Canada’s Wooden Crib Grain Elevators

Ridpath, SK

Eric Gagnon has a long-standing interest in the railways and grain industry of Western Canada, but it was not until he drove the country roads of Manitoba and Saskatchewan in 1984, 1985 and 1986 that he was able to explore and photograph the remaining wooden grain elevators.  Many were in their last days, waiting to be converted to private use, left without rail service due to branch line abandonments by Canadian National and Canadian Pacific railroads, or soon to be demolished. 

The iconic shapes of wooden grain elevators have now almost completely disappeared from Western Canada's skyline, and with them many small communities, the family farms they served, and a pioneering way of life. The  larger and more efficient concrete elevators that replaced them are no longer the heart of the communities they serve.

(Click on photo to open album)