Home Town or Home Community:
THE RURAL MUNICIPALITY OF LeROY #339
The Rural Municipality (R.M.) of LeRoy #339 comprises of all lands in townships 34, 35 and 36 in ranges 19, 20 and 21 West of the Second Meridian. The R.M. is 3 townships by 3 townships. Each township consists of 36 one square mile sections. Each section is 640 acres more or less. Each township being six miles by six miles results in the R.M. being about 18 miles by 18 miles. A Correction Line exists between townships 34 and 35. This survey aid to accommodate the curvature of the earth causes the R.M. to not be a perfect square shape.
The land is classified as thin black soil. The texture varies from sandy loam through to clay loam with a. small amount of silty loam. There are also small saline areas throughout the municipality. The elevation varies from 1725 to over 1825 feet above sea level. The higher elevation being to the north and west results in water flow to the south and east.
The earliest known inhabitants of this area were the various nomadic native tribes. The known predominant natives were the Assiniboine and the Cree. They travelled about as the food and water supply dictated. Their major camping sites were along the shores of Big Quill Lake and Jansen Lake as well as along the various creeks that ran into these lakes.
As early European explorers began settling in Eastern Canada it was just a matter of time before they would travel by water and over land westward. The first Europeans in this area were most certainly fur traders and explorers. The first Europeans known for certain to have crossed this area were members of the Palliser Expedition of 1857 to 1860.
In 1856 John Palliser joined the Royal Geographical Society and with their assistance obtained a financial contribution from the Colonial Office in early 1857. By mid-summer 1857 the Palliser Expedition was at Fort Garry and obtaining the necessities for their trek westward. The expedition set out in two groups. One group travelled west while Palliser’s portion travelled south to the 49th. Palliser’s portion followed what was later to be the International Boundary west and then travelled north to join the other group of his expedition. The whole expedition travelled west to the “elbow” of the South Saskatchewan River. From here they travelled northward until they arrived at Fort Carlton in early October, 1857. In mid-October, James McKay, John Ferguson Pierre Beauchamp, a young Indian, and John Palliser left Fort Carlton leaving the remainder of the expedition members there for the winter.
Palliser and his exiting winter group travelled south and east. This group travelled through what is today R.M. #339. Records indicate they crossed north of Jansen Lake and travelled south and east towards present day Dafoe, around the southwest edge of Big Quill Lake. The approximate date of this crossing was October 18, 1857. They then travelled southeast to the Touchwood Hills Post. Records indicate it took three days to cover the 146 miles from Fort Carlton to the Touchwood Hills Post. This group eventually got to Fort Garry by November 1, 1857. From Fort Garry Palliser travelled to New York to obtain an extension for his expedition plus additional funding.
The spring of 1858 saw Palliser making his return trip to Fort Carlton. Records indicate that his return group crossed this area between Big Quill Lake and Jansen Lake on about May 29, 1858 Palliser’s records state that the heavy slushy snow made the trek very difficult. Apparently it was a late spring in this area in 1858. The Palliser returning group rejoined the over wintered group at Fort Carlton on June 1, 1858. From Fort Carlton the Palliser Expedition travelled throughout western British North America. The group kept records of the flora and fauna and took specimens of some of the flora. They also kept records of weather conditions and also explored mountain passes towards the Pacific coast.
As settlement moved westward from the Red River Valley to the Qu’Appelle Valley area and increased along the Saskatchewan River a quicker route between the two districts was required. This resulted in the establishment of the “Carlton Trail” and “Carlton Telegraph Line”. This trail and line began at For Qu’Appelle and ran north to the Touchwood Hills, then northwest, passing southwest of the Big Quill Lake and south of Jansen Lake to the Humboldt Telegraph Station. From there the trail had two distinct directions. One north and west to Fort Carlton and the other more of a westerly direction towards Edmonton.
The Carlton Trail passed almost diagonally from the southeast to northwest corners across what later became the R.M. of Prairie Rose #309. The Trail then crosses for a distance of one to two miles across the northeast corner of the R.M. of Usborne #310 The Trail then enters the southeast corner of the R.M. of Wolverine #340 and goes north-northwest to the Humboldt Telegraph Station southwest of the present day city of Humboldt. The telegraph line was built in 1878.
By late 1884 discontent was stirring along the Saskatchewan River in the Northwest Territories. The Metis sought out Louis Riel to lead their cause. On March 19, 1885 Riel established a provisional government. Within a week the Northwest Rebellion had begun. General Middleton travelled along the Carlton Trail passing through this area on April 12, 1885. Most of the travel was done using sleighs in place of carts or wagons. A small reason for the Riel Rebellion was a dispute with Dominion Lands surveying.
After the Carlton Trail became a set route a stagecoach system was established. The stage not only carried passengers but also mail. The route began at Troy (later named Qu’Appelle) and followed the Carlton Trail to Fort Carlton and then on to Prince Albert.
