The Last Elevator in Cayley

In the late 70’s and again in the 80’s  I traveled to Southern Alberta towns that still had standing elevators with one purpose in mind. I wanted to get as many photos of these vanishing landmarks on film as I could.

In 1990 we bought an existing framing business and building that we remodeled to accommodate our new venture.  Full service frame shop, gallery and photography studio. I had no shortage of images to hang on the walls of the gallery in the town of Claresholm, AB.  I matted, framed and sold countless images from my collection of elevators. In 1981 I photographed the Cayley, AB elevator row.  These elevators were built along the tracks and the curve in the tracks was particularly attractive. This made for more interest than just a straight row. The light co-operated and I got a beautiful shot.   They were building a new Alberta Wheat Pool elevator at the time.The next time I visited the town of Cayley, AB was March 2000.  My niece Brita, who was six years old, and I were on our way to High River to visit my mother who was in the hospital at the time.  Word was out that the last and newest Cayley elevator was going to be torn down in the near future.  This being the case I asked Brita to let me take a photo of her standing on the tracks in front of this landmark.  I told Brita at the time that she would be the last little girl in the world to be in a photo of Cayley’s last Alberta Wheat Pool elevator.  To the best of my knowledge, it was true.  The track was torn out and the large backhoes moved in and destroyed this structure.

2 Comments

  • Elaine King says

    I’m so pleased that you captured the wonderful places and buildings Judy. There’s nothing like them today to tell their story. XXX

  • Judy Dahl says

    Thank you Elaine. I enjoyed driving around the countryside taking photos of elevators. They were definitely a unique structure. Funny thing is, the U.S. has some really different styles construction. Our Alberta elevators that I photographed did not often stray from the standard design. I will post some of my U.S. treasures when I get a chance.

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