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Patrick, Thomas Alfred (1864-1943)

T. A. Patrick.
C.J. Houston and C.S. Houston

Born at Ilderton, Ontario, on December 23, 1864, Patrick graduated in medicine from the University of Western Ontario in 1888. He practised medicine and surgery at Saltcoats until 1894 and in Yorkton until 1939.

Patrick was the first physician to seek office (1881) and the first to be elected (1897) to a Legislature within the present boundaries of Saskatchewan. He sat in nine sessions of the Legislative Assembly of the North-West Territories, initially as an independent supporter of Premier Frederick Haultain, but always as one of the strongest proponents in the fight for a more responsible form of territorial government. Patrick was the first to propose the present boundaries of Saskatchewan and Alberta. His election campaign of 1898 helped turn the tide against the idea of one large prairie province or of one southern ranching province and a northern mixed-farm province, or of making each of the four existing postal districts into provinces.

Patrick was an active promoter of Saskatchewan's third hospital, the Yorkton Queen Victoria Hospital. A few seconds after midnight on September 1, 1905, the day that Saskatchewan officially entered confederation, he delivered the province's first baby. Jennie was born to Trintie and Thomas Luke Gibney. On February 1, 1928, four hours after the bells had rung to celebrate the assumption of city status by Yorkton, Patrick delivered Muriel, born to Roslyn and Mayme Young - assisted in the delivery room by Jennie Gibney, RN. Patrick died September 6, 1943.

C. Stuart Houston

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Further Reading

Houston, C.J. and C.S. Houston. 1980. Pioneer of Vision: The Reminiscences of T.A. Patrick, M.D. Saskatoon: Western Producer Prairie Books.
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