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History of Major Posts
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Fort Whoop-Up

The notorious Fort Whoop-Up was the destination of the NWMP. When they arrived, the whisky traders had disappeared, leaving behind a caretaker. Without a single shot, the largest and most profitable whisky trading post closed.

Cecil Denny describes the fort in 1874: "Whoop-Up was a stockade fort, about a hundred yards square, the dwellling–houses facing inward. The bastions at the corners were loopholed and the fort was the proud possessor of two old-fashioned brass field-guns, which I doubt could be fired without danger of bursting."

While the traders may have thought that the NWMP would soon turn around and return east, leaving them to trade whisky once again, this was not to be. The Fort, its true name was Fort Hamilton, continued to operate as a trading post, minus the whisky. In fact, the NWMP established barracks in the Fort from 1875 to 1890. In 1876, they expanded the stockade in order to keep their horses within the walls where they could not be stolen.

After the NWMP no longer needed this outpost, the Fort evolved into a ranch. Today, it interprets the history of the whisky trade, the NWMP and the ranching era in Southern Alberta.


Native people waiting to trade at Fort Whoop-Up.
Native people waiting to trade at Fort Whoop-Up.


 
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4. Establishment of a Police Force


Daily Life and Routine at the Posts
Development of Communities Around NWMP Posts