He was Proud to Have Been at the First Calgary Stampede
The stylish young couple with the baby carriage are Elmer and Agnes Hansen, who, after three years in Calgary, were well established, with a new house and a new baby, my father, Harold Hansen. Like many others, they went to the first Calgary Stampede to see the sights, but they returned yearly to support an institution which for them embodied all that was so good in this new land.
Elmer had first visited North America in 1907, looking for alternatives to the structured society of his homeland, Denmark, which he referred to as the "Old Country". After seeing what Chicago, and then Boise, Idaho had to offer, as well as points in between, Elmer returned to Denmark, married his sweetheart and tried to settle down in Copenhagen as a store proprietor. The New World, with it's open-ended opportunities still called to him; he turned his back to his friends and family, and with his new bride set off on the adventure of a lifetime. They arrived in Calgary in 1909 and soon settled into a good life in this thriving city, he as a house builder and she a young mother. Within two more years, they would leave Calgary to take up farming in the Vulcan area, to retire back in Calgary in the 1950's.
Harold would develop his own affection for the Stampede, rarely missing a yearly visit and always encouraging support for his favourite Calgary event. Square dancing, flipping or eating pancakes, touring the exhibits and enjoying the evening Grandstand show all rolled into one enthusiastic Stampede experience which he enjoyed for all of his ninety-one years. He was proud to have been at the first Calgary Stampede.