hide You are viewing an archived web page collected at the request of University of Alberta using Archive-It. This page was captured on 16:19:38 Dec 08, 2010, and is part of the HCF Alberta Online Encyclopedia collection. The information on this web page may be out of date. See All versions of this archived page. Loading media information
Heritage Community Foundation Presents
Alberta Online Encyclopedia
spacer spacer spacer spacer spacer

Home    |    Info    |    Contact Us    |    Partners    |    Sitemap    |    Archives    

Alberta's Francophone Heritage
Background, People, Culture, Heritage Community Foundation, Albertasource and Alberta Lottery Fund


Francophone Edukit

Angel Spacer
North-Central Alberta



Central Alberta

Southern Alberta


From a certain perspective, the community of St. Albert could be considered as the first centre of French Canadian settlement in Alberta, but the lands were ultimately divided into river lots and given to the local Métis in the scrip settlement.

The first French-Canadian settlers to come to the area and claim land for farming were the two Lamoureux brothers who arrived in autumn 1872. Their family history varies, but Joseph and Frank, after a considerable odyssey through the United States, met up accidentally in Oregon after not having seen each other for many years. They teamed up and headed for Caribou gold fields, but didn’t find any gold. On their journey, they were told of the fertile Saskatchewan valley and decided to see it for themselves. Upon their arrival, the brothers decided to settle across from Fort Saskatchewan, approximately 10 kilometres from St. Albert. The brothers sent for the rest of their family and a number of friends to come and join them at the little town they call Lamoureux.

Several years later, in 1890, settlement in the region was officially promoted by Jean-Baptiste Morin, a young priest who became a federal government agent in charge of recruiting settlers. Morin was named to the position at the urging of Bishop Vital Grandin and father Albert Lacombe.1 Based in Montreal, where he had an office, Morin gave presentations and prepared promotional articles for French-Canadians on settlement in Alberta. He visited the northern United States a great deal, and as a testament to his success, historian Donald Smith notes that of the 620 families who settled eight localities in Alberta, more than half were from the United States, while only a fifth of were from Quebec.2 Morin was considered to be the founder of Morinville and Beaumont where several hundred French-Canadian families eventually settled. Nine localities in the area (Edmonton, St. Albert, Morinville, Fort Saskatchewan or Lamoureux, Stony Plain, Beaumont, St. Pierre de Villeneuve, Rivière-qui-Barre, and Vegreville) were settled by migrants from Eastern Canada and immigrants from the northern United States.


Albertasource.ca | Contact Us | Partnerships
            For more on Francophone Alberta, visit Peel’s Prairie Provinces.
Copyright © Heritage Community Foundation All Rights Reserved