Sunday, May 27, 2007

Dorothy On My Mind

I had no idea when I pointed my truck east that I would find myself in fog shortly after leaving Highway #1 and turning on to Highway #9 North. I had left home at 5:30 am and after picking up a coffee I was alone with my thoughts, thinking of the photos that I planned on shooting on this beautiful morning.

I had the radio on along with my VHF radio when it came to life with my friend Brian VE6XX giving his callsign out. Brian was leaving his home near Champion in Southern Alberta and on his way to the Suffield army base near Medicine-Hat to do some work for the British Army. I chatted to him for awhile linked in to the CTV repeater in Calgary as we were more than a hundred miles apart. After a half hour of chit-chat, we signed as I was at my first stop of Horseshoe Canyon where a stop was in order. I took this Badland photo amongst others while I took a short walk around the rim of the canyon. I would have spent more time, however I had the ghost town of Dorothy east of Drumheller, Alberta in mind for my destination on this day. I had not been up to Dorothy for a number of years and had been wanting to visit the area for sometime.

Dorothy is a cool ghost town situated in Aberta's famed Badland Country just to the southeast of Drumheller, Alberta. Dorothy has history from 1895 up to 1970. Dorothy enjoyed its greatest prosperity in the 1920's shortly after the railway line was built through the area. At one time coal was king with dozens of coal mines up and down the valley. With the closing of the coal mines it was only a matter of time before people pulled up stakes and moved on. By 1960 Dorothy was in decline and today less that a dozen residents live in the area not counting this male Tree Swallow that was not impressed with my nearest to their nest.

There are a lot of photo-ops in Dorothy and I enjoyed my time on this beautiful morning with Meadowlarks singing off in the distance as I went about shooting photos. Amongst the more interesting buildings still standing are several Churches, a elevator and this old shop.

The two Church's still standing in Dorothy stood the ravages of time better than most of the buildings that I shot photos of on this day. Perhaps more care was taken with the construction or a higher being is looking out for their well-being. One of the Churches is a United church that was supported from 1932 to 1961 and the other church is a Roman Catholic church supported from 1944 to 1967. They are gradually being withered away by time and the elements.

I am amazed that the windows are still intact in the one church and hope they remain unbroken as they are quite interesting and add immensely to the wellness of the church.

As you can see from this last photo the windows are long gone from the Catholic Church that is situated in a very cool location as you cannot help but notice the badlands that make for a great visit to the ghost-town of Dorothy. From here I will make my way to East Coulee where the Atlas Coal Mine is located and also a very cool place to visit.
Stay tuned

No comments yet