On July 17, 1886 the mail stage left Qu’Appelle with driver, John Scott, and two passengers: Edward Fiddler, a farmer and Honorable J.F. Betts the former Territorial Assembly speaker. Harry Telford took over the driving duties at Fort Qu’Appelle. The stage arrived at the Salt Springs depot that evening where the night was spent.
On the morning of July 18, 1886, with John Art as driver, the stage left for the Humboldt Telegraph Station. Almost half the distance was covered when a single man stopped the stage and robbed it. It has been determined that this first mail stage robbery occurred about six miles southwest of Sinnett or four miles west of Esk. Some letters were taken but nothing from the passengers. A $250.00 reward was offered for information. Sometime later John Art, the driver, recognized a man on the street of Prince Albert whom he claimed was the mail stage robber. A man named Garnett was arrested, tried in court, and sentenced by Judge Richardson to 14 years imprisonment after being found guilty.
The Dominion of Canada, after acquiring the Northwest Territories from the Hudson’s Bay Company, decided to set up a survey system in preparation for settlement. The system used was based on Meridians, Ranges, Townships and Sections. The Prime Meridian was set at 98° West Longitude which is twelve miles west of Winnipeg, Manitoba. The Second Meridian is on the 102 West Longitude which passes between Pelly and Norquay, Saskatchewan All lands in R.M. #339 are designated West of the Second.
The townships in the Rural Municipality and the dates their initial surveys were completed were:
36-21-W2nd: July 4, 1883.
35-21-W2nd: August 14, 1883
34-19; 34-20; and 34-21-W2nd: September 5, 1883
35-19; 35-20; 36-19; and 36-20-W2nd: September 9, 1893.
All the lands in township 34 were in the pre-1905 District of Assiniboia and all lands in townships 35 and 36 were in the pre-1905 District of Saskatchewan.
Obtaining Land or a Homestead:
As the Indians had received their land (reserves) for signing their treaties, this left only the “Half-breeds” to satisfy. Therefore, the Federal Government set up the Half-breed Scrip Commissioners. The commissioners took applications from Half breeds who had to prove that they were indeed Half-breeds. All Half-breeds whose claims were allowed were given a certificate for 240 acres or $240.00 at the option of the claimant. These certificates were later forwarded to the Department of the Interior by the claimants or their agents and a $240.00 Scrip Note or a 160 acre and 80 acre Scrip Notes, according to the certificate, were issued in exchange. Thus the explanation for 80 acres being known as Scrip Land.
Money Scrip was payable to the bearer and was accepted by the Department on the Interior, at its’ face value in payment for open Dominion Lands. Scrip Notes for 240 acres total could only be used by the grantee personally and were assigned set parcels of open Dominion Lands. Once they received title for the land most Half-breeds sold it to land agents or investors. Very few, if any, did settle upon their land. In R.M. #339 it was found that Northwest Half-breed Scrip, as it is known, only occurred in townships 35 and 36 or what was once the District of Saskatchewan.
In 1908, the Federal Government passed the Volunteer Bounty Act. Under this act any volunteer’s surviving family or the volunteer personally serving the Crown in the South African Boer War were given the choice of $160.00 Scrip or two adjoining quarter sections of Dominion Lands that were available for homestead entry, in the form of a South African Volunteer Bounty Warrant. This person could enter a homestead, as designated, free of charge and after proving up to obtain a free patent. Entry upon such lands had to be done before December 31, 1910 or it was lost. As an example, a South African Volunteer Bounty Land Certificate was issued for a local parcel, NE and NW 2-33-19-W2nd. This land was in the Local Improvement District 17-N-2 which later was part of the R.M. of Prairie Rose #309.
March 24, 1903 saw the first homestead applied for in what later became the R.M. of LeRoy #339. Not knowing all the regulations to follow some early settlers upon hearing of free land just came and picked a parcel of land and squatted. From early family histories it has been found that quite a few new Canadians had arrived as early as the spring of 1902 and built a sod shack or even dug a hole in the side of a hill and believed that was all they had to do. The regulation was that a homesteader would travel to a Land Titles Office and file on what ever piece of land he wanted providing it was uninhabited or unclaimed Dominion land plus he or she paid a $10.00 registration fee. Land Titles Offices that served this R.M. were in Yorkton, Regina, Prince Albert and later Humboldt.
Prior to 1904 rural government was comprised of Local Improvement Districts (L.I.D.) of about one township in size or six miles by six miles. In 1904 the Territorial Government passed a new Local Improvement Ordinance. This ordinance reorganized L.I.D.s into units of three to six townships in size. Most contained four but natural boundaries played a major role in some L.I.D. sizes. The L.I.D. system used a number-alphabet-number sequence to designate where it was. There were four L.I.D.s in this area, namely:17-N-2, 17-P-2, 17-Q-2 and 17-R-2.
