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Trivia

  • located in the central prairie region of Canada
  • Alberta is west, Manitoba is east
  • U.S. to the south and Northwest Territories to the north
  • Regina, the capital city, is often called “The Queen City”.
  • Regina is the home of the RCMP Training Academy.
  • flower – Western Red Lily, tree – White Birch, bird – Sharp-tailed Grouse
  • motto: “From many peoples strength”
  • “Saskatchewan” comes from a Cree word “Kisiskatchewani Sipi” meaning “swift flowing river”, which referred to the Saskatchewan River.

Land and water

  • one half is forest, one third is farmland
  • over 100,000 lakes, rivers, streams
  • northern Saskatchewan : forests, marshes, lakes, rivers
  • southern region is mainly flat prairie with some rolling hills and valleys
  • sand dunes 30 m. high at Athabasca Provincial Park in northwest Saskatchewan
  • “Great Sand Hills” region in southwest Saskatchewan
  • main rivers: Assiniboine, North and South Saskatchewan and Churchill

The people

  • First people : Chipewyan (north) , Assiniboine (east), Blackfoot (west) and Cree
  • Métis (of mixed European and Aboriginal descent) were among the first settlers.
  • majority of Saskatchewanians are of British origin, followed by Germans and Austrians, native people, Ukrainians, Scandinavians, and French
  • population just over a million (2008)
  • largest cities – Regina and Saskatoon
  • population of (2006 census metropolitan area): Regina (194,971), Saskatoon (234,000)

History

  • The earliest explorer was Henry Kelsey (1690).
  • Samuel Hearne built trading posts for the Hudson’s Bay Company.
  • English and French trappers and fur traders arrived.
  • Forts were built to maintain law and order.
  • In 1874 North West Mounted Police arrived to establish law and order.
  • Settlers were encouraged to come for free land for homesteads.
  • The railroad was built across the southern part of the province in 1882-83.
  • Settlers came from eastern Canada, British Isles, the US, and continental Europe.
  • Immigrants arrived in large groups and settled in different regions.
  • Settlers included Barr colonists from England, Doukhobors from Russia, Hutterites, Mennonites, Hungarians, Ukrainians, French, Germans and Scandinavians.
  • Saskatchewan became a province in 1905 with Regina as the capital.

Climate

  • long, cold winters and hot, dry summers
  • polar air masses bring winter storms with nasty wind chills and blowing snow
  • windy both winter and summer

Economy

  • grow over 54 percent of Canada’s wheat crop
  • crops include canola, rye, oats, barley, flaxseeds, wheat, lentils
  • raising hogs, cattle and poultry on farms
  • forestry in northern Saskatchewan
  • rich in minerals (potash, uranium, coal, oil and natural gas)
  • world leader in the production of uranium
  • leading exporter of potash ( fertilizer )
  • Canada’s second largest producer of oil (after Alberta)
  • third largest producer of natural gas in Canada

People and places

  • W.O. MITCHELL (born in Weyburn) wrote about prairie life in his book “Who Has Seen the Wind”.
  • JEANNE SAUVE (born in Prud’homme) was the first woman to become Governor General of Canada.
  • GORDIE HOWE, one of the greatest hockey player of the NHL was born in Floral, Sask.
  • ALLAN SAPP, a world-renowned Plains-Cree artist was born on the Red Pheasant Reserve.
  • BUFFY SAINTE-MARIE, a well-known singer/songwriter, was born on the Piapot Reserve in the Qu’Appelle Valley -Tunnels of Moose Jaw : underground passageways used by the Chinese, gangsters and bootleggers.
  • Big Muddy Badlands : unusual land formations and petroglyphs
  • Wanuskewin Heritage Park: archaeological digs provide information about the Indians of the Northern Plains
  • RCMP Heritage Centre and Training Academy in Regina
  • Grasslands National Park: original shortgrass prairie, herds of pronghorn, rattlesnakes, endangered black-tailed prairie dogs, burrowing owls and peregrine falcon
  • Prince Albert National Park: only protected white pelican nesting colony in Canada, cabin of Grey Owl, herd of plains bison
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