North-West Mounted Police - A Tradition in Scarlet   Francais Home Sitemap Links Feedback Credits
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1. Introduction2. Birth of a Police Force3. The March West4. Establishment of the Force5. The Railroad and the Rebellion6. The Growth of the Force7. Establishment of a National Police Force8. Biographies
 
The First World War
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At the end of the South African War, I joined the South African Constabulary while others returned to the RNWMP. We still had plenty to keep us busy in Canada!

We had about 70 or so men patrolling in the north, enforcing liquor laws, helping the Inuit, collecting duties from whaling ships and reminding the world that the Arctic islands were part of Canada! In the west, the provinces of Saskatchewan and Alberta had been formed. The RNMWP was contracted by these provinces to take care of their policing. In 1912, we began to expand into northern Manitoba as well.

As the First World War developed in Europe, there were concerns for our people here at home. There were thousands of German settlers in Canada - other Canadians worried that they would start a war here. We were assigned to keep an eye on them, just in case. By 1917, the government became more worried about supporters of Germany crossing the border into Canada to start trouble. We stopped policing in Alberta and Saskatchewan except for federal law enforcement. Our men were re-assigned to patrolling and protecting the international boundary. Some of our men took on new duties in intelligence and security.

Yet, our men were itching to go overseas and fight in the war. Until 1918, they were needed more at home. Finally, the government allowed the force to send two mounted cavalry squadrons. A Squadron served in France and Germany while B Squadron spent the remaining months of the war in Siberia as part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force. When they came back to Canada, they found the country changed and the force taking on a new role.
Two members of the Lord Strathcona's Horse.
Two members of the Lord Strathcona's Horse.


 
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6. The Growth of the Force