Local Improvement District 17-N-2:
L.I.D. 17-N-2 contained all lands in townships 33 and 34 between Big Quill Lake and Jansen Lake, that being Ranges 19 and portions of 18 and 20 W2nd. After elections at the first meeting of L.I.D. 17 four councillors elected and one was chosen as chairman. A secretary- treasurer was hired and weed inspectors plus a health board were appointed.
Councillors for 17-N-2:
T.M. Motion 1906
P.H. Dawson 1907-1908
George Postier 1909
A.J. Hill 1906
J.H. Reisen 1907-1909
S.Y. Bullis 1906
William H. Stewart 1907-1909
Henry Johnston 1906-1907
D. Wiltse 1908-1909
Henry Johnston 1906-1907
J.H. Reisen 1908-1909
P.H. Dawson 1906
J.B. Leightner (acting) 1907
J.B. Leightner 1908-Oct. 1909
S. Moss Nov.-Dec. 1909
Saskatchewan Local Improvement District Association Convention Delegates:
Henry Johnston 1907
J.H. Reisen 1908
D. Wiltse 1909
Overseer: J.H. Scriver 1906
Health Officers: 1908:
William Cowie 1908
William Charles 1909
James Large 1908-1909
M. Wiltse 1908
Byron Blancher 1909
Thomas Valentine 1’908
Frank Johnston 1909
The final meeting of L.I.D. 17-N-2 was held on November 6, 1909 to draw all business to a close.
Local Improvement District 17-P-2:
From the May 18, 1906 issue of “The Humboldt Journal” under the Watson news: “A movement is on foot to organize a L.I.D..” Local Improvement District 17-P-2 began in late May 1906 and included all lands in townships 35 and 36 in Ranges 18 and 19 West of the Second Meridian.
Councillors for 17-P-2:
J. Auchstaetter 1906-1907
Peter L. Berggren 1908-1909
A. Gregory 1906-1907
John Howe 1908-1909
C. Foster 1906-1907
Henry Swinch 1908
George Pratt 1909
Louie Koenig 1906-1908
L. Billmeyer 1909
J. Auchstaetter 1906-1907
Thomas L. Hayward 1906-?
W. T. Smart ?-1909
Road Master: Julius Foster 1908
L.I.D.s 17-N-2 and 17-P-2 held a joint meeting on June 19, 1906 at Watson, Saskatchewan. All of the discussion at this meeting revolved around what later became the original Provincial Highway #6 straight south of the west edge of Watson. By the end of 1909 L.I.D. 17-P-2 closed operations.
Local Improvement District 17-Q-2:
L.I.D. 17-Q-2 included all lands in townships 33 and 34 from Jansen Lake westward to include Range 22. The Carlton Trail crossed diagonally from southeast to northwest across this Local Improvement District. A very limited amount of information was found for L.I.D. 17-Q-2.
Councillors for 17-Q-2:
J. McKay 1908
J.D. Grenill 1909
J. McConnell 1908
Lawrence Dunn 7-1909
L.I.D. 17-Q-2 ceased operations at the end of 1909.
Local Improvement District 17-R-2:
Local Improvement District 17-R-2 included all lands in townships 35 and 36 in Ranges 20, 21 and 22 West of the Second Meridian.
Councillors for 17-R-2:
T.J. McGuire: ?, 1908 and 1909.
It is believed that Mr. McGuire was councillor for Division 1.
George Wilson Sr. ?-1909
Saskatchewan Local Improvement District Association Convention Delegate:
T.J. McGuire ?-1909
Saskatchewan Local Improvement District Association Director:
T.J. McGuire 1908-1909
By the end of 1909 L.I.D. 17-R-2 ceased operations.
A Rural Municipality Act was passed in the Saskatchewan Legislature’s 1908-09 session. This act did away with the old Local Improvement Districts. Municipal boundaries were redrawn and the size was increased to about nine townships in a three by three configuration. This act came into force in 1910 thus the reason for the old local improvement districts winding down.
Local Improvement District #339:
A vote was held on August 5, 1909 throughout the new proposed Local Improvement District #339 area to decide if the area was to remain a L.I.D. or become a Rural Municipality. The Secretary- Treasurers of the old L.I.D.s were in charge of this vote with the L.I.D. 17-R-2 Secretary-Treasurer, George Wilson Sr. in overall charge. The vote was in favor of remaining a L.I.D. One key difference was that a L.I.D. would only have six councillors while the Rural Municipality would also have a. reeve in addition to the six councillors Elections for each of the six councillors in the new L.I.D. #339 were set for Monday, January 3, 1910. Records are not totally clear but it is assumed that there was only a single nomination for each division. Therefore the first Council meeting was held on January 3, 1910 at the residence of Anthony Anstett on SW 14- 35-21-W2nd.
