First Church of Christ Fire

I woke up this morning to another fire. This one a little closer to home at the Church of Scientists down the street. The church is a historical landmark in Calgary and is next to the Lougheed House. The church was built in 1927 for the Christian Science congregation who was established in Calgary around 1898.

Some of the more famous members of the church included Reuben Jamieson (Calgary’s mayor from 1909-1910) and his wife Alice Jukes Jamieson who was appointed in 1914 as the first female juvenile court judge in the British Empire and later became magistrate of the women’s court.

The fire started at 4 in the morning and fire fighters were at the scene for most of the day. According to the press release given by the fire department, the fire was a stubborn one that created some problems because to the older, heavy timber used in the construction. The fire eventually burnt through the main floor and then burned through the roof which fell inside the brick shell of the building. The fire commander made the decision to fight the fire from above to minimize the impact on the brick walls as the building has been designated as a heritage site.

Residents of the surrounding buildings were evacuated in the morning and allowed back into their homes around 2 in the afternoon. On my way home from dance class I could see the damage done and it was quite significant. It will be interesting to see if the Church decides to keep the building or to scrap it.

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