Cardston Alberta

Video 1

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Video and Model Details


This one was fun to model. I do now know that there is a major flaw with this model, mainly it is to tall. The internet was a bit to vague on dimensions, so I defaulted to high. I will fix that in another variation. Someday. meanwhile, the detail on this model is rather significant. I especially like how well the textures turned out. the stone has just the right amount of ripple to it.


Suburb Morning Calm Front ST-GAINmitchellsounds
Suburb Morning Calm Rear ST-GAINmitchellsounds


Modeled: 2.63
Render: Cycles

Whole Scene

Vertices: 72,328
Faces: 63,639
Objects: 297
File Size: 4.1 mb


Temple Only

Vertices: 69,613
Faces: 62,082
Objects: 94
File Size: 3.5 mb

Simple Model

Model Details

This is the Google Earth model for this temple. It was one of my first, and I had a shortage of references. Still, I think I did all right.


Whole Scene

Vertices: 72,328
Faces: 63,639
Objects: 297
File Size: 4.1mb


Cardston Alberta Temple Wiki


The Cardston Alberta Temple (formerly the Alberta Temple) is the eighth constructed and sixth of the still-operating temple. Located in Cardston, Alberta, it is the oldest Temple outside the United States. It is one of ten temples that do not have an angel Moroni statue, and one of four without spires.



In General Conference of 4 October 1912 it was first announced there would be a temple built in Canada.[1] It was reported in the 1 January 1913 Deseret Evening News that a site had not been picked, but it would probably be in either Raymond or Cardston.[2] [3]

In a letter to Alberta Stake President Edward J. Wood on 13 February 1913 telling him, in confidence, that the Cardston site had been chosen.[3] An eight-acre plot (now known as Temple Hill) was given to the church by Charles Ora Card (great-grandfather of writer Orson Scott Card and musician/lawyer/professor Arlen L. Card.) The official announcement would be made some months later at the site dedication.[2]

This was the first temple in a push to bring the temples closer to the members. (The Laie Temple would be announced later, though it would be completed first.)


It was determined during the planning for the Cardston temple that an assembly hall was not necessary for a temple. Consequently Cardston temple was the first temple designed to not have an assembly hall (though the more rapidly completed Laie Temple would be the first constructed temple to not have one.)[2]

Unlike previous temples, where an architect was chosen by the Church to design the temple to general direction from the First Presidency, multiple Architects were invited to submit designs for the new temple Most of these designs held to the classical/Gothic themes of the 4 Utah temples. A design by Hyrum C. Pope and Harold W. Burton was the winning design and it was instead heavily influenced on the exterior by Frank Lloyd Wrights Unity Temple. Burton and Pope had their career launched by this success, and would also go on to design the Laie temple, to submit a design (unchosen) for the Mesa Temple, and to Design the Oakland California Temple.


Site Dedication

27 July 1913, President Joseph F. Smith arrived in Cardston to confirm the location of the temple and dedicate the site. [2]


A groundbreaking was performed on 9 November 1913  by Daniel Kent Greene. Construction started shortly thereafter.[2]

The granite used in building the temple was hand-hewn from quarries in Nelson, British Columbia. Later additions would be built of artificial precast granite.


19 September 1915 – 2,000 people were in attendance to watch as David O. McKay placed the cornerstone on the temple. [2]

23 September 1917 – capstone was placed on the temple, worked turned to the interior.[2]


The temple was dedicated on 26-29 August 1923 by President Heber J. Grant in 11 Sessions.[4] At the time of Dedication the temple was  29,431 sq feet ( sq m)

Dedicatory Prayer

Dedication Order

The Temple was the 6th active temple dedicated. It was the first in Canada, and the First outside of the United States. There was one other temple, the Mesa Arizona Temple, under construction at the time of it’s dedication.


The site expanded to more than 10 acres (4.0 ha) in the mid-1950s. Around the same time the lower terrace was excavated, with the garden area being removed. Roofs were put in and space was added for lockers and additional rooms.

The courtyard was covered and added to the temple. A new covered porch was added over the entryway.

These early renovations had a theme of renew and update attached. Original workmanship was frequently updated and painted over, including murals.

Eventually a new courtyard was added to the temple on the west end surrounding the entryway.

1962 Renovation

An extension was approved and added to the East end of the temple. The new extension has an assembly hall and lockers. The extension took the temple to 65,000 sq ft.


The addition was rededicated on 2 July 1962 by Hugh B. Brown.

Rededication Order

At the time of this rededication, there were 11 other temples in operation, the rededicated Cardston Temple bringing the number up to 12. There was one temple, the Oakland California Temple, under construction at that time.