The first councillors and their mail addresses were:
Division 1: Alfred Guittard – Nealdale
James Roach – Bog End
John Tallon – McGuire
L. Billmeyer – Watson
Division 5: O.H. Nelson – Englefeld
Division 6: P.J. Vonderloh – Muenster
The first meeting listed Alfred Guittard as Adolf Guittard, however all later meetings records show Alfred. At the first meeting L. Billmeyer was appointed Secretary only for the January 3, 1910 meeting. P.J. Vonderloh was nominated as chairman Anthony Anstett was hired as Secretary-Treasurer.
Councillors for L.I.D. #339:
Alfred Guittard 1910-1911
William Weeks 1912
James Roach 1910-1912
John Tallon January-March 1910
Thomas J. McGuire April 1910-April 1911
Frank A. Anstett May-December 1911
R.A. Fenske January 1912
J. Downey March-December 1912
L. Billmeyer 1910-1912
O.H. Nelson 1910-1912
P.J. Vonderloh 1910-1911
Mike Mehr 1912
P.J. Vonderloh 1910
T.J. McGuire January-April 1911
James Roach April 1911-February 1913
L. Billmeyer January 3, 1910
Anthony Anstett January-October 1910
Albert Anstett (acting) Nov.-Dec. 1910
Albert Anstett 1911
Vacant for January 2, 1912 meeting
John H. Shakespeare 1912
It is assumed that a member of the council recorded the January 2, 1912 meeting as John H. Shakespeare was interviewed for the position and was hired after the January 2, 1912 meeting. L.I.D. #339 joined the Saskatchewan Association of Municipalities for 1911. The membership fee of $10.00 was forwarded to E. Stingley, the Association Secretary-Treasurer. T.J. McGuire was sent as the delegate to the Municipal and Local Improvement District Convention for 1911. The convention was held on March 15 and 16 in Moose Jaw.
In January, 1913 the Local Improvement District became a Rural Municipality. James Roach was appointed Chairman at the January 6 meeting. Nominations for Reeve was set for January 28, 1913. L.I.D. #339 resolutions of local historic significance: Meeting minutes to be printed in the “Watson Witness” and “Lanigan Ledger“.
Bank of choice was the Bank of Commerce in Lanigan. The Medical Health Officer for 1912 was Dr. Chapman of Lanigan. Each year pound keepers and weed inspectors were put in place. The major weeds were: tansy mustard, stinkweed and wormsweed After a few years sow thistle and Canada thistle became a problem.
Rural Municipality of Roach #339:
At the February 25, 1913 meeting the name Rural Municipality o Roach #339 was adopted. This was the first Reeve- conducted meeting. David McCulloch was elected Reeve since the last L.I.D#339 meeting in January. At the February 2, 1914 meeting the name of the Rural municipality was changed to “Ayr” Rural Municipality of Ayr #339:
Council meeting motions of note:
The April 3, 1916 meeting put in place a committee to ascertain the possible purchase of land from Mrs. George Wilson for cemetery purposes.
A motion at the July 30, 1916 meeting states: “All men on active service who were resident ratepayers prior to enlisting shall be exempt from taxation to an amount equal to the taxes on one quarter section every year during the continuance of the war”.
On March 5, 1917 a motion was made to pay Mrs. George Wilson $30.00 for one acre of land purchased by the municipality for cemetery purposes.
From the August 5, 1918 meeting: “Whereas the frost of July 24th “wrought” serious damage to the crops” the Dominion Government was to be petitioned to look into conditions and supply seed in 1919.
A motion for a supper and dance in honor of returned men to be given at Bog End school on October 30th at 8 P.M. was made at the October 6, 1919 meeting.
Canadian Pacific Railway built a branch line from Lanigan to Naicam in 1920. This line was diagonally across the municipality from southwest to the northeast. The railroad surveyed three siding sites:
The October 4, 1920 meeting contained a motion that W. Weeks and L. Morton be appointed a committee to locate a site for a municipal hall in Unwin.
The first reference to the Unwin site being locally known as LeRoy was made in the minutes of the municipality on March 7, 1921.The April 4, 1921 meeting contained the motion to write the postmaster General asking for tri weekly mail service and for the local post office name to be changed from Bog End to LeRoy. At the same meeting it was suggested to petition the Provincial Government to undertake construction of a road parallel to the C.P.R. tracks from Lanigan to Watson.
On June 6, 1921 it was moved that the banking business be transferred from the Bank of Commerce in Watson to the Standard Bank of Canada at LeRoy. Council moved that they endorse the petition to have the name of the Bog End post office changed to “LeRoy” at their August 1, 1921 meeting. On October 3, 1921 the new plan of the town site of LeRoy submitted by the Canadian Pacific Railway was approved.
On October 25, 1930 the Rural Municipality of Ayr’s name was changed to the Rural Municipality of LeRoy #339.
