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History & Heritage

Camrose is a community with rich Indigenous heritage that intersects with the Settler story in the early 1900s.

Let history

in Camrose

come alive

Visit both museums in Camrose to experience historical gardens, a railway, and exhibits on the settlers that helped shape the area. Museums promises an unforgettable experience.

Virtual Tours

May to September (guided)

Camrose Heritage Railway Station & Park

Stop by the railway park year-round to experience their historical gardens. Have a tour of the buildings and artifacts during the summer Tuesday to Saturday or by appointment. The White Elephant Gift Shop has a unique selection of antiques and upcycled items.

July 1 to September 15

Camrose & District Centennial Museum

Take a trip back in time and see everything from historical buildings to fire trucks. The museum houses thousands of artifacts as the history of Camrose comes to life in the stories told here.

Indigenous history

Camrose is located in a travelling route and home to the Maskwacis Nêhiyawak, Niitsitapi, Nakoda, and Tsuut'ina Nations, the Métis, and other Indigenous peoples. Their spiritual and practical relationships to the land create a rich heritage for our learning and our life as a community.


Dried Meat Lake, which is the water source for the City of Camrose, holds historical significance to the First Nations and Metis in this area. People would combine bison meat with berries to make pemmican as the Saskatoon bushes grow abundantly in this region.

Settlers in the early 1900s

The Camrose railway depot was constructed in 1911 following the completion of the railway connecting Camrose to Vegreville in April of 1910.

Freight service began in November of 1910 through Camrose and was followed by passenger services beginning in 1912.

The freight line primarily transported agricultural products like grain and cattle as well as coal.

Historical photo of the locomotive leaving Camrose
Historical picture of the ski hill in Stoney Creek Park

Early recreation & industry

Many early homesteaders were from Sweden and Norway and skiing became a popular past-time that continues today.

Camrose was first known as Stoney Creek (named after the creek flowing through the city) and incorporated as Sparling in 1905. Due to similar town names elsewhere and confusion with mail deliveries, the town was incorporated as Camrose in 1906.

 

The Camrose community formed around the bustling railway hub and the agriculture industry thrived due to the fertile soil and plentiful precipitation.

The swans

Swans were a staple of Camrose as they swam around Mirror Lake during the summer and raised young. 2019 marked the end of an era as the City of Camrose discontinued hosting the swans over winter due to ethical concerns.

When the swans left Mirror Lake, this allowed the possibility of taking non-motorized boats on the lake for recreation and pleasure.

Swan
Swans
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