This community of 14,000 is located 141 km northwest of Saskatoon, high above the south shore of the North Saskatchewan River Valley. There is the town of Battleford with 4,000 people in it.
The town is at the North Saskatchewan mouth of the Battle River, which was named for several battles between the Cree and the Blackfoot around the Battle and Pigeon Lakes southwest of Edmonton. In 1874 it was declared the capital of the North-West Territories. The Northwest Mounted Police built Fort Battleford here in 1876 and the post office opened in 1877. The town’s decline began in 1905 when the Canadian National Railway built its tracks on the opposite shore of the North Saskatchewan.
The main industries in the North Battleford area are agriculture, health, finance, education and industrial service centres. Since 1998 there has been over $40 million in agriculture construction, with study growth also so occurring in manufacturing, food processing, and tourism.
North Battleford has 11 elementary schools (3 offer French immersion), two junior high and two high schools. The North West Regional College is also located here, offering first and second year university, technical institute programs, business training and student services. The average price of a home here is $59,000 (about half or a third of the cost of homes in B.C. or Ontario), reaching as high as $120,000. Kildeer Park and Fairview Heights are two of the more popular residential areas, being just minutes from outdoor sporting facilities. They is lots to do here with facilities including the Gold Eagle Casino, four indoor hockey rinks, two curling rinks, an indoor pool, waterslide park, golf courses, ski facility (with quad lifts) and the Battleford Provincial Park also nearby.
North Battelford History
Battleford) was home to several historic indigenous groups, including the Cree, Blackfeet, and Siouan Assiniboine, who all contested for control of local resources.
The first Europeans in the area were French fur traders in the late 1700s. They founded Fort Montaigne d’Aigle (Eagle Hills Fort) nine miles below the confluence of the Saskatchewan and Battle Rivers in 1778, though it was abandoned in a conflict between traders and natives.
Tthe town of Battleford was founded 1875 on the south side of the North Saskatchewan River, and served as capital of the North-West Territories between 1876 and 1883.
The Canadian Northern Railway main line built in 1905 to Edmonton was built on the north side of the North Saskatchewan River. North Battleford, built alongside the railway line, was incorporated as a village in 1906, as a town in 1907, and as a city (with a population of 5,000) in 1913. This town quickly became the dominant one of hte two towns, collctively called “the Battlefords”.
In 1916, North Battleford got a new North Battleford Public Library with a $15,000 grant from the Carnegie Foundation of New York. In 1956, the current Canadian National Railways Station was built.
North Battleford Attractions
Allen Sapp Gallery/The Gonor Collection
Located on Hwy.16 to city centre
Showcasing the work of Allen Sapp. Open to the public year round, hours vary with season. Admission free, with donations accepted.
Fort Battleford National Historic Site
Central Ave. SE (in Battleford, 4.8 km southeast of North Battleford)
P.O. Box 70, Battleford, SK S0M 0E0
This historic site has a total of five buildings (four with furnishings)including reconstructed stockade/bastions. Open from May long weekend until labour day, 9 am to 5 pm. Admission, children under 6 FREE,
Fred Light Museum & Tourist Information Centre
Located at the corner of 20th St. and Central Ave.
(306) 937-7111 or (306) 937-6200
A firearm collection. Many historic artifacts including shaving mugs, lamps, a large mustache cup collection and military uniforms from the 1800s and the two World Wars. Open daily 9 am to 8 pm. Admission free, with donations accepted.
George Hooey Wildlife Exhibit
Located on Hwy. 16
(306) 937-2660 or (306) 445-4244
Over 400 displays of taxidermy specimens (dating back to 1890) by the late George Hooey. Open weekdays from 10 am to 4 pm. Admission free, with donations accepted. Wheelchair accessibility.
Gold Eagle Casino
Located on the North side of Hwy. 16 at the east end of the city
Black Jack, Roulette, Poker, slot machines, Let It Ride, Caribbean Stud Poker, Progressive Jackpots and a lounge. Open Monday to Saturday 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. and Sunday noon to midnight. Wheelchair accessibility.
Located at the corner of 22nd St. and 1st Ave.
The 1908 CNR Station represents Battleford’s first access to the rail system. The Station has since been moved and converted into a restaurant. Open Monday to Saturday, 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and Sunday, 4:00 to 9:00 p.m..
Saskatchewan Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum
Honouring Saskatchewan’s top baseball athletes. Exhibits photos of the inductees into the SBHF and over 3000 artifacts dealing with baseball in Saskatchewan.
The Chapel Gallery
Located at the Don Ross Complex, 891-99th St.
(306) 455-1757 or (306) 445-1760
Hosting a permanent collection of works by Provincial, Regional and local artist. There are also travelling exhibits which change monthly. The gallery is open daily from June to August, 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.. Admission free, with donations accepted. Wheelchair accessibility.
Western Development Museum/Heritage Farm and Village
Located at Junction Hwys. 16 and 40
Different setups of agricultural equipment supported by demostrations of 1920 farming precedures. Open daily from May 1 to Labour Day weekend, 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Labour Day weekend to April 30, Tuesday to Sunday, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.. Admission fee. Limited Wheelchair access.
Saskatchewan Handcraft Festival
Located at the Battleford Arena and Alex Dillabough Centre
An annual Craft Show/Market with 80 of the best craft artist.