Rural Municipality of LeRoy #339:
In 1931 Relief became a reality with the first depression seed and fodder relief to farmers. This remained in effect until 1940 when notice was received from the Bureau of Labour that no further relief be granted. It should be noted that a form of relief existed in the First World War years regarding seed.
On January 5, 1946 things were set in motion for the formation of a union hospital district. Three hospital sections were moved into the village of LeRoy from the Dafoe airport at Lampard. They were moved across country crossing Jansen Lake on Section 4-35- 19-W2nd. The hospital was officially opened July 27, 1947. Rural Electrification came into the area in the late 1940s and early 1950s.
In 1962 the Rural Municipality purchased shares in the Humboldt Senior Citizens Home. The R.M. also supported the establishment in 1964 of Quill Plains Centennial Lodge at Watson. After the Provincial closure of the LeRoy Union Hospital on July 12, 1969 the R.M. joined by the town of LeRoy, the village of Jansen and the Rural Municipality of Prairie Rose #309 to form LeRose Lodge. The Lodge opened October 1, 1970. The grand opening was on July | 11, 1971 with the former Prime Minister John G. Diefenbaker in attendance. The Lodge closed early 1996.
The town of LeRoy and the R.M. pulled together to make the building into Evergreen Assisted Living which opened in December, 1996.
In the late 1960’s it was observed that a recreation park was required as swimming lessons were being held at the Municipality’s flooded gravel pit. In 1970 LeRoy Leisureland Regional Park began operating four miles west of the town with support from the town and Rural Municipality.
Reeves of Rural Municipality #339 (Roach)(Ayr) LeRoy:
David McCulloch February 1913-1915
Thomas J. McGuire 1916-1918
William Weeks 1919-1920
Charles W. King 1921-1925
Fred J. Harcourt 1926-1930; 1933-1946
George T. Carter 1931
Eric Neal 1932
Albert Hamilton 1947
W.C. Crowter 1948-1952
Ed T. Fetter 1953-1960; 1963-1968
Mark Painter 1961-1962
Arthur Findling 1969-1974
H. Dean Volden 1975-1982
Don E. Fetter 1983-1990
Gerald N. McGrath 1991-1998; 2001-
Lorne Schroeder 1999-2000
Division 1:William Weeks 1913-1915; 1917-1918; 1925-1930
A. Byers 1916
H.W. Wiltse 1919-1924
A. Gehl 1931-1932
Tom Taylor 1933-1935
Albert L. Hamilton 1936; 1941-1946
Henry C. Rossiter 1937-1940
Ed T. Fetter 1947-1948
Adolph J. Fetter 1949-1954
William G. Arnst 1955-1962
Arthur Findling 1963-1968
Don E. Fetter 1969-1979
Gordon C.J. Fetter 1980-1984
Dan L. Reinhardt 1985-1998
Delwyn J.J. Jansen 1999-
James Roach 1913
G. King 1914-1915
L. Morton 1916-1921
A. Peterson 1922-1925
William C. Crowter 1926-1933; 1944-1947
Nick Dietrick 1934-1943
J.A. Merrit 1948-1953
Robert C. Eike 1954-1957
William J. Braitenbach 1958-1961
W.E. Bonney 1962-1965
Walter Torwalfc 1965-1977
Gerald N. McGrath 1978-1990
Elmer I. Henning 1991-1996
William Wildeman 1996-
J. Downey 1913-1916
I.J. Koski19171924 S. Mhusk 1925-1929; 1947-1948
C. Paproski 1930-1932
A. Tallon 1933-1935
A. McEachern 1936-1942
J.E. Miller 1943-1946
F. Meger 1949-1952
James A. Sinnett 1953-1978
Joseph M. Bernauer 1979-1990
R.M. Koski 1991-1996
Walter Staniec 1997-
Louis Billmeyer 1913-1921
J. Pitka 1922-1927
H. Hinderks 1928-1937
R.J. Zentner 1938-1944
E.F. Molle 1945-1949
| P. Walerius 1950-1951
George Stockbrugger 1952-1977
Herbert Martin 1978-1981; 1994-1997
Larry D. Stockbrugger 1981-January 1984
Adam P. Zentner March 1984-Jahuary 1993
John G. Kirzinger February-December 1993
Calvin Buhs 1998-
J. Schmitt 1913
W.J. Willicott 1914-1920; 1929-1932
G.T. Carter 1921-1928
W. Meeker 1933-1937
A. Mclntosh 1938-1946
Steve D. Weese 1947
Clemens Schueller 1948-1950
August Henning 1951-1954; 1957-1959
Mark Painter 1955-1956
George E. Classen 1959-1973
A.W. Luchsinger 1974-1980
Carl H. Hogemann 1981-1998
Calvin Michel 1999-
M. Mehr 1913
T. Harder 1914-1917
J. McEachern 1918-1927
J.M. Loehr 1928-1933; 1937-1939
J.C. Knaus 1934-1937
Joseph A. Hinz 1940-1955
J.J. Jantzen 1956-1966
Leo A. Hinz 1966-1967
Graham A. Ross 1968-1977
John H. Kraus 1977-1997
Allan Moorman 1998-
John H. Shakespeare 1913-1927
James F. Spicer 1927-1946
James Richard Harcourt 1946-1978
Jerry Psovsky 1978-1986
Joan (Noble) Fedak 1987-
Pauline Harcourt 1969-1978
Beatrice Torwalt 1978
Connie Porten 1979-1986
Carrie Therres 1999-2001
Glenda Hamilton 2003-January 2004
Mark Fedak 2000
John deGooijer 2001-2002
Municipal Office Locations:
SW 14-35-21-W2nd near McGuire, Sask. 1910-1911
NW 20-34-19-W2nd Nealdale, Sask. 1912-1921
118 Poplar Street, LeRoy, Sask. 1922-June 1940
126 Aspen Street, LeRoy, Sask. July 1940-1987
100 First Avenue N.E., LeRoy, Sask. 1987-
As homesteaders and various businesses arrived and settled the area the population increased. For economic reasons, primarily, the population of the area began to decline about 50 years later.
