Revelstoke marked the centennial of the laying of the Revelstoke Courthouse cornerstone on May 2

Sunny sky blesses Revelstoke Courthouse cornerstone centennial ceremony

Bright, sunny weather made for a pleasant ceremony to mark the centennial of the Revelstoke Courthouse cornerstone ceremony on May 2.



Bright, sunny weather made for a pleasant ceremony to mark the centennial of the Revelstoke Courthouse cornerstone ceremony on May 2.

About 100 people gathered for the event, which featured several local community organizations who have been around for the century. They included the Masonic Order, the Revelstoke Community Band and the Rocky Mountain Rangers Cadets.

Mayor David Raven thanked everyone for participating in the ceremony. Raven echoed the sentiment in a speech by mayor Sullivan 100 years ago. “I can sure share his optimism for the future of Revelstoke. I think the next 100 years is going to be fantastic,” he said.

Organizer Meghan MacIsaac thanked Revelstoke Museum & Archives curator Cathy English for her help with the history of the event. MacIsaac pointed out that many members of the audience were descendants of those who built the courthouse.

Helen Grace is the granddaughter of Tom W. Bradshaw, one of the dignitaries at the original ceremony. Bradshaw was an official of the CPR as Freight Agent and Secretary of Schools in Revelstoke.

“He lived up on CPR Hill in one of the official houses, and they were all wood-finished houses … they were all painted CPR red,” Grace said. “Since then five more generations have been born and Baptized here, so that makes six generations coming from my grandparents. So, we’re Revelstokians,” Grace said.

Robert Lundberg represented the Masonic Order that laid the cornerstone 100 years ago. “In the dining hall at the Masonic Lodge we’ve got a blown up picture of this particular event happening with the Grandmaster with his silk top hat and most of the others in full regalia,” he said.

Lundberg is the historian for the Masons. He relayed a story about the famous Pradolini “Pink Castle” on Second Street East in Revelstoke. The unusual building built by Anselmo Pradolini features turrets, stone work and other unusual architectural features. “It was supposedly constructed to prove to the government authorities that the Pradolinis were well-versed in all the architectural forms that they needed to build this place. Needless to say they got the job.”

Lunderg said the building was designed for a different future than today. “Revelstoke was going to be the key city in the Interior because of its situation along the CPR right-of-way and it being the head of navigation on the Columbia River,” he said, noting Revelstoke had its own immigration post. “Needless to say, the long-term plans for Revelstoke didn’t turn out quite as expected, primarily [due to changes] in the 1950s with the changes that took place with the government at that time, but we have done our best over the years and we’re very pleased and proud that we still have a court here.”

A time capsule near the cornerstone was not opened — it would have been a bit of work. If you look at the north-east corner of the building, it is marked in stone.

Revelstoke city council representative Chris Johnston said he approved of the city’s decision to buy the courthouse after the provincial government was no longer interested in ownership. “Part of that allowed the court to continue sitting here,” he said.

Canada’s national anthem in 1912 was The Maple Leaf Forever. She sang the song accompanied by the Revelstoke Community Band. She ended the ceremony with a rendition of God Save the Queen. For those of you who’ve never heard The Maple Leaf Forever, here are the lyrics:

The Maple Leaf Forever

In Days of yore, From Britain’s shore

Wolfe the dauntless hero came

And planted firm Britannia’s flag

On Canada’s fair domain.

Here may it wave, Our boast, our

pride And joined in love together,

The thistle, shamrock, rose entwined,

The Maple Leaf Forever.

CHORUS

The Maple Leaf, Our Emblem Dear,

The Maple Leaf Forever.

God save our Queen and heaven bless,

The Maple Leaf Forever.

At Queenston Heights and Lundy’s

Lane, Our brave fathers side by side

For freedom’s home and loved ones

dear, Firmly stood and nobly died.

And so their rights which they

maintained, We swear to yield them

never.

Our watchword ever more shall be

The Maple Leaf Forever

CHORUS

Our fair Dominion now extends

From Cape Race to Nootka Sound

May peace forever be our lot

And plenty a store abound

And may those ties of love be ours

Which discord cannot sever

And flourish green for freedom’s

home The Maple Leaf Forever

CHORUS

 

 

 

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