May 1940 and Tisdale Coop Burns

FTLComm - Tisdale - November 22, 1999
When the Beeland Coop's web site was being constructed we needed some pictures of the orginal Coop that opened in Tisdale in the summer of 1939. We came up with on picture which was a photocopy of the original photograph now in the archives of Federated Coop in Saskatoon. But when manager Larry Parks was talking to Don Lamb about the site and showed him the pictures on the site Mr. Lamb remembered the event.

With a little digging around in his photos he came up with the pictures he took that day fifty-nine years ago. The pictures were taken on a 126 camera and were printed as contact prints so the quality of the images is extra ordinary. The picture above shows the Tisdale Coop's facility with its tanks on fire beside the warehouse and office building. It is important to remember that this was the second year of the war and picture of burning buildings seemed to be par for that era.
Don Lamb snapped the picture above right from his own yard as you can see the smoke and flames over his wood pile and back fence. The picture above right shows the back of the Coop site as the tanks cook off and vapour fills the air around the tanks.
In these pictures we have moved around to the side of the buildings (above left) with hoses in hands it looks like the realisation that fighting this inferno was beyond their capabilities as you can see the hoses are not charged. At this point the buildings, warehouse and office building are still standing but in the next picture (above right) everything has ignited and intense flames roar from the warehouse. During that era a lot of fuel was sold in drums and within that warehouse would have been the drums of fuel. It is important to note that Mr. Lamb had moved back from the site at this point as the heat would have been intense as would the disconcerting banging as steel gas barrels would make as the vapour inside produced explosive ruptures. Remarkable pictures.