REPORT ON TOWNSHIP 55, RANGE 12, WEST OF THE FOURTH MERIDIAN
ACCESSIBILITY AND ROADS
This township is fifteen miles north and eleven miles east of the town of Vegreville. The main through road between the above place and St. Paul des Metis passes through the township, the North Saskatchewan river being crossed by a ferry at the east boundary of section 34. There is also a main east and west road along the south boundary of the township. These with many good roads within the township make all parts easily accessible.
The Canadian Pacific Railway has located a branch line between Edmonton and Lloydminster which passes through the northerly part of the township to the south. When it is operating, shipping facilities for the settlers of this township will be greatly improved.
Vegreville has a population of about 1,500. It is situated on the line of the Canadian National railways which runs from Edmonton to Winnipeg, via North Battleford. This town is an important business centre and local market for the surrounding district. A Provincial Government telephone central is located here; from which telephone lines radiate in all directions and serve the country for many miles around. There are excellent schools. and nearly every line of business is represented at Vegreville. Marketing of grain and dairy products is facilitated by seven grain elevators with a total capacity of 520,000 bushels, a flour mill, and a creamery. have a predominating soil of from six to ten inches of black sandy loam. Sections 34, 35, and 36 have a soil of from six to twelve inches of black fine sandy loam over clay loam or clay. The remainder of the township has mixed areas of black sandy loam, black fine sand, and black, brown, or yellow sand.
The settlement of this township, which was begun about 1903, is now fairly 'well developed, although about twenty- five per cent of the land is still unoccupied. The southerly and westerly pant is settled mostly by Europeans of Slavonic descent, while in the northerly and easterly part the settlers are mostly French-Canadians.
CROPS AND STOCK
Wheat and oats are the chief grain crops grown for sale. Oat greenfeed is grown for fodder. In this district crops are successfully grown and harvested, although in a few years partial crop failures have been reported due to either drought or frost.
Mixed farming is carried on by nearly all of the settlers. Horses, cattle and hogs are the chief kinds of stock raised, of which hogs are probably the most profitable. Dairying is carried on to a limited extent, cream being sold in Vegreville.
SURFACE AND SURFACE COVERING
North Saskatchewan river cuts through the northeasterly part of this township flowing easterly through sections 33, 34, 35, 26, 25, and 36. It is about '1,000 feet wide and has a current of from three to four miles per hour. The valley of the river is about 150 feet deep and two miles in width. Sections 1 and 12, and parts of sections 2, 11, and 13 are on a high elevation with a decided slope westerly. The surface of this portion of the township is mostly heavily rolling. Excepting also the land 'broken by the river valley, the 'balance of the township has a good surface described as either undulating or gently rolling and with a general slope towards the north. About 30 per cent of the township is under cultivation. The remainder is mostly used for pasture, and the greater part of it is open country with bluffs of poplar, from two to four inches in. diameter, and willow.
DRAINAGE AND WATER
Since the general slope is towards the river most of the surplus water runs off and there are not many sloughs. Good water is obtained from wells which range from twenty to seventy feet in depth.
Sections 1 to 5, 9 to 13, and parts of sections 14, 15, and 16 have a soil of black fine sandy loam from six to twelve inches in depth, interspersed with areas of black sandy loam, and many stony areas. Sections 6, 7, 8, 17, 18, 19, and 20
HAY AND WINTER FEED
Within the township there are no large areas of natural haylands, but considerable quantities of hay are cut from the small hay sloughs and low Iambs. This is supplemented by oat greenfeed and straw for winter feed for stock.
Sufficient fuel for the use of the settlers can be secured from the poplar bush within the township, or along the North Saskatchewan River just north of this township. This wood when properly dried, burns well and is considered very satisfactory.
'SCHOOLS AND POST OFFICES
Schools are situated at the southeast corners of sections 1 and 6, and on section 27. These schools, which have but one-room each, are well attended. Brosseau post office is in section 35 just north of the river, Duvernay post office is in section 27 just south of the river, and Two Hills post office is near the southwest corner of the township. These offices fully serve the postal needs of the township.
(Sgd.) R. H. KNIGHT,
Dominion Land Surveyor.