The Dominion Exhibition

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On the road, the horses nickered and blew as the expedition entered the congested city of Calgary with a population of twelve thousand. The expedition rode by hundreds of souls, most on horseback, giving little leeway to electric cars. The Dominion Exhibition filled the city with excitement.

At the north edge of Calgary, Sherman scanned Blackfoot elders who squatted around their large tepees, each adorned with unique images, and contrasting colors around the bottom border. As was his custom, Coppaway lingered by the Indians, introducing himself and asking after their health. The Blackfoot men wore leggings and thigh length buckskin tunics with moccasins of moose hide decorated in colorful bead work.

In front of the Sarcee camp, newly constructed grandstands and exhibit buildings for livestock and entertainment stood on many empty acres, with new barns and stables lined up neat-like in a row. Behind one main thoroughfare, Sherman’s men could see a column of vendor carts with signs reading ‘Beaver Balls,’ and Saskatoon Pie.’ Near the standing stalls, other signs read ‘Bannock & Jam,’ and ‘Blueberry Grunt.’

NOTE: The Dominion Exhibition of 1908 was renamed the Calgary Stampede in 1909.
Because the years did not align, I cut this scene from my novel.

Joyce

Joyce Derenas is a historical fiction author who writes stories based on the real lives of her French-Canadian ancestors of the Beauce Valley in Quebec.