Thursday, August 5, 2021

EP Ranch Furnishings

 by Anita Mae Draper

Prince of Wales "E.P." Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, Canada, early 1920's

When Edward, the Prince of Wales of Great Britain, bought the Bedingfeld Ranch in 1919, it came with a house full of simple furnishings. Thanks to the Glenbow Archives located both online and in Calgary, Alberta, and the Toronto Star Archives located in the Toronto Public Library, we have images of what the furnishings looked like in 1923 as well as in 1941.

The photo above shows the main house on the left and the original Bedingfeld homestead cabin on the right. As you can see, the main house was surrounded by open vine-covered and closed verandas, ensuring a great view of the Rockies no matter what the weather. According to the following photograph from the Toronto Star in 1923, Edward liked to sit and read on the veranda.

EP Ranch Veranda, 1923, Courtesy of Toronto Public Library

Twenty-two years later while still under Edward's ownership, similar simple furnishings were still used in the veranda when this next photo was taken in September 1941.

Veranda at EP Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, Sep 1941. Glenbow Archives

Likewise, the bedroom was sparse with the personality of a hospital room when Edward first bought the ranch, as shown in this next photo.

E.P. Ranch Bedroom, 1923, Courtesy of Toronto Public Library

Although Edward filled his ranch bedroom with more furniture, it isn't what one would expect as the personal chamber of the heir to the British throne.

Bedroom at E.P. Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, 1941. Courtesy of Toronto Public Library

According to historical records, Edward had the bottom floor of the ranch house enlarged and renovated prior to 1923 when he made time for his first visit since buying the ranch in 1919. The following image shows the living room as it was that year when he returned after the four year absence.

View of living room in EP Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, 1923. Glenbow Archives

Edward returned in 1924 and 1927, and then not until 1941 when this next photo of  the same side of the room was taken. By that time, the room was referred to as the new wing to avoid confusion with the original two rooms before renovations, although not much had changed in the way of furnishings.

New wing, EP Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, 1941. Glenbow Archives

On the right is the new fieldstone fireplace created with stones collected from the EP Ranch fields. It is interesting to note that when the EP Ranch celebrated it's 100th anniversary in 2019 with an open house, the living room was called the reception room and still contained most of the same furniture, right down to the light stands on either side of the fieldstone fireplace.

Fieldstone Fireplace, EP Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, 1941. Glenbow Archives

The light stands were made from German shell casings. They were Edward's stamp on the place and reminded him of serving in the Great War. Also note the letters 'E' and 'P' carved into the stones, another of Edward's personal touches, although probably not by his own hand.

Edward's office was in the corner of the dining room, as seen in the images below.

Corner Office in Dining room, EP Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, 1941. Glenbow Archives

Although the original extendable table with its heavy twist spindles is long gone, the chairs still remain as they did when Edward walked the carpet-covered oak floors and sat down to eat his meals or read a newspaper.

Dining room, EP Ranch, Pekisko, Alberta, 1923. Glenbow Archives

Along with renovations to the ranch house, Edward instructed his manager to build new barns for the purebred stock he was sending from England. By 1923 when Edward returned, there were two log barns and one large wood frame barn in use.

New Barn, EP Ranch, 1923. Courtesy of Toronto Public Library

It seems that although Edward was known for avoiding state affairs while enjoying the social life of a 'playboy', he didn't mind the quiet, simple ranch long as he didn't have to stay too long.  

In my last post on the Butter Prince of 1924, I asked how many pounds of buter you thought were used to create the butter scene of the prince at his ranch. The actual answer is 3,000 pounds.

You can read previous posts on Prince Edward's EP Ranch at these links:


Anita Mae Draper lives on the Canadian prairies where she uses her experience and love of history to enhance her stories of yesteryear's romance with realism and faith. Readers can enrich their story experience with visual references by checking Anita's Pinterest boards. All links available on her website at


  1. Thanks for continuing this peek into Prince Edward's country home. I imagine that the simplicity of its' furnishings would have been a great respite for him, even if he didn't spend a lot of time there. And isn't that the purpose of a vacation?

    1. Connie, I very much agree. I think it's the lack of 'fuss' that calms us since our senses aren't trying to take in and process every color, sound, and smell at once.

      Thanks for sharing. :)