Patrick Burns

Patrick Burns, meat packer, rancher (b at Oshawa, Canada W 6 July 1856; d at Calgary, Alta 24 Feb 1937). A farm boy without much formal schooling, Burns joined the vanguard of Ontario farmers moving to Manitoba after the Riel uprising. In 1878 he walked 250 km from Winnipeg to the homestead he had selected near Minnedosa.

To earn working capital, Burns began to freight goods from Winnipeg and trail neighbours' cattle to the Winnipeg market. By 1885 Burns was buying cattle full-time and in 1886 he got his first contract to supply beef to a railway construction gang. His business grew with the railway boom and he expanded aggressively into ranching, packing and the retail meat trade.

By WWI Burns had become one of Canada's most successful businessmen. In 1928 he sold his packing business for $15 million but retained his vast cattle ranches. He was made a senator in 1931 and is honoured as one of the "Big Four" western cattle kings who started the CALGARY STAMPEDE.