Every now and then there is an article or two appearing, to let Saskatoon know about the house and the activities around it. As these articles are written and published, they will be added here...just in case you missed them in the original publication.
The Superintendents House's - Life with the Rich and Famous
(Submitted By Colleen Yates - FFFH Newsletter #15, January 2003)
2001 Vintage Building Award in the Adaptive Re-use - Community Landmark category
(Saskatchewan Architectural Heritage Society 2001 Vintage Building Awards)
Preserving the Past
(originally appearing in The Saskatoon Sun February 18th, 2001 by Bernie Cruikshank)
Peter F. Drucker Foundation
(letter to the Friends of the Forestry Farm House October 10th, 2000)
Forestry farm grew from tree planting program
(originally appearing in The Saskatoon Sun June 18th, 2000 by Colleen Yates)
The Superintendent's House - Life with the Rich and Famous
FFFH Newsletter #17, October 2003
Submitted By Colleen Yates
We all know the importance of the Superintendent's residence as the home of the men responsible for developing, propagating, and distributing millions of trees. The Sutherland Forest Nursery Station's importance in assisting the Federal Government's settlement and agricultural goals made the Station an important place not only locally and regionally, but also nationally and internationally.
This importance brought many important and distinguished visitors. It was one of THE places to visit when in the area. Sir Rider Haggard, author of King Solomon's Mines and many other books visited in July 1916, shortly after the Nursery Station was established. The newspaper account in the Daily Star stated "...the forestry farm of Sutherland had also proved (an) object(s) of special interest to him".
Governor General Lord Byng of Vimy and his wife Lady Byng visited in the 1920s and took tea on the lawn with Superintendent James MacLean and his family. Prior to becoming Governor General (1921 to 1926) Byng had commanded the Canadian Forces during the Great War. Lady Byng established hockey's Byng Trophy, for excellence and sportsman - ship.
In 1935, MacLean's niece, Phyllis Cline married Mr. Grant MacEwan on the grounds of the Sutherland Forest Nursery Station. MacEwan, a College of Agriculture professor at the University of Saskatchewan and later Dean of Agriculture at the University of Manitoba went on to be Mayor of Calgary, a member of the Alberta Legislature, and Lieutenant Governor of Alberta. MacEwan is probably best remembered for his large literary outpouring, chronicling the history of Western Canada.
214 - 1808 Smith Street
June 12, 2001
Friends of the Forestry Farm House Inc.
C/O Bernie Cruikshank
518 Rossmo Road
Congratulations! Your entry, "Superintendent's Residence Rehabilitation" project has been reviewed and selected to receive a 2001 Vintage Building Award in the Adaptive Re-use - Community Landmark category.
Considering the quantity and quality of this year's entries, it is evident that Saskatchewan people are aware of the many benefits associated with the restoration, renovation, preservation and adaptive re-use of our province's built heritage resources. Thanks to the efforts of heritage-minded organizations like yours many important historical properties will continue to serve as functional reminders of Saskatchewan’s vital architectural legacy.
Every year, as part of our Annual General Meeting proceedings, we honour the dedication and efforts of the selected winners with a special Vintage Building Award Reception (wine and cheese) followed by awards ceremony and slide presentation of this year's winning projects.
This year's event will be held at the Moose Jaw Art Museum, Performing Arts Theatre, Crescent Park in downtown Moose Jaw on June 22, 2001 at 7:15 P.M. We certainly hope you can attend! Each award winner will be provided with two free tickets to the event. Additional tickets may be purchased for only $10.00 each.
Please call the SAHS office at 1-306 359-0933 by June 18 to confirm your attendance at the Awards event or to make alternate arrangements for pick-up/delivery of your award if you’re unable to attend.
We are looking forward to meeting you at the 2001 Vintage Building Award Reception and Presentation and Reception.
We are especially delighted to inform you that the board of directors of the Heritage Canada Foundation will be in attendance to see Saskatchewan honour its own.
Michael C. Phelps, Executive Director SAHS
On behalf of the 2001 VBA Selection Committee
Preserving the Past
From The Saskatoon Sun, Sunday, February 18th, 2001
By Bernie Cruikshank
Friends of the Forestry Farm House Inc.
The Friends of the Forestry Farm House Inc. (FFFH) originated in 1990 as a task force comprised of groups interested in saving the Superintendent's Residence at the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park. The interest in saving the house was driven by two factors: first, to save this important heritage building and second, to use the building as a focus to tell the story of the Sutherland Forest Nursery Station.
The FFFH was incorporated as a non-profit society in 1996. The organization prepared a Restoration and Sustainable Development Plan for the house and lobbied the city for a lease. City council agreed to lease the house to the FFFH for a ten-year, renewable term. The lease was signed in 1998.
