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Krause Milling Company Grain Elevator and Flour Mill Site Complex


Other Names:
Krause Elevator And Flour Mill
Krause Milling Company Grain Elevator
Krause Milling Company/Grain Elevator & Mill Site
Radway - Krause Milling Co

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place
The Krause Milling Company Grain Elevator and Flour Mill Site Complex is comprised of a 1929 grain elevator, drive shed, office/powerhouse, storage building and the foundations of a 1929 flour mill, located on 0.41 hectares in the centre of Radway at the intersection of First Street and Railway Avenue.

Heritage Value
The Krause Milling Company Grain Elevator and Flour Mill Site Complex is significant as an example of the 1920s grain elevators constructed on the Canadian National Railway's (C.N.R.'s) branch lines. It is unique in that it was built to accompany a flour mill (demolished in 1959) that, along with the Radway Creamery, brought much regional business to the town.

By 1932 Radway boasted five grain elevators. The 1929 Krause elevator is distinctive in that it, with the mill, it served for processing grain locally, particularly after the fall in prices during the Depression made exporting grain east less profitable. In addition, this elevator was the only one representing individual family enterprise on the local level rather than commercial chain operations, though it was later sold to the International Grain Company and then to the United Grain Growers, who operated it until 1996.

The elevator represents what has been called the prairie vernacular industrial style, a building designed for grading, weighing, storing and shipping grain. The elevator depends on the vertical conveyor belt that carries grain to the top of the elevator and uses gravity to distribute it to rail cars or trucks. The elevator retains a high degree of integrity, and is an excellent example of traditional "crib" construction. As the only elevator remaining from the row of five, it is a significant regional landmark.

Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 1966)

Character-Defining Elements
The heritage value of the Krause Milling Company Grain Elevator and Flour Mill Site Complex is retained in such character-defining elements as:
- form, scale and massing of the elevator, with attached drive shed, office/powerhouse, and storage outbuilding;
- square 21 bin elevator with a cupola and shouldered lean-to roofs over bins covered in cedar siding painted white with United Grain Growers logo;
- drive shed with two weigh scales and ramp on west elevation;
- interior beam construction with double layered working floor, enclosed conveyor belt, [now electrified ] power train system and gerber system;
- truck and wagon hoisting system (compressor, storage tank, jack, platform);
- fireproof storage building , with bays for storage and coal;
- foundations of 1929 flour mill;
- location on rail siding running northeast of main CNR line.


Street Address: First Street East and Railway Avenue
Community: Radway
Boundaries: Portion of the Northwest quarter of Section 32, Township 58, Range 20, West of the Fourth Meridian
Contributing Resources: Archaeological Site/Remainss: 1
Buildings: 3
Structures: 1

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

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

Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
54.060663 -112.941423 GPS NAD 83

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type


Recognition Authority: Province of Alberta
Designation Status: Provincial Historic Resource
Date of Designation: 2002/01/30

Historical Information

Built: 1929 to 1929
Significant Date(s) N/A
Theme(s) Developing Economies : Extraction and Production
Developing Economies : Trade and Commerce
Historic Function(s): Food Supply : Grain Elevator
Current Function(s):
Context: With the extension of the Canadian Northern Railway (CNoR) to Edmonton in 1904, the vast countryside to the north-east of the city soon filled up with homesteaders. At points along the rail line, CN erected 'sidings', or stations, many of which evolved into small communities which served their agricultural hinterland. One of these was Radway, named after Orland S. Radway, who arrived in the district in 1909 and opened a store next to the station. The following year, he became the first postmaster in the tiny hamlet, around which was a growing number of German and Ukrainian settlers.

The prosperity of Radway would fluctuate with the times, which, during the late 1920's, were very prosperous. In 1927, a Board of Trade was formed to promote local business. When the Krause Milling Company flour mill in Bruderheim burned down in early 1928, the Radway Board seized the initiative and held a 'monster meeting' of district residents to promote the construction of a new flour mill there. Special guest was W.A. Krause, who also owned a flour mill in Leduc. Krause was promised volunteer help, donated materials, and financial assistance from the community if he would locate a new mill in Radway. With the agreement of CN to build a spur line to the proposed mill site, he agreed, and work began that summer. The mill was completed in the fall of 1929 on land just across Railway (main) Avenue, on land acquired from the M.D. of Unity for $100.

To supplement the milling operation, Krause also erected an adjacent elevator where the grain could be cleaned prior to milling. Along with the Radway Creamery, built in 1926, the flour mill and elevator brought much regional business to Radway, which also had four other grain elevators. Though it would not be incorporated as a village until 1943, its population in 1929 was estimated to be 300. Although the depression hit the district very hard, as in the rest of rural Alberta, the mill continued to do much business. With collapsing grain prices, farmers were discouraged from shipping their grain east.

In the late 1930's, Krause sold the mill and elevator to the St. Paul Flour Milling Company, which, in time, sold them to a local company headed by Frank Weder, which operated them as the Radway Flour Mill. Following World War Two, improved transportation reduced the viability of locally milled flour, and, in 1953, the mill was closed down, with United Grain Growers (UGG) purchasing the elevator. Although the mill would be torn down in 1959, the elevator has survived and stands as a tribute to the local grain growing community and its endeavours towards economic self-reliance.


The historical significance of the Krause Milling Company Grain Elevator and Mill Site lies in their association with the will of the people of Radway to see their community develop as something more than simply a centre for the growth and export of grain, but also for its manufacture into flour locally.

(Historical Interest Summary)

Additional Information

Object Number: 4665-0902
Designation File: DES 1966
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File: HS 69652
HS 69653
HS 69654
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. 1966)
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