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ALBERTA PACIFIC GRAIN ELEVATOR SITE COMPLEX

Meeting Creek

Other Names:
A. P. G. Elevator
A.P.G. Elevator
Alberta Pacific Grain Elevator
APG Elevator

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place
The Alberta Pacific Grain Elevator Site Complex is located on Railway Avenue at Main Street, beside an active railway line in the hamlet of Meeting Creek in central Alberta. The site consists of a pre-World War One grain elevator and an attached drive shed, an office/engine house, and a storage/fuel shed, located on one lot of 215 square metres. The adjacent rail line and train station are not included in the designation.

Heritage Value
The heritage value of the Alberta Pacific Grain Elevator Site Complex in Meeting Creek lies in its role in the grain trade which lay at the economic heart of this rural community and its hinterland from before World War One. It also represents a method of grain handling that predates the large cooperatives of the 1920s onward.

The construction of the Calgary and Edmonton and Canadian Northern Railways and the introduction of the sturdy strain of Marquis wheat in 1910 dramatically expanded agricultural settlement and wheat production in central and northern Alberta in the first two decades of the twentieth century. Meeting Creek was one such settlement, established in 1911 in the centre of what would become a rich agricultural hinterland north of Buffalo Lake. The Alberta Pacific Grain Company erected the hamlet's first grain elevator next to the rail line sometime between 1914 and 1917.

Very few elevators of this period have survived in Alberta, and the buildings on the site follow standard plans common throughout the province at the time. The Alberta Pacific Grain Elevator Site Complex is an excellent, rare example of an early grain elevator, and demonstrates the central role of elevators in Alberta's rural communities. It represents an all-wood Prairie Vernacular style of industrial building designed to grade, weigh, store and ship grain, in this case with a 26, 000 bushel capacity and typical crib construction. The site retains original grain handling artifacts that demonstrate the workings of the elevator, and its historic relationship with the Canadian Northern railway station and rail line.

Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 1864)


Character-Defining Elements
Key elements that define the heritage character of this site include:
- the form, scale, and massing of the grain elevator and its ancillary structures, the drive shed, office-engine house and fuel shed; and the unaltered spatial relationship between the structures;
- the tall rectangular design expressing its grain handling function, with wooden crib construction, exposed structural members, sloping shoulder design, wood framing, and cupola
- pressed metal (tin) covering of elevator;
- in situ components of the grain handling system, such as the elevator leg and distributor, weigh scale and hopper scale, control wheel and levers, electric motors, bins, hopper, belts and pulleys for the vertical conveyor belt, wood bins and chutes, air pressurized hoist system, man-lift;
- post and beam construction of drive shed;
- fenestration pattern;
-prominent corporate signage;
- the external visual relationship between the site, rail line and railway station.


Location



Street Address:
Community: Meeting Creek
Boundaries: Plan 5614 AF, Block A, Lot 2
Contributing Resources: Buildings: 3

ATS Legal Description:
Mer Rge Twp Sec LSD
4
19
43
8
4 (ptn.)

PBL Legal Description (Cadastral Reference):
Plan Block Lot Parcel
5614 AF
A
N/A


Latitude/Longitude:
Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
52.681222 -112.727913 Secondary Source NAD 83

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type

Recognition

Recognition Authority: Province of Alberta
Designation Status: Provincial Historic Resource
Date of Designation: 2001/10/19

Historical Information

Built: 1914/01/01 To 1917/01/01
Significant Date(s) N/A
Theme(s) Developing Economies : Trade and Commerce
Peopling the Land : Settlement
Historic Function(s): Food Supply : Grain Elevator
Current Function(s): Leisure : Museum
Architect:
Builder:
Context: The community of Meeting Creek developed shortly after the arrival of the railway to the district in 1911. Across the tracks, directly facing the hamlet's main street, the first grain elevator was erected by the Alberta Pacific Grain (APG) Company. The date of construction is listed on the designation application form as 1917-18. A photo of the hamlet dated 1914, however, clearly shows this wood frame elevator as the most prominent structure in the skyline.

Although Meeting Creek never developed into Village status, it was for years the centre of a rich agricultural hinterland north of Buffalo Lake. During the 1920s, the Searle Grain Company and the Alberta Wheat Pool (AWP) also built grain elevators there. In later years, the Alberta Pacific elevator was given a metal veneer and, in 1972, sold to the Alberta Wheat Pool. Today, the structure complements the adjacent railway station, which also dates from the pre-1920 period.

HSTORICAL SIGNIFICANCE

The Alberta Pacific Grain Elevator in Meeting Creek is historically significant in that it represents the economic heart of this rural community and its hinterland from, practically, its inception. It also represents a method of grain handling that predates the large cooperative endeavours of the 1920s onward. Very few grain elevators of this vintage have survived in the province. The presence of early grain handling artifacts inside adds to its historical worth.

Additional Information

Object Number: 4665-0972
Designation File: Des. 1864
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File: HS 63207 (Elevator)
HS 63208 (Office)
HS 63209 (Outhouse/Storage)
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. 1684)
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