Touchwood Hills Post Provincial Park
Archaeological Site EiNa-1
Links and documents
1879/01/01 to 1879/12/31
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Touchwood Hills Post Provincial Park encompasses 6.76 hectares of aspen woods and meadows in the Touchwood Hills of southeastern Saskatchewan near the Village of Punnichy. The park contains cellar depressions and other archaeological remains of an 1879-1909 Hudson's Bay Company trading post, as well as a short segment of cart tracks that are remnants of the Carlton Trail.
The heritage value of Touchwood Hills Post Provincial Park lies in its association with the Hudson's Bay Company and the early transportation and communication networks of western Canada. Although the post traded for beaver and other furs, its main purpose was to acquire and distribute provisions for Hudson's Bay Company operations in the Northwest. Located on the southern edge of the parkland belt near the grasslands, the post was well-situated to trade for a variety of bison products, including robes, fresh and dried meat and, most importantly, pemmican. Acquired mainly from First Nations on the plains to the south, these provisions were shipped from the Touchwood post to other company posts via a network of trails. Chief among these was the principal overland route between Fort Ellice and Fort Edmonton, the Carlton Trail, which passed through the Touchwood Hills post. A segment of the Dominion Telegraph line constructed in 1882 also passed near the post, further enhancing its role as a transportation and communication hub.
The last of four Hudson's Bay Company posts built in the Touchwood Hills between 1849 and 1879, the 1879-1909 post was one of the few western trading posts to remain in operation after the decline of the fur trade. Following several years of serving local First Nations, Métis, settlers and railway contractors, the post closed when rail networks became fully established in the area.
Province of Saskatchewan, The Parks Act, May 26, 1986.
The heritage value of Touchwood Hills Post Provincial Park resides in the following character-defining elements:
-elements that speak to the post’s provisioning role, including its setting on the edge of the parkland and its largely unaltered landforms and vegetation;
-elements that reveal information regarding the Hudson's Bay Company’s occupation of the site, including artifacts and cellars, mounds or other archaeological features, and the spatial relationships and environmental context of the archaeological remains;
-elements that reflect the site's role as a transportation and communication hub, including its location on the original route of the Carlton Trail, cart tracks, and any archaeological remains related to the construction and operation of the telegraph line.
Government of Saskatchewan
Parks Act, s. 4
1879/01/01 to 1909/12/31
Theme - Category and Type
- Developing Economies
- Trade and Commerce
Function - Category and Type
- Commerce / Commercial Services
- Trading Post
- Road or Public Way
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
Heritage Conservation Branch,
Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport,
3211 Albert Street,
Regina, Saskatchewan S4S 5W6
Cross-Reference to Collection