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Appraisal and Plans for the Majestic Theatre in Lethbridge

https://collections.galtmuseum.com/en/permalink/descriptions48716
Date Range
November 1935
Material Type
Mixed Media
Accession No.
20081018000
Physical Description
3 items
Scope and Content
Copy of "Appraisal for Majestic Theatres, Ltd. Majestic Theatre Lethbridge, Alta." The document provides a detailed cost estimate of the value of the theatre and its contents. Accompanying the appraisal are copies of two architectural drawings of the building, each in three pieces.
Material Type
Mixed Media
Date Range
November 1935
Creator
B.C. Appraisal Company Limited
Physical Description
3 items
Physical Condition
Very Good
Language
English
Scope and Content
Copy of "Appraisal for Majestic Theatres, Ltd. Majestic Theatre Lethbridge, Alta." The document provides a detailed cost estimate of the value of the theatre and its contents. Accompanying the appraisal are copies of two architectural drawings of the building, each in three pieces.
Access Restrictions
Public Access
Accession No.
20081018000
Collection
Archive
Less detail

Lethbridge and District Japanese Garden Society Fonds

https://collections.galtmuseum.com/en/permalink/descriptions63661
Date Range
1963-1995
Material Type
Mixed Media
Accession No.
20001036000
Physical Description
approximately 40 cm of manuscript material 66 photographs 1 book
Scope and Content
The fonds consists of meeting minutes, manager's reports, photographs, a photograph album, general tourism materials and studies, as well as a book in Japanese by or about Dr. Tadashi Kubo.
Material Type
Mixed Media
Date Range
1963-1995
Creator
Lethbridge and District Japanese Garden Society
Physical Description
approximately 40 cm of manuscript material 66 photographs 1 book
Physical Condition
Very Good
History / Biographical
The idea to build a Japanese landscape garden in Lethbridge was the thought of two men who arrived at the idea independently of each other. Reverend Yutetsu Kawamura was a Buddhist priest in southern Alberta, and Cleo Mowers was the editor and publisher of The Lethbridge Herald. Reverend Kawamura thought building a Japanese garden in Lethbridge a worthwhile community project for his congregation. Cleo Mowers felt that such a garden would be a tribute to Japanese Canadians who were forciblly relocated from their homes in British Columbia during World War 2, and who subsequently decided to make southern Alberta their home. Mr. Mower’s idea of a Japanese garden came to the attention of Kurt Steiner, manager of the Lethbridge Travel and Convention Bureau. Mr. Steiner approached a member of the Japanese Canadian Citizens Association (JCCA) with the idea, and then met with Reverend Kawamura. Reverend Kawamura agreed to talk to as many people as possible to gauge interest in such a project. On 6 September 1963 a meeting was held in the basement of the Lethbridge Buddhist Church. Twenty people attended, and it was agreed that they would carry the proposal to their respective associations or churches. Mr. Steiner agreed to contact the newly-formed federal Centennial Commission about funding possibilities. When the group met again on 23 October and 5 November, it was apparent that the cost of the garden project was the primary concern. At the meeting of 5 November Reverend Kawamura appointed a six-member steering committee to assist him in investigating options for building the garden. A meeting of the JCCA on 16 November was not encouraging. A majority of the members present objected to the garden project because of the perceived costs, and because the finished garden might not be of a sufficiently high quality. Reverend Kawamura decided to write a proposal for a Japanese garden despite the JCCA’s opposition, and the first draft was ready on 22 November. It stated that the main objectives of a Japanese garden would be as a reminder of Japanese heritage for future generations, and as a symbol of Japanese – Canadian friendship. The draft proposal also stressed that the garden be as authentic as possible, and expressed the hope of obtaining funding through the Centennial Commission. Realizing that the project was too expensive to be completely funded by southern Alberta’s Japanese Canadian community, the steering committee met with representatives of the City of Lethbridge and the local Centennial Committee to discuss funding for a Japanese garden. The steering committee, now seven members, wrote a brief to submit to the local Centennial Committee, who selected projects to fund as part of Canada’s 100th anniversary. The Centennial Committee endorsed the project subject to approval by Lethbridge City Council. Approval came on 6 January 1964. On 13 January 1964 the City appointed a Japanese Garden Committee with