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A slice of 1930’s Sylvan Lake heaven

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Hey local history buffs, the above video is a great snapshot of a place and time, in this case, 1930’s Sylvan Lake, AB.  

Lake Cottages have always prompted whimsical names. Sylvan Lake is no different.  This story showcases some great photos from the 1930’s and also includes a Directory from the 1960’s. Names like “Seldom Inn” and “Turkey Teepee” stand out. 

Below is a photo of the Webster cabin, known as the LA-ZE-LOT.  George Webster (second generation) with grand-daughters Kari-Lynn Shiells and Susan Marie Shiells.

the LAZ-E-LOT

“Robin Nest” home on 41st Street and 50th Avenue

The above photo shows the “Robin Nest” home on 41st Street and 50th Avenue in the early 1930s. The people are unnamed except as “Grandma and Ed”.  Ed was the maker of the wooden figurines in the picture.

Two very interesting accessions have come to us out of the blue from two very interesting contributors. The first one came through registered mail from a lady by the name of Gertrude Lambert in Edmonton whose father, Mr. Elliott, had been a teacher at the Olds Agricultural College and, later, Vermilion College. They built a cabin at Sylvan Lake about 1921 where the whole family spent the next 18 or 19 summers (until 1939).  She and her daughter had been down to hunt up their old cabin which is still standing and while they were in town, picked up the current Sylvan Lake News with a write-up about our then new Archives. So, without so much as a phone call, she sent a collection of beautiful old photos and an accompanying registered letter. She was later down for a visit and brought additional pictures. Another interesting side of this story is that we also have met the present owner of the same cabin whose father, Dr. Charles from Calgary, purchased the cabin from the Elliott family and they have been coming here every summer since 1943. We also have pictures from this family.

Here’s what we do know.  The Elliott family built their cabin at Sylvan Lake about 1921 and came every summer until 1939 when WWII broke out.  William taught at Olds, later Vermilion Agricultural Cottage;  children Gertrude (Edna) and Bill, Jr.

 

From left to right: Mrs. (Edna) Elliott; Dr. Jack Elliott (guest); Mr. William Elliott; Jack Elliott (guest); and Bill Elliott. In front is 5-year old Gertrude.

Elliott Family Cabin (Grey Glen), circa 1930

Above is a picture of the Elliott family and their guests gathered on the porch of their Sylvan Lake cottage (circa 1930). From left to right: Mrs. (Edna) Elliott; Dr. Jack Elliott (guest); Mr. William Elliott; Jack Elliott (guest); and Bill Elliott. In front is 5-year old Gertrude. On the back is written: Originally Grey Glen / address 13 Street, 2nd road from (corner) road from Red Deer which went along the waterfront. Built approximately 1920-24 by my father W.J. Elliott and son William S. Elliott  (Site:  33rd Street East)

Davey family, next door to the Grey Glen, Elliott’s Cottage at 13th Street in Sylvan Lake

Above, the Davey Cottage, circa 1930’s

This is the cottage belonging to the Davey family, next door to the Grey Glen, Elliott’s Cottage at 13th Street in Sylvan Lake, circa 1920-38. An older woman and two children are standing by a screened-in porch and a man is sitting and reading a newspaper inside.

Davey Family, circa 1930s

 Above, the Davey Family, circa 1930s

The Davey Family owned the cottage next door to the Elliott’s cottage at 13th Street in Sylvan Lake, circa 1920-38.

Jean Phillips, Gertrude’s Elliott’s friend

 Above, Washing Clothes, circa 1930s

Jean Phillips, Gertrude’s friend from Edmonton, bringing in the washing at Grey Glen Cottage.

William Elliott sawing wood

Above, Sawing Wood in May, 1941

William Elliott sawing wood with a buck saw at Buck Saw

 

Polishing Shoes

Above, Jean Phillips, Gertrude Elliott’s friend from Edmonton, polishing her shoes on the deck of Grey Glen, Elliott’s Cottage.

The Elliotts at Grey Glen

 

Edna & William Elliott [1930]

Mr. and Mrs. William Elliott are standing by their cottage, Grey Glen.

 

Gertrude Elliott, Grade 12

 Above, Gertrude Elliott (Edna), 1938

This is a picture of Gertrude Elliott taken in 1938 when she was a Grade Twelve student (later, Edna Lambert – donor of these pictures). Her full name was Edna Gertrude Elliott.

