Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Coronation is the new Haneyville

Old Barn, near Haneyville 
I took an impromptu trip to Coronation, AB with a friend and her daughter this last weekend. She knows the things I like to take pictures of and her family and relatives were pioneers and are homesteaders of that area so she showed me old barns, houses, cemeteries, an abandoned town and a couple old grain elevators. It was an awesome day and seeing my friend reliving old memories was priceless.

Google map view of the cemetery
We stopped at Haneyville Cemetery on our travels. Haneyville is NW of Coronation about 12km.  As you can see by the photo, most of the cemetery is unused. They likely set aside a large area for the cemetery while envisioning the population boom when the railroad came. This sadly, was not meant to be.





Just east of the cemetery is Arkona School. It opened in 1908. It was named after the hometown of some of the first homesteaders from Arkona, ON. Mrs. Evelyn Towns, from Arkona, became one of the first school teachers. I am not sure when the school closed but it still sits on a quiet corner, as it always has.

By 1910, Haneyville had a couple of stores, a stopping house, barn, post office, and a school. It was Mr. E.R. Haney who owned and operated the stopping house, feed barn and mill as well as one of the stores.

In September of 1911 the long awaited CPR railroad was built into what would soon become Coronation (it was incorporated in December of 1911). The railroad bypassed the growing community of Haneyville by 2 1/2 miles. This was essentially a death sentence for the town. Lots in the Coronation town site were bought and the Haneyville buildings were moved. Only the stopping house and school buildings remained. The stopping house became a residence. The Haney Store was moved and became the Star Theater in Coronation. The Haney's ran the theater then later they also owned and operated the Alberta Hotel. Mr. Haney passed away in 1936 and was buried at Haneyville Cemetery.

Arkona School today 

The Big Store at Haneyville, AB (courtesy of the Glenbow Archives)
Haneyville town may be gone but the memories, stories and the families of these pioneers will live on. I have barely touched on the history of the area and highly recommend reading the stories in the local history books. They determination and spirit of the pioneers of Alberta never ceases to amaze me. If you have stories or photos of the area, I am always interested in seeing them and learning more!

Here are a few interesting buildings from Coronation:


I was focused in the Avalon sign, but there is a
big mural on the side featuring the Royal Family

Former Catholic Church
More to come from this day trip including a stop at Bulwark, AB. See you soon!

References: Shadows of the Neutrals; Find a Grave; Pioneering with a Piece of Chalk





18 comments:

  1. Great find. Looking forward to future editions.

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    1. Thanks Vicki! I am lucky I know people in the area.

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  2. Always enjoy reading your posts!

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    1. Thanks BW, I guess this blogging thing isn't too bad.

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  3. Very nice Jenn...that Avalon looks like it could almost be an old theater. I love old cemeteries...the little Frances gravestone took me aback though, considering my last name! Gave me a little bit of the creeps...mind you, I'm in the middle of researching pumpkin carving patterns for Halloween, so maybe I'm in the mood to be spooked! :)

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    1. Hi Rain, yes the Avalon is a theater as well. Yes it was a bit strange to see that little Frances stone laying there, it looked out of place but I didn't want to move it.

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  4. Great article and photos, I haven't been to Coronation for many years. The Avalon was a theatre. It was a pleasant surprise to see a photo of my uncle Jack's shoe store. He used to do the rural mail delivery as well and it was quite an adventure accompanying him as he delivered to many farms and rural post offices.

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    1. Hi Marvin, thanks for reading! That would have been an adventure for sure! I bet he knew everyone in the area. Love the shoe store building.

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  5. Nice post, Jenn. Many of the pioneer cemeteries down here are large (4 acres isn't unusual) with only a small percentage of space taken up by gravesites. Also, sometimes what looks like empty space actually holds unmarked graves.

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    1. Thanks Michael. I wondered, one website says there are 65 interments there but there was definitely not 65 visible.

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  6. Nice post Jenn! I have photographed the Avalon Theatre before too. I love the looks of that building. So retro!

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    1. Thanks Tim! Very retro, I love the sign! It was a great day.

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  7. As a kd lang fan, I really should make a pilgrimage to Coronation some day. Haven't got there yet though!

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    1. Hey Debra! I think she lived in Consort but they are near each other. šŸ˜Š

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  8. That small stone with the name "Frances" may be a footstone (a small marker placed at the foot of a grave). I've seen some in old cemeteries around here and more often than not they were used on children's graves.

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    1. I looked it up, there was a child named Frances buried there. Thanks Michael.

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