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Viva Vidora...textured

An old home moved off it's foundation now sits idle in the middle of what once was Main Street Vidora, Saskatchewan. July 16, 2010


Taken from wikipedia



In 1910 construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway line came through Vidora. Many of the CPR's engineers and surveyors were housed at a local farm house during construction of the rail line. Living at the same house where two girls named "Vi" and "Dora", the engineers and surveyors decided to use the two names to name the land because of their great hospitality, thus giving the town its name "Vidora". After the land was named, settlers as well as bootleggers began to settle the area starting the hamlet of Vidora. By 1917, the hamlet was incorporated as a village, and now had its very own town Council, and mayor. After becoming a village, Vidora began to grow quite fast and prosperous. By 1920, the village business districts consist of more than twenty businesses, including businesses such as a post office, cafe, pool hall, main hall, banks, lumber yards, general stores, a hotel and a spectacular row of 5 grain elevators. Vidora even had its very own electrical power plant, powering the whole town.


Vidora was also active socially, with church and school programs and annual summer fairs.


Prohibition Days


Like most towns throughout Alberta and Saskatchewan, Vidora began as a small parcel of land owned by the Canadian Pacific Railway. Like many towns of southwest Alberta and Saskatchewan such as Govenlock, Senate and Whiskey Gap, Alberta Vidora had a fair amount of bootleggers, that came into the area to smuggle rum, alcohol, and whisky across the border during Prohibition in the United States.


The Great Depression


Vidora’s future looked promising but due to the Great Depression years, with accompanying droughts, falling grain prices and poor crop yields, Vidora's population slowly began to decline. Beginning in 1924 a devastating fire destroyed many important businesses including Vidora’s first store, post office, cafe, pool hall and main hall. Then in 1926 and 1928 more vital businesses would also be wiped out by fire. In 1936 the C.P.R. station closed and afterwards moved to Frontier. In 1961 the Vidora General Store was moved to Robsart, then in 1969 the rural municipal office was also moved to Consul as did the Vidora Community Hall in 1976. To mark the end of its long prosperous life, Vidora's five grain elevators closed and were torn down sometime in the 1970s or 1980s.


Copyright Cody Kapcsos, 2012. All rights reserved.

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Taken on July 16, 2010