Beltline Garden Festival at Lougheed House

Buy a Booth, promote your company! Be there as Beltline’s best loved summer festival takes centre stage in Lougheed House's 2.8 acre central park. A Free, family-friendly day of fun including a Dog Parade (20th), live music, children’s activities, garden games, free museum admission, and beer garden.

July 20, 11 am – 4 pm AND/OR  

July 27, 11 am – 4 pm  

Beltline Garden Festival 2019 (pdf)


Historic Calgary Week 2019

Oh, The Fun We Had!

Chinook Country Historical Society is pleased to present the 29th annual Historic Calgary Week from July 26 through August 5, 2019, a collaborative history festival with more than 40 partner organizations. We are pleased to be working again with many organizations with an interest in our history. We would like to acknowledge the significant contributions to HCW 2019 of Southern Alberta Pioneers and their Descendants, Calgary Public Library, particularly Central Library and Memorial Park Library, Calgary Heritage Authority, the Calgary Herald and Central United Church.  Several of our partners, including Heritage Park, Glenbow, Canada Sports Hall of Fame, National Music Centre’s Studio Bell, Lougheed House and Reader’s Garden Café offer discounts throughout the year to HSA members. Our members also get “first crack” at registering for certain events that have attendance limits. 

With over 100 events, this will be the largest, most fun-filled HCW ever. Sports, dancing, music and cinema are only a few of the events. Participate in the Barley Belt Bicycle Breweries tour. Learn about the history of the downtown movie palaces and take in some of the movies that were shown in them. Relive the family-friendly sports days. Learn about the history of Calgary’s ghost signs and experience our haunted haunts. Playgrounds, Parks, Polo, Peonies, Pride, and Planetariums are just a few of our Pioneers Passions. Behind all this fun are the stories of the people that made Calgary and region their home over the centuries.

The “week” will start with our opening ceremonies at the Southern Alberta Pioneers building at 9:45 am on July 26.  Stay for the four presentations during the day. Return for the talks, walks, films, family events, museum and community visits. Discover the historical treasures in our city by taking part in our History Hunt.  Challenge yourself with the HCW Crossword Puzzle that will appear in the Calgary Herald at the beginning of the festivities.

There are many opportunities to volunteer with us in bringing HCW 2019 to Chinook Country so please send us an email to to be part of Calgary’s largest history festival. General enquiries are always welcome as well. 


President's Report 2019

We have moved our website to a new address: Visit this site from time to time to see the latest news on our programs and other events of interest to the history community in Calgary and region. Any questions, ideas or comments can be directed to our email:

May 28 saw the last of our Fall and Winter programs, Treasures: The Beulah Home for Unmarried Mothers, 1909 – 1939, presented by Amy Kaler of the University of Alberta. We had another successful year with attendance as high as 170 people at events. The 2019-2020 program is now out with ten events this year, including a special presentation on October 15, 2019 at the University of Calgary Taylor Library. This event will showcase the new Research Centre opening in the Fall which will house several archives, including the Glenbow Archives. The latter are in the process of moving to the University, so plan on attending this event to learn how these archives will be incorporated into the U of C.

Historic Calgary Week is coming up on July 26 and will run for 11 days again. Oh, The Fun We Had! is the theme this year. Join us in the more than 100 interesting and informative events celebrating our history. The program brochure is included with this newsletter in the mail out to members. The full program will appear on our website in early July after our members have an opportunity to register for programs.

We are continuing our planning for the new initiative to develop video tours of Calgary historic sites. Our first video will be of the Grand Theatre. If any of you or people you know has personal stories of this historic site, please contact us at - your experiences and stories will make this a more interesting product.

The Building Calgary Communities program, in cooperation with the Calgary Association of Lifelong Learners will commence again in October. Check our website later this summer for details.

--Walt DeBoni


University of Calgary Public Archaeology Program

Registration is now open for the Public Archaeology Program at the University of Calgary. Volunteers are needed to help excavate at the Cluny Village Fortified Site.

Check out for more information and to register.


Paleo 2019


Saturday, March 23


Paleo 2019

Dinosaurs! Fossils! Enjoy fascinating palaeontology talks, fossil displays and posters from 9 am to 4:30 pm on Saturday, March 23, 2019 at the Jenkins Theatre, Mount Royal University, 4825 Mount Royal Gate SW, Calgary. This annual event allows adults and children from the general public to learn about the latest palaeontological research.