The house had been vacant for a number of years and, although most of the original elements remained, it had been subject to a number of unsympathetic renovations and had sustained some damage due to years of neglect.
In 1998, the house was stabilized. Over the course of the next two years funds were raised and volunteers and professionals were organized. With the expertise of Kindrachuck Agery Architects Ltd., a plan for adaptive reuse was developed.
Under the attentive eye of Stephen Stade of Homestead Construction, a complete restoration of the house occurred. Many volunteer hours and professional time resulted in a house that reflects a 1920 Prairie home. Plaster walls, a picture rail, wainscoting and hardwood floors are only a few of the many features restored in the house.
The FFFH know that the success of the house and the interpretation are dependent on long-term sustainability. In 2001, interpretive programming and a food service establishment will be enhancing the Superintendent's Residence.
From: Drucker Canadian Foundation
Sent: Tuesday, October 10, 2000 11:42 AM
Subject: Trees for the Prairie
PETER F. DRUCKER CANADIAN FOUNDATION October 10, 2000
On behalf this year's Selection Committee for the Peter F. Drucker Award for Canadian Nonprofit Innovation we would like to thank you for your submission and to advise you of the results of the Committee meeting on October 3 in Toronto. The purpose of this meeting was to review the applications and to select this year's winning program and honourable mention. We were very excited to receive 65 submissions from across Canada and without exception this country is fortunate to have so many committed organizations whose performance is critical to our communities.
Your submission was read carefully and with great enthusiasm, and the extent of your innovative program recognized by the Selection Committee. The Peter F. Drucker Canadian Foundation feels privileged that you responded to the award and shared this specific program from your organization. Over the next two weeks your program will be posted in our website www.innovativepractices.com which was officially launched in April 2000. Compiled in one data base this site hosts more than 700 stories from award applications since 1993 and serves as a valuable source and network for everyone working in the nonprofit sector.
Choosing a winning application was certainly not an easy one for the judges as each of the submissions excelled in quality, integrity and elements of innovation. In Peter Drucker's words... the purpose of the Canadian award for nonprofit innovation is to find the innovators, whether small or large, to recognize and celebrate their example; and to inspire others... your work has certainly reached these goals.
The Foundation has chosen as this year's winner "Film Circuit, a project of the Toronto International Film Festival Group" and the Honourable Mention is "Our Millennium, a project of the Community Foundations of Canada", from Toronto Ontario.
Best wishes for your continuing successes and many thanks from all of us for your participation and contribution in this year's program.
Dawn Robinson Ralph
From The Saskatoon Sun, Sunday, June 18th,2000
Forestry farm grew from tree planting program
By Colleen Yates
for The Saskatoon Sun
Enticing settlers to the prairies was a major concern for the Canadian government in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Recognizing the significant difference between the vast, open prairies and the lands the settlers would leave behind in Europe, Eastern Canada and the USA, the government initiated a tree planting program to assist with its settlement initiative.
The program initially stressed the aesthetic advantages of trees, particularly the beautification of farm yards. Following the First World War, the focus of the program changed to more practical applications including moisture retention and erosion control.
To provide trees for the planting program, forestry nursery stations were established. The first began in 1903, at Indian Head, followed by one at Sutherland in 1913. Each station distributed up to three million free seedlings per year. The Sutherland station was located on two sections of land and was comprised of a tree nursery area, pasture and crop land as well as a number of buildings. The site was selected for its physical soil characteristics in addition to its proximity to the railway and labour sources in Sutherland and Saskatoon.
The Sutherland Forest Nursery Station had only two superintendents over its 53-year history. The first of these was James McLean, followed by Less Kerr. The superintendents resided in the large red brick house located on the site. The house and surrounding grounds were to present an idealized farmyard, showing how attractive prairie farms could be with the aid of landscaping.
The grounds have been used for public recreation and enjoyment since the forest nursery station was founded. It was a regular destination for people and groups from Sutherland and Saskatoon. One of the more illustrious visitors was Lord Byng, governor general of Canada. The house is currently being restored by the Friends of the Forestry Farm House Inc., a not-for-profit group dedicated to the restoration of the house for the purpose of interpreting the history of the forest nursery station.
The Sutherland Forest Nursery Station was closed in 1965 and all operations were transferred to Indian Head. The next year the Federal government transferred ownership of the western half of the site to the City of Saskatoon for use as the Forestry Farm Park. About the same time a private zoo in Saskatoon was closing and the City of Saskatoon acquired the animal collection, moving it to a portion of the Forestry Farm Park.
The legacy of the Sutherland Forestry Nursery Station is evident in the shelter belts and farm yard plantings scattered over the northern portion of the prairies from Alberta to Manitoba.
Yates writes for the Municipal Heritage Advisory Committee