Downtown Grande Prairie Presents

Memory Lane

A History of Downtown Grande Prairie from 1914 - 2014

SPRA 2003.71.04 Ruth Logan photo

This photograph of Bill’s Real Good Food Café, on the north-east corner of 100th Street and 100th Avenue bears a map of the Alaska Highway, dating it to 1942 when the Alaska Highway was being built. Bill’s Café became Joe’s Corner Coffee Shop in 1948 when it was purchased by Chinese restaurateur Joe Mark.

Neighbouring businesses include the Buffalo Lakes Lumber Co. and the Yukon Southern office which was founded in 1933 as United Air Transport by 24-year-old Grant McConachie. This was the first airmail and passenger transport service between Edmonton and Grande Prairie. The company was purchased by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1941 and re-named Canadian Pacific Airlines, and Grant McConachie became president of CP Air in 1947.