75 Noble Avenue (4)
These photos were shot when the Traffic Box was still located at Portage & Carleton, but it was always Tom's intent to have this one at Hargrave so that Timothy E could gaze across at the Eaton's building. In 2011 it was removed from its location at Portage & Hargrave and donated to a private citizen.
Location: N side bet. Henderson & Beatrice, traffic controller box on front lawn
Occupant: Traffic Controller Box
District: East Kildonan
Artist(s): Tom Andrich (Eclectic Fine Art)
Sponsors: Take Pride Winnipeg!
This is another in a series of Traffic Control Boxes in Downtown which artist Tom
Andrich has beautified with Heritage themes pertaining to our city's rich history. In 2011
the box was removed from the street because a larger box became required. The box
was donated to a private citizen. The 2 photos shown here are of the box at its original
Tom: "I wanted something that was going to represent Hargrave. To me Eaton's
represented Portage & Hargrave. I wanted Timothy because people remembered the
statue. Even people that don't remember the statue will have an image to remember
Timothy Eaton. That store did so much for Winnipeg- so many people in the city worked
there. So I wanted him looking across at the Eaton's Building but it's no longer there!"
(The historic Eaton's Building and Department Store was demolished in 2002 to make
room for The True North Centre Arena and entertainment complex).
The actual Victorian bronze statue of Timothy Eaton, the founder of T. Eaton Company,
is huge. Finished in 1919, it's a larger than life rendition of Timothy sitting in an ornate
wooden armchair with a long fringe of tassels around the base. More importantly, this
statue was said to reflect the high regard Eaton's employees (who themselves contributed
$15,000 towards it) had for a man who initiated a work day ending at 6 p.m., with a
half day holiday on Saturday, and who created the famous company slogan, 'Goods
satisfactory or money refunded.' Over the years the statue became popular with
Eaton's shoppers, who stopped to rub the toe of his shoe for good luck. As Andrich
states, the statue was a metaphor for the entire Company.
The Eaton's catalogue was another symbol Andrich thought of. For decades Eaton's
was one of the most important retailers of applied arts and fashion for Canadians at
every economic level. Eaton's Catalogues were often the only way that people living
in isolated areas found out about the latest merchandise and products.
Tom: "It's really hard because you're working on a four-sided painting and I was trying to
figure what else to put in there. So I went to the archives went through all sorts of
photographs and I settled on that- Eaton's delivery. Because that's another thing Eaton's
was known for besides Timothy and the statue. They were the only ones that did
deliveries- the delivery part was extremely important. And I worked as an Eaton's
delivery guy when I was going to university!"
"I was trying to get pictures of the oldest Eaton's delivery wagon I could find and that
was the one I showed there with the horses. That was one of the first delivery wagons
they used. That's why that image is there, just to show people what was used. Also, I
wanted to reproduce the same dark navy blue with the red white and blue stripes at the
top. Those were the colours they used. To me that represented Eaton's."