Although it never achieved the status originally intended, Lower Fort Garry served in a number of minor roles. During the Oregon crisis (see OREGON TREATY) in the 1840s, a British army contingent was stationed at the fort; in 1871 some opponents of Louis RIEL rallied around Stoughton Dennis there; and during the winter of 1873-74 the NORTH-WEST MOUNTED POLICE trained its first recruits at the fort. It later served as the first provincial penitentiary and as an insane asylum.
In the early 20th century it was a residence for Hudson's Bay Company officials, and thereafter was leased to a country club. In 1951 the HBC gave the property to the federal government. It was designated a national historic park and, after restoration carried out in the 1960s and 1970s, the fort is now one of the major HISTORIC SITES of Parks Canada.
Author C.J. TAYLOR
Links to Other Sites
Lower Fort Garry
This illustrated Parks Canada website focuses on the Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site of Canada.
The RCMP March West
Read Commissioner George Arthur French’s day-by-day account of the treacherous journey that brought peace and order to Canada’s prairies -- the March West of 1874. A Royal Canadian Mounted Police website.
The Canadian Register of Historic Places
Canada is home to a vast array of fascinating historical sites. Many of them are illustrated and described in this searchable online database of Canadian historic places that are of local, provincial, territorial, and national significance.