Ralph Steinhauer

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The Honourable

Ralph Garvin Steinhauer

10th Lieutenant Governor of Alberta
In office
July 2, 1974 – October 18, 1979
MonarchElizabeth II
Governor GeneralJules Léger
Edward Schreyer
PremierPeter Lougheed
Preceded byGrant MacEwan
Succeeded byFrank C. Lynch-Staunton
Personal details
BornJune 8, 1905
Morley, Alberta
DiedSeptember 19, 1987(1987-09-19) (aged 82)
Edmonton, Alberta
Political partyLiberal
Spouse(s)Isabel Florence Margaret Davidson

Ralph Garvin Steinhauer, OC (June 8, 1905 – September 19, 1987) was the tenth Lieutenant Governor of Alberta, and the first Aboriginal person to hold that post.

Personal life[edit]

Born in Morley, Alberta, he was a Cree. His parents were Josiah Apow and Amelia Mildred Mumford. When his father died, his mother married James Arthur Steinhauer, a descendant of the Cree Methodist Missionary Henry Bird Steinhauer.[1]

He married Isabel Florence Margaret Davidson on November 20, 1928 and had five children.

He died in Edmonton on September 19, 1987, following pulmonary problems.[2]


Because his father moved often for missionary work, he attended school infrequently. A voracious reader, he was 15 years old when he enrolled in Grade 4 at the Brandon Indian Residential school in Manitoba, and finished with a Grade 8 education.[2] When Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau asked him to be the lieutenant-governor of Alberta, he responded, "I'm not schooled for a thing like this... You're plucking a person out of the farmyard and an Indian at that."[3]


In the 1920s, he became district president of the United Farmers of Alberta. He was a founder and the president of the Indian Association of Alberta.[2]

He ran unsuccessfully as the Liberal candidate for the House of Commons of Canada in the Alberta riding of Vegreville in the 1963 federal election. He placed third.

He was chief of the Saddle Lake Indian Band for three years.[1]


In 1967, he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. In 1984, he was inducted into the Alberta Agriculture Hall of Fame.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "The Honourable Ralph G. Steinhauer, 1974-79". Legislative Assembly of Alberta. Archived from the original on July 18, 2015. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  2. ^ a b c Meili, Diane. "Ralph Steinhauer: Prominent Native leader passes away suddenly". Windspeaker. AMMSA. Retrieved November 21, 2014.
  3. ^ "Ralph Steinhauer, lieutenant governor of Alberta". CBC.ca. CBC.

External links[edit]