Yearly, the SAPD have participated in the Stampede Parade since it's beginning in 1912. Decked out in authentic old-time regalia they rode horses or in Red River carts, wagons and rigs. Eight of these rigs have been restored and are presently on view at the Remington Carriage Museum in Cardston, Alberta.
Historical Photo Display
The photo exhibit at the 2016 Calgary Stampede was in the Western Oasis in the BMO Centre and was focussed on the history of southern Alberta's transportation network and its development.
Also featured were pioneer women, in celebration of the centennial of the right to vote, highlighting their contributions in building the region and how it impacted their roles in Alberta society.
The SAPD have had a display at the Stampede since 1999. The original display involved some of the carriages that were part of the SAPD's collection. The display has evolved over time and, since 2004, has been a photo display drawn from the SAPD's archives of 1000+ digitized photos of historical significance. In recent years, the display has also included a vehicle from the Remington Carriage Museum. The photo display and the antique carriage have proven to be of interest to many Stampede visitors.
In addition to the annual Calgary Stampede Display, SAPD have organized a "Mini-display" of 144 eight by ten photos mounted on four, tri-fold panels and several easels displaying larger images. This display has been set up at many locations over the years.
SAPD anticipates extending the number and diversity of locations in which the display will travel.
Opening Our Doors
SAPD participates in a number of community outreach initiatives.
Jane's Walks are free, locally organized walking tours, in which people get together to explore, talk about and celebrate their neighbourhoods. Where more traditional tours are a bit like walking lectures, a Jane's Walk is more of a walking conversation. Leaders share their knowledge, but also encourage discussion and participation among the walkers.
See the Southern Alberta Pioneers Tour for information on our recent walk in May.
Historic Calgary Week
The Opening Cermonies will be hosted by Southern Alberta Pioneers and the Memorial Building will be open Friday July 22nd from 9:45 am to 3:30 pm, where members of Southern Alberta Pioneers and their Descendants will share the history and memories of early Southern Alberta settlers.
Coordinated by the Chinook Country Historical Society, the annual Historic Calgary Week is 11 days of walks, talks and tours celebrating the history of Calgary and region held in late July-early August each year.
See the Historic Calgary Week 2016 Brochure for more information.
Doors Open Calgary
For one weekend in September, buildings in all quadrants of the city open their doors — free of charge — to the public and providing special revealing tours and behind-the-scenes experiences.
See DOYYC 2016 for more information.
Pioneers Digital Memory Project
The Southern Alberta Pioneers and their Descendants (SAPD) has had a long tradition of capturing and recording photos, documents, voices and physical artifacts in order:
- to collect and preserve information in connection with the early settlement of Alberta and the subsequent history of the Alberta Pioneers
- to encourage and develop within the community a recognition of the importance and achievements of the early pioneers
- to advance knowledge of and promote the study of the history of the province of Alberta
- to verify and publish information as to its past and present condition and resources
- to keep alive the memory of the early pioneers and the narratives of their exploits, perils and adventures
The Pioneers Digital Memory Project seeks to extend this ongoing effort into the digital realm.
Beginning in 2015, a number of initiatives began to convert content to make more historical information available online.
- The SAPD library collection has now been largely entered into an online catalog.
- Sixty-Five cassette tapes of recorded interviews from the 1970s and 1980s, mostly done by Dora Armstrong, have been converted and are in the process of being transcribed.
- Computer equipment has purchased for the purpose of digitizing of the photographs in the SAPD archives.
Future Initiatives may include:
- Creating an online database of Genealogical Information.
- Creating a digital archive of photographs and historically significant documents.
- Building a website that can display this digitized historical information.