Glenbow Archives: NA-2186-52
Title: Burton-Deane house on west bank of Elbow
River, Calgary, Alberta.
Date: August 21, 1929
Remarks: Royal North-west Mounted Police
building. Prior to being moved across river.
Temporary bridge-work under construction, by
The deane house
The Deane House is
closed for rehabilitation until Fall 2014.
The Deane House rehabilitation is Phase One of a
HISTORY upgrade and expansion of Fort
Calgary. Click HERE
to learn more.
The Deane House was built in 1906 for
the then Superintendent of Fort Calgary, Captain Richard
Deane. The Captain felt that the quarters used by the
previous Superintendent were not good enough for his wife
Martha. (Martha Deane never lived in the house. She passed
away before she could join her husband in Calgary)
A budget of $5000.00 was set, the
plan was obtained and construction began in August using
prisoners from the guardhouse to excavate the basement.
Due to a carpenters' wages settlement, an increase from
.45 to .55 per hour, the final price of the house was
$6200.00. In his memoirs, Deane wrote about his new home,
"certainly the best house in Mounted Police occupancy at
The house was originally built near
the corner of 9th Avenue and 6th Street SE facing east
towards the Barracks and parade square. Deane, an
enthusiastic gardener, was responsible for the much
admired lawns and gardens surrounding the house.
In 1914 the Fort Calgary site was
purchased by the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway for use as a
rail terminal and the house was moved to the southeast
corner, near the site of the present day Interpretive
Centre, for occupation by the station agent.
The house was purchased by C.L.
Jacques in 1929 and moved again, across the Elbow River to
a new foundation on its present site. It was pulled across
the river on skids with the use of temporary pilings and a
steam tractor, a feat so remarkable it was written up in
an issue of 1930 Popular Mechanics. The house was put to
use as a boarding and rooming house and was commonly known
as Gaspe Lodge until 1973.
The City of Calgary purchased the
house in 1973 and for several years housed the Dandelion
Gallery, an artists and authors co-op and studio.
The R.C.M.P. Veterans Association
restored and enclosed the verandah as part of their
Centennial Celebration in 1974.
The Deane House, possibly the only
remaining building from the Fort Calgary site still
intact, was designated a Registered Historic Resource in
1978. It was vacated by the Dandelion Gallery in September
The house is operated by the Fort Calgary Preservation
Society as an autonomous body of The City of Calgary.
While The City does cover a small percentage of the
operating costs, Fort Calgary relies on revenues generated
from the restaurant and private functions in order to
cover all of its expenses.