<%@include file="menu.html" %>

Welcome to the Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan. For assistance in exploring this site, please click here.

If you have feedback regarding this entry please fill out our feedback form.


Town, pop 3,063, located 40 km E of Melfort on Hwys 3 and 35. People began settling the area around 1902 and before the railway arrived, the locality was known as Doghide after the Doghide River, which flows along the town’s east side. With the construction of the Canadian Northern Railway from Hudson Bay to Melfort in 1904 the townsite was named Tisdale in honour of Frederick W. Tisdale, a civil engineer with the railroad. The first wave of settlers largely came from eastern Canada, Great Britain, and the United States. Through the 1920s people from continental Europe came to the area and in the 1930s, people from the dried-out southern plains migrated to the region. Tisdale attained town status on November 1, 1920. The community grew gradually at first, but with the advent of modern machinery the heavy bush in the region was cleared and its agricultural potential came to be realized. Tisdale, already established as the major supply and service centre for a sizable surrounding territory, developed rapidly from the World War II era through to the mid-1970s and came to be known as “the Land of Rape and Honey.” Today, approximately one-third of the farmland in the region is cropped with canola and the area has long been known for its honey production. The honey industry began to develop significantly in the 1940s. Today, more than 4 million kg of honey—10% of that produced in Canada—comes from the district. The largest pulse crop processing facility in Canada is also located in the area, as is the largest alfalfa dehydrator in Saskatchewan. When, in the 1970s, the population began to shrink, Tisdale’s community leaders were determined not to accept the decline that was so common throughout Saskatchewan’s rural communities: a collectivist spirit enabled the development of creative counteractive and aggressive initiatives. Success bred success and local investment attracted outside capital. Among the initiatives are a city-sized shopping mall that is 100% locally owned; the Tisdale RECplex which houses health care services, educational facilities for all ages, a library, a multi-purpose auditorium, a performing arts theatre, an aquatic centre, a regulation-size arena, a curling rink, a rifle, hand gun, and archery range, several meeting rooms, and a kitchen with the capacity to serve more than 500 meals; the Doghide River Trail system, which is a scenic route for walking, cycling, and cross-country skiing; and five inland grain terminals, which today make Tisdale the largest grain handling centre in Saskatchewan. Tisdale is the hometown of comedian/actor/writer Brent Butt, the star of the hit TV series Corner Gas.

David McLennan

Print Entry
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.