Heritage Community Foundation Presents
Alberta Online Encyclopedia
The largest of the province's six tourism areas, this region encompasses a vast expanse of land stretching from just north of Edmonton to the border with the Northwest Territories. The Aboriginal Peoples of Treaty 8 live here and the area was important to the Fur Trade, which resulted in the development of Métis communities, the first Francophone communities in the province. Some of the first settlers were trying to find an overland route to the Klondike Gold Rush.
The origins of the City are in the Rossdale Flats, an Aboriginal gathering place for over 8,000 years and an important fur trade site. The City is also the provincial capital and the home of the University of Alberta. It is surrounded by rich farmland and a range of municipalities. The region is an important support base for the petroleum industry as well as refining and petrochemicals.
Central Alberta, the Heartland of the province, is a place that celebrates its roots and maintains a close relationship with the land. Aboriginal Peoples of Treaty 6 live here and the rich farmland attracted immigrants from the Ukraine, Scandinavia, Estonia and Western Europe. The area also hosts a range of industries, in particular, those associated with petroleum.
This region was the home of Aboriginal People of Treaty 7 and saw the arrival of the Canadian Pacific Railway and a range of settlers. It also saw the beginning of ranching, which resulted in the establishment of the Calgary Stampede. With the coming in of the Turner Valley wells prior to World War I, the City went "oil mad" and is now not only a petroleum administration centre but also Canada's second-largest corporate centre.
The Rocky Mountains inspired and challenged Aboriginal Peoples as well as settlers and visitors today. The engineering of the Canadian Pacific Railways through the mountains linked Canada from sea-to-sea but also made possible the recreational and cultural activities for which the region is renowned.
This area is inhabited by Aboriginal Peoples belonging to Treaty 7. It is prime ranchland and today has a thriving livestock industry. The coming of the railway at the end of the nineteenth century brought people from many lands who settled and left their mark. These include communities who sought religious freedom such as the Mennonites and Hutterites.