25 YEARS AGO
• STETTLER — The sweet smell of worked leather fills the Double L Saddlery shop. A set of harness bells jangles softly, punctuated to the clatter of an electric harness stitcher. Rolls of tanned leather are stacked high above workbenches and a pail of yellow straw sits beside a well-worn work horse collar in need of new stuffing. Everywhere there are the trappings of horses: finely-tooled saddles, fringed cowboy chaps, and flashy chrome-studded, black patent leather harnesses. “I never imagined it would turn into this,” Dorothy Lohr says as she surveys the family’s leather shop. She remembers the late-night tap-tap-tap- as her husband Lloyd sat the farm kitchen table first trying his hand at crafting leather over 35 years ago.
• ROCKY MOUNTAIN HOUSE — Arson is suspected in a fire that destroyed a building occupied by OK Tire (Rocky) Lt. Early Thursday. “It’s suspected arson — I really can’t say any more at this point in time,” provincial fire inspector Earl Moker said today. “It started in a small room by the northwest corner of the building.” RCMP are investigating. Garth Torwalt, owner of OK Tire, said the blaze ruined about $270,000 worth of stock and equipment in the garage and tire shop and damaged an adjoining building that contained oilfield equipment. Volunteer firefighters from Leslieville and Caroline joined Rocky’s 21-man volunteer force to fight the blaze for about four hours.
50 YEARS AGO
• After playing for years, the “dream” hand in cribbage came Sunday to Mrs. Ted Bioletti, 3585 54th Ave. Crescent. In a friendly game with her husband, Mrs. Bioletti held three fives and the Jack of spades. The cut turned up the five of spades for the 29 count. She won the game, she said, but not by very much.
• A road link from Mountview and Sunnybrook in Red Deer’s southeast residential area, to Gaetz Avenue will probably be completed in 1962 or 1963, according to a report given to city council Monday by Engineer Nelson Deck. The road would be an extension of 32 St. to the west through the Piper Creek ravine. Mr. Deck said that part of 32 St. in Sunnybrook will be completed this year as it is a prepaid public works item. The remainder of 32 St. in Sunnybrook, he said will likely be constructed in 1963, the road east from Gaetz Ave. will probably be built as far as 47 Ave. The ravine part of the project, which includes a bridge or a culvert at the creek, will be a debentured cost.
90 YEARS AGO
• Before Judge Mahaffy at Lacombe on Friday, A. H. McNeil was placed on his trial on a charge of attempting to set fire to a barn near Mirror with intent to defraud. The barn belonged to him, but was occupied by his tenants, Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Sharpe. McNeil had been staying off and on with them this winter, and the fire broke out on February 2, on the second day of that particular stay; the barn and house had been insured some two weeks before, the barn for $500. The chief evidence against the accused was that of Mr. Sharpe and his daughter. Mr. Sharpe’s evidence was that McNeil’s assistance in helping to put out the fire was not very effective, and the girl’s was that she had heard McNeil take matches from the metal box, though he was not a smoker, and that she had seen him go into the barn and shortly after run around the trees down to the hay stacks, while a moment or so afterwards she saw the glare of the flames and gave the alarm to her father. The Judge gave the accused the benefit of the doubt in his own mind as where he had set the hay on fire, and discharged him.
The evidence was not clear as to his participation in the fire, and he did not see how he was to gain by the firing of the barn which was worth the $500 insurance at any rate.
• Mr. John Shanks, general manager of the Brazeau Colleries, Nordegg, went through home on Wednesday from the miners-operators conference at Calgary, which was ineffective in arriving at a wage scale, owing to the operators and the miners being too far apart in their demands.