Alfred Schmitz Shadd was from a distinguished Black family known for its abolitionist and equal rights stance. In 1896 Shadd moved from Chatham, Ontario, to Kinistino, North-West Territories where he taught school. He returned to the University of Toronto to complete his medical degree in 1898. Shadd practised medicine in Kinistino and later in Melfort. The "country doctor's" talents and energies became respected by local Aboriginal persons and white settlers of the Carrot River park belt. He operated a drugstore, engaged in mixed farming and stock breeding, edited the town's newspaper, and served on town council and various boards. In 1901, he was an unsuccessful candidate in the territorial elections. In the 1905 election, as the Equal Rights Party candidate he came within 52 votes of becoming the first Black person elected to a provincial legislature. In his forceful speeches and editorials he stressed stronger provincial government, taxes for the Canadian Pacific Railway and local control of schools. A Canadian black granite stone marks his Melfort burial place.