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Historical Society brings new mural to the Wadey Visitor Information Centre

posted on Jul 6 2018

Stephenson Livery Stable by artist John Ellenberger

The Historical Society, the Town Economic Development Tourism Committee and artist John Ellenberger have been working together to bring a historical mural project to Blackfalds.

These organizations worked together to identify locations in the community that would be well - suited for the mural placement. The Wadey Centre grounds were chosen as the best location and the Historical Society had John Ellenberger paint the mural. Town Staff assisted in building and setting up the frame to mount the mural where the artist then came and placed it.

The mural tells the story of Frank Stephenson who, along with his brother Charles, built a livery stable on the east side of Broadway Avenue. These stables were an important aspect of the community as many people owned or rented horses as transportation - before automotive vehicles came into existence.

The livery man looked after the housing, harnessing and feeding of the horses, usually for a charge of 25 cents per day. He was often a blacksmith as well, providing wheel repair and horse shoeing. The livery also hired out horses, wagons or carriages, allowing a visitor who arrived by train the means of getting to a destination or touring the area.

Livery Stables also served as an information hub since when visitors arrived, they first learned at the stables where they would find food, accommodations, shopping, land office etc. In many ways it provided similar services to those now offered at the Wadey Visitor Information Centre.

A plaque telling the story of the mural will be installed later this summer.

Be sure to check out this wonderfully historic mural at the Wadey Centre!

4400 South St | Blackfalds, AB | T0M 0J0