Eau Claire (1886 - )
Eau Claire, the community south of the Bow River, north of 4th Avenue, east of 2nd Street and west of 9th Street SW, was formed when the Eau Claire and Bow River Lumber Company manager, Peter Prince, built its mill next to the river in 1886. The mill, one of Calgary’s first major industries, employed many people of Norwegian descent who came from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, with the mill’s owner, Issac Kerr. They built Trinity Lutheran Church in 1910, which still stands on 3rd Avenue SW; the church and the 1886 restaurant are the only historical remnants left in the district. Prince’s Island, named after Peter Prince, is Calgary’s Central Park used for R&R and events big and small, among them the Calgary Folk Fest. The small homes, boarding houses and businesses of the district have given way to new luxury condos along the river and surface parking lots for downtown workers.
To learn more:
- McLennan, William M. 2005. 711 Eau Claire Avenue: A Collection of Memories of Growing up in the Eau Claire District of Calgary During the Depression and the War Years. Accessible at Calgary Public Library.