Gasoline Alley Museum

Gasoline Alley Museum located at Heritage Park in Calgary, Alberta, is a “must see” if you are in the area. This museum is open year round. The historical village portion of Heritage Park is open mid-May to October. I will do a separate post on the historical village portion of the park. This post contains a lot of photos, so it may take some time to load if you have internet issues.

The museum contains antique cars, trucks, gas pumps and signage from petroleum companies. All of the items were donated from a local businessman, Ron Carey. In talking with one of the docents working in the museum, they received about 1/3 of his collection of vehicles. He also stated they believe the museum houses the largest collection of gas pumps in Canada.

Our friends that we are traveling with, Karen and Al Phillips, found the ”Phillips” gas pump.

The green vehicle on the right is a 1937 Terraplane “Big Boy” Pickup, featuring a waterfall grill. A 1912 Buick Model 2-A Express Truck is to the left.

The rear view of the trucks.

This is a 1924 unrestored International Truck that was found rusting away on a farm. It has been left as they found it.

The first outdoor gasoline pump was invented by Sylvanus Bowser. In 1905, the “Bowser Self-Measuring Gasoline Storage Pump,” a metal tank inside a wooden cabinet with a flexible hose and manual suction pump, was put into service. The Shell tank below is a model from 1911.

1911 pump with 1950s model in rear

The first pumps were called “pre-visible pumps” since customers could not see what they were buying.

In 1915, “visible pumps” were invented. Gas was pumped from an underground storage tank into the “visible” glass tank, so customers could see what and how much they were buying. Apparently people felt they were getting cheated by the gas companies, so this solved the problem. 100 plus years later, people still feel cheated by the gas companies!

Visible pumps

Clock-faced pumps began appearing in the 1920’s that were faster and more accurate than the visible pumps. A bell rang with every gallon dispensed, and the dial would show the total amount pumped.

Clock-faced pumps

In 1934, the computer pump was invented. It would “compute” the total sale in dollars and gallons.

Computer pumps

A rare, fully restored 1926 Shell Tanker fuel delivery truck with a 500-gallon fuel tank and 12 5-gallon fuel cans.

1919 Oldsmobile 3/4 Ton Truck. Trucks like these were very popular with farmers and delivery companies.

1927 GMC Sedan Delivery Vehicle. The Imperial Bank of Canada had a fleet of maroon vehicles. This one was used to deliver packages.

1956 Plymouth Sport Suburban Station Wagon. The lighting doesn’t really show how bright pink this vehicle is. I think every person walking by said “wow, that’s really pink!”

1931 L-29 Cord, a popular front-wheel drive car.

1932 Auburn with a 6.4-liter V12 engine.

1905 Cadillac, found in an abandoned gold mine in Northern California. It was likely a Model E Runabout that was converted by a prospector into a truck. It has been preserved to the condition it was found in.

Front and rear photos of a 1915 Cadillac that was retrofitted in 1922 as a tow truck.

A 1908 Mitchell. The MItchell Motor Car Company was located in Racine, Wisconsin. We are both from Wisconsin, but I had never heard of the company until I saw this vehicle.

The museum has an extensive collection of signs.

Below, on the left is a 1909 McIntyre Model M high wheel runabout. A 1911 Model 49 Overland is on the right.

On the left is a 1918 Chevrolet 490 (named for it’s selling price of $490). It was designed to compete with the Ford Model T. The maroon vehicle is a 1922 Gray-Dort Model 19-B, produced in Chatham, Ontario.

Two photos of a 1933 Diamond T Brewery Truck Model 210-FF. Diamond Ts were considered to be the ”Cadillac of Trucks” based on their performance and construction.

The green vehicle is a 1945 Federal Dump Truck that could hall four yards. The red vehicle is a 1941 Chevrolet 1 1/2 ton Tow Truck.

A rare 1949 Endor Pixie Motorized Bicycle, with a two speed gearshift on the left handlebar and a twist grip throttle on the right. It had a top speed of 26 mph.

Front and rear photos of a 1928 Ford AR Roadster Pickup. This was a Canadian built model, because both the driver and passenger doors open. Fords built in the US had no drivers door that opened, to prevent drivers from stepping out and into traffic. In Canada, some provinces drove on the right, and some on the left, up until the 1940s. So two functional doors were needed.

This was just a wonderful museum. There is such a variety of vehicles on display, in various conditions. My photos are only a fraction of what they have on display here. If you are in the Calgary area, make sure to stop in – you won’t regret it.

Quote of the Day: “The best car safety device is a rear-view mirror with a cop in it.” – Dudley Moore

May 2022 Cost Updates and Instagram posts


While we were waiting to cross the border into Canada on May 17, 2022 , we recorded the mileage on our motorhome at 10,925 miles. We have driven 902 miles from May 17 to the 31st, and have purchased 433.47 liters of gasoline, which equals 114.50 gallons. Total cost for fuel on the motorhome since crossing the border May 17th was $585.60. This works out to an average of $5.11/gallon. And this was all in the Province of Alberta. Where gas is cheap! Alberta prices ranged from 1.69/liter to 1.769/liter. Per our friend Don, gas is well regulated here, so you don’t get the wild price swings like in the US. One gallon of gas equals 3.78 liters (it’s all about the math!). We are now in British Columbia, and gas is over $2/liter.

