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Crippled Creek Crossing Site

Gravelbourg RM 104, Saskatchewan, S0H, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1981/11/04

View northwest at reported location of site on near (east) side of Wood River, 2004.; Government of Saskatchewan, Marvin Thomas, 2004.
Site Location
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Other Name(s)

Crippled Creek Crossing North-West Mounted Police Camp
Archaeological Site DlNo-1
Crippled Creek Crossing Site

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/02/02

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Crippled Creek Crossing Site is a Municipal Heritage Property encompassing 128 hectares of land along the Wood River in south-central Saskatchewan near the Town of Gravelbourg. Featuring a mix of cultivated and pasture land, the property is known in the local community as the location of a nineteenth-century North-West Mounted Police campsite.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Crippled Creek Crossing Site lies in its association with the North-West Mounted Police and their famous "March West." In July, 1874, a year after the founding of the Force, a contingent of "Mounties" set out on a long trek from Dufferin, Manitoba with orders to curtail the whiskey trade, establish amicable relations with First Nations, and perform general policing duties in the North-West. Among the 275 officers and men were some who would achieve prominence for their exploits in the West, including Commissioner George Arthur French, James Macleod, James Walsh and Samuel Steele.

Unfamiliar with the rigours of prairie travel, low on rations, and often without adequate water or pasture, the column reached Old Wives Lake in southern Saskatchewan by mid-August in poor condition. As the main contingent pressed on farther west, a decision was made to leave seven troopers, five of whom were sick, a Métis employee, and 26 weak horses at a camp on the Wood River not far south of the lake. This encampment, dubbed "cripple camp," was their home until Commissioner French and some of the troops returned in early October on their way east to the North-West Mounted Police's newly established Swan River headquarters.


Rural Municipality of Gravelbourg No. 104 Bylaw No. 6/81.

Character-Defining Elements

The heritage value of the Crippled Creek Crossing Site resides in the following character-defining elements:
-the site in its defined boundaries, consisting of fields and pastures intersected by the Wood River flowing in its natural course;
-archaeological objects or features related to the North-West Mounted Police occupation.




Recognition Authority

Local Governments (SK)

Recognition Statute

Heritage Property Act, s. 11(1)(a)

Recognition Type

Municipal Heritage Property

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1874/01/01 to 1874/12/31

Theme - Category and Type

Governing Canada
Security and Law

Function - Category and Type


Food Supply
Horticultural Facility or Site


Undetermined (archaeological site)
Buried Site

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Department of Culture, Youth and Recreation Heritage Resources Branch 1919 Saskatchewan Drive Regina, SK File: MHP 146

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

MHP 146



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