Here's a great photo of the hotel that I found on the internet, looking exactly as I remember it:
[photo by Lawrence Hutchinson, taken in 1981, found here on Flickr ]
But the topic of my posts today and on Thursday is not actually the Queen's Hotel per se but instead, the brick building in the photo which you can see to the right of the hotel, on the other side of my grandma's flower garden and hedge. This large commercial building was built in 1907 for J.P. Beauchamp & Co. as a store. In later years, it served many other functions, including as a telephone operators building and a community hall. But no matter its purpose, the building's most notable feature was always a huge painted advertisement on one side for Christie Biscuits, Purest of All Pure Foods.
One of the small prairie towns in which I found myself this summer was precisely my old Saskatchewan stomping grounds. The Queen's Hotel is gone now, an empty lot all that remains. The hotel burnt down in a 2003 fire that occurred about 15 years after my grandparents ceased owning the business. And of course, my grandma's flower garden is long gone now too. But look what's still standing!
[photo © Debra She Who Seeks, August 2017]
I assume that ad was painted in 1907 when J.P. Beauchamp had the building constructed. Given that his corporate name was painted right above it, this theory seems plausible. So now in 2017, the building and the ad are both 110 years old.
In Thursday's post, I'm going to share some old family photos of the Christie Biscuits ad that were taken over the years.