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The Village of Briercrest

Box 25
Briercrest, SK
S0H0K0

Phone: 1-306-799-2066
Fax: 1-306-799-2067

Email:
villageofbriercrest@sasktel.net

History

The VIllage

The site of the present village was purchased by the CNR in 1911 about the time the railway line was constructed. Many business buildings and homes were built by 1911. At the time of incorporation as a village in April of 1912, there were over 100 persons residing in the village.

The name Briercrest was given to the first post office that was located on the farm of Captain Charles Jaques in 1902. Mrs. Jaques had chosen the name after the wild roses growing on a ridge nearby and agreed to the use of the name for the village.

Today, almost 100 years later the village remains part of an active community with businesses and community organizations serving the area. About 125 residents currently live in the village.

The village is located about 45 km southeast of Moose Jaw and about 80 km southwest of Regina, Saskatchewan. It is serviced by Highway #339 and a short-line railroad operated by Southern Rails Co-operative.

Brier Rose Cultural Centre

Dedicated to Edna Jaques

Edna Jaques was born to a Great Lakes captain in Collingwood, Ontario, on January 17th 1891. At the age of eleven she moved with her family to Saskatchewan to homestead. The family farm became the nucleus of the community of Briercrest. Her mother ran the first post office from their farm and, inspired by the crest of the hills covered in brier roses, named the post office Briercrest.

Edna's poetic bent was evident as soon as she learned to write and she was constantly jotting down rhymes on scraps of paper. Her first published work appeared in the Moose Jaw Times when she was thirteen years of age. A year later, she sent a selection of her poems to evangelist Billy Sunday who set them to music and sang them at revival meetings. In her early twenties in Calgary, she wrote the war poem that was to bring her widespread recognition. Later, printed on a card along with the Belgian National Anthem, the poem was sold throughout the United States at 10¢ a copy and raised one million dollars for war relief. It was later read at the unveiling of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Washington, D.C.

Edna's first lecturing engagement occurred in 1929 when the president of the Canadian Club in Moose Jaw asked her to make an after dinner speech. She subsequently found herself in such demand as a public speaker that she travelled extensively across Canada.

She wrote some 3,000 poems and published several poetry collections during her lifetime.

The Peachey House

The "Peachey House" at 305 Railway Ave, Briercrest, built by Alex Boan on his farm, was later purchased by Bruce Jaques (brother of Edna) and moved to his farm. Eventually, it was moved to its present location beside the home of Captain and "Maw" Jaques (parents of Edna) by Alex Boan for his family dwelling. The last resident in the home was Emma Peachey who moved there in 1969.

In the early 1930's, Edna Jaques was living with her parents and used to regularly drop in to visit Alex and Dorothy Boan in this house.

Because it is so closely associated with Edna Jaques it is only fitting that it should honour her.

The "Peachey House" was designated as a heritage property on November 5th 2008 by the Village of Briercrest. The Brier Rose Cultural Centre was incorporated on December 22nd 2008 and the Board of Directors was formed. The first objective listed in the incorporating documents reads as follows: "to provide a forum for the community of people interested in prairie literature and the history of Briercrest, especially as they pertain to Edna Jaques and the Jaques family".

Today

The Peachey House is in the process of joining with and also moving beside the Briercrest and District Museum located at the south end of Main Street. It was felt by both the Cultural Centre’s Board of Directors and the Museum Board that it would have a much better exposure and in return have a lot more visitors to the Cultural Centre if it was moved next to the Museum. In the mean time until the move, you can still visit the Peachey House where it is and enjoy what a wonderful Heritage Site it is.

If you have any questions call Jacqueline at 1-306-799–4414


Briercrest Bible College

Briercrest and the surrounding area was originally populated by a blend of farmers, educators, businesspeople, and the occasional politician. People from the East, West, and the US all moved to this area of lush farmland, bringing with them a strong religious bent. In response to this, The Bible School opened its doors on October 19th 1935 with an enrollment of 11 students.

We rented the Nichol's House and growth was immediate requiring additional space. The Jamieson Building was rented the next year. In 1938, the Yale Hotel was obtained from the Village in lieu of building a town hall. The following years the Gilroy and Walker houses were purchased. We also purchased a large home and moved it into the village west of the Walker house. All this to make room for a growing student body that numbered 110 by 1940.

After the war in 1946, we purchased the Caron Airport to become the home of the Briercrest Bible College. At Caronport, we also opened a residential High School and a Grade School for children of the Faculty and married students. Interest in the schools continued to grow so that by 1985 there were 793 students enrolled in the college, another 300 in the High School and 150 in the Grade School.

Today, Briercrest Bible College has over 10,000 alumni throughout the world. A mountain in Jamaica is named Briercrest in honour of the school where the missionaries studied – Briercrest Bible College in Canada!

The Briercrest & District Museum

P.O. Box 216,
Briercrest, SK
S0H 0K0

Located in the former school building, the museum houses twelve theme rooms showcasing the district’s rich past. There is also an ice cream parlour modeled after Anderson’s Ice Cream Parlour.

The museum is open:
Saturday from 10:00 am – 4:30 pm and Sunday from 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm.
During the week we are open by appointment by calling:
1-306-799-4951
1-306-799-4424
1-306-799-2004