For this True North Tale I sat down with former Alderman and Mayor David Lovell and he told me what Yellowknife was like when he moved here in the fifties (1950’s)
“it was sort of a strange town. It could have as easily been in LABRADOR ,Northern Newfoundland or somewhere. There were four (4) very DISTINCT communities there was The con,The Giant those were the two mines that were in production, the old town and the new town “
He talked about how since so many of the men were former servicemen and between all the moms that knew everything that was going on. It was pretty hard for a kid to get away with something back in the day.
“80% (Of the men) had been in uniform and there were things you did and didn’t do but adults knew what to ignore and what to really put their foot down about that was the first thing. Secondly it was like having three-Hundred (300) Mothers FORTUNATELY only One-hundred and fifty (150) were on duty on any given day”
He told me that even when people in Yellowknife were at odds with each other they would still find ways to help one another.
“At the Height of the giant strike I remember one time a car went in the ditch,So i went out of my house to go help him. Suddenly a car stops and two guys jump out and start helping us push the car and then another person comes from the sidewalk and we got the car out and i was thinking you’re not dead yet yellowknife . “
And David believes the spirit of interconnectivity and community caring still lives on in today’s territorial and city governments.
“We are very well served by our GOVERNMENTS and i am talking both territorial and city. they do a good job and i think sometimes people don’t appreciate what a good job they do”- David Lovell , FOrmer Alderman and mayor of Yellowknife