Langley in History: The Mad Mule of Murrayville!

Eighty

Years

Ago

May 23, 1935

Gerald Charter sold his ice cream and confectionary business to R. Wall of Vancouver.

The building inspector noted that there were several buildings being put up without permits. Council authorized him to take steps to enforce the bylaw.

A dance planned for May 24 in the Athletic Hall was postponed, due to other attractions.

Seventy

Years

Ago

May 24, 1945

A land drive to enlarge the Langley Prairie athletic field by six acres raised $3,816.50 – more than was needed.

Echo Lidster, a former junior club worker in Langley, was appointed temporary assistant to New Westminster district agriculturalist Gordon Langdon.

Two weeks of hot pursuit ended in the capture of a mule that had broken loose and jumped a fence. Three days after “The Mad Mule of Murrayville” was coralled by an irate farmer, it jumped the fence again, this time at Fry’s Corner, where it had been shipped by its captors. Bill Macklin of Murrayville reported seeing it one night, staring at the moon, kicking up its heels, and whinnying – but when he crept up on it, the mule was suddenly “gone like magic.”

Sixty

Years

Ago

May 26, 1955

Size of the crowd at Langley’s May Day broke all records for the event.

Intruders broke into Lang­ley High School, breaking six doors and stealing $450.

Langley City’s police force was limited to a complement of three men, while the Town­ship’s force was cut to five members from six.

The first Langley City election drew 450 voters, less than half of those eligible. Elected were Alf Penzer, Eddie Mountain, John Condor, William Lott, and Andy Van Kuyk.

Fifty

Years

Ago

May 27, 1965

Nearly 8,000 children and parents turned out to see May Queen Sheila Winter crowned in Fort Langley.

A six-year-old playing with pals on the road was killed beneath a pickup truck at the corner of Brown Road (240th St.) and 36A Ave.

Competing for the Miss Langley title were Margaret Watt, Elaine Good, Kirsten Wagerer, Louise Hruby, Catherine Johnson, leona Preister, Sheila Waugh, Linda Ollinger, and Valerie Cobb.

Forty

Years

Ago

May 22, 1975

A violent cloudburst during the maypole dancing threw Fort Langley’s May Day celebrations into disarray.

Preliminary approval for a 75-bed extended care facility for Langley Memorial Hospital was given by the Central Fraser Valley Regional Hospital Board. The new facility trumped plans for a 25-bed addition to the Cedar Hill Estended Care Unit. 

Thirty

Years

Ago

May 22, 1985

School trustee Robert Kearl was surprised that his motion banning the subject of abortion from Langley classrooms was defeated. His fellow trustees noted that abortion was not included in the curriculum anyway, and trustee Marlene Grinnell said she had not heard a single complaint on the matter in her five years on the school board.

One-legged cross-Canada runner Steve Fonyo decided to run on the south side of the Fraser River, meaning his route would cut through Langley as he neared the end of his journey.

Thousands lined Fort Langley’s streets to watch about 100 floats in the May Day parade.

Coghlan residents opposed a vinegar bottling plant proposed for their area.

Twenty

Years

Ago

May 24, 1995

Sunshine lit up the 100 entries in Fort Langley’s 73rd annual May Day Parade which wound its way through a crowd estimated at between 4,000 and 5,000. May Queen Jenny McIntyre of Langley Prairie Elementary School was crowned by retiring queen Darcie Olnik of Otter Elementary.

Steve Burton’s motion opposing plans for a new university in Cloverdale was carried by Township Council. Burton and his fellow council members felt the new facility should be built further from Vancouver, to cater more to the needs of the Fraser Valley.

A surprise announcement that the provincial govern­ment planned to spend $1.3 million to improve Langley schools just had local officials clamouring for more.

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