The following census population information indicates the changes:
1911 RM, 1248
1921 RM, 1589
1931 RM, 2072, Town, 178
1941 RM, 2245, Town, 200
1951 RM, 1963, Town, 409
1961 RM, 1775, Town, 490
1971 RM, 1402. Town, 449
1981 RM, 997 Town, 506
1991 RM. 750 Town, 456
2001 RM, 637, Town, 413
Post Offices in the R.M
Bog End: The local topography gave us the post office name of Bog End which was established on 14-35-20-W2nd.
Bog End February 1, 1909. Bog End post office moved to the rail siding named Unwin located on 13-35-20-W2nd early February, 1921.
Post Office records indicate that Bog End post office’s name changed to LeRoy on December 1, 1921. LeRoy post office remains open today.
Mulvihill: Thomas Mulvihill opened this post office on 32 35-21-W2nd on April 1, 1911. The post office name was changed to Shady Grove on July 1, 1913. Shady Grove closed on December 31, 1919.
Natika: Natika post office name came from an Indian maiden. Natika was established May 1, 1906 by the Gregory family on 16- 35-19-W2nd. This post office closed on May 20, 1922.
Nealdale: Named after the first postmaster, Eric Neal, Nealdale was located on 20-34-19-W2nd. This post office was the residence of the Municipality’s Secretary-Treasurer from 1912 to 1922. Nealdale was closed June 26, 1926.
Romance: Romance post office opened on the site of the rail siding of the same name November 16, 1927. Romance post office closed May 29, 1970.
Sinnett: The first Sinnett post office was established March 25, 107 in township 35-21-W2nd. Sinnett was named for Reverend John C. Sinnett C.J., founder of the “Irish Colony”. Sinnett post office name changed to McGuire on September 1, 1908. McGuire was the family name of the Postmaster, Thomas J. McGuire. McGuire
Post office’s name changed to Manresa on April 1, 1912. Manresa post office closed October 22, 1924.
Sinnett: When the original Sinnett post office’s name changed to McGuire on September 1, 1908 this left the name Sinnett open for Reverend John C. Sinnett C.J. to open a post office September 1, 1908 on 16-34-21-W2nd. Sinnett post office moved closer to the rail siding named Vigor Siding in 1919. The people of the district asked Canadian Pacific Railway if the rail siding could also be named Sinnett. The C.P.R. agreed. Sinnett post office closed July 3, 1969.
School Districts in the R.M.:
Bright Spot #3043: The school building was situated on the center on the north edge of NW 12-35-19-W2nd. The school opened for the fall term of 1915. The school closed for the winter just before Christmas and reopened usually in early March thus avoiding costly winter heating costs. Bright Spot school closed June 27, 1952.
Brindle #2347: The Brindle school house was located at SE 13- 34-21-W2nd. School began in the fall of 1921 at the Joe Roraff home. The school house was built in the spring of 1922. Brindle school closed June 26, 1959.
Caseyville #2041: The first classes were held in a tent on NE 20-35-21-W2nd. The school building was built in the same location in 1908. An exact closure date was not found but is believed to have occurred in the late 1950s or early 1960s.
Early Dawn #2273: The school house was built on 1-36-19- W2nd and opened in 1909. A second school house was built in 1957 to accommodate the increasing student population. A second teacher was required. Early Dawn schools closed in 1962.
Ilinois #2312: The school building was built in 1910 on NW 12-34-20-W2nd. The school opened January 3, 1911 and closed in June, 1960.
Korbel #1415: The school building was constructed in 1907 on SE 20-36-19-W2nd. School opened for classes in 1907. The school closed in June 1961.
