It happened this week in Cranbrook: 1909

It happened this week in Cranbrook: 1909

The week of May 20 - 26: Items compiled by Dave Humphrey from the archived newspapers held at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives


King lumber mill … One of the largest, best managed and arranged manufacturing institutions in the district is the King Lumber Mills, Limited. This company operates two sawmills and one of the largest planing mills, sash and door factories and woodworking establishments in the west. Their timber limits cover an area of 3,800 acres, containing upwards of six hundred million feet of timber, and their payroll is divided between about two hundred and fifty employees. The product of the concern is shipped all over the Dominion, even as far east as New Brunswick. The business of this company is systemized so that the matter of waste, if not absolutely eliminated, is certainly reduced to a minimum, as the sash and door factory and the lath mill can use a great deal of material that would otherwise be wasted.

Funeral pyre … For the first time in the history of Cranbrook the weird Hindoo custom of cremation took place last Saturday.

Sheai Sangh, a Hindoo laborer, died in the St. Eugene hospital after two weeks’ illness from lung trouble. His fellow countrymen at once got the necessary permit from Government Agent Armstrong, and proceeded with the corpse to the Standard Lumber Company’s mill, where the funeral pyre had been built. The wooden box containing the body was placed upon this and covered with cords of dry wood. A match did the rest.

It was a gruesome sight for the spectators who had gathered around, having motored, driven or ridden to the scene of the cremation. As the box burned up the charred body could be distinctly seen. One black hand, raised, probably by the action of the heat, until it was almost perpendicular; and one could see the flesh dropping off and the white bones appearing. The scalp fell away, disclosing the skull, as white as if it had been buried in lime.

It is a curious custom, but apparently is attended by no religious ceremony of any kind, the Hindoos simply standing around smoking and smiling.

At a certain stage of the proceedings the dead man’s clothes were burned also.

After about four hours parts of the bones of the feet, the hands, the head and the body were collected and later transmitted to the dead man’s wife in India, where they will be thrown into the river Ganges.

From a sanitary point of view cremation is unquestionably a good thing but it would seem that the open air system adopted by the Hindoo is somewhat shocking to Western feelings. What appeals to the sons of the Orient is somewhat harrowing to the feelings of the dwellers in the Oxident.

Moyie baseball … A great game of ball took place at Moyie last Sunday between the Moyie and the Cranbrook teams, the result was a victory for Moyie, with a score of 1 to 0. The game was an even one all through, the teams being very closely matched. These teams play here on the morning of the 24th and the public is assured of its money’s worth, as no doubt the contest will be a close and interesting one.

Imperial Bank to build at once … The plans for the new Imperial Bank of Canada building will be here this week and construction will commence at once. The building will be of solid brick, two stories high, 66 by 60 feet in size. The same plans will be used in Fernie, where the bank will build and open as soon as possible.

Earthquake shock felt … Although it is not generally known, there seems no doubt but that a distinct earth tremor took place in Cranbrook last Saturday evening. At about 10.30 o’clock the lawyers who were arguing a case in the court house, felt the building shake for a period of several seconds, W. R. Ross, K.C., of Fernie, said he felt it distinctly and so did M. A. Macdonald. John Cholditch, who was sitting reading in his room, also felt the shock. This semi-disturbance was very general all over Western Canada, having extended from Winnipeg west.

Laundry move … Wing Lee has moved his laundry next to the Saratoga Restaurant, Van Horne Street, where patrons may leave their laundry, and where all business will be done. Best Laundry in B.C.

Acquitted … The Cameron brothers, who were charged with having set fire to the lumber piles of the Mayook Lumber company, were acquitted by Stipendiary Magistrate Armstrong yesterday. Four days were occupied in hearing the evidence and the arguments of the lawyers. W. R. Ross, K.C., appeared for the private prosecutors, and J. A. Harvey and M. A. Macdonald for the defence.

Fat Man’s baseball … The fat men’s baseball team is getting into shape and will undoubtedly put up a strong game against Fernie on the 14th. Manager Elmer says that offers have been received by some of the members from Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston, but that he is sure of his team for this season at least.

Moral and Social Reform Council … A meeting which represents a new force in the communal life of Cranbrook was held in the court house on Monday evening at 8.30. This was a meeting to perfect the organisation of the Moral and Social Reform Council of British Columbia recently organised in Vancouver and which together with councils of all other provinces of Canada is affiliated with the Moral and Social Reform Council of Canada. Representatives were present from the several protestant churches, fraternal societies and labor unions. Rev. C. O. Main was chosen President; Rev. E. P. Flewelling 1st vice president and G. W. Patmore 2nd vice president and H. White secretary treasurer. A committee was appointed to draw up a constitution and draft the policy of the council. . The aim of the council is to centralise in one organisation all efforts of reform in the community. Its work will be to deal with temperance, gambling, immoral literature and obscene pictures, social vice, law enforcement, educating and sensitising public opinion, oversight of voters’ lists and in other ways to advance the moral and social welfare of the community. The attention of the council at present will be concentrated on the suppression of the social evil, as the most glaring of Cranbrook’s evils and a committee was appointed to draft a petition to the police commissioners urging the enforcement of the law for the suppression of the curse. This petition is to be circulated among the voters. Letters are to be sent to the various organisations not already represented, asking that representatives be appointed to the council at once. The meeting adjourned to meet on Friday, May 28, to hear the report of the committees.

New bank for Cranbrook …Inspector Crosby of the Royal Bank of Canada has been in Cranbrook for the past week making the necessary preparations for establishing a branch bank in this city. We learn that these arrangements have been completed, and that the new bank has secured temporary quarters on Cranbrook Street a few doors north of Beale & Elwell’s, and that the bank will open about June 1st.

Fernie News … The law in respect to discharging firearms in the city limits should certainly be enforced. One of our young men had a narrow escape last Tuesday evening owing to some man practising with a revolver, the bullet just grazing the young man’s head.

Love wrecker … “Automobiliousness” is the new germ which eats into romance and severs hearts which once were fond.

Take care … With the approach of the big race meet at Cranbrook and the large influx of visitors a number of men who gain their livelihood by preying upon their fellowmen, such as the tinhorn gambler, pickpocket and stick-up operatives, the public are cautioned to keep their eyes on their valuables, and see that your homes are carefully locked when you are away viewing the sports.


It happened this week in Cranbrook: 1909

It happened this week in Cranbrook: 1909