(Hover over image to activate slideshow options – Slides courtesy of Glen Lundeen / prairie-towns.com)
The launch of Prairie-towns.com signals yet another online endeavour to preserve the history and heritage of Western Canadian communities.
Contained within the collection are over 2700 photos, many postcard images, from 400+ communities throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan. Amongst the total is are several pioneer-era postcards from southeast Alberta communities such as Alderson, Chinook, Orion and Suffield (see above) that have withered considerably, or disappeared altogether since the images were captured.
According to a description on the website, the majority of the images of Saskatchewan towns are from the collection of postcard dealer, Don Kaye; however, there are also a number of images throughout attributed to the collections of the Glenbow Archives and Peel’s Prairie Provinces.
The website’s curator, Glen Lundeen, approached Mr. Kaye about scanning his collection and putting it online, a request to which Kaye consented. Mr. Lundeen states on the website that he is “slowly working” through an “immense amount of material”, roughly totalling about 10,000 cards; and that he hopes to add “500 to 1000 images per month.”
“It is not complete and hopefully never will be.”
I have confirmation from Mr. Lundeen that visitors are free to download any of the photos from the collections for personal use. I am still attempting to confirm whether this also applies to images attributed to the Peel and Glenbow collections.
Mr. Lundeen also adds that he would appreciate any and all contributions from any visitors who may have any old photos or know of someone who does.
I would add that donations of archival photos and information from southeastern Alberta would also be much appreciated for Forgotten Alberta. Visitors are also free to download many of the archival photos contained online at the Forgotten Alberta Archive. Please check licensing information for details.