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Sundre, Settlement

David McDougall, son of Missionary George McDougall from Morley, Alberta, was the first man to live and ranch on the flats west of the Red Deer River in 1893. Aboriginals who roamed the foothills had described the region to him as one of endless grasslands. One year after McDougall started his ranching operation, three families arrived in the area. Slowly, others began to hear about the good land and started to build small settlements in the region. The settlement had a store, co-operative creamery, a community hall but the nearby settlement of Derbytown became the centre of all activity.

Around 1905, a guy named N.T. Hagen bought McDougall's land. He turned the farmhouse into a store and post office. In the early days, when a post office was opened the government required a name for the location. N.T. Hagen decided to name it after his birthplace in Norway. On December 15, 1909 the village was officially named Sundre. The settlers worked hard to make a living off of the land, but had problems with the poor quality of the soil in the area. In time, the settlers and their children learned that, while the area was not good for grain production, it was a great place to raise grass, legumes and to ranch. Homesteaders came and went, but land was rarely left vacant.

The General Store

The General Store

Log Cabin

Log Cabin