Lampard #4512: The school house was located on SE 23-34- 19-W2nd. The school was built in 1923 and opened August 30, 1923. The school closed in June 1965.
Bog End #1742: The original school was built in 1907 on SE 13-35-20-W2nd which is a half mile east of present day LeRoy. In 1922 the school was moved into the village of LeRoy on SW 13- 35-20-W2nd and the name was changed to LeRoy. At least seven various school buildings have existed through the years. One was lost to fire in April 1970. Currently there is one large modern school building housing kindergarten to Grade ‘Twelve. Student population was as high as at least 300 in the mid-1960s.
Linton #2259: The school house was built in late 1908 and completed by January 8, 1909 when classes began. The school closed in June 1953. The school was located on SE 3-36-20-W2nd
Loyola #1910: The school was built on SE 8-34-21-W2nd in 1908. The school opened March 15, 1909. In 1948 the school was moved to the Sinnett hamlet on 10-34-21-W2nd where it operated until it closed in 1970. The Sisters of Service taught at the school until they left in 1969.
Sinnett #1809: The school was built on SW 2-35-21-W2nd in 1908 with classes beginning that September. The school name changed to Manresa on August 30, 1916. The school closed in June, 1960.
Mintern #772: The school was built on NW 23-36-20-W2nd and opened March 1, 1926. The school closed in 1953.
Natika #4376: The school house was built on SE 29-35-19-W2nd in 1921 ready for use in September. Natika school closed in June, 1963.
Newnham #1972: The school was built on SW 30-35-20-W2nd and opened in May 1908. The school closed in 1959. Saint Francis #1747: The school was built in 1907 on SE 32- 36-21-W2nd and opened May 8, 1908 as a private school. In 1909 the school district was reorganized into a public school with a new school house built on SW 4-37-21-W2nd opening in the spring of 1910. June 29, 1964 was the last day of school.
Saint Gertrude #2329: The school was built to begin classes in the fall of 1909 on SW 16-36-21-W2nd. Fire destroyed the original school house in the spring of 1932. A new school was built and ready for use August 16, 1932. The school closed in June of 1966.
Sjolie #2145: Pronounced “Shirley”, the school house was built in 1908 on the Sjolie homestead, NW 18-36-20-W2nd. Sjolie school closed for a few years due to low enrollment. The school reopened in 1928. A new school was built in 1937. The old school building was sold to the Rural Municipality and moved to LeRoy where it was opened as the Municipality and Town Office. The grand opening of this building as the new office was in July 1940. This building remained used as the municipal office from 194fl to 1987. The school closed in 1963.
South Saint Gregor #3163: The school was built on SW 6-37-20- W2nd and opened July 19, 1915. The school closed in 1963.
Ryan #1944: The school building opened in 1908. The name changed to Spring Grove in 1919. The school burnt January 13, 1944 and was rebuilt while classes were in a bachelor’s shack. The school closed in 1958.
Other school districts to which a few ratepayers belonged included:
Sacred Heart Separate School in Watson
Rural Telephone Companies in the R.M.:
Englefeld Rural Telephone Company Ltd.
Lanigan Rural Telephone Company
Muenster Rural Telephone Company #798
Nealdale Rural Telephone Company
North Lanigan Rural Telephone Company Ltd. #737
Prairie Rose Rural Telephone Company #945
Quill Plains Rural Telephone Company Ltd. #637
Sinnett Rural Telephone Company #514
Saint Gregor Rural Telephone Company #1112
Warren Rural Telephone Company #929
As the years went by amalgamations occurred to where we now have the following exchanges under Sask Tel serving the R.M.:
Urban Settlements in the R.M.:
Hamlet of Romance: The Canadian Pacific Railroad allotted the siding of Romance on 2-36-19-W2nd when it built the branch line from Lanigan to Naicam in 1920. In 1921 The Goose Lake Elevator Company of Winnipeg was the only taxable property at $75.00 Municipal and $75.00 School tax. In 1922 the Goose Lake elevator was owned by the Pioneer Grain Company. By 1923 Pioneer Grain had a house on Lot 10 of Block 2 plus the elevator. This was the first residence in Romance.
Vigor Siding: The Canadian Pacific Railroad allotted the siding of Vigor Siding on 10-34-21-W2nd when it built the Lanigan to Naicam branch line in 1920. After the local post office (Sinnett) moved to Vigor Siding the area residents got the Vigor Siding name changed to Sinnett in 1925 as tax rolls indicate. The only taxable property at Vigor Siding in 1922 was The State Elevator Company elevator at $75.00 Municipal and $75.00 school taxes.
Unwin: When Canadian Pacific Railroad built the Lanigan to Naicam branch line in 1920 they allotted the siding of Unwin on 13-35-20-W2nd. The siding locally became known as LeRoy for John LeRoy who was a World War One casualty, in early 1921. The name of LeRoy became official when the post office name was changed from Bog End to LeRoy on December 1, 1921.
