Thursday 24 March 2022

The Great Nanton Train Robbery!

Dispatches from Southern Alberta
Dateline:Feb 5th 1907


The What?  Yes, The Great Nanton Train Robbery. 
The CPR line moved coal through the town of Nanton during the winter of 1907.  The problem was the ‘through’.  Nanton was running out of coal, and despite the promises of the CPR to make delivery, the coal cars kept rumbling through the town and further down the line.

That all changed on February 5th, when seven coal cars reached Nanton and the population there decided that they would go no further.  The coal was needed in Nanton, and they would have it.  J.P. Longpre, the CPR Station Agent at Nanton, contacted the district superintendent, who instructed J.P. To arrange for police protection for the train, and to get it moving down the tracks.

As J.P. And the local NWMP were discussing the matter, the train tried to leave the station.  A local resident, Ira Shoop, hopped on the caboose and ran along the box cars, dropping down between them to set the brakes.   Shoop was arrested. (He was later released as the jail had no heat - no coal, remember?)

Again, the train tried to pull out of the station.  This time all the citizens banded together and set the brakes on all the cars.  

J.P., the NWMP officer and train crew retired to a local eatery for lunch and to further discuss the situation.

While they were gone, the citizens remaining on the platform held a meeting chaired by the Baptist Minister (the Presbyterian Minister took the minutes!) and it was agreed that they would go ahead with the ‘robbery’.  The farmers would help themselves to one ton of coal each, and the townies to half a ton.  All agreed that they would pay the CPR $6.00 a ton.

Returning from lunch the train crew, NWMP and JP Longpre watched patiently as the residents lined up alphabetically to receive their coal.  The funds collected were then turned over to the CPR Agent.

A NWMP Inspector investigated and no charges were laid, in that the robbery was conducted in such a proper and honourable way.  It is said that the CPR were not all that pleased with this verdict!

 Check out the Bomber Command Museum in Nanton Alberta for lots more interesting stories!
Victorian Society of Alberta 

Friday 18 March 2022

Happy Birthday to Princess Louise Caroline Alberta

 Happy Birthday to Princess Louise Caroline Alberta today! She is the wonderful princess whom the great province of Alberta is named after and aunt to Princess Patricia, the daughter of the Duke of Connaught who’s birthday was celebrated yesterday on St. Paddy’s Day, also known as Regimental Day by the proud Canadian regiment that is named after her. 

Princess Louise was born in Buckingham Palace on March 18th, 1848 and loved to skate, fish and above all she loved painting and creating sculptures. She was the first Princess to live in Rideau Hall in Ottawa, while her husband, John Campbell was the Governor General of Canada from 1878 to 1883.🇨🇦


From: The History Wrangler

Victorian Society of Alberta



March Fashion Friday

 This month we are showcasing a fantastic webpage included at:

Fashion Era | A Fashion History Hub from Era to Era

Specifically this post covers the fashionable hostesses wardrobe.

Enjoy this detailed and informative look at Edwardian Fashions.

Victorian Society of Alberta

P.S. The links below are live and lead to the sections of the webpage directly!


The Society Hostess

Edwardian Fashion History 3

An Edwardian Lady and her Fashion Wardrobe

By Pauline Weston Thomas for

The Society Hostess Fashion Wardrobe

Tuesday 1 March 2022

March Book Tuesday

 Welcome to the March edition of Book Tuesday.

Today we are featuring a biography of one of Western Canada's most famous Frontiersmen


Victorian Society of Alberta

Kootenai Brown
Canada's Unknown Frontiersmen.
by William Rodney

Brown’s remarkably adventurous life in Canada began in BC in 1862 during the Cariboo gold rush. He later became a BC policeman, Pony Express rider, buffalo hunter, Head Scout for the Rocky Mountain Rangers during the 1885 Riel Rebellion and a conservationist who fought to establish Waterton Lakes National Park. Here he is buried, this region of lakes and mountains his magnificent memorial. Possibly BC’s greatest frontiersman, nevertheless, in Canada he is virtually unknown. By contrast, if Kootenai had lived in the US he would be as familiar as Davy Crockett and Daniel Boone.