Showing 114 results

Archival description
Agriculture Collection
Print preview View:

108 results with digital objects Show results with digital objects

Agriculture Collection

  • AGC
  • Collection
  • 1882 - 2020

The collection consists of various documents and photos about Indian Head's agricultural heritage, including the Bell Farm, the federal Tree Nursery and the federal Experimental Farm. The Agriculture Collection includes materials related agriculture and includes, especially, series pertaining to three major agricultural developments in Indian Head 1) The Bell Farm (Qu'Appelle Valley Farming Company) which was a huge farming venture of 57,000 acres promoted by Major William Robert Bell in 1881-1882 to Eastern Canadian and American shareholders. The venture finally failed and Major Bell left Indian Head in 1895. 2) The federal Experimental Farm which was established in 1887 under the superintendency of Angus MacKay and continues to conduct research as Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Indian Head Research Farm . 3) The federal Tree Nursery (PFRA) resulted from the promotion of trees and shrubs for shelter by Angus MacKay , the superintendent of the Experimental Farm . Established as a separate federal government station in 1901 under the superintendency of Norman Ross, it provided trees and shrubs for farmers throughout the prairies until its closure in 2014.

Bell barn and portable granaries

Bell barn photographed from the road (#56). There are farm implements in the foreground and portable wooden granaries on their sides beside the barn. The photograph was likely taken on the same day as IHM.2022.0075 and IHM.2022.0076.

Bell Farm

The Bell Farm Series contains photos, maps and textual records about the 57,000 acre Qu’Appelle Valley Farming Corporation (called “The Bell Farm”), of which Major William Robert Bell of Brockville, Ontario, was the founder in 1882 and the farm’s general manager. Financial difficulties associated with crop failures as well as the 1885 Northwest Resistance at Batoche (led by Louis Riel Jr.) arose at the farm. During the Resistance, Major Bell and most of his workers and horses were in the service of the Canadian militia and little or no crop was planted or harvested. In 1886, much of the farm’s land and assets were sold and the corporation was re-financed, resulting in a smaller company registered as “The Bell Farm Company.” This company also failed financially by 1889 and was liquidated.
Major Bell retained a personal holding of 12,000 acres, which he farmed from 1889 to 1895, supported by investors. Further misfortunes, primarily, the destruction by fire of his flour mill and the sudden death of his wife caused Major Bell to leave Indian Head in 1895. His land and assets were sold by auction.
The archival materials include photos of the farm buildings, including the large stone house and the round barn which, in 2020, continues to be a museum dedicated to telling the story of Major Bell’s huge farming company. Other photos and textual records tell the stories of the people and the operations of the farm.

Bell Farm house / headquarters

Bell Farm house/headquarters building photographed from the road (#56) with two people standing in the doorway and half of the Bell barn on the right of the picture.

Bell Farm house and barn

Bell Farm house and barn photographed from across the road (#56). There are horses and a wagon in front of the door of the house. The photograph was taken on the same day as IHM.2022.0075.

Results 1 to 15 of 114