The 1921 taxable properties in Unwin:
Saskatchewan Co-operative Elevator Co. – grain elevator
The State Elevator Company – grain elevator
Saskatchewan General Trust Co. – general store
Booth & Robertson, Jansen, Sask. – stock on trade
F. Hannah – butcher shop
Massey Harris Co. Ltd. – implements
John Hill – implement warehouse, office and oil house
British American Oil Co. – oil in store
Beaver Lumber Co. – building and stock
Empire Lumber Co. – building and stock
Warner Hardware & Implement Co. Ltd. – building & stock
Harry Hazeldine – building and stock – general store
Charles Mahn – building – carpenter
A.H. Nielson – garage
Hugo F. Shaw – house
Oliver Bonderud – harness shop
F.D. Walker – butcher shop
Harry 0. Johnson – bank building
F.B. Wilkins – house
J. Dekan – pool room
Robert Hannah – house and barn
F. Schroeder – blacksmith shop
A. Headrick – barn and house
W.J. Coleman – house and barn
Fung Yee and Gee Ping Sam – store and stock / cafe
T. Winton – drug store and stock
Alfred Olson – house
S.D. Weese – house
Additional properties in LeRoy hamlet in 1922:
A.E. Van Wyck – blacksmith shop
R. McKnight – house
W. Johnson –
T.A. Warner –
Rural Municipality of Ayr
Imperial Oil Co. – oil stock
Victoria Elevator Company – grain elevator
Falconer and Grady – garage
In late 1922 the hamlet of LeRoy set up their own government system to begin very early 1923. Although separate government entities the town and rural municipal councils always worked together to the best of their abilities for the benefit of their residents.
Churches in the R.M.:
The following local churches within the municipality serving the residents of the town of LeRoy and the municipality:
LeRoy Baptist Church 1977-
Holy Rosary Catholic Church 1948-
Jehovah’s Witnesses 1938-
Norwegian Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church 1908-
Pentecostal Church 1945-1973
Saint Gertrude Catholic Church 1945-1992
Saint Ignatius Catholic Church 1906-2000
Saint Nicholas Anglican Church 1906-1990
Saint Oswald Catholic Church 1906-1965
Saint Patrick Catholic Church 1905-1965
LeRoy United Church 1911-
The first Doctor to serve the residents of the municipal area with municipal government consent was Dr. Large of Jansen. Another Doctor was Dr. Chapman of Lanigan. Drs. R.P. Mulholland and G. McGorman of Watson served the northeast area of the R.M. The first “Municipal Doctor” was Dr. Hindson. The Municipal Doctor resided in LeRoy and was paid a set income, per year by the municipality to care for the municipal residents. Extra health requirements provided outside the municipality were covered if not totally at least a portion for any ratepayers’ needs.
Other Doctors that served the town and R.M.:
Dr. A.F. Hildebrand
Dr. R. Pugh
Dr. G.C. Cameron
Dr. W.N. McKee
Dr. H. Yeager
Dr. N. Farkas
Dr. T. Radomsky
After the hospital closed various Doctors from neighboring communities supplied health services. Today a Doctor from Humboldt has clinic hours at the LeRoy Clinic.
The Cheese Factory:
A unique business operated in the municipality known as the LeRoy Cheese Factory. The cheese factory was built about one mile north of LeRoy in 1925 by Alex Dewar. The plant was capable of handling 8,000 pounds of milk per day. The first cheese maker was Mr. Carlton of Landsdowne, Ontario. The cheese factory operated until late 1927 and only in the summer. Most farmers thought they were paid for every can of milk they delivered so they would add water to the milk much to the consternation of the cheese maker. But there was a test for butter fat used and the addition of water came to an end. In 1931 the LeRoy Milk Producers Association decided to reopen the cheese factory with Mr. Reinelt as cheese maker. As money was very scarce it was decided to use script. Script notes were ordered printed by the Watson Witness. Producers were paid with these script notes. The producers in turn used the script at the businesses in LeRoy. When the cheese was sold the LeRoy Milk Producers Association bought back the script from the businesses. In 1937 the LeRoy Milk Producers Association joined the Dairy Pool. In 1943 nearly one million pounds of milk was handled. With the advent of cream shipment and the reduced milk handling at the cheese factory, the factory closed in 1949. Don Lister was the last cheese maker.
The Rural Municipality of Prairie Rose #309
The Rural Municipality of LeRoy #339
The Town of LeRoy
“As The Furrows Turn – LeRoy and District”
“The Palliser Expedition” by Irene M. Spry
Saskatchewan Legislative Library
Dean Mario, Postal History Society of Canada Journal No. 116,
“The Humboldt Journal”
“The Watson Witness”
Saskatchewan Archives – Saskatoon
Researched and Compiled by Delwyn J.J. Jansen – February, 2004.