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Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce Building


Other Names:
C. I. B. C. Bank Building
C. I. B. C. Building
C.I.B.C. Bank Building
C.I.B.C. Building
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
CIBC Bank Building
CIBC Building
Imperial Bank of Commerce Building

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Heritage Value

Character-Defining Elements


Street Address: 5002 Main Street
Community: Donalda
Boundaries: Plan 5965 AE, Block 2, portion of Lots 9 and 10
Contributing Resources:

ATS Legal Description:
Mer Rge Twp Sec LSD
8 (ptn.)

PBL Legal Description (Cadastral Reference):
Plan Block Lot Parcel
5965 AE
5965 AE

Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
52.585374 -112.574033 GPS NAD 83

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type


Recognition Authority: Province of Alberta
Designation Status: Registered Historic Resource Rescinded
Date of Designation: 2003/04/28

Historical Information

Built: 1932 to 1932
Significant Date(s)
Historic Function(s): Commerce / Commercial Services : Bank or Stock Exchange
Current Function(s):

When the Canadian Northern (CN) Railway pushed through a line from Camrose to Stettler in 1911, the area in between had already been settled, largely with American and Scandinavian immigrants. To serve this rich agricultural region, CN erected stations at key points along the rail line, often bypassing existing rural communities. This was the case with Harker midway between Camrose and Stettler, which gave way to an adjacent community named Eidswold shortly after a station was erected there. Eidswold was not the name preferred by CN however, and, after four months, the name of the station and post office became Donalda, after Donalda Crossway, a niece of the vice-president of CN, Donald Mann.

Donalda quickly grew as a prairie hamlet, serving a large agricultural hinterland. When it was incorporated as a village with over 200 people in December 1912, it held most of the commercial and social amenities required of a prairie village. The following year, this would include a newly installed branch of the Merchants Bank of Canada, later to merge with the Bank of Montreal. This four-square wood frame structure would serve as the financial centre of the district until burning down in 1928.

Following the fire, the Bank of Montreal did not renew its franchise, and Donalda remained without a bank for nearly four years, with most of the local population doing their banking in Stettler. Then, in 1932, the Imperial Bank of Canada erected another frame bank building on the same site as the old bank. This bank went on to serve the district for 64 years, becoming a branch of the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) in 1961. During these years, it saw the district struggle through the great depression, endured the tension of World War Two, when people had money but not much to buy, and into the relative prosperity of the post war years. CIBC finally vacated the building in 1996 and, shortly thereafter, presented it to the Donalda Museum Society for one dollar, along with a cheque for 5,000 dollars to assist with restoration.


The historical significance of the CIBC Building in Donalda lies in the central role it played in assisting the people of the community and district to make ends meet through depression and war, and to assist in the growth of the district in the years that followed.

(Historical Interest Summary)

Additional Information

Object Number: 4665-0827
Designation File: DES 2012
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File: HS 33567
Website Link:
Data Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch, Old St. Stephen's College, 8820 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB T6G 2P8 (File: Des. 2012)
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