By Carson Ellis For the Independent
My apologies for this rather lop-sided photo. It looked better at the time I took it. However, I rather enjoy this photo for two reasons.
First of all, in 1958 I don’t imagine it being a very easy task to put together a page so heavily laden with graphics, nor would it have been very cheap. Yet the businesses seen on these pages felt it was a good opportunity to just wish their customers, and those in the area a Merry Christmas. No product placements, or plugs. Just a friendly gesture to the community that they depended on and were a part of.
Secondly, it’s a great way to sort of bookmark what types of places were in operation at the time. Many of the businesses I don’t recognize, but that’s part of what makes it interesting for me, is seeing business names I know nothing or very little about.
Lou’s Fashions is probably the first and most recognizable name on the page. At least for me, Lou’s was a long-standing business in Stettler, and drew people from all over, including an aunt of mine from Red Deer who came to Stettler every now and then just to go to Lou’s. I imagine she managed to squeeze in a visit with her brother from time to time while here.
The Stettler Hatchery is a building I remember as a kid. I always thought it was neat because it was orange (I’m horribly colourblind so forgive me if it wasn’t orange). I remember being in there once, and the woman working there showed us stairs into the basement. I don’t think I went down. To my memory, it was a resounding nope. That building still stands but is sadly falling apart. The front section has recently been removed. Still though. It used to be quite the hub in its day.
Macleod’s pops up from time to time, and I believe it sat about where Stettler Answering Service sits just south of Home Hardware, although I can’t be sure.
Sims furniture was a fairly new Stettler Business in 1958. Having only had their grand opening in October of that year. Its opening was considered well received, with an estimated 3,000 people visiting the new building and business on that day. Sims operated in Stettler until being sold in 1972 when it became Wells Furniture.
Parrish & Heimbecker, of course, we all know, thanks to the tireless efforts of the Society that has gone to great strides to preserve the elevator. P & H was a long-time elevator in town and was very busy in the ’50s.
The rest of the businesses I can’t really speak on. But that’s part of the charm. But maybe I’m just weird.
Send us news tips to: