Memorial Gates commemorate 67 students and faculty

On Campus News, 24 May 1996

Like many cities throughout the world, Saskatoon boasts a number of memorials to her sons and daughters who made the ultimate sacrifice overseas during World War I. The city's first major art collection honours the dead who attended Nutana Collegiate; a row of elms marking the entrance to Woodlawn Cemetery is dedicated to individual soldiers; Vimy Ridge, that most famous of Canadian battles, is commemorated by a memorial in Kiwanis Park; a statue in City Park was erected to Hugh Cairns, VC, commemorates celebrates 73 Saskatoon footballers; a clock honours a Star-Phoenix partner; and several churches house a variety of memorials, flags, statues, etc.

The Memorial Gates, while no longer marking the entrance to the University of Saskatchewan, remain the University's memorial to the 67 students and faculty who perished in the Great War. Designed by the original University architect, David R. Brown of Montreal, the memorial consists of two main gates, on either side, (originally*) for vehicular traffic and two small gates for pedestrians. The gates themselves are of solid bronze imported from England, the balance being of local greystone. A stone tablet, positioned between the bronze gates, bears the inscription:

These are they who went forth from this University to the Great war and gave their lives that we might live in freedom.

Erected in 1927-28 at a cost of thirty thousand dollars, the gates and tablet were unveiled by President W.C. Murray and the memorial dedicated by the Bishop of Saskatchewan on 3 May, 1928. From November of that year to the present time Remembrance Day services have been held annually at the Gates.

*A recent rerouting of the roadways has served to enhance the site of the Memorial Gates as the entrance to University Hospital and the Health Sciences Complex.

Stan Hanson