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Alberta's First Election

November 9, 1905 was an historic day in the political life of Alberta. On this day the voters in the newly-created province headed to the polling stations to elect 25 members to form the Provincial Parliament of Alberta. Only men were eligible to vote at this time; enfranchisement of women would not occur until eleven years later in 1916.

Voting in the 25 Alberta constituencies was conducted in secret but no names of candidates were printed on the official ballots. Instead, voters used coloured pencils to mark a red "X" for the Liberal candidate or a blue "X" for the Conservative. In constituencies where three candidates ran, a yellow pencil was provided. Voting procedures were further complicated in the constituencies of Peace River and St. Albert where two candidates, both Liberal, were the only candidates contesting the election. How the secret vote was conducted in such ridings is a matter of conjecture.

Results of the first election saw 23 Liberals headed by Premier A.C. Rutherford and two Conservatives elected to form the new Provincial Parliament of Alberta.   

  


Reprinted in part with permission from Edmonton Public Schools Archives and Museum


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