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A matching pair of solid Western Red Cedar pillars have been installed in front of Aggie Hall to reflect our Town’s place at the 49th Parallel. The new markers were crafted in a similar style to the original wooden post previously used to identify Ladysmith's position as a 49th Parallel community. The old marker is currently located at the Ladysmith Museum.
"For years, Ladysmith has gained a widespread reputation as a picturesque, seaside community with unparalleled small town charm located at the 49th Parallel," said Mayor Aaron Stone. "These beautiful new markers are a visual representation of that interesting historical fact and provide tourists and residents with attractive photo opportunities."
The exact location of the 49th Parallel – the northern latitudinal boundary that marks the US/Canada border from British Columbia's mainland to Northern Ontario – is approximately where First Avenue meets the Trans-Canada Highway. As such, to allow better accessibility for picture-takers, the markers were not placed directly on the 49th Parallel. Rather, Town staff determined Aggie Hall plaza as the most appropriate location for the wooden pillars to be installed.
"Visitors to Ladysmith often inquire about the best place to take 49th Parallel photos and we are pleased that the new location was chosen with safety and convenience in mind," said Tammy Leslie, President, Ladysmith Chamber of Commerce. "The new markers will create a permanent legacy for residents of the 49th Parallel, provide tourists with a beautiful backdrop for their vacation photos, and spur interest in further exploring First Avenue."
The impetus for new 49th Parallel markers came from a joint Signage Committee composed of representatives of the Town, the Chamber of Commerce and the Ladysmith Downtown Business Association during a review of Town signage in 2014.