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Alberta Online Encyclopedia
When Coal Was King
Industry, People and Challenges
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William Stafford, SeniorLethbridge was divided into two parts by the railway. The north part, in turn, was divided into the North Ward (the area north of the railway east of 13 St N), an unnamed district (usually referred to as North Lethbridge) lying between the railway and 9 Ave N west of 13 St N, and the Village of Stafford, also west of 13 St N between 9 and 14 Aves.

Galt Mine No. 3 was started in 1890 and opened in 1892. It was located opposite the corner of 6 St and 9 Ave N. The nearby community at first was called Number Three. The coal company subdivided an area of 92 one-acre (0.2-ha) lots bounded by 13 and 23 Sts and 5 and 7 Aves N for sale to mine employees but it was too far from the mine and sales were slow. James F. Pierce, a local rancher, purchased land near the mine shaft from the company and, on 27 June 1891, subdivided it into 40 one-acre (0.2-ha) lots and called it the Pierce Addition. These lots sold briskly because of their proximity to the mine.

The people of the community incorporated on 31 October 1900 as the Village of Stafford.

In 1901 an area immediately east of the Pierce Addition between 8 and 9 Sts N was subdivided by Olaf Hammerburg, also a local rancher. [Hammerburg died on 4 February 1901 and his subdivision plans likely were completed by his wife, Clare Hammerburg.] The Pierce and Hammerburg Additions soon came to be the most heavily populated parts of the village. A store was opened by Simon Swedish in 1902. The 15 May 1911 Vair Addition, which adjoined the Hammerburg Addition on the east between 9 and 10 Sts N, was not settled for several years.

Galt Mine No. 3. One of the big producers in the Lethbridge district. It was located at what is now 9th Avenue and 9th Street North. The Village of Stafford sprang up near the mine entrance. Opened in 1890, it closed in 1924.The Perry Addition, subdivided by James Perry on 8 October 1907, consisted of 40 one-acre (0.2-ha) lots between 12 and 13 Sts and 9 and 14 Aves N. A few scattered houses along 9 Ave connected the Perry and Pierce-Hammerburg Additions. The Perry Addition came to be known as Little Wigan.

In 1901 the Village of Stafford successfully appealed for a change in its boundaries, adding 100 ha. On 27 May 1911 the province authorized another large addition to the village. And in 1912 village councillors devised a scheme whereby they threatened to petition the province for a still larger addition, which included much of north Lethbridge and the North Ward. Because of previous successes, this threat was taken seriously and played an important role in forcing the City of Lethbridge to annex the village in 1913.

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