11 Amazing Alberta History Facts That Will Definitely Surprise You

Anusuya Mukherjee
Oct 04, 2023 By Anusuya Mukherjee
Originally Published on Jan 03, 2022
Alberta, Canada is one of the biggest provinces in the world.
Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.8 Min

Alberta, one of the three central provinces of Canada, possesses the mainland in the country's western region.

On the north, Alberta forms its boundaries with northwest territories, while on the east, it meets the boundary of Saskatchewan. The west of Alberta is bordered by British Columbia, while southern Alberta is connected to the state of Montana, U.S.

The western part of the province comprises mountainous terrain, and the eastern side is covered in great plains. Alberta is widely known for its mesmerizing natural beauty, historical and cultural richness.

Check out our other articles on Panama history facts and Alaska history facts here at Kidadl.

Alberta's History And Culture

Alberta has had very interesting and memorable moments across history. Please keep reading to learn about the first settlers of Alberta and their cultures.

Before becoming a province, Alberta was the home to Native American groups for approximately 11,000 years. In the '50s, the land was used by European explorers to expand their fur trade across America.

Alberta first became a part of Canada in 1870, where it was considered a district of northwest regions up until 1882. After that, in 1905, under the Alberta Act, it finally gained the status as the eighth province of Canada.

Government And Politics

Alberta has the highest real per capita GDP out of all the other provinces. Read this section to find out how the political system of Alberta works!

The most significant contributor to Alberta's $338.2 billion economies is its oil and petrochemical industries. These oil reserves were first discovered in 1947 and have been a supporter of Alberta's economy.

Due to excess oil reserves, in 2008, authorities decided to build a pipeline (known as the Alberta Clipper) flowing from Alberta to Wisconsin. The second industry to lay the foundation of Alberta's vast and diverse economy is its Agriculture and Livestock.

It contributes approximately 2.2 % of Alberta's GDP. Other industries like tourism, manufacturing, transportation and real estate also contribute to the GDP.

Alberta has a democratic government led by the leader of the winning party. This leader also goes by the name of the Premier.

They govern the province in accordance with the Constitution Act, 1867. Since the '60s, Alberta has only had three major political parties: the Liberals, the Social Democrats, and the Progressive Conservatives (now known as Wildrose Party).

Alberta has had its fair share of police organizations, starting in 1905 with establishing the first policing unit, the Royal Northwest mounted police. Since then, several organizations have been appointed and disbanded for political reasons.

Currently, Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT) look after the law enforcement of Alberta.

Political History Of Indigenous People

Before becoming a province or even named Alberta, it was the home of three recognized groups, the First Nations, Metis, and Inuit.

The First Nations were further classified into three groups: Subarctic People, living in the northern part, the second was the Plain Indians living in the south, and the third were the ones following mixed cultural practices of these two groups. As of now, Alberta still has over 220,000 people claiming to be aboriginals (term used for these indigenous people).

As a result of its booming economy, Alberta has become the fastest-growing province in Canada. Alberta has a total population of four million, out of which one million people reside in Edmonton (the capital city) and one million in Calgary.

These cities offer the best cultural experiences by hosting many cultural and educational festivals like the Edmonton Fringe festival or Mountain Film Festival for tourists to see and celebrate. These cities are also home to some of the main tourist attractions like the West-Edmonton Mall or the Calgary Tower.

April 29, 1903, goes down as one of the important dates in the history of Alberta, Canada. This was the day that Canada's worst natural disaster, the frank slide, took place. A large chunk of the turtle mountain came off and killed nearly 76 people. Since then, the authorities have kept a close watch on the mountain.

Alberta, Canada is home to beautiful National Parks and Lakes.

Agriculture And Forestry

Did you know Alberta is 100% rat-Free? If not, keep reading to learn more about Alberta's agriculture and mesmerizing sceneries.

When the rats were seen migrating from Western Canada in the '50s, people feared that they might destroy the agricultural crops and produce. To combat this, Alberta's government formulated a brutal rat program, eliminating all of them.

