Saskatchewan Legislative Building Time Capsule - Cornerstone Laying

Laying the Cornerstone

The date set for the laying of the cornerstone was October 4, 1909.

Robinson borrowed as many decorations as he could from other organizations but still had to arrange for 10,000 yards of red, white and blue bunting, 200 miniature flags and other decorations to be purchased. These would be reused for the official opening in 1912.   A grandstand was constructed in front of the Legislative Building and a welcoming triumphal arch of boughs (a frequently occurring feature of royal visits to Canada) was constructed on Albert St. on the north side of Wascana Lake.

Robinson’s plans to obtain a buffalo handle for the ceremonial trowel on short notice almost failed due to the distinct shortage of the animal in the Canadian west by 1909.  He was ultimately successful in obtaining two horns.

The cornerstone of the Alberta Legislative Building had been laid on October 1, 1909 by the Governor General of Canada, Earl Grey.  He travelled on to Regina by rail, arriving on October 3.  

It was truly a celebration.  Dignitaries arrived from throughout the province and special trains carried those wishing to join the celebrations.  Galas, suppers, performances and parades took place throughout the city.  On the morning of October 4th, Grey, accompanied by his party and a mounted contingent of the Royal Northwest Mounted Police, travelled to the Legislative Building for the ceremony.  Tickets to the grandstand were in short supply and many minor dignitaries were disappointed in not being able to access prime viewing.

An official reception followed that evening at City Hall.


R-A2273 – Triumphal arch erected on the route to the Legislative Building to welcome visitors.  The building is visible in the background.


R-B3126 (2) – The cornerstone ceremony in progress.  Crowds in grandstand and dignitaries climbing the steps.  The area around Wascana Lake is visible without a tree or building in sight.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-20 – Organizers try to draft experienced bridge builders to build grandstands for the cornerstone event.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-24 – Draft program of events for the cornerstone ceremony.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-33 – Some individuals wanted to attend the event but were unsuccessful


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-36 – Some attendees were concerned about the dress code for the various events


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-49 – Details of the actual stone placement


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-50 – p49 continued


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-71 – Once the organizers decided they wanted a buffalo horn handle on the official trowel, they had to find buffalo horn.  Letters were sent to multiple possible sources.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-66 – Confirmation that buffalo horns are available for the trowel handle.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-78 - Deputy Minister of Public Works F. J. Robinson tried to track down every flag and piece of bunting in Saskatchewan for the cornerstone laying.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-93 – Copy of order in council authorizing expenditures on the cornerstone ceremony.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-164 – Telegram from F.J. Robinson asking that the Canadian Pacific Railway management instruct their personnel to expedite the rail car carrying the cornerstone.


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-183 – A sample invitation for the cornerstone laying


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-186 – Sample pass to be pinned to the lapel of cornerstone ceremony attendees


Saskatchewan. Department of Public Works - R195.2-118-217 – Bill submitted by the Royal North-West Mounted Police for the varnish used to refinish the carriage used by the Governor General.


Leader_0000 – Overview of the planned event. - Regina Morning Leader, October 4, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0003 – Some merchants worked the event into their advertising - Regina Morning Leader, October 4, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0004 – Headline - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0005 – Report on the cornerstone ceremony - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0006 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0007 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0008 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0009 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0010 – Ceremony report continued -  Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0011 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0012 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0013 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]


Leader _0014 – Ceremony report continued - Regina Morning Leader, October 5, 1909 [from microfilm]

 

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