One hundred years after Calgarians chose to dedicate the greatest outdoor show on earth to Canada’s returning First World War soldiers, the Mint has issued a new silver coin commemorating the historic Victory Stampede of 1919. The coin was unveiled at Stampede Park’s Military display, which showcases and honours Canada’s Armed Forces.
“The Calgary Stampede is an unforgettable celebration of Alberta’s pioneering spirit and thriving western culture,” said Marie Lemay, President and CEO of the Royal Canadian Mint. “As this year marks the 100th anniversary of the Victory Stampede, this coin is also a great way to remember the soldiers who defended our freedoms and values in the First World War.”
“The 1919 Victory Stampede offered a place for everyone to come together and celebrate following the Great War. One-hundred years later and we continue to be a gathering place for our community,” says Dana Peers, President & Chairman of the Board of the Calgary Stampede. “We are very proud of our history and to have it recognized with a commemorative coin is very special.”
Calgary artist Michelle Grant’s design on the reverse of this 99.99% pure silver coin captures the excitement of the roping competition, which was one of many rodeo events on the Victory Stampede program. The 57,000 spectators in attendance on the last week of August 1919, were regaled by cowboys and cowgirls showing off their skills in bronco riding, fancy roping, trick riding, relay races and more. Building on the success of that historic event, the Calgary Stampede became an annual tradition.
In the foreground of this classic Stampede scene, a selectively gold-plated cowboy riding atop his galloping steed tightly holds the reins in one hand while the other twirls a stranded rawhide lariat traditionally used for roping livestock. The rim of the coin itself emulates the stranded pattern of the lariat. The background is filled with spectators admiring the show from the original grandstands. “The Canadian Army is once again truly honoured by its partnerships with the Calgary Stampede and the Royal Canadian Mint,” said Brigadier General Stephen Lacroix, Commander, 3rd Canadian Division/Joint Task Force West and Honorary Stampede Parade Marshal. “We are humbled by the support of Canadians coast to coast to coast, and are looking forward to commemorating this 100th anniversary of the Calgary Stampede in true Albertan fashion as the ‘Army of the West’.”
Find more information on the Royal Canadian Mint’s website.
CoinsWeekly published an article about the 100th anniversary of the Calgary Stampede in 2012.
If you want to learn more about this annual event, visit the website of the Calgary Stampede.
And if you’re in Calgary already, why not visit the Money and Calgary exhibition?
Here you can see how the coin was unveiled and learn more about the historic Victory Stampede: