Sifton, Manitoba, Canada, really doesn’t exist anymore. We are here to spend the night only, as it is too far to drive from Indian Head to Winnipeg in one day.
Large influxes of Ukrainians settled this region in the mid-1890s, part of a mass immigration undertaken by the federal government. Sifton is named after Minister of the Interior, Clifford Sifton, who viewed farmers from Eastern Europe as ideal for settling and opening the Canadian West
Sifton is also the birthplace of Canada’s iconic fashion item of the 1950s, the Mary Maxim sweater. When the company relocated to another area, the town dried up and blew away.
Indian Head, Saskatchewan, Ca to Sifton, Manitoba, Ca: 144.8 Miles
Indian Head, Saskatchewan, Canada, began in 1882 as the first settlers, mainly of Scottish origin, came into the area to farm the rich soil.
According to legend, in 1837 an epidemic of smallpox struck the Assiniboine Indian Village here. According to their custom, those struck climbed the highest part of the land to die. Their skeletons remained there for many years and because of this they called the hills “Skull Mountainettes”, which developed into the name Indian Head. Hence, the name of the town. Only thing is, when I look around, there are no hills, only prairie.
William Robert Bell was born May 28, 1845 in Brockville, Ontario. He was a militia officer, farmer, and businessman. He is mostly responsible for the settlement of Indian Head as a result of his experimental farm for growing wheat and other grains. He arrived here in 1882 to build this farm. The most notable structure remaining is the round horse barn, now referred to as the Bell Barn.
From it’s copula, Bell had a view of his entire farm (see, no hills).
Although a small town, it’s main industry is still agriculture, mostly wheat and other grains. Grain elevators sit at the head of the town’s main street.
Their mall consists of 2 stores, a hardware store, and a convenience store.
Saskatoon, Sk to Indian Head Saskatchewan, Canada: 208.6 miles
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada, now that is a mouthful, was founded in 1882 as a Temperance colony. The Toronto-based Temperance Colonization Society was granted 21 sections of land straddling the South Saskatchewan River. The aim of the group was to escape the liquor trade in that city and set up a “dry” community in the Prairie region. Saskatoon is named after the berry of the same name, which is native to the region.
The first known European to enter Saskatchewan was Henry Kelsey in 1690, who travelled up the Saskatchewan River in hopes of trading fur with the region’s indigenous peoples.
The province name is derived from the Saskatchewan River, which means “swift flowing river” in the Cree language. Why didn’t they just name the province “Swift River”, something you can pronounce?
Tidbit of Information: In 1803 the Louisiana Purchase transferred from France to the United States part of what is now Alberta and Saskatchewan. In 1818 the U.S. gave the area to Britain.
Lloydminster, Alberta, Ca to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada: 173.7 miles
Isaac Montgomery Barr, born March 2, 1847 in Hornby, Canada, now part of Ontario, Canada, was an Anglican clergyman.
He had the vision of an all-British Colony in the middle of the untapped Canadian west. Intended to be an exclusively BritishUtopian settlement centred on the idea of sobriety, the town of Lloydminster was founded on May 10, 1903 by the “Barr Colonists”, who came directly from the United Kingdom. The town was named for George Lloyd, who took over the colony when Barr realized he bit off more than he could chew.
When the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan were formed out of the Northwest Territories on September 1, 1905, the dividing line went right down the center of Lloydminster. Therefore, it is the only Canadian city in two provinces.
St. Albert, Alberta, Ca. to LLoydminster, Alberta, Canada: 158.5 miles
Edmonton is the Capital of Alberta, Canada. Today, it is just another big city. However, someone had forethought. As the city was expanding, and original buildings were being torn down to make way for new, someone thought to preserve their heritage and move these buildings, with their rich history to a preservation area, now called “Fort Edmonton Park”.
The Park is divided into time eras: 1846 Fort; 1885 Street, 1905 Street, and 1920 Street & carnival midway.
Each era contains the original, or rebuilt structure from that time, with character actors recreating the times.
Starting with the establishment of the settlement, we visited Fort Edmonton, built in 1895.
I even participated in the Metis (half-breed Indian) dancing of the time.
Although the day started out sunny, a sudden rain storm came upon us, but we improvised.
Finally, we visited the “midway”, where Barbara enjoyed the rides.
Albert Lacombe was a French-Canadian Roman Catholic Missionary. He was born February 28, 1827 in Saint-Sulpice, a British colony on the lower Saint Lawrence River, now known as Quebec.
Before Canada even existed, the Mission of St Albert was founded by Father Lacombe in 1861 on the Sturgeon River in what is now central Alberta, Canada. I think the river might look a little different today than it did in 1861:
The Mission was named after Father Lacombe’s patron saint, St. Albert of Louvain. One of the first buildings built was the chapel, the original log chapel is still here and is the oldest surviving wooden structure in Alberta.
The purpose of the mission was to help the local Indians to a better life. Father Lacombe was assisted by The Sisters of Charity of Montreal, more commonly known as “The Gray Nuns”. Unfortunately, it made them feel good, but killed the Indians.
The mortal remains of Father Lacombe are contained in a crypt behind his chapel.
Tidbit of Information: The crypt was originally made of stone, but was converted to this wood because people were chipping away the stone for souvenirs.
Valleyview, Alberta, Canada to St. Albert, Alberta, Canada: 211.4 miles