Telephones were established in Alberta in 1885 and began to spread accross the province after the Bell Telephone Company established itself in Calgary in 1887. Bell refused to extend services to rural areas believing them to be unprofitable. Consequently, Alberta began to build rural telephone lines in 1907 and, in the following year, took over Bell’s provincial inffrastructure to establish a department that would become Alberta Government Telephones
Alberta Government Telephones (AGT) was the telephone provider in most of Alberta from 1907 to 1991. It was formed by the Liberal government of Alexander Cameron Rutherford in 1906 following the acquisitions by the government of several independent telephone companies. In 1908, AGT acquired the Bell Telephone Company's Alberta operations for $675,000. It eventually served almost all telephone customers in Alberta outside of the Edmonton area, where telephone service was operated by the Edmonton municipal government.
Alberta Government Telephones was directly managed by the province's Department of Public Works as a public utility until 1958, when it was transformed into the Alberta Government Telephones Commission, a crown corporation. From 1945 until 1960, AGT operated the province's educational radio station, CKUA.
In 1969, AGT built what was then Edmonton's tallest skyscraper as its new headquarters, joined by a second tower in 1971; they are now called TELUShouse at ATB Place.
In 1990, the Alberta government began the process of privatizing AGT, and formed Telus Communications as a holding company to facilitate the transfer. In 1991, the province of Alberta sold its remaining ownership interest in AGT to Telus for $870 million. Telus acquired Edmonton Telephones Corporation (Ed Tel) from the city of Edmonton in 1995; Ed Tel had been created only five years earlier. In 1996, the AGT and Ed Tel brands were retired in favour of the Telus name. Telus merged with BC Tel in 1999 to form the present-day Telus Corporation.
Telus Yellow Pages were downsizing and 10 decades of old Alberta telephone books were given to the volunteer group Medicine Hat Telus Community Ambassators. The Ambassitors in turn donated the phone books and their shelving units to the Medicine Hat Genealogical Society to be scanned and stored as one unit. The project will be ongoing until complete.
All rights reserved. These digital copies of the Alberta Telephone Directories is the sole ownership of the Medicine Hat Genealogical Society and any unauthorized reproduction in whole or part is prohibited. All information presented is for your personal use only.
Phase IV of the Phone Book Project has been completed. Phase V will begin with the finishing of the Yellow Pages. All donations will go to the Digitization Project Committee at 974 - 13 ST SW, Medicine Hat, T1A 7G8. A tax receipt can be given upon request.