I have limited information concerning the murals on the walls of Calgary #1 Legion and would appreciate any input from those that know more than I. I have been told that these murals were painted by Elsdon Brown. Comrade Brown was President of Calgary #1 Legion in 1977.
2 of the murals have been severely damaged caused by a leak on the East roof of the Branch. This leak was caused by the construction of the Bow Tower.
Elsdon Brown was President of Calgary #1 Legion and painted the murals on the walls on the main floor.
Damage to the Murals can be seen in this picture. When the Bow Parkade was being constructed the shaking from drills and cement pouring caused the Legion to seperate from the St. Regis.
Construction of the Bow started on June 13, 2007, with work starting on both sides of 6 Avenue South between Centre Street and 1st Street East. Sixth Avenue was excavated, after closure of the block (August 21, 2007) and the six level underground parkade was constructed on a two block area, on both north and south side of 6th Avenue. The excavation and construction of the Parkade shook the Legion badly causing a number of cracks throughout the building. Some of these cracks were repaired but the leaks from the roof were never fixed. Matthews Development, who oversaw the building of the Bow denied they were the cause of the leaky roof. Encana was the owner of the Bow Tower and Ledcor did all the construction. Encana sold ownership to H.R. Reit in 2007.
The St. Regis has had leaks a few times in the same area as the Legion has. When asking the workmen if they could fix the leaks on the Legion side, they would look at it but won't do any repairs. H.R. Reit (the current owner) has denied any blame that the construction caused our ceiling to leak.
You can see the crack in the exterior wall where the separation from the St. Regis and the Legion exists. They have put cladding on the east side of the St. Regis, but none on the west side.
Its funny their claim, that they did not cause the damage, somehow jumped a building and caused damage there.
A closer look at the water damage on the murals.
The photo on the left shows the huge crack between the Legion building and the St. Regis Hotel. There were a number of cracks in the Legion caused by the shaking of the ground, however the crack on the roof and wall of the east part of the Legion is where the roof leaks and is causing damage to the beautiful historic murals.
It breaks my heart to see how Encana, Matthews and H.R. Reit allowed this to happen.
In this photo you can see the huge crack from roof to ground circled in red. They have fixed the roof and wall on the east side of the St. Regis but not on the Legion side.
FYI: The photo on the right shows murals on the west wall of Memorial Hall. These murals are hidden behind the wood paneling. There are also murals painted on the wall on the stage that are also hidden. The picture was from an old newsletter dated 1960.
(Editor's Note: I had the pleasure of meeting the Grandson of Elsdon Brown Sr. Jay L Butler, a few days ago. He set me straight about who painted the murals. It was not Elsdon Brown Jr. who is pictured but his father, Elsdon Brown Sr. The following is an email from Jay:)
Message: I am the grandson of Elsdon Brown senior. He is the father of Elsdon Brown who was your president in 1977 and was very active in the annual poppy drive (also my uncle). The murals were actually painted by his father, Elsdon Sr, a WWI veteran and wonderful amateur painter. I don't know when the murals were painted but Elsdon Sr passed away in 1964 so obviously some time before then as he was in poor health for several years before he died. Just thought I'd add a little history for you. Regards.