I attended many meetings at McDougall School, at 412 – 7 Street SW, Calgary, when the oilsands industry and provincial and federal government representatives were negotiating fiscal terms during the mid to late 1990s. Because it is one of the oldest buildings in Calgary’s downtown core with a unique architecture and history, I always found the school interesting.
When it was constructed during 1906 to 1908, life in Calgary was very different. It was originally used as a school for training teachers, although it now contains offices and meeting rooms primarily used, I believe, by the Alberta government. After its construction it was likely one of the prominent buildings in Calgary. Today it is dwarfed by the many skyscrapers that occupy the downtown core. Then, horses transported people from place to place. Now, vehicles and a transit system move people about Calgary. Then, Calgary was an important hub for agricultural and ranching communities. Now, while Calgary hasn’t forgotten its agricultural and ranching roots, it is, perhaps, most popularly known as the location for the head offices for Canadian and Canadian subsidiaries of international oil and gas companies. So much has changed during the past century.
I took the above photograph at about 6:24 a.m., approximately 20 minutes before sunrise, on August 28, 2016.
For those interested in learning more about its history, please visit Canada’s Historic Places: “McDougall School.”