Welcome to Camrose Founders Days Festival

Celebrate culture and heritage during our largest community historical festival, Camrose Founders Days. WW I continued in 1915, influencing all corners of the world, even the small prairie community of Camrose as many local boys enlisted and were shipped overseas. It is said that Canada "came of age" during those war years. Camrose would not be the same. Celebrate 100 years of Scouting in Camrose and 100 years of Canadian Girls in Training in Canada.

*please note that due to conflicting schedule, the customary theatrical performance at the Bailey Theatre is not available this year.
It will return in 2016; we are sorry for the inconvenience.

Event Brochure

1915 Highlights:

  • Wheat hits highest price in Town's history in January 1915, the Camrose elevators paying $1.05 for No. 2 Northern wheat. Farmers were not selling, believing that wheat would climb to $1.25.

  • Camrose is asked to supply twenty men for the war, a phone call to the Town Office coming from Captain Daniels, C Company, 6th Battalion, Edmonton.

  • Dr. W.V. Lamb continued as our Medical Health Officer for a salary of $100/annum.

  • The Camrose Constituency Relief Fund, later renamed as the Canadian Patriotic Fund, to date in early January had collected $2,501.80. The amount that the Camrose area would raise would be $200,000. According to the Bank of Canada inflation converter, that would come to $4,301,694 in 2015 dollars.

  • An example of how funds were raised:
    Nearly $50 was raised at a euchre party hosted by the Ladies Patriotic League at the Canadian Club. Prizes were presented by Geo. P. Smith, a cream & sugar set, a silk work bag for the ladies and a box of cigars and pipe for the gentleman. The gentleman's prices were won and donated back for auction to raise more money.

  • In January, the Normal School had 128 students, 7 from Camrose; Mr. MacNally was principal.

  • Europe battles made front page news.

  • It was reported in January, ‘Elaborate preparations have been completed to guard Paris against possible raids by Germany's Zeppelin fleet'.

  • Hockey and curling continued to be of major interest to the 1915 community, front page news.

  • Curling club membership climbed to 76, increasing rinks to 19.

  • L.R. Jackson was elected as president of the Canadian Club.

  • Debating subjects: "Resolved that Consolidated Rural Schools are Preferable to Small Rural Schools" and "Resolved that Canada should Adopt the Australian Military Service".

  • A business tax was imposed by Town Council, 5% of rental value.

  • The licence fee for restaurants and laundries was raised from $5 to $50.

  • C.G. Corneille was appointed justice of the peace for a salary of $250/year.

  • With 1914 electrical plant surplus of $3,563.78, Town Council reduced the cost to consumers twice during the year. The waterworks operation saw a profit of $291.80, and it was noted that this utility was usually a losing venture.

  • A drunk a disorderly conviction carried a sentence of 3 months hard labor.

  • The David Theatre changed to the Mutual Film Corporation. One new film brought in was called "From the Manger to the Cross".

  • Mr. M.A. Maxwell considers new employment that would eventually take him away from Camrose. Recognized as one of the Founders Days Founders in 1911 when employed by the Town of Camrose as Engineer. His role in the successful development of both the Electric Plant and Waterworks installation allowed Camrose to emerge as a flourishing municipality.

  • Phone numbers still had 2-3 digits.

  • Made in Canada Ford Runabout retails for $540 and a 5 passenger Sedan, $1150, both included headlights! Mr. Drysdale, the Studebaker Agent, was selling a 5 passenger Six for $1,750, ads claiming they were two years ahead of anyone else's and a guaranteed smooth ride.

  • At a very large ski tournament hosted in Camrose, late February 1915, an Edmonton skier took first prize, A. Maland of Camrose came in 2nd and a Revelstoke skier took 3rd. It was reported to be the most successful tournament in the Fram Ski Club's history.

  • A new fire alarm system was approved by Town Council, one to be installed at the fire hall, guaranteed to wake sleeping fireman. And the second to be installed just outside the town clerk's office where it will be heard a block away.

  • The Scandinavian Prohibition League began campaigning for a dry Alberta.

  • Mr. Chas. Duggan filled train cars with over 500 hogs, sending to Montreal in hopes that they would fetch a better price than at Calgary and Edmonton packers. Hogs from other farmers brought the total to 1000.

  • Found within the Social and Personal column, James Pike sold his Ford car to V.E. Forster.



The Camrose Founders Days Festival Committee is proud to be honouring Theo C. Bailey as our 2015 community Founder!

A truly deserving individual to be
our Community Founder!
Theodore C. Bailey

Theo was born in Rosemont, Ontario in 1896, the youngest child with 9 older brothers and 2 sisters. He moved to Camrose in 1912, becoming a pharmacy apprentice at the S.E. Large Drugstore (later becoming Camrose Drug. He would soon put his career on hold to serve in WW I.

While a soldier serving with the First Canadian Infantry Battalion, Theo fought in the battles of Ypres, Salient, the Somme and the capture of Vimy Ridge. As a result of being wounded by shrapnel in 1917, he had chance encounter with a German corporal. Meeting amidst a near deserted battlefield, the German soldier assisted the injured Bailey to a British first aid cleaning station. Years later, Theo recalled the last words this very young man said to him... "goodbye Canada".

Recovery was slow for Theo, transferred first to a hospital in England and then Edmonton; he was discharged on June 14, 1918.

Theo returned to Camrose, later marrying Isabella Stuart in 1924, graduated from the University of Alberta in 1926 and continuing with his pharmacy career.

Theo Bailey was an exemplary community leader. He served on City Council, was president of the Royal Canadian Legion, organized the community Remembrance Day ceremonies for years. He was the first inductee into the Lions Sports Hall of Fame for his dedication to the sport of hockey and was active on many successful committees (including chair of a committee that raised $42,000 for Camrose's first swimming pool.

The Camrose Founders Day Committee salutes Theo Bailey, an outstanding choice as 2015 Camrose Founder.