Second Renovation

In 1988 the temple closed for a log renovation. Upgrades were made to the mechanical and electrical systems. After the work necessitated uncovering the temple’s original murals, the focus shifted primarily to restoring the temple to its 1923 glory. The west end porch and reception area was removed and a new entryway was added. the expansion took the temple to 89,405 sq feet.

Open House

An open house was held from 6 – 15 June 1991. More than 100,000 people attended the 9 days of the open house, an average of 11,111 per day. It is estimated that more than half of attendees were not members of the Church.[5]

Second Rededication

The temple was rededicated on 22-24 June 1991 by President Gordon B. Hinckley 12 sessions. more than 25,000 attended the dedicatory sessions.

Dedicatory Prayer

Rededication Order

At the time of the rededication of the Cardston Alberta Temple there were 43 Other dedicated temples, 3 of which were undergoing renovation. The Predication brought the number of actively operating temples up to 42. Additionally there were 4 announced temples awaiting groundbreaking.

Temples under construction Temples awaiting Groundbreaking Temples under renovation
San Diego California Bogota Columbia Bern Switzerland
Orlando Florida London England
Bountiful Utah
St Louis Missouri

National Historic Site

In 1992, the temple was declared a National Historic Site, and a plaque was dedicated in 1995.[6]


President Clark L. Hardy 2015–
President L. Mark Evans 2012–2015
President Brent L. Nielson 2009–2012
President Donald S. Hansen 2006–2009
President Lynn A. Rosenvall 2003–2006
President Heber B. Kapp 2000–2003
President Joseph E. Jack 1997–2000
President Merlin R. Lybbert 1994–1997
President H. Lamont Matkin 1991–1994
President Roy R. Spackman 1986–1991
President Harold E. Bennett 1982–1986
President Vi A. Wood 1977–1982
President Elmo E. Fletcher 1972–1977
President Heber G. Jensen 1968–1972
President Octave W. Ursenbach 1956–1968
President Willard L. Smith 1948–1955
President Edward J. Wood 1923–1948


The temple has four ordinance rooms, five sealing rooms, and a floor area of 88,562 square feet (8,227.7 m2).

The Height  of the temple is 110 ft[7] The width of the temple is currently 165 ft, and the length is 311 ft.





Leaded art glass





South East corner of the temple, facing east, on the bottom of the upper level of the temple. This portion of the temple was originally a garden area, and the cornerstone could easily be accessed. Excavation  of the terrace to expand the temple put the cornerstone on the upper section of the temple, out of reach of the public.

Spires and Moroni



Torleif S. Knaphus — sculpted the large bas relief titled Christ the Fountainhead (Originally placed on the exterior of the building, now inside the temple) and also the life-size oxen holding the baptism font.

LeConte Stewart – painted murals and other art work in the temple




Individuals and Contractors

Architect Hyrum C. Pope and Harold W. Burton
Contractor  Member Built


Sources and Links

External links

Additional Articles


  1. [1]Deseret Evening News, 1 Jan. 1913.
  2. [2]“The First Modern Temple – The History of the Cardston Alberta Temple,” Accessed 23 June 2017.”
  3. [3]Edward J. Wood Diary, Church History Library, MS 7313.
  4. [4] Heber J. Grant (), “Prayer offered at the Dedication of the Alberta Temple, at Cardston, Canada, August 26, 1923”, Improvement Era, 26 (12): 1075–1081, October 1923.
  5. [5]David Bly, “Alberta Temple Rededicated,” Ensign, September 1991. Accessed 24 June 2017.
  6. [6] “Canadian Register of Historic Places”,, Parks Canada Agency
  7. [7]Andrew Jenson, “Elder Andrew Jenson (Assistant Church Historian.)”[General] Conference Report, pp. 125–132, October 1923. Accessed 23 June 2017.


This post currently has 3 responses

  • Hi, I love your model, what software do you use? I live in Cardston and did 3D modeling in University. I’ve been considering modelling the interior of the Cardston Temple. Don’t suppose you would consider sharing your model?

  • I have been told that my grandpa Frederick Wesley Hillyer did wood carving in the celestial room, when they added more to the veil in the 1988 renovation. But he died in 1990, I was only 7 years old, he was 67. I wonder if there is any official record of him doing this work.

    • I have an ancestor who worked on the Salt Lake Temple. For that temple, at least, a record was kept, a special book, with the names of everyone who worked and their hours. Unfortunately, I don’t think those books are open to the public!

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