”.  On the date of this post, we are in the middle of Stampede week and I was thinking about the history of this long standing tradition.

Celebrating the Calgary Exhibition & StampedeOn the Calgary Stampede website they have information and a great video on Building the Stampede Legacy.  With an event that is over 100 years old, there is a lot of history there.  With a public event of this magnitude, there has been a lot of photos, video and news articles produced over the years and the life story of the Calgary Stampede has been written several times in numerous books .

People often think of a biography or life story being about a specific person.  Actually a life story can be written about a place, a building, a long-running event like the Calgary Stampede, or even a specific thing like an ancient artifact that tells a story about human history.

Knowledge of our past is important.  The history of mankind including our people, our creations, our events and our stories all need to be recorded for future generations.  You can write your story or we can help you do it.  The important thing is that it gets done, so now is as good a time as any to capture your legacy.