Alphabet II

Weekly Photo Challenge: Alphabet


This image speaks to the writer in me.

Every letter of the alphabet is represented in this old word processor, which is only a few decades removed from the model I learned to type on way back when.

Carbon copies and triplicate, white out and erasers.

“Those were the days,” she sighed with a hint of sarcasm.

Image captured at Heritage Park in Calgary, Alberta.

Thanks for stopping by …



©Dorothy Chiotti … All Rights Reserved 2016

Prairie Relics

Weekly Photo Challenge: Relic


For this challenge we’re visiting two locations in the Canadian prairies ~ the ghost town of Rowley and Heritage Park in Calgary, both in Alberta.

Since my family has roots in the prairies and I remember some of these things from when “I was a girl,” (I’ll differentiate ~ I’m not that old 😉 …), it’s fun for me to be able to share this with you.

Alberta Relics

These I do remember. There was a time when grain elevators could be seen all across the prairies ~ markers of the next town so you were never lost. As a child I found them very romantic and loved scanning the horizon for them whenever we were going for a drive. Their actual business was to collect and store grain until the next train rolled into town to pick it up.

Sadly you seldom see these wooden sentinels anymore. Most have deteriorated over the years and been demolished. In Rowley, however, these grain elevators have been restored and are a tourist attraction. Similar elevators exist in Heritage Park as well.

This CP Rail caboose is also a relic of the past. Up until the 1980s these manned rail transport vehicles were coupled to the end of freight trains as shelter for the train crew and as lookouts for safety issues.
I can remember what a thrill it was, as a child, to wave to the engineers stationed in the caboose as the end of the train went by. They always waved back.


Relic II

No, I’m not old enough to have used one of these!

Captured at Heritage Park


Manual Typrewiter

While this typewriter on display at Heritage Park does somewhat pre-date me, I am old enough to have started learning to type on a manual.
Carbon paper to type things in triplicate and no “auto-delete” button.
Those were the days. 😉


Kitchen Relics

Stuff in the kitchen of the old rail station at Rowley.
This kind of shelf liner I recall from time spent at my grandmother’s.
Look at that wallpaper!!


Tractor Relic

When I look at one of these old tractors (this one in Rowley) I always wonder how they got any traction.
Hmmm … guess this predates me too. 😉


Relic Stairwell

Lots of relics here, but I’d like to draw your attention to this relic of a staircase nailed into a tree! You’ll find this in the middle of the old bank in Rowley, if memory serves.



Living relics of the past. You rarely see wagon teams anymore.
These beauties captured at Heritage Park.


Thanks for visiting these old relics with me …



©Dorothy Chiotti … All Rights Reserved 2014

Shout Outs

The Quiet Image

The Rider

@The West Gate


six degrees photography

The Tonsorial Parlour

Weekly Photo Challenge: Community


Barber shops and beauty parlours ~ hubs of community gossip for as long as there’s been hair.

Calgary’s Heritage Park, Canada’s largest living historical village, depicts the history of Alberta during pioneer times.

A few years ago a barber shop/snooker hall (referred to in olden days as the “Tonsorial Parlour”) was moved to the Park from the village of Barons, Southern Alberta.

This building has been restored and outfitted to resemble the look of such an establishment in early 20th century Alberta.


The image below is from our family archives and features my great grandfather, Steve McDonall (leaning on the counter), and two clients in his Tonsorial Parlour in Youngstown, Alberta in 1912. No doubt in the middle of a good chin wag.

Maybe discussing the sinking of the Titanic?

The Tonsorial Parlour

Of course, I cannot take credit for this image, but it was fun to show it for the purpose of this challenge anyway.

Thanks for visiting …

Dorothy 🙂


©Dorothy Chiotti, Aimwell CreativeWorks 2013

Shout Outs


Through The Luminary Lens

This, That and The Other Thing


Shave and a Haircut … Southern Alberta


A few posts ago I mentioned meeting some long lost cousins in Edmonton, Alberta. Our common ancestry begins with our great grandfather Steve who, by all accounts, was a rather cruel and troubled individual. Judging by some of the travails that have haunted our families since I see no evidence to the contrary.

The details are sketchy, but he was born in Tyre, Michigan in February 1877, and headed west across the U.S. to Montana with the building of the Great Northern Railroad. Later, some time in the 1920s, he landed with his wife and three sons in Southern Alberta. There he bought and farmed a section of land near Youngstown, not far from the Saskatchewan border, and set up a pool hall and barbershop in town. I’m told he lead a rather prosperous life.

These images depict a barbershop/pool hall which, in those days, inhabited the same space.

This particular pool hall was saved and moved from small town Barons, Alberta, to its present location in Calgary’s beautiful Heritage Park Historical Village — a spot I always love to visit when I’m in town. My personal collection of vintage photos includes one of great grandpa Steve in his barbershop standing behind his barber’s chair, so when I walked inside this piece of Alberta history it felt like I was, for a moment, stepping into his world. I found the experience to be quite moving, especially since I’d just visited with the cousins and the spirit of our family conversations still lingered.

Great Grandpa Steve lost everything during the Great Depression and Dust Bowl. This, no doubt, only exacerbated his already cantankerous nature making life even more difficult for his traumatized family. In the end, they migrated hundreds of miles to north of Edmonton where, in his 50s, Steve started all over again … securing land from the government in exchange for clearing and planting and creating a working farm.

That, however, is a story for another day.

Thanks for visiting …

Dorothy 🙂


Copyright Aimwell CreativeWorks 2012