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Key Number: HS 33567
Site Name: Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
Other Names:
Site Type: 0402 - Mercantile/Commercial: Bank


ATS Legal Description:
Twp Rge Mer
42 18 4

Address: N/A
Number: N/A
Street: N/A
Avenue: N/A
Town: Donalda
Near Town:


Type Number Date View


Plan Shape:
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Roof Structure:
Roof Cover:
Exterior Codes:
Exterior: N/A
Interior: N/A
Environment: N/A
Condition: N/A
Alterations: N/A


Construction: Construction Date:
Usage: Usage Date:
Owner: Owner Date:

Architect: N/A
Builder: N/A
Craftsman: N/A
History: Built in 1930. Located on original site of bank of Montreal. Amalgamated from Bank of Canda to Bank of Commerce 1961.

When the Canadian Northern 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 center 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 in 1961. During these years, it saw the district struggle through the great depression, endure the tension of World War II, 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 $1.00, along with a cheque for $5, 000 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.


Status: Status Date:

Designation Status: Designation Date:
Registered Historic Resource
Register: N/A
Record Information: Record Information Date:
K. Williams 1990/05/29


Alberta Register of Historic Places: 4665-0827
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