Langley Centennial Museum
Add As Favorite
Saved List Options
My Saved List
Create a New Saved List
Marshall Cronkhite oral history interview conducted by Loryl MacDonald on 19 Aug. 1991.
1 audio cassette.
19 Aug. 1991.
SR-163: Tracks 1 - 3 discuss the Cronkhite family and farm, briefly refernces the impact of World War One on his fathers health.
Track 4 describes County Line School and Langley High School. Mr. Mansor is mentioned.
Tracks 5 - 6 discuss leisure activities and church involvement in the County Line area.
Track 7 discusses the Depression.
Tracks 8 - 11 discuss World War II. Cronkhite's service in the air force is mentioned. Mackenzie King is discussed. The internment of Japanese-Canadians is discussed. The Takita family is mentioned.
Track 12 mentions shopping in County Line. The BC Electric is discussed.
Track 13 describes politics in County Line. The Poppy family, Flowerdew, and Skea are mentioned.
Track 14 discusses the changes over time in County Line.
Track 15 concludes the interview.
British Columbia Electric Railway Company Ltd. (BCER)
The British Columbia Electric Railway's interurban passenger service for the Fraser Valley, B.C., area came through Langley in 1910. The company was building rail lines into Langley as early as 1906, when they signed an agreement with Langley government. The company itself began as a merger of the National Electric Tramway and Lighting Company (Victoria), Vancouver Electric Railway and Light Company Ltd., and Vancouver & Westminster Tramway Company, and was responsible for hydroelectric power generation, power transmission, and electric rail lines on Vancouver Island and in Vancouver and the Fraser Valley. All three companies had gone into receivership in 1895, and the BCER was met with receivership in 1896, following the Point Ellice Bridge Disaster in Victoria. The company was only able to survive through assistance from London financers, and began operations in 1897 as an English-owned company. A station built at 240 St. in the general area formerly known as Harmsworth in Langley was named after Rochfort Henry Sperling, general manager of the B.C. Electric Company, and the area subsequently came to be known as Sperling community. In 1910, a substation was built at Coghlan, and still stands (2021). The substation stepped the voltage from the power transmission lines down for use by the trains passing through. It did not provide power to the surrounding community. Interurban passenger services on the B.C.E.R's Fraser Valley Line ceased in 1950. The company ended all service in 1958, and broke up into the branches it is modernly: BC Hydro, Translink, and BC Transit.
County Line School
In 1892, County Line Elementary started out as Beaver Elementary, a one-room school located at the corner of Coghlan (256th St) and Roberts (56th Ave) Roads. In 1918 a new school was built further east on Roberts Road, and the name was changed to County Line. This new school was two storeys and had kerosene lamps and a wood furnace in the basement. In 1931 the school burned down. After the fire a new County Line School was built on the same property. The new school was also two storeys high, and was painted pink and had no windows in the front. It had a wide stairway leading to the front door, which was on the second floor where the three classrooms and cloakroom were. In 1947 the school buildings were transported to Otter Road (248th St.) and became North Otter Elementary. The present (2006) County Line Elementary opened on the corner of County Line and Kendall Roads in 1948. The school was continually added to over the coming decades. In 2004 the school sat on 4.5 acres and had 134 students.
Term Source: History of Langley Schools" by McTaggart, Pepin & Sherritt p. 28.
Cronkhite, Abram Marshall
Abram Marshall Cronkhite (1881-1958). Abram Cronkhite was born in 1881, in New Brunswick. Cronkhite married Agnes Macdonald, and together they had three children: John Morrison, Flora Eunice (married name Ellis), and Marshall Abram Cronkhite. Mr. & Mrs. Cronkhite come from a background of "United Empire Loyalist" stock. Mr. Cronkhite owned a farm in Aldergrove. He died in 1958, in Aldergrove.
Marshall Abram Cronkhite was born in 1925 in Langley (Aldergrove) to Abram Marshall and Agnes Cronkhite (née Macdonald). Marshall served in the Royal Canadian Air Force in World War II. After the war, Cronkhite received an agrology (agriculture and economics) degree from UBC. He worked for the provincial and federal governments as a farm management specialist, and returned to farming himself in 1966. He was married to Jennifer Cronkhite, and together they had five children: Andrew, Janet, Duncan, Brian, and David. Marshall was the brother of John Morrison and Flora Eunice (married name Ellis) Cronkhite. He died in 2015 on his dairy farm in Aldergrove, which had been "his lifelong home" (Aldergrove Star Obituaries, 10 Nov. 2015.).
Langley High School
In 1909 the first high school class was organized and held in rented quarters in Murrayville. From 1911-18, classes were held in Belmont Superior School (later Murrayville Elementary), but the school became overcrowded with elementary and high school students. The school board approached the Municipal Council, but their request for a new schol was turned down twice. The board resigned, but the next board was more successful and local contractor Owen Hughes was hired on a low bid of $11,900. The School Board temporarily found room for the overflow pupils from Murrayville in the downstairs portion of Milner Hall and by renting the Sharon Presbyterian Church Hall. In 1922, Langley High School moved from Murrayville to Milner School, where it remained until Langley High School was built on Yale Road in 1924. Langley High School opened in 1924 with two classrooms and one science room. It taught grades 9 to 12. Additional rooms were built in 1934. In roughly 1947 the new school on the current property (2005) was built, and it included Grades 11 and 12. In 1948, the old building on Fraser Highway became Langley Central Elementary, and the high school students moved to the current location (2006) at Langley SECONDARY School. In 1985 the school went from Grades 8-12.
See Also: Langley Secondary School
Term Source: History of Langley Schools" by Harry McTaggart, Maureen Pepin, and Norman Sherrit.
World War, 1939-1945
Saved List Options
My Saved List
Create a New Saved List
Argus v220.127.116.11 - Langley Centennial Museum