Cleo Mowers as Chair. The committee established a “Garden Fund” to solicit contributions from the community, and named Alfred W. Shackleford as Chair of the finance committee. Support was also secured from the Japanese ambassador to Canada and the Japanese consul in Winnipeg, both of whom assisted in planning the garden’s opening ceremonies. It was also discovered that Dr. Tadashi Kubo, a renowned landscape gardener from the University of Osaka Prefecture, was in San Diego to supervise the construction of a Japanese garden there. Mayor Frank Sherring flew to San Diego for a meeting with Dr. Kubo, with the result that Dr. Kubo agreed to undertake the project in Lethbridge. Dr. Kubo returned to Japan and solicited 25 plans from his students at the University of Osaka Prefecture. From these he submitted 12 to the Japanese Garden Committee in Lethbridge, who in turn submitted four plans to City Council. The final selection was simple, as both Council and the Committee liked the same plan. Mr. Mel Murakami, general construction superintendent at Bird Building Supplies, helped prepare a project budget of $186,000. City Council authorized the Japanese Garden Committee to begin construction. Dr. Kubo could not supervise the Lethbridge project directly, and sent his assistant Masami Sugimoto from Japan in November 1964 to oversee the construction. Transforming the 3.7 acre site next to Henderson Lake into a Japanese garden proved an exacting process. Between 9,000 and 13,000 cubic yards of earth were moved. Rocks of a specific type needed for the garden were finally located in a field south of Hillcrest. Trees were donated from as far away as Calgary and Brooks. Once inspected by Masami Sugimoto to ensure conformity with a Japanese garden, work crews moved them to the site. Volunteers were recruited in March 1966 to dig and move donated trees and bushes, as well as sod lawns. In 1965 a ‘pebble party’ was held along the banks of the Oldman River, where volunteers collected the flat stones that make up the ariso beaches in Nikka Yuko Centennial Garden. That same year, the pavilion and other wooden structures were ordered from Japan. The order for the pavilion and wooden structures was the catalyst for an important event that transformed the Japanese Garden Committee. The City of Lethbridge handled the purchase, and their rules stated that goods were not to be paid for until received. The City had paid a deposit of $15,000 and expected to pay the rest on delivery. On the other hand, Japanese export regulations would not allow the shipment of any goods until fully paid for. The impasse was resolved when, at the suggestion of local lawyer Walter E. Huckvale, the Japanese Garden Committee incorporated as a registered society and assumed full responsibility for the garden project. Five members of the newly created Lethbridge and District Japanese Garden Society signed personal promissory noted for the $35,000 still owed. The new Lethbridge and District Japanese Garden Society met on 11 June 1965 and elected nine more directors in addition to the six already appointed. The wooden pavilion and structures arrived from Japan with a crew of skilled workers to assemble them. Construction of the rest of the Japanese garden proceeded rapidly, and on 3 July 1966 the Nikka Yuko Centennial Garden ‘unofficially’ opened five months ahead of schedule. Between then and the official opening ceremonies held on 14 July 1967, over 35,000 people visited the garden. The ceremonies were highlighted by the presence of Prince and Princess Takamatsu of Japan, who officially opened the Nikka Yuko Centennial Garden to the delight of the 3,000 dignitaries and visitors in attendance. The Nikka Yuko Centennial Garden cost $276,755 to complete. A federal – provincial centennial grant provided $47,865, $25,728 was raised by the Lethbridge and District Japanese Garden Society and the remaining $203,162 came from the City of Lethbridge. Horace Barrett was hired as the garden’s first manager, and Bill Riley was the first garden supervisor. Dr. Tadashi Kubo returned to Lethbridge in May 1972 to inspect the garden and offer suggestions as to its maintenance and future growth. Dr. Kubo’s 21 recommendations were all implemented, and the Nikka Yuko Centennial Garden continues to reflect the harmony and aesthetic of a traditional Japanese garden. [Source: Van Luven, Lynne. Nikka Yuko Centennial Garden - A History. Lethbridge and District Japanese Garden Society, September 1980]
Language
English
Japanese
Scope and Content
The fonds consists of meeting minutes, manager's reports, photographs, a photograph album, general tourism materials and studies, as well as a book in Japanese by or about Dr. Tadashi Kubo.
Access Restrictions
Public Access
Accession No.
20001036000
Collection
Archive
Less detail