Barbara Villy Cormack
Life and Work
"I promise to do my best, to do my duty to God and my king, to help other people at all times and obey the Guide Law."
For Barbara Cormack and the Alix Girl Guides, summer camp marked the apex of the year.
Loading bedrolls and supplies into the Cormack's truck, they arrived at the camp at Buffalo Lake (Cruikshank's Beach) and set up camp. They learned about the flora and fauna around them under Mrs. Cormack's instruction. Picking wild raspberries for each other, they ate the wormy ones so as not to dampen the enthusiasm of those who picked them.
Through the rest of the Guide's year, their captain Barbara Cormack organized activities according to the Guide Law. They travelled to Edmonton for the Royal Visit in 1939 and paraded for Lord Tweedsmuir in Stettler, demonstrating their first aid skills. They met at the Cormack farm, learning animal husbandry and acting in plays written by Captain Cormack. Barbara Villy Cormack had moved with her husband Eric to a farm north of Alix in 1925. She also wrote novels, poetry and biographies set in Western Canada and developed a song book for children with Down's Syndrome. In 1981, Barbara received the Order of Canada, recognizing her service to people with mental disabilities.
Books by Barbara Villy Cormack
- Beyond the classroom : the first 60 years of the University of Alberta Department of Extension.
- Landmarks : a history of the Girl Guides of Alberta.
- Local rag.
- Mist of green : a story of young adults.
- Perennials and politics : the life story of Hon. Irene Parlby, LL.D.
- The Red Cross lady (Mary H. Conquest, M.B.E.).
- Ruth [microform] : a tale of new beginnings.
- Seedtime and harvest.
- Westward ho!