Dr. Emily Bamforth from the T-Rex Discovery Centre will explain why Saskatchewan is Canada’s new fossil frontier. James Campbell of the University of Calgary will describe one of the marine reptiles found in the fresh water Dinosaur Park Formation. Greg Funston of the University of Alberta will reveal the hidden animals found in the Horseshoe Canyon Formation.  Darren Tanke of the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology will describe the relocation and salvage of some of the lost dinosaur quarries in Dinosaur Provincial Park. Dr. Jon Noadof Gran Tierra Energy will tell the story of the world’s most famous bird Archaeopteryx. Dr. Paul Johnston of Mount Royal University will describe the strange Cambrian Stenothecoida. Conrad Wilson from the University of Calgary will describe the earliest Carboniferous ray-finned fishes from Blue Beach, Nova Scotia.  Dr. Lindsey Leighton of the University of Alberta will explain why palaeozoic predation still matters after all these years.

This event is FREE to the public, is family friendly and no registration is required. Paleo 2019 is sponsored by the Alberta Palaeontological Society, Mount Royal University and the Canadian Society of Petroleum Geologists Palaeontological Division.  


For details, go to or e-mail Mona Marsovsky ( or phone 403-547-0182.


Innovations of WWI

The National WWI Museum and Memorial published a list of WWI innovations to mark the centennial

Source:Doran Cart, Senior Curator, and Jonathan Casey, Director, Archives and Edward Jones Research Center, of The National World War I Museum and Memorial 

Grow Your Own/ Garden to Table (called Victory Gardens)

In WWI, the US Food Administration regulated food production to support the armed forces and allies. To conserve food, Americans were encouraged to be self-sustainable with practices such as growing their own food and choosing meatless and wheatless days, a concept that many people still practice today for various reasons. Americans began to substitute food with other grains, potatoes, flour, and corn, and oils and margarines for animal fat. The regulation also lead to new initiatives like canning vegetables to preserve food. If Americans weren’t fighting for the war, they were working for the war, and growing their own food was one way to contribute. 

The Concept of Vitamins Were Introduced

The concept of vitamins (however, not yet in the form of supplements) grew during this period when medical research began to recognize that you can receive vitamins from a balanced diet and nutrition. This understanding was applied to food in the trenches, including the frequent use of tomatoes, which was added to SLUM (made of beef, potatoes, onion and tomatoes), a main dish in field kitchens. 

Contraception was popularized

Venereal disease disabled many soldiers and man power was lost, causing a strong effort to manage a contraception effort through various forms. Organizations like the YMCA and Salvation Army provided “wholesome” entertainment during the soldiers’ free time, soldiers were given cards that listed the location of prophylactic stations in Paris and booklets were given to soldiers that urged them to keep themselves clean, were all efforts to keep disease from spreading.The actual idea of contraception was not really discussed in the military. One of the prophylactics that were available in France were called French letters. Soldiers could go into a pharmacy and ask for a French Letter that came in a little envelope.   


Items created for the war often had to be repurposed following the war, and one of those items is Kleenex, which was actually the crepe paper used during the war in the filters of gas masks. During the influenza epidemic following the war, Kimberly Clark repurposed the paper as a disposable product for people to sneeze into and limit the spread of bodily fluids. 


During the war, army nurses did not have sanitary products provided to them. They found that the Cellucotton bandages made of wood pulp to treat wounds were five times more absorbent than other bandages and used them as a makeshift sanitary napkin. After the war was over, Kimberly Clarke executives were looking for ways to use the leftover Cellucotton and marketed them as sanitary napkins.  


A German physical trainer, Joseph Hubertus Pilates came up with rehabilitation exercises to help Austrian soldiers with therapy after injuries. It was always really seen as a rehabilitation method until modern times.   (Note: The Museum does not have much information on this topic) 

Plastic Surgery

The modern idea of plastic surgery and the techniques used today originated in WWI due to the injuries from the use of explosives (artillery, machine guns, chemicals). Dr. Harry Gillies developed the techniques to rebuild faces after so many noses were lost and performed over 11,000 plastic surgeries on the wounded during the war. Along with the surgeries that were developed, sculptors created partial masks for those with facial disfigurements.  It did not entirely give them a normal appearance but would make them less grotesque. These advances were made very quickly in this field because of an effort to make it seem like what had happened to these soldiers was not so horrible. 


The Germans were leaders in prosthetics which did exist before the war, but were advanced during and after the war because of the substantial number of limbs that were lost. The increase in casualties resulted in developing more functional limbs, specifically for arms, so that soldiers could be more accepted and welcomed back into society. While they were not comfortable or made well, they allowed soldiers to participate in society following the war, for example being hired by the labor department. (Note: The Museum has a prosthetic arm in their collection made by a company in Kansas City) 

Toilet Paper (Note – The Museum has several examples on display)

During WWI toilet paper came in sheets, quaintly called napkins.


Historic Calgary Week Recap

72 events - wow, how does one summarize them? Have a read through the HCW 2018 recap. Dowload below.