Yorkton's Early Story

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History and Folklore Summary
1890 - 1899


- The Orkney Literary and Debating Society's subject for the week of March 4th was Stock-raising versus Grain growing, resulting in favour of Stock-raising. (Source: THE REGINA LEADER, MARCH 11, 1890.)

- Joel Reaman, Member of the Legislative Assembly of the Territorial government traveled to Ontario in the interest of immigration. (Source: THE REGINA LEADER, March 11, 1890.)

- On August 16th, the Dominion Land Surveyor, R.C. McPhillips declared that the map of the "Plan of Yorkton" bearing the seal of the Manitoba and North Western Railway Company of Canada dated Dec.12, 1890, being the north half of Section 35, Township 25, Range 4 West of the 2nd Meridian was accurate and made in accordance with the "Territories Real Property Act."

- The Manitoba and North Western Railway extended its line to Yorkton, now at the new location, 2½ miles ( 4 kilometres) south of the old site. The railway company put their lots for sale and businesses moved to the new site.


- Yorkton's first school at the new location was "Argyle School" constructed of field stone and situated on Argyle Street.

- The M. & N.W. Railway's first train pulled into Yorkton on January 9th.

- "N.H. Neilson, Justice of the Peace, met with a severe accident Tuesday last, being so unfortunate as to be kicked by a mule. Dr. Watson dressed the wound and reports the patient doing well." (Source: THE LEADER, Regina, N.W.T. Front page Feb.10 1891.)

- A settlers' train arrived in Yorkton in May, 1891. They had left South Dakota after a series of very dry years. They brought their household effects and farm machinery on the train and drove their livestock across country.


- Joel Reaman was elected as Yorkton's first representative to the Territorial Legislative Council.

- The first newspaper THE MESSENGER, published Issue No. 1 on June 24, and the last one in September. It was handwritten by Editor, Rev. R.P. Byers, a Presbyterian missionary.

- Frederik Robert Insinger, immigrant from the Netherlands, educated businessman, fluent in English, rancher near Willowbrook, was elected as the member for Wallace Constituency (which included Yorkton) to the Legislative Assembly of the North West Territorial Council. He resigned in 1897 and moved to Spokane Washington to manage a bank.


- John F. Reid, early York Farmers' Colonization Company settler served on the first board of the Orkney Presbyterian Church.

- On April 29, the Yorkton Anglican Church was officially established as a parish.

- Christie's Funeral Home was founded.


- On July 15th Yorkton achieved the status of "VILLAGE' with a population of 215.


- The Legislative Assembly of the North West Territories authorized the appointment of a deputy clerk of the court of the Judicial District of the Eastern District of Assiniboia for the Yorkton area.


- The Legislative Assembly of the North West Territories established a Cheese and Dairy Association and appointed a Dominion Dairy Commissioner.

-It was reported that the wheat crops of the Yorkton and Saltcoats districts were excellent. (Source: Journals of the Legislative Assembly of the North West Territories)

- THE YORKTON ENTERPRISE began publishing a weekly newspaper.


- An epidemic of scarlet fever and typhoid fever ravaged the area.

- Dr. T. A. Patrick was elected to the Territorial Council of the North West Territories.

- On December 10, C.W.R. Pearson opened a branch of the Pickering Private Bank.

- The Hudson Bay Company opened a store.

- The Balmoral Hotel was built by R.C. Arnold, and initially known as "Arnold House."

- An influx of settlers began to arrive by train from various countries, they were Germans, Russians, Poles, Hungarians, Americans, and in greater numbers, Ukrainians. The great majority of these pioneers came for the most part to settle on homesteads still available in the outer reaches of the original York Colony lands; Rhein, Canora, Beaver Hills, Crooked Lakes, Otthon, Ebenezer, Preeceville, etc. They continued to arrive until the early 1900s.


- Dr. T. A. Patrick, Secretary of the Board of Trade was corresponding with THE GOLDIE & McCULLOCH CO. LTD., for equipment supplies for the flour mill being constructed in the village.

- The City's second school—Victoria School was built on 5th Avenue North.


- On July 1, the Union Bank of Canada, took over the Pickering Private Bank.

- Two organizations were founded this year; the Masonic Lodge and the Odd Fellows Lodge.

- In July this year, after taking part in a parade, Scotty McDonald a well known horseman took the notion to ride his horse into the Balmoral Hotel bar and order a drink.