REPORT ON TOWNSHIP 52, RANGE 11, WEST OF THE: FOURTH MERIDIAN
ACCESSIBILITY AND ROADS
This township is easily accessible from the villages of Innisfree or Raufurly. From the former place a good road runs north and enters the township at the southeast corner of section 3. A good road from Ranfurly runs, north along: the west boundary, the distance to the southwest corner of the township being about four miles.
Within the township and along its boundaries there are 3", miles of well-travelled roads and 23 miles of slightly travelled roads. Nearly all of the well-travelled roads are graded and built upon the road allowances.
Innisfree has a population of about 300, and nearly all lines of business essential to serve a farming community are represented there. Three grain elevators and one bank have been established at this point, which greatly facilitates the marketing of grain. The train service is good, there being a daily through passenger train each way and a daily local freight and passenger train one way.
SURFACE AND SURFACE COVERING
The surface throughout the township is very changeable. The major portion of the township is rolling, there being about 100 quarter-sections of this type of surface. About twenty quarters are gently rolling or gently sloping, and about, twenty-four quarters are rolling to hilly and quite rough.
Twenty-eight percent of the township is now under cultivation, and substantial additions are being made each year. About 3 per cent of the township is covered with poplar' 3 to 5 inches in diameter, with scattered areas of poplar up to 8 inches in diameter. About 12 per cent of the township has young poplar and willow bush 6 to 12 feet in height. About 3 pier cent of the area of the township comprises .mall lakes and the remainder, being about 54 per cent, is open prairie land.
The main soil of. sections 6 and 7 is dark fine sandy loam with a sandy loam subsurface soil. Sections 18, 19 and 30 and parts of sections 2, 3, t, 5, 8, 17, 20, 25, 31 and 36 have dark sandy loam soil. The remainder of the township has a soil of dark fi4e sandy loam with a clay loam subsoil interspersed with areas of dark sandy loam and areas that are stony.
The settlement of this township commenced from sixteen to twenty years ago, about the time that the railway through this district was being built. Most -of the settlers who took. up land at. that time drove in from Edmonton. At present there are about sixty families living in the township, the majority of whom are of Ukrainian nationality. This town- ship forms, a part of the municipality of Birch Lake, and from general appearances it seems that this locality has received its fair share of local improvements in the construction and maintenance of roads. The Provincial Government telephone lines are at present constructed along the east boundaries of sections 3, 10 and 15 and along the west boundaries of 6, 7 and 18, and as a consequence a few farmers have installed telephones.
CROPS AND STOCK
Wheat, oats, rye, and a limited amount of barley constitute the grain crop, while the fodder crop is chiefly of oat end rye hay. Vegetables common to Western Canada are all grown, and as a rule crops in this district are successfully grown and harvested,
although it is commonly reported that a few crops have been partial failures due to frost or drought.
Mixed farming is general in the township and all farms are well supplied with horses. The cattle owned by each farmer averages from twenty to thirty, while a few have forty to fifty. Nearly all have a few hogs, amounting to as many as twenty in a few cases. Dairying is carried on to a considerable extent and cream is sold to the creamery at Innisfree.
HAY AND WINTER FEED
A limited amount of winter feed for stock is secured from the prairie and low slough lands, but by far the greater amount of feed for stock is obtained from oat and rye hay and from straw.
Most of, the settlers use wood for fuel. This is secured from their land when clearing is done, and in part from township 53, which is thickly wooded with poplar. This wood when properly dried burns well and is considered very satisfactory
Good water is obtained from wells 20 to 60 feet in depth. Within the' township, and particularly in sections 25, 26, 27 and 28, there are a few natural water springs, and these are very valuable as sources of water for stock.
POST OFFICE AND SCHOOL
Most of the settlers get their mail from Innisfree, but a few have Ranfurly as their post office.
The schools are well attended, there being from thirty to fifty children in attendance at each school. Three schools serve the needs within the township. These are located as follows: in the southwest quarter of section 17, in the north- west quarter of section: 34, and in the southwest quarter of section 7, township 52, range 10.
The township with which this report deals is favourably situated so far as shipping facilities are concerned. It is well supplied with roads. The soil is generally good and a fair amount is under cultivation. The farmers, who are all carrying on mixed farming, are quite industrious.
August 1923. (Sgd.) R. H. KNIGHT,
Dominion Land Surveyor