OLDE TOWNE BEVERLY HISTORICAL SOCIETY

INCORPORATED JUNE 30, 2005

Beverly

“To preserve the history of Beverly, using it to educate its citizens and build community.”

THE OLDEST CENOTAPH IN ALBERTA

Beverly cenotaph dedication ceremony in 1920.

Public service at Beverly Cenotaph, 1933  |  credit: City of Edmonton EA-160-1168

The small mining community of Beverly was incorporated as a town in 1914 and, that same year, nobly responded to the call for men in the First World War. Evidence of this response is shown on the Town's Honour Roll and the names inscribed on the Memorial Stone. With the war over in 1919, the survivors returned to Beverly determined to build a better community. It is in this state of mind that a group of veterans founded an association based on brotherly love and endeavoured to assist the returned soldiers to adjust themselves to civilian life. Thus was the humble beginning of the Beverly Veterans' Association, which was registered under the Companies Act, April 9, 1920.

During the first months of the organization, it was decided to lay plans to erect a fitting Memorial in tribute to the comrades who gave their lives for King and Country. A memorial fund was opened and subscription lists were circulated to raise enough money for the project. One of the Charter Members, Thomas R. Dando, generously provided two lots for a Memorial Park on which to erect a Cenotaph. Later, the lease was issued to the Beverly Veterans' Association for a period of 99 years and renewable as long as the land was used for the original purpose. The rental was free.

Due to the generosity of Mr. Dando, the project got started. The response for funds from the Community was most gratifying and months of work brought the Memorial Park and Cenotaph into reality. On October 17th, 1920, the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, Honourable G. Brett unveiled the Cenotaph and dedicated the grounds, in a colourful ceremony. After WWII, the Town doubled the size of the Memorial Park with the addition of two adjoining lots. The Cenotaph was moved to a more central location and the names of the men who gave their lives in the Second World War were inscribed on a tablet and attached to the monument.

On October 5, 1958, there was a re-dedication of the Beverly War Memorial. After the Invocation, offered by Reverend Knoppers, His Worship, Mayor Johnny Sehn, unveiled a tablet in honour of the Beverly men "who gave their lives so that we might enjoy freedom".

In 1961, the City of Edmonton annexed the Town of Beverly, and the maintenance of the park and Cenotaph became the responsibility of the Parks and Recreation Department. Annual flower beds are planted at the site, which is intensively landscaped with shrub beds and several park benches.

Public service at Beverly cenotaph in 1930.

Beverly cenotaph unveiling, 1920  |   credit: CoE EA-160-14

Top of Page Present day ceremony at the Beverly cenotaph.

Public service at the Cenotaph.  |  Credit: Beverly Memorial Cenotaph Committee