May campground and entertainment costs

We had 15 nights of camping in Canada in May, at a total cost of $510.98 American, which works out to $34.07 per night. We have had full hookups (water/sewer/electric) and places with just electric (and the electric is 30 amps). There are many options to choose from, so your campground costs will vary. Don’t plan on having much for wi-fi! Even the campgrounds that advertise internet – it’s not always usable. (I’m currently writing this at 4:30 am – that’s when I can get on the campgrounds free wi-fi. It’s been light outside for about 45 minutes, so if feels more like 6 am.) We don’t have a satellite dish, and have always relied on over the air for television. We have not been able to pick up anything over the air, so if that is something that is important to you, pack a lot of DVD’s!

We have visited many museums and toured the local towns. Entertainment costs will vary based on your own personal interests. We have spent a total of $97.00 since May 17th on museums and sightseeing adventures. These are in American dollars. Right now, $1 Canadian equals 78 cents American, so we use our credit card as much as possible to get the more favorable exchange rate.

Prices in the grocery stores are comparable to costs in the United States for most products. Dairy and Canadian meat and chicken are a bit higher. Butter is sold by the pound (454 grams) but it is not divided into quarters like in the United States. I would have an issue with this for baking!

May Instagram posts

As promised, for those folks that are not on Instagram and/or don’t want to be on more social media sites, (thinking of you Ole!) I will have links to the posts that I made. So if you are interested in what else I have posted, just click on the links below. You can go through the photos on the posts by swiping to the left on the pictures. Given the limited internet, I will continue to use Instagram for quick updates on where we are. Instagram will always be the most current way to keep up. For more detailed posts on some of the places we have visited, I will continue to do blogs (although I need to stop taking so many photos!). I still have several more blogs to post on some more museums from May, so stay tuned.

If for some reason the links are not working, or you have any issues, please let me know at

Quote of the day: “Often, bumpy roads lead to beautiful places.” – Dave Martinez

The Military Museums

Located in Calgary, Alberta, is The Military Museums (yes, plural). The building complex contains museums honoring the Air Force, Navy and Army, along with various divisions within the Army. Plan on spending several hours here, as there is a lot to see.

Princess Patricia’s Canadian Light Infantry (PPCLI)

Established in 1914 during World War I, the PPCLI is one of Canada’s most famous regiments. It was named after Her Royal Highness Princess Patricia of Connaught, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria.

PPCLI soldier’s in WWI bunker
Handguns assigned to PPCLI soldiers

Below depicts PPCLI soldiers using the Lewis Gun, an anti-aircraft machine gun used during WWII.

The PPCLI not only served during WWI, WWII and Korea, but most recently in Afghanistan. They had on display LAV III “Charlie” which was used in 2008 in Afghanistan.

Canadian Women’s Army Corps (CWAC)

Almost 22,000 women were a part of the CWAC, and were stationed at Army bases in Canada and overseas. The women provided support services in transportation, medical and administrative areas. The museum pays tribute to their service. The CWAC was demobilized after WWII ended.

Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF)

The RCAF was founded on April 1, 1924. The airman’s uniform was modeled after the Royal Air Force blue uniforms.

The museum has models of all the planes used by the Royal Canadian Air Force during WWII. It’s a model airplane lovers dream display.

A separate building held several airplanes used by the RCAF. A CF-104 Starfighter was on display.

There was a platform to view the cockpit of the Starfighter.

The museum also contained a CF-18 Hornet.

How do you tell the difference between a Canadian Hornet and an American version? The Canadian Hornet has a large light on the side by the cockpit. It is used for identifying aircraft in the darkness of the Canadian Artic.

Naval Museum

This was my favorite section of the museum, as they had a large display of aircraft, drone boat, uniforms, torpedos, various weaponry and models of ships past and present.

Among the many models of ships in the museum, is the HMS Bellerophon. This is the first Bellerophon, launched October 1786.

To the more modern day HMCS Calgary II. It is a Halifax Class Patrol Frigate, commissioned in 1995.

In 1955 Canada purchased 39 McDonnel F2H-3 Banshee planes. These planes were used until 1962 when the Royal Canadian Navy discontinued the use of fighter aircraft.

Hammerhead, a remote controlled small attack boat, with a maximum speed of 40 knots/74 km hour. Developed in Canada in 2008, it is still in use. It is the first time I have seen a “drone” boat.

This gun mounting was used for training at the West Coast Fleet School in Canada until 1995.

Ho, Ho, Ho and a Bottle of Rum!

The Royal Navy started the daily ration of rum to sailors around 1655. Rum was used as it kept better than beer in hot climates. Conditions were harsh on ships, and it was something the sailors looked forward to. The Canadian Navy followed the British and continued the tradition of rum rations until 1972. Below are various storage containers used for rum.

This copper set was used in WWII on HMCS Saguenay to measure out the daily issue of rum, about 2 5/8 ounces.

Naval Uniforms over the years


The four-rotor Enigma machine was used by the German Navy in 1942 to securely transmit communications from Naval headquarters. The allies realized the only way to break the code was to capture an Enigma machine. The Royal Navy Destroyer HMS Griffon made the first capture of an Enigma machine and documents on April 26, 1940 from the German trawler Polaris off the coast of Norway. It has been suggested by post-war historians that intercepting and decoding German communications shortened the war and saved thousands of lives.

If you are in the Calgary area, we would highly recommend a visit to The Military Museums. My blog only covers a fraction of what they have on display. It is truly a remarkable place.

Quote of the Day: “We must never forget why we have and why we need our military. Our armed forces exist solely to ensure our nation is safe, so that each and every one of us can sleep soundly at night, knowing we have ‘guardians at the gate.’ ” – Allen West