Following the War of the Spanish Succession (1701-1714), the French migrated towards the interior, and the fur trade expanded inwards in U.S. North America.
The North West company (1760-1821) (also called the XY company) headed in Montreal, Quebec by Scottish Directors used French Canadians for canoeman, the French courer commonly called engagés and voyageurs. The British ran the Hudson Bay Company (1670-1870) from its head office in England. In 1821, the administration districts of the Northwest Company and the Hudson Bay Company are merged into the Hudson Bay Company. Many retirees of the Hudson Bay Company settled with a Canadian family in the Red River Settlement. From this fur-trading era, a new distinct ethnoculture arose called the Métis which were families of Frenchmen who wed "à la façon du pays" native women mainly those of the 'Ojibwa'. See Métis and Canadian-Saskatchewan web pages.
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Whitewood: A French settlement near Moose Mountain of French courts and noblemen had its beginnings in 1885. The ranching venture of Count and Countess of Roffignac (Comte de Roffignac) at Rolandrie Ranch was a main feature of this new 'utopia'.
The French settlers were not a tightly knit communitarian settlement, but rather they were very gregarious and retained their French distinctions.
The Saskatoon Gen Web region already had métis settlers along the South Saskatchewan river near Batoche and Duck Lake who had migrated from Manitoba around 1870 and with the completion of the Qu'Appelle Long Lake and Saskatchewan Railway linking Regina-Saskatoon-Prince Albert in 1890, French families from France also settled near Duck Lake. St. Brieux, Saskatchewan was also settled by immigrants who sailed directly from Breton on the St. Malo in 1904 under the guidance of Father Le Loch. Lake Bon Eau was later called Bon Eau when first settled by French to the area, later when a new wave of English settlers came, the town was renamed Crystal Springs. On Feb 27, 1912 l'Association Catholique Franco-Canadienne de la Saskatchewan A.C.F.C. was formed in Duck Lake. 'Le Patriote de l'Ouest' was an A.C.F.C. publication. From this group l'Association des Commissaires d'Ecole Franco Canadiens de la Saskatchewan A.C.E.F.C. also arose. In 1918 a questionaire distributed in Saskatchewan showed 27 schools were teaching French.
Around Maple Creek and Cypress Hills in the Swift Current Gen Web Region there was a mixed French and English populaton around 1880. The French and Métis migrated easterly to Willowbunch. Lac Pelletier is a community of French origins in this area.
Jean Louis Legare, a Quebec Trader, built a post near Willowbunch and was reknowned for feeding the hungry. Later a French settlement arose here and another famous figure, the Willowbunch Giant, Edouard Beaupre (1881-1904) was born in Willowbunch and at 8'3" travelled Canada and the U.S.A. with the circus. The Moose Jaw Gen Web Region is the locale for Whitewood, Willowbunch, Coderre, Courval, Gravelbourg, LaFleche, Lisieux, Meyronne, Moose Mountain, Ponteix, Radville, Victor, St. Victor and Assiniboia. Ferland, Saskatchewan was called 'St. Claire des Prairies' then this was shortened to 'The Prairies' and finally called Ferland which it is known as today.
Weyburn Gen Web Region in southern Saskatchewan has French settlement places of Bellegarde, Cadillac, Cantal, Dumas, Forget, Montmartre, Redvers, St. Hubert, Sedley, Storthoaks, Val Marie, and Wauchope.
In 1884, the Indian Industrial School on the shores of Mission Lake was initiated by Fathers Hugonard and Lebret. In the Yorkton Gen Web area, Dollard, Dubuc, Wolseley and Lebret were Saskatchewan settlement places of French descent.
In the 1800's Fur trading took place in northern Saskatchewan north of the tree line, as that is where the fur bearing animals were trapped. Many North West Company forts arose in this area. The French voyageurs engaged in the early marital practice of "à la façon du pays" and each fort had it's own community of families. As the HBC and NW company merged in the year 1821 the posts are listed at the Hudson Bay Company Archives (HBCA) web site: Hudson Bay Company Forts.
French towns in the Lloydminster Gen Web Region were Lac Des Prairies (now better known as Meadow Lake), Jackfish Lake, Blaine Lake, Bapaume, Big River, Butte-St.Pierre, Debden, Delmas, Edam, Laventure, Leoville, Makwa, Spiritwood, and Vawn. Ormeaux, Pascal, and Victoire had French immigrants from Quebec.
Prince Albert Gen Web Region is in the North-Eastern portion of Saskatchewan, with French towns of Albertville,Arborfeld, Prince Albert and Zenon Park.
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