Back in early May, Jack Scott emailed me about donating few items his family had picked up at the Calgary Stampede’s Indian Village in 1956 to the Archives. He was emailing from Dalkeith, a small suburb of Edinburgh, Scotland but had plans to come to Calgary at the end of the summer and would like to bring the items along.

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Jack, aged 6, and his sister at the 1956 Stampede. He had the original photo restored, but the Indigenous man’s face remains damaged.

Chatting over coffee, Jack marveled over how much Calgary has changed since he was here in 2001. In a thick Scottish accent, he explained that his dad was in the Air Force and so he, his sister and his Scottish mother moved around. A lot. Jack was born in Manitoba and lived in Whitehorse and Calgary before moving with his family to France and, eventually, Scotland. The jacket and gloves travelled along with them. “There I am, aged six,” he said, pointing at a young boy wearing a too-large headdress in the restored photograph he brought along. It was taken at the time that his family bought the jacket and gloves.

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The front and back of the Stampede Archives’ newest donation: a jacket bought in Indian Village in 1956. On the back, “White Horse Y.T.” has been added in black and white beads. The family had recently moved from Whitehorse to Calgary.
Indian Village gloves
These well-loved beaded riding gloves with gauntlets accompanied the jacket.

“Sorry it’s dirty,” Jack said, pointing to the jacket. “I tried to get someone to clean it in Scotland, but they were too afraid to wreck the beading.” No problem. The wear and tear show how well-loved the jacket and gloves truly were. Jack’s sister used them for years when she was riding, though she complained that the jacket was not warm enough. To solve this, Jack’s mom brought it to a seamstress to line it with one of his dad’s silk sleeping shirts.

The maroon silk shirt that now lines the jacket was actually one of Jack’s dad’s sleeping shirts. It was added to make the jacket warmer.
The maroon silk shirt that now lines the jacket was actually one of Jack’s dad’s sleeping shirts. It was added to make the jacket warmer.

Despite offers from collectors, Jack firmly believed that the items needed to come back to Calgary. Because his family bought it at Indian Village, the Stampede’s Archives are a perfect fit to store, protect and – in the future – display them. Having travelled from Calgary to Europe to Scotland, the jacket and gloves have made a worldwide journey and are now back with the Calgary Stampede.
If you have any items you would like to donate to the Calgary Stampede Archives, please contact archives@calgarystampede.com.