Municipalities: To Conserve and Protect

In every city, town, village and county you find special places illustrating each community’s heritage. Have you ever wondered how locally significant historic places are recognized and protected?

In Alberta, municipalities can designate these places as Municipal Historic Resources. Each Council decides what deserves to be designated. A designated site remains private property—the only difference is that the owner needs to have the municipality’s permission before altering it.

Sites like the D.U. Ranchlands Cabin gives us a glimpse of how homesteaders lived in the southern foothills around 1900, while the Trapper’s Shack shows us how fur traders lived in Fort Vermilion around the same time. The Acadia Block has been part of downtown Lethbridge’s business district since 1909. The Mill Creek Trestle Bridge reveals how we traveled before cars were affordable. The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church north of Lamont is full of beautiful artwork painted by famed iconographer Peter Lipinski.

You can find 154 Municipal Historic Resources (including the ones mentioned above) on the Alberta Register of Historic Places with more added all the time. Check out the Register to learn more about some of the special places that can show us how Albertans have lived. 

Written by: Michael Thome, Municipal Heritage Services Officer

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