The Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan


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Town, pop 2,361, located 16 km W of the Saskatchewan-Manitoba border at the junction of Hwys 1 and 8. Settlers, mostly of English and Scottish origin, began arriving in the Moosomin area around 1881 in advance of the CPR’s push westward across the plains. The Moosomin post office was established in the fall of 1882, the name being derived from the Cree word for the “mooseberry,” or high bush cranberry. By 1884, the community boasted five hotels, five general stores, two blacksmiths, two livery stables, nine implement dealers, a doctor, a lawyer, and a butcher. Additionally, a newspaper was established that year, which evolved into the World-Spectator , still publishing. Prior to the development of railroad branch lines, Moosomin served an area reaching from the Qu’Appelle Valley to the Souris River district. With far-flung points throughout the North-West, stagecoaches provided communications as well as freight and passenger transit; Bertram Tennyson, the Poet Laureate’s nephew, was one of the drivers. It may be that no other town in the eastern North-West Territories sent so many homesteaders and businessmen out onto the plains. In 1905, when the province of Saskatchewan came into being, Moosomin’s population was already around 1,000 and growing. Moosomin’s economy is largely tied to the region’s agricultural industry, which has long consisted of mixed farming. Other significant area employers are: the PCS Rocanville mine; TransCanada Pipelines, which has a pumping station northeast of Moosomin; the Government of Saskatchewan, which has several regional offices in the community; and the Oil and Gas Industry, which has been making incursions into the region. In recent years, the Moosomin Moose, a recreational hockey team, raised over $500,000 toward the construction of a new $20 million integrated health care facility that is scheduled to open in early 2007. The team played three marathon hockey games, each temporarily a world record—the last being 130 hours long. Gordon Thiessen, formerly Canada’s chief banker and monetary policy maker as the governor of the Bank of Canada, is a Moosomin high school graduate. Another of the community’s notable citizens was General Andrew George Latta McNaughton. An army officer, scientist, and diplomat, he was born in Moosomin in 1887 and went on to become the president of the National Research Council of Canada, the senior Canadian officer in the United Kingdom during World War II, and the Canadian Minister of National Defence; he was also the Canadian representative on the United Nations Atomic Energy Commission, and president of the Atomic Energy Control Board of Canada.

David McLennan

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This web site was produced with financial assistance
provided by Western Economic Diversification Canada and the Government of Saskatchewan.
University of Regina Government of Canada Government of Saskatchewan Canadian Plains Research Center
Ce site Web a été conçu grâce à l'aide financière de
Diversification de l'économie de l'Ouest Canada et le gouvernement de la Saskatchewan.