Other strict measures like arsenic powders, pest control were carried out to reduce the number of rat infestations in the province. To this day, Alberta follows these rigid procedures to stay rat-free; there are a lot of mosquitoes, though.

Located near Northern Alberta and spread across 6,213 mi (10,000 km), the Boreal forests take up 48% of Alberta land. Boreal forests are one of Alberta's main tourist attractions because of what it offers.

In addition to the lush and dense trees, the Boreal forest also has rocky mountains, moraines, and three massive rivers, namely the Athabasca River, the Peace River, and the Saskatchewan River.

The Winter season dominates this forest, and the summer is also cold while the other two seasons are experiencing rainy and cloudy weather. Alberta's soil quality, pest-free lands, and perfect climatic regions make it the ideal place for getting high-yielding gains when it comes to agriculture and farming. Wheat, canola, and barley are the main crops grown here.

Let's talk about Alberta's National Parks. The province of Alberta is home to some of the world's largest, most beautiful national parks. For instance, the Wood Buffalo national park spreads across the northeast of Alberta, and southern northwest territories are the second largest national park in the world. The Banff National park comprises the beautiful Lake Louise.

Lake Louise is famous for the color of its turquoise blue water, which reflects the beauty of the Victoria Glacier and its surrounding mountains. Previously known as Emerald Lake, Lake Louise was renamed after Princess Louise, daughter of Queen Victoria. The Banff national park is also widely known for its hot springs.

However, two parks attract the most attention out of all the parks in Alberta. Waterton National Park, named after the Victorian naturalist Charles Waterton, is divided into glacier park in Alberta and the U.S. Dinosaur Provincial Park.

As the name suggests, Dinosaur Provincial Park is home to some of the richest dinosaur fossils in the world, with over 58-species of dinosaurs discovered. History lovers should consider visiting this one! What's even more interesting is that all of these parks are part of UNESCO's World Heritage Sites.

Apart from mountain parks, Alberta is also known for its breathtaking glaciers. Alberta, along with Canada and British Columbia, is hometown to the largest icefields, the Columbia Icefield, located within the Rocky Mountains of North America and the Canadian Rockies.

Furthermore, these Columbia Icefields feed six massive glaciers, including the Athabasca glacier, near Jasper National Park. What's even more exciting is that this is one of the accessible glaciers, meaning you can plan a complete hiking trip through the glacier.

That's the reason it's also the most-visited glacier in North America. Another great mountain peak in Alberta is Mount Columbia. Located in the Rocky Mountain, it is the highest point in Alberta.

Flag Of Alberta

Adopted in 1968, Alberta's flag is one of the most symbolic and unique flags. Moreover, the emblem of Alberta, combined with its flag, paints a beautiful picture of their culture.

Alberta's flag consists of a red cross of St. George at the top, Rocky Mountains and prairie lands in the middle, and wheat fields at the bottom, all encompassed in a provincial shield and a blue background. The proportion of the Alberta flag is measured to be 2:1, meaning the flag's width is twice its height.

Alberta was assigned the Coat of Arms in 1907. Later on, in 1980, it was enlarged by adding a beaver wearing the royal crown while holding a silver and red wreath. The design also has two supporters, a lion and an antelope holding the provincial shield.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created many interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Alberta history facts, then why not take a look at Jamaica history facts or Norway history facts?

We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

Written by Anusuya Mukherjee

Bachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

Anusuya Mukherjee picture

Anusuya MukherjeeBachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

With a wealth of international experience spanning Europe, Africa, North America, and the Middle East, Anusuya brings a unique perspective to her work as a Content Assistant and Content Updating Coordinator. She holds a law degree from India and has practiced law in India and Kuwait. Anusuya is a fan of rap music and enjoys a good cup of coffee in her free time. Currently, she is working on her novel, "Mr. Ivory Merchant".

Read full bio >