Movie Monday: Community Events

Image: A film still showing children in costume at a winter carnival (SPRA 449.01.13, Fonds 449: Foster Family fonds)

Movie Monday highlights videos from the Archives’ film collection. Every week, an archival film will be featured on our YouTube channel and here on our blog. The Movie Monday project is made possible with the generous funding support of Swan City Rotary Club of Grande Prairie

Welcome back to Movie Monday! Today’s film from the Foster family fonds is filled with content of all kinds. Whether your interests are architecture and livestock, children and royalty, or weddings and carnivals, this film has something for you.

On July 21, 1959, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip visited Edmonton as part of a royal tour that took them to every Canadian province and territory. Great pains were taken to prepare the city for their arrival, and at 10:00am the royal party arrived by rail at the CNR station pictured in the film. An estimated 200,000 people lined Jasper Avenue and 101 Street in hopes of catching a glimpse of the queen. Not only did the Fosters have front row positions as the royal entourage drove by, they managed to capture the moment (and the queen?) on film! Though the royal couple was only in Edmonton for 4 1/2 hours, they managed to squeeze in a tree-planting ceremony followed by an outdoor luncheon with almost 2,000 invited locals.

The Canadian National Railway station that served as the point of entrance for the queen was opened in 1928. The building was two stories high and constructed of concrete, tile, brick, and Tyndall stone. The station boasted a central waiting room, dining room, restaurant, smoking room, ladies’ waiting room, offices, and a milk and cream distribution area. By 1959, the site boasted a twenty-track railyard and many expansions to the building, including the addition of a third storey. Sadly, the building was demolished in 1964 to make way for Edmonton’s CN Tower.