MARY'S GENEALOGY TREASURES
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Mormon Pioneers in Alberta -
Emigration Gap

Cairn at Emigration Gap

At this site the first Company of Latter-day Saint settlers entered Canada on the 1st of June 1887. They paused here where a stone cairn marked the International Boundary. In a driving rain, each member of the group of eight families added a rock to the pile, and they all gave three cheers for their new home and religious freedom.

In the United States there was at the time anti-mormon activity such that some members of the church felt themselves to be in danger. On the advice of Church leaders in Salt Lake City, Utah, an exploring expedition the previous autumn had located a new settlement site for them. Early in the spring the President of the enterprise, Charles Ora Card, returned with an advance party to establish the first colony at what is now Cardston.

The main body of the group left northern Utah on the 3rd April 1887. President Card met them near Helena, Montana, to guide them home. After passing here, they continued through a late snow storm, arriving at the site of Cardston on the 3rd of June. With all 40 settlers assembled there, that date was recognized as the founding of the community.

The monument originally constructed 1937 was restored by the Cardston Alberta Stake of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to commemorate the Centennial of the Mormon Pioneers entry into Canada and the founding of the town of Cardston. It was dedicated on 3 June 1987.

On Back of Cairn
McLeod Trail Mormon Pioneers entered Canada here June 1, 1887 Erected May 15, 1937

(There are 8 large rocks on the top of the cairn to represent the 8 families.)

Ghost Towns of Southern Alberta

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Copyright 2000
Mary Tollestrup