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Alex Lord’s memoirs concluded

Continued from Alex Lord’s recollections:

“During my four years in Kelowna [1910 – 1914], the growth of the school was regular and, for those days, rapid. The new six-room school was soon filled and the wooden building divided its four rooms between the high school and elementary classes.

Kelowna Public School
Kelowna Public School 2

In the summer of 1913, a twelve-room school and auditorium building was opened by the local minister of the Crown, the Honourable Price Ellison, with his optimistic assurance that ‘This structure will meet Kelowna’s needs for all time.’ 3 Yet school opened in the autumn with twelve classes enrolled, and thirteen teachers, an additional teacher solely for music and art 4 — a daring innovation in 1913.5

The problem of the new arrivals was not one of classroom space, but very much more of absorbing a variety of backgrounds into our classes as they were constituted. Hardly a week passed without the arrival of a father or a mother to enrol their children — from Ontario, from Scotland, from Tasmania, from Nova Scotia, from Northern Rhodesia, from Seattle, from dozens of different parts of the world.” 6

To view more of Alex Lord’s British Columbia see Google Books.

1 School located at northeast corner of Richter Street and Glenn Avenue (Lawrence Avenue) — today’s Brigadier Angle Armoury. Photo courtesy of Dorothy (Whitham) Zoellner in from Slates to Blackboards to Computers. A History of Public Schools in the Central Okanagan. Kelowna, BC: The Educational Heritage Committee of the Central Okanagan Retired Teachers’ Association, n.d., p. 18.

2 Kelowna Public School (Central Elementary), opened officially opened in 1914. Photo courtesy of Flo Mahood. Ibid., p. 18.

3 Price Ellison was born in Durham, England, in 1851. As a youth he emigrated to Boston and later prospected for Cariboo gold. He came to the Okanagan in 1876, at length acquiring the Postill and Simpson ranches near Okanagan Mission, ‘property near Swan Lake, meadows near Lumby, and the lease of the Winfield Ranch. In 1896 he was elected to the provincial legislature [E Yale],’ and was McBride’s minister of lands in 1909 ‘and of finance and agriculture in 1910.’ Art Gray, Kelowna: Tales of Bygone Days. Kelowna, BC: Kelowna Print, 1968, p.134; Margaret A. Ormsby, ed., A Pioneer Gentlewoman in British Columbia: The Recollections of Susan Allison. Vancouver, BC: UBC Press, 1976, p. 121n, citing Myra K. DeBeck, ‘Price Ellison: A Memorial by his Daughter,’ Twelfth Report of the Okanagan Historical Society (1948), pp. 48-58.

4 The teacher in question was E.P. Duthie officially identified as a music and drawing instructor, appointed at a salary of seventy dollars a month. Annual Report of Public Schools, 1914, ACXXviii.

5 Alex Lord was the principal of the new school and enrolled Division I. His students were Loretta Baston, Frances D. Buckland, Marguerite Budden, Marjorie Bulman, Ralph Bulman, Blossom Buck, Margaret Clark, Edna Clark, George Curts, George Day, Norman DeHart, Ewart Fletcher, Nettie Harvey, Roy Haug, Richard Herocks, Earl Howard, Vivian Jones, Russell Leckie, Beata Lloyd-Jones, Lawrence Marshall, Annie McMillan, Tina McMillan, Percy Rankin, Jean Ritchie, Marjorie Switzer, Russell Sutherland, Mabel Watson, Donald Whitham, Laura Wilson, Fred Whitehead, May Wilson, Abbie Wilson, Loraine Woolsey, Annie Reekie, Raymond Daley. “First Central Pupils Widely Scattered.” Kelowna Daily Courier, Sat., January 18, 1964 in from Slates, Ibid., p. 21

6 John Calam, ed. Alex Lord’s British Columbia. Recollections of a Rural School Inspector, 1915-36. Vancouver, BC: UBC Press, 1991, p. 107.



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