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Stanley Park District

by Christine Hayes - 0 Comment(s)

PC 1248

Elbo [sic] River

Postcards from the Past, PC 1248

I was reading the old newspapers, again, when I stumbled on the announcement of the winner of the “name that district” contest on April 15, 1909. J.R.C. Smith, of 1811 Centre Street, Calgary, suggested the name Stanley Park for the new subdivision adjoining Elbow Park. For his prize, he was awarded a fifty-foot corner lot in the subdivision. Over seven-hundred people entered and this, according to promoters, was an indication of a potential rush of buyers for the new lots. I have no idea why the name Stanley Park was chosen over all the others and I have no indication of the significance of the name (although I am still looking). I am very curious so if anyone out there knows, please let me in on the tale.

I checked the Henderson’s directories to see if I could find out more information about Mr. Smith (suspecting, I must admit, that he was made up and this was all a publicity ploy) and what I was able to find was that there was a Smith living at 1811 Centre Street Calgary. Crispin Smith, who was a city magistrate, was the householder at that address. Could J.R.C. Smith have been his son? I don’t know and I haven’t been able to find any more information. No addresses turn up in Stanley Park in the five succeeding years of Henderson’s directories. Even though Stanley Park was named and lots were designated, little development took place until the 1950s. The park itself, was designated a park in 1924, but most of the development of the park took place when landscaping began in the 1960s. My resources are obviously incomplete on the subject of Stanley Park, so I would be most delighted to hear from anyone who can add to my information.

Even the photo I’ve put into this entry is not of the area of Stanley Park but of a lovely vista of the Elbo (sic) River.

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