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Heritage Community FoundationAlberta's Political History - The Making of a Province
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Edgar DewdneyThe Province of Alberta was formerly part of a much larger political jurisdiction called the North-West Territories. Until 1897, the North-West Territories was governed by a Lieutenant-Governor with the assistance of an appointed Council or elected Legislative Assembly. Although some of these Lieutenant-Governors appointed an Advisory Council or Assembly, there was no full-fledged Executive Council (Cabinet) or President of Executive Council (Premier).

In 1897, the North-West Territories Act was amended to provide for an Executive Council and, consequently, the first and only Premier of the North-West Territories, Frederick W.A.G. Haultain , was appointed by the Lieutenant-Governor.  He served in that capacity from 1897 to 1905.

Frederick W.A.G. HaultainOn September 1, 1905, the Provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan were formed out of the North-West Territories.  Once again, the related legislation ( Alberta Act and Saskatchewan Act ) provided for the appointment of an Executive Council and, consequently, a Premier.   



Voices of Politics
The Honourable Helen Hunley discusses her role as Alberta's Lieutenant Governor with Sharon Vasey.
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Reprinted from Premiers of the Northwest Territories and Alberta 1897-1991 with the kind permission of the Legislative Assembly Office .

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