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1880s Pre-Railway Settlement

North-West Mounted Police Sawmill c. 1880

In 1875, the NWMP detachment at Fort Macleod ordered a sawmill from their supplier, I.G. Baker, in Montana. The sawmill was the first of its kind in Southern Alberta, and the NWMP used it to make shingles and floorboards for the Fort's buildings. The sawmill used in the Park's exhibit today comes from the Jensen farm in Priddis. Chris Jensen and his son Victor built the mill in 1915 with parts ordered from Kansas...

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Millarville Ranchers' Hall

Built by ranchers from the district in 1895, this hall was used for community events like political rallies, boxing matches, theatrical evenings, school lectures, Christmas concerts and Anglican and Presbyterian church services...

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Mackay Cabin

Although some records indicate this cabin was built as early as 1870, it was probably built in 1884 or 1885 in Calgary, by William Bruce, out of logs salvaged from an abandoned mine and floated down the Bow River...

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I.G. Baker & Co. Store

In 1874, the North West Mounted Police arrived half-starved and exhausted in the Sweetgrass Hills after their historic march west from Winnipeg. The officers in charge trekked to Fort Benton, Montana, to secure supplies, where they met Charles E. Conrad of I.G. Baker & Company...

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Homesteader's Tent Cabin

Heritage Park built this tent cabin in 1976 to portray a form of temporary accommodation frequently used by homesteaders and businesses before 1900...

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Gleichen School

The village of Gleichen sprang up in 1883 at the No.12 siding of the Canadian Pacific Railway. Five years later, the district's first school was built by Victor Joseph Beaupre from logs that were floated down the Bow River. By 1908 the school's attendance had grown to 60, and a new four-room schoolhouse was built. The old schoolhouse, which was later used as a residence, was donated to Heritage Park in 1977 and restored to its original appearance...

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Drew's Saloon

Henry "Boston" Drew, a well-educated and gentlemanly ex-U.S. army officer, first came to Canada in 1884 on a cattle drive from Idaho. He decided to settle in Alberta, and built a saloon, called the Drew Reserve, on his property at Spitzee Crossing (now High River) in 1886...

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Berry Creek North West Mounted Police Barracks

This NWMP outpost was built 145 kilometres east of Calgary in June 1905 to prevent horse rustling, possibly by the Hole-in-the-Wall Gang of Montana. The outpost was donated to Heritage Park by Harold Forster Industries Ltd. in 1977...

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Bachelor's Tent Cabin

When an area was initially being settled, there was a frequent lack of permanent housing and a shortage of affordable building materials. Tents or tent cabins were an acceptable solution, since they were well suited to bachelors with limited resources and few expectations of luxury...

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