Longview celebrates 50th anniversary
Foothills: Village incorporated in 1964
Wednesday, Jul 23, 2014 06:00 am
The co-operation of landowners and the people who rented the land led to the formation of a scenic village 50 years ago.
The village of Longview celebrated its 50th anniversary during Little New York Days in the village approximately 40km southwest of Okotoks.
Rose Dayment and her husband Joe owned the Esso gas station back in 1964 (where the present Fas Gas is) and their house was in the back.
Becoming incorporated allowed the residents of Longview to buy their homes.
“It (Longview becoming incorporated) meant that we could own our own land and our own lot,” Rose Dayment said. “It made your home more special. People would fix up their homes and make it look nice and continue to develop.
“When you didn’t own the land underneath your home, you tended not to do to much to it.”
Becoming incorporated also brought improved service and water to the community.
The lots were priced at $185 each in 1964.
Prior to 1964, the folks in Longview had rented the land in the community. A committee, led by Longview citizens Joe Dayment, Homer Hayden, Bob Hampton and Mel McCaig, was formed in 1961 and they worked closely with the municipal district and the province for the incorporation. The land was purchased from Gallup and Sons and the Malmbergs. It became the village of Longview of Jan. 1, 1964. A census showed Longview had a population of 246 people.
It was humble beginnings for the first Longview council — former mayor Ron Whenham and councillors Stan Gallup and Joe Dayment.
“(Some of) the first meetings were held at the Gallup residence,” Dayment said. “The little village office was on the second floor of the Twin Cities Hotel. Ron Whenham owned the bar and he let his office be used for the village for that first little while.”
The village office would later be at the now Longview Community Hall, which was moved to the community from the Hartell area in 1964.
Bella Gallup, 91, ran the Gallup and Sons general store, back in the early 1960s.
The store was located near the present Blue Sky Motel.
She has lived in Longview since she was a teenager. Her and her husband, Wallace, moved down near Pekisko Creek in 1961. She recalls when Longview went through the oil boom prior to the Leduc strike of 1947, when the community was thriving.
“There were hair dressers, a movie theatre and maybe six or seven restaurants just in the town of Longview,” Gallup said. “Everybody worked 12-hour shifts.
My two brothers, myself and mom and dad were living in this little house that is still in Longview. The beds were never empty because my dad would work nights while my brothers were working days.”
The family was working at Barbers Machine Shop, which has since moved to Calgary.
At times during the boom, Longview would reach populations in the 900 to 1,000 people mark. It dropped off as the oil boom slumped.
However, a thriving ranching industry and services in the village means it will continue to thrive. The village is a popular stopping point for motorcyclists, motorists and cyclists as they venture down Highway 22.
The current population of Longview is approximately 307.