Help Preserve a Grain Elevator

Ogilvie grain elevator in Wrentham, AB
Ogilvie grain elevator in Wrentham, AB

Please consider donating to preserve a grain elevator. The Ogilvie Wooden Grain Elevator Society owns the former Ogilvie grain elevator in Wrentham, Alberta, south of Lethbridge. This historic elevator is in its original location and is the last Ogilvie elevator left in Alberta, and one of very few remaining in Canada.

Wooden grain elevators are costly to maintain. Every donation helps! Your donation is tax deductible for Canadians.

Donate to the Ogilvie Wooden Grain Elevator Society

Oldest Grain Elevator Being Dismantled

Elva grain elevators

Regretfully, the former Lake of the Woods grain elevator in Elva, Manitoba is being dismantled. This grain elevator became the oldest remaining grain elevator in the Canadian prairies after the Fleming elevator was destroyed by arson.

There are actually two elevators in Elva, and a newer concrete elevator outside of town. The newer elevator in Elva is a former UGG elevator. The Lake of the Woods elevator is a short, squat elevator and was built in 1897.

Drone view of Elva grain elevators, 2019
Drone view of Elva grain elevators, 2019

The elevators will be dismantled and the cladding, boards and nails will be sold.

Learn more about the Elva grain elevators

New Elevators for a New Year

Grain elevator at Menzie, Manitoba

We wish you a very belated “happy new year” for 2022. As a late gift for the new year, here are some “new to us” grain elevators to share, and some updates on existing elevators. We have been scanning more of the Donald Hamilton collection of grain elevator photos, as well as acquiring other images, and we have lots to share. Here are the new elevators for Grain Elevators of Canada, by province or state:

Manitoba

Saskatchewan

Alberta

Minnesota

North Dakota

Fire Destroys “Dog River” Elevator

Rouleau, SK aka "Dog River" grain elevator, July 2005. Contributed by Pat Scrimgeour.

Regrettably, fire has claimed the last grain elevator in Rouleau, Saskatchewan. This ex Saskatchewan Wheat Pool elevator was made famous by the Corner Gas TV series, and it was relabeled as “Dog River” for the show.

Train passing the "Dog River" grain elevator. Contributed by Steve Boyko.
Train passing the “Dog River” grain elevator. Contributed by Steve Boyko.

The CBC reported that fire crews were called between 2 and 3 AM on November 5, 2021to the fire. By then it was fully involved and the fire crews worked to keep the fire from spreading.

Photos show the elevator was completely destroyed, with only a few pieces of scorched equipment remaining. Rail cars in the adjacent siding were scorched.

The elevator was built in 1973 and sold to a local farmer in the mid 1990s. It was used for storing grain for a while but had been dormant for the past few years.

Read more about the Rouleau / Dog River grain elevator

Grain Elevators: Beacons of the Prairies

Photographer Chris Attrell has partnered with author Christine Hanlon to produce a beautiful book featuring Canada’s grain elevators, Grain Elevators: Beacons of the Prairies. This 128 page hardcover book contains numerous full colour images of the grain elevators in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and British Columbia.

Amazon links on this site are affiliate links, meaning that I earn a small commission if you purchase something using those links.

The stars of the book are the grain elevators, evocatively photographed in all seasons in night and day. The photographs are large and colourful and are all captioned with details about the elevators and/or the area.

I must disclose that I was the copy editor for this book – and I was paid for it – so I am quite familiar with the book’s contents and I am definitely biased in its favour. It was a pleasure to work with Christine, Chris and Vernon from publisher MacIntyre-Purcell on this book.

You can view the virtual book launch below.

The book includes numerous sidebars describing aspects of grain elevators and the people and companies who built them. It is not “just a picture book”!

Several of the grain elevators featured in the book were photographed by Chris before their demolition, and the elevators at Winnipegosis and Pierson were demolished while the book was being completed. Poignantly, Homewood and Lowe Farm‘s elevators are featured in the book but were demolished soon after this book was released.

This book has been produced to the same level of quality as Chris’ previous book, Forgotten Saskatchewan, which was a best seller in its class on Amazon.

If you like grain elevators, you should get this book. It’s available from McNally Robinson and from Amazon (below).

Buy the book on Amazon.ca

Welcome to Richard Woloshyn!

Frontier, SK, Sep 2014. Contributed by Richard Woloshyn.

I’d like to welcome a new contributor to the site – Richard Woloshyn.

Richard contacted me to offer some grain elevator photos to fill some gaps in the list. He supplied images of elevators in places like Duck Lake, SK and Kirriemuir, AB. Thank you very much!

Kirriemuir, AB, Sep 2013. Contributed by Richard Woloshyn.
Kirriemuir, AB, Sep 2013. Contributed by Richard Woloshyn.

If you have some grain elevator photos to contribute, please contact me at steve@traingeek.ca. We’re looking for photos that you took, or have the copyright for, and especially for photos of grain elevators not present on this site already or showing a different angle than what’s here already. Thanks for your contributions.

Welcome to Ron LePage!

Meadow Lake, SK grain elevators, 1970s. Contributed by Ron LePage.
Meadow Lake, SK grain elevators, 1970s. Contributed by Ron LePage.

Ron LePage has contributed quite a few grain elevator photos recently, mostly from Alberta and Saskatchewan. Much appreciated!

You can see his contributor page and find a few elevators that he has submitted photos of.

If you’d like to contribute your photos of Canadian grain elevators, contact me at steve@traingeek.ca. Thank you!

Ole Pedersen Kirkhus Photos

Clearwater, MB grain elevator, 1928

Ole Pedersen Kirkhus helped build some of the very early Pool elevators in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. He took photos of his work and coworkers and his family has graciously allowed us to post these rare photos.

You can see the full list of elevators on his contributor page, but I have included a few elevator photos here.

We are very grateful to his descendants for sending these photos in.

Alexander, MB grain elevator, 1927
Alexander, MB grain elevator, 1927

See more of his elevator photos