The Longbranch Inn & Granum History

The Longbranch Inn was built in 1985 as a one story, full-service hotel, after a major fire in The Town of Granum that destroyed the land mark Alberta Hotel along with other structures including grain elevators.

The Town of Granum is situated on the junction of Highway 2 and Highway 519 just east of the foothills of Alberta and is equally located between the Towns of Claresholm and Fort Macleod. Granum is a short 129 kilometers (80 miles) south of Calgary on Highway 2 and 75 kilometers (45 miles) northwest of Lethbridge on Highway 3.

The Town of Granum records, Granum Museum and the local history book named “Leavings by Trail – Granum by Rail” tells us The Town of Granum was originally known as “Leavings”. It was first a stopping place on the way to Fort Calgary serving Bull teams of 16 or more oxen yoked together to pull three freight wagons linked by chains. When the railway came, the location between Fort Macleod and Claresholm was then given the name of Leavings, being the point where the Macleod-Calgary Trail left Willow Creek area.

Leavings was established as a Village on July 25th, 1904. Two short years later in 1906, homesteaders were breaking sod and producing major crops. It was reported that Leavings shipped 350,000 bushels of grain that year and 500,000 bushels in 1907.

Malcolm McKenzie, the region's first Province of Alberta M.L.A. to be elected, suggested that the name “Leavings” be changed. On October 1st, 1907, Leavings became the Village of Granum, “granum” being the Latin word for “grain”. The Village of Granum became the “Town of Granum” on November 7th, 1910. In 1910, Granum could boast of having up to seven grain elevators, all located along CP Rail, just east of Railway Avenue.

Today, Granum continues to be incorporated as a “Town”, and is governed by five elected Councillors. The Mayor is appointed from and by those five elected. The Town offers many services, including high-speed internet, a library, churches (Granum & Area), an elementary school (built in 2004), Granum & District Volunteer Fire Department, a Museum, Par 3 Golf Course, ball diamonds, Granview RV Park with an Amphitheatre available for rent. Hospital facilities are located in Fort Macleod or Claresholm.

Granum is also the home of a number of businesses such as The Longbranch Inn, Agrium Inc, a seed cleaning plant, Canada Post, a gas station, ATB Financial and many Home Occupations.

Today the population of the Town of Granum is approximately 450 residents.