Taken at Grey Glen Cottage

Former Elliott Cottage in 1996

Above, The (Former) Elliott Cottage in 1996

In March of 1996, Mrs. Lambert’s daughter drove her mother to Sylvan Lake to see if they could find the old cottage on 13th Street built by Mrs. Lambert’s parents, the William Elliotts. They were successful, despite the fact that the name of the street had been changed to 34th Street. Mrs. Lambert, in her letter which accompanied the pictures stated that it appeared “in excellent condition, well cared for and very familiar”.  It had been renamed Sherwood Lodge (formerly, Grey Glen) This picture was taken by Mrs. Lambert and her daughter that day and sent to the Archives with the historical pictures.

William Elliott

Above, Mr. William Elliott Sawing Wood with a Buck Saw – May, 1941

Bill Elliott

Bill Elliott at Grey Glen Cottage [1938]

The name Grey Glen is on the fence as well as the roof of the cottage.

Life Guards

Above, Sylvan Lake Life Guards, circa 1937-38

Gertrude and Bill Elliott worked as life guards on Sylvan Lake for two summers just before the outbreak of World War II, then the family sold the cottage, Grey Glen. 

Jean Phillips 

Jean Phillips – Chore Girl, circa 1930s

Jean Phillips was a friend of Gertrude Elliott’s who was visiting at Grey Glen Cottage. She is holding a water pail in her left hand, a bottle in her right hand, and has a blanket or towel over her right arm.

Below you’ll find a directory from the 1960’s.  Collectively they form a portrait of a much simpler time.

For other Todayville stories from the Sylvan Lake Archives, CLICK HERE.

If you have a unique and interesting stories you would like to see on todayville, you can do one of two things.  Either register for free (except for business) or send us an email with details to rdnews@todayville.com.  Learn more about the Sylvan Lake Archives.

 


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Agriculture

Ellis Bird Farm… A place where nature and industry need each other.

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Can industry and the environment thrive side by side?  There’s an amazing park just west of Red Deer where industry and nature have combined to create something precious… The Ellis Bird Farm.

40 years ago, Union Carbide.. a huge multinational company was looking for a new home in Central Alberta.  Union Carbide wanted to set up an ethylene glycol plant along the Red Deer River, right smack in the middle of some of the best agricultural land in the country.

The last person many would expect to deal with the company was a slight and aging farmer, a bird lover named Charlie Ellis.   In the years after their parents died, Charlie and his sister Winnie stayed on the Ellis farm and cultivated their passion for nature.  Charlie started innocently enough with a few birdhouses, and a strong urge to protect native birds… tree swallows, chickadees, purple martins, flickers, and especially Mountain Bluebirds.  The birds flocked in record numbers to Winnie’s orchards and flower gardens as well as Charlie’s growing number of birdhouses stretching acre after acre.   When an agent of Union Carbide came for a visit.. to everyone’s surprise, Charlie proposed a deal.  If the company was willing to take care of his birds, if they’d promise to keep up what Charlie had built up… well then Charlie would sell his land to the company.   That was the beginning of Ellis Bird Farm.

Sponsored by DOW Chemical Canada and Ellis Bird Farm, Todayville is proud to present a series of features on the history of Central Alberta’s incredible prairie oasis and nature preserve… The Ellis Bird Farm.  In this video we hear from Jean-Yves Vanier of Dow Canada.

 


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Urgent need for blood donors by Canada Day!

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More than 23,000 donors across Canada needed by July 2

Canadian Blood Services is urging Canadians to help meet patients’ needs this summer by donating blood and by encouraging others to roll up their sleeves as well. With people away or busy with other activities, there tend to be fewer donations, making summer one of the most challenging times for Canada’s blood system.

More than 23,000 donors are urgently needed by July 2 to ensure patients continue to have access to the blood and blood products they need.

“The summer is a time for family to relax and enjoy themselves. Yet, the need for blood and blood products is constant. The need for blood does not take a holiday,” says Rick Prinzen, Canadian Blood Services’ chief supply chain officer and vice-president of donor relations

Kiran Benet from Brampton, ON is grateful to blood donors for the critical support they provided to her 15-year-old daughter, Cierra, who required 28 blood transfusions, in addition to a life-altering stem cell transplant.

“At age 10, Cierra was diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), a rare blood disorder in which the bone marrow fails to make enough viable blood cells,” says Kiran. “Life turned upside down for a couple of years until a genetically matched volunteer stem cell donor was found. Today, Cierra is preparing for her Grade 9 exams and recently celebrated her birthday. None of this would have been possible without the generosity of donors willing to help people like us.”

Currently, the national blood inventory continues to meet patients’ needs but a boost in donations by Canada Day will ensure demand is met throughout the summer. New donors are urged to get involved.

Canadians who are unable to give blood can encourage others in their networks to give blood on their behalf. Making an appointment to donate has never been easier.

Visit blood.ca, download our GiveBlood app or call 1-888-2-DONATE to find a nearby donation site. Walk in appointments are also available at all locations.Ur


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june, 2018

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