Province of Buffalo
The Province of Buffalo was a proposal for the creation of a new Canadian province in the early 1900s. Its main proponent was Sir Frederick Haultain, the premier of the North-West Territories. However Haultain's frosty relations with then-prime minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier did not help his cause, and the proposed province was divided into Alberta in the west, and Saskatchewan in the east in 1905.
The Province of Buffalo was one of several proposals for the area of what would become Alberta and Saskatchewan. Haultain proposed the idea in 1904, stating that "One big province would be able to do things no other province could." At the time the majority of Calgarians and Edmontonians disagreed with the proposal, since Haultain thought the capital of the new province should be Regina, but the two major western cities each had their own ambitions to be a capital city (Edmonton eventually becoming the capital of Alberta). Laurier eventually decided to carve two provinces out of that section of the North-West Territories by dividing the land up with a north-south line. This created Alberta in the west, and Saskatchewan in the east.
Some[who?] Albertans and Saskatchewanites believe one province would have been better suited to the area, curbing Albertan right-wing conservatism and giving formerly resource-poor Saskatchewan access to greater financial resources. The idea of a union is still brought up occasionally by fringe politicians in the two provinces.
In 2005 Canadian Geographic magazine ran a cover story, "How the West was divided ", on Haultain's proposal.
- The Buffalo Province History Conference
- January/February 2005 Issue of Canadian Geographic, with the article "How the West was divided "
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