Forgotten Alberta

Sights and Stories of the Southeast

Pioneers, not Palliser, define southeastern Alberta

Posted on | January 20, 2012 | 1 Comment

Happy 2012 everyone! For your reading enjoyment (I hope) here is an excerpt from, and a link to, my first Forgotten Alberta column for the Prairie Post:

You’ve probably heard of Captain John Palliser.

He’s the Irish adventurer whose expedition passed through these parts a century-and-a-half ago, and whose name has become synonymous with Alberta’s southeastern corner.

His description of a triangle-shaped region, encompassing modern-day southeastern Alberta and southwest Saskatchewan, as “desert, or semi-desert in character, which can never be expected to become occupied by settlers” has long outlived the intrepid captain, who passed away in 1887.

The Irishman’s observations regarding the “Palliser Triangle” are controversial. Since their initial publication in 1863, his conclusions have consistently been both debunked and vindicated, with opinions on the subject changing as frequently as the southeast’s volatile weather.

Considering the relative prosperity within Palliser’s Triangle today, the ongoing recognition we give the Captain is puzzling.

Click here to read the rest of the column in the Prairie Post


One Response to “Pioneers, not Palliser, define southeastern Alberta”

  1. Exploring Palliser’s Grave | Forgotten Alberta
    March 26th, 2014 @ 8:41 pm

    […]  located at Comeragh Church, Briska, Co. Waterford, Ireland.  Palliser, the Irish explorer whose name adorns an exceptionally brown portion of the Canadian West, was laid to rest in a particularly verdant corner of the Emerald […]

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    Drawing on 100+ years of family history in southeastern Alberta, Prairie Post columnist Jonathan Koch highlights the region's almost forgotten pioneer-era people and places.

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