100 Years, 100 People: 1940 - 1949
War, Fire and New Beginnings
Ernie MacLeod was born in High River, Alberta. He received his engineering education at the University of Alberta. In 1939, Macleod joined the team at Calgary Power as a floorman at the Ghost plant. His starting salary was $70 Cdn a month. In 1939, two prisoner-of-war camps were established near Seebe to hold German and Italian soldiers. The Canadian Army issued handguns and rifles to Calgary Power employees, including Macleod, should they have to defend themselves or the installations against escaped prisoners. Then, in 1940, MacLeod joined the Canadian Navy and went to war. He returned in 1946 to work again at Seebe. This time, he worked in rural electrification. MacLeod retired in 1977 after 38 years with Calgary Power.
Gifford Horspool was born in Illinois in 1897. He was raised in Lethbridge and Calgary. At age 18, Horspool left home to serve in the Canadian Army during World War I. At his return in 1919, Horspool completed his studies at the Technical School in Calgary. In July 1920 he was hired by Calgary Power as a floorman at the Horseshoe power station. By November, he had been promoted to full-fledged operator. From then on, his title changed six times. He was known to possess uncommon mechanical skills; he could fix or assemble exceptionally complex machines. In fact, his talent was recognized outside Canada and he was sent to India for several months to support the building of a new power plant there.
After 44 years with Calgary Power, Horspool retired in 1964 as a plant supervisor.
Malcolm Clarke was born in Langham, Saskatchewan in 1918. During the Depression, Clarke completed his Industrial Electricity studies at the Institute of Technology in Calgary. His career with Calgary Power started in 1937 when he became a floorman at Seebe. During each summer, Clarke was also sent to work at the Ghost plant. When the fire broke out at the Horseshoe plant in 1941, Clarke was one of the many employees who spent exhausting hours trying to control the fire and repair the damage from the blaze. In 1947, the company built the Barrier hydro plant and introduced the use of remote control. By then, Clarke was promoted to chief operator at Barrier. As the system presented several problems, Clarke and Tom Cardell modified and redesigned the equipment until it worked effectively. With their experience and expertise, all the hydro plants were eventually converted to remote control, with Seebe as the control centre.
After 45 years with Calgary Power, Clarke retired in 1982 as technical specialist at Seebe.
Henry "Hank" Bradley
Henry Bradley was born in Brushy Ridge, west of Calgary, in 1908. After finishing his Electrical Line studies at SAIT in Calgary, Bradley worked as an errand and delivery boy. In 1930 at the age of 22, Bradley joined the Calgary Power team as a patrol man. In 1947, as district manager, Bradley was the first employee to operate the company’s first mobile radio. Later on in his career, Bradley was known as Calgary Power’s safety man. He was a pioneer in the field of pole-top rescue and helped to develop the safety techniques practiced by linemen in the province. Bradley also played a key role in creating the company’s first pension plan and an employee credit union.
Bradley retired in 1972 after 42 years with Calgary Power.
Claude Hawkins was born in Red Deer, Alberta and received his education in Calgary. During World War II, Hawkins served in the Royal Canadian Air Force and in 1944 he received his pilot wings. Before joining Calgary Power, Hawkins worked as a shift engineer in a power company in British Columbia. He began his employment with Calgary Power in 1946, when he was hired at the Victoria Park steam plant. Hawkins was later appointed superintendent of Wabamun in 1953. He spent a few months in England learning about turbines and generators for the new plant. He lived part-time in camp at Wabamun while construction was taking place in 1954 and 1955 until his family moved in the summer of 1956. Hawkins continued as superintendent while the rest of the units were added and the plant was transitioned to a coal generation facility. He passed away in 1975.