This is the fascinating story of the E.P. Ranch, owned for 43 years by His Royal Highness, Edward, Prince of Wales. The ranch served as a bond between him and the people of Canada, and its development was closely bound up with the history of ranching in the foothills of southern Alberta. While in Alberta in 1919, Edward spent some time on the Bar U Ranch near High River. On his return eastward from Vancouver, he made arrangements to purchase a small ranch close to the Bar U. Edward often remarked that it was the only property he owned. The original ranch was transformed into a centre for breeding excellence that had international significance. The onset of the Great Depression in Canada, however, and the waning interest of Prince Edward led to a downscaling of activities during the 1930s. The 1950s saw the ranch revitalized with new capital. Once more it was to be used as a link between the pedigree bloodstock of the United Kingdom and the farms and ranches of western Canada. The management of this growing enterprise