#FABTrip15: The heart of New Brigden

In 1925 the Canadian National Railway began to construct a branch line west from Loverna, SK to Hemaruka, AB. By 1926 it had reached New Brigden. The railway brought grain elevators, a hardware store, grocery stores, restaurant and other services to New Brigden. A water tower was also erected to provide a reliable water source to the early steam locomotives. Constructed almost entirely of wood the approximately, the 13-meter water tower is the tallest feature of the New Brigden skyline. In the early years New Brigden was served by train three days a week. In time however, improved roads in the region made it easier to move around, making it necessary for the train to come to New Brigden only once a week, Fridays. In 1979, New Brigden lost its railway service. The water tower remains as the oldest structure in the community and the last prominent reminder of the settlement period. Sources: newbrigden.ca, Alberta Register of Historic Places #Alberta #Canada #railway #history #mybadlands #FABTrip15 @gregfarries

A photo posted by Jonathan Koch (@forgotten_alberta) on

A few miles east of Sedalia is the hamlet of New Brigden. For many years, this community was known for being the home of long-serving Alberta politician, and one-time Deputy Premier, (Hon.) Shirley McClellan.  This community seems to have weathered the recurring cycle of drought and depopulation better than many in the dry belt, and today still boasts a school, post office and community hall. New Brigden also possesses enough community spirit to acquire almost $40,000 in provincial grants to preserve the hamlet’s 90 year old water tower, which while weathered and leaning, has long out-lasted the railway that preceded it. 

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5 thoughts on “#FABTrip15: The heart of New Brigden”

  1. A great find along the abandoned CN rail line! Can’t wait to see the finished product!

  2. Oh well, look how long the Leaning Tower of Pisa has been standing lol. Pretty neat structure for out in the prairies.

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