North-West Mounted Police - A Tradition in Scarlet   Francais Home Sitemap Links Feedback Credits
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Sout African War
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In 1899, things were getting hot for Britain in South Africa. When the South African War started, Britain asked Canada to send soldiers. The Prime Minister sent Lt.-Colonel William D. Otter, (remember him from the North-West Rebellion?) with 1000 men in the 2nd Battalion, Royal Canadian Regiment. The British weren't doing so well, and more men were needed.

Some of our men joined the 2nd Canadian Mounted Rifles. I was asked to command the Lord Strathcona's Horse. Several of my comrades from our Yukon days went with me. In all, about 217 NWMP officers fought in the South African War. King Edward VII thanked us for our help by conferring "Royal" on our name. After 1904, we were known as the Royal North West Mounted Police.

This wasn't the only time that we brushed shoulders with royalty. In 1897, we sent a detachment to London to represent Canada for Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee. We were on hand at King Edward's coronation in 1902, then at King George V's coronation in 1911.
The police were keen to sign up and fight in the South African War where their discipline, horsemanship and survival skills made them welcome additions to the fighting force.
The police were keen to sign up and fight in the South African War where their discipline, horsemanship and survival skills made them welcome additions to the fighting force.

RNWMP provide an honour guard at the Alberta Legislature in 1917.
RNWMP provide an honour guard at the Alberta Legislature in 1917.

 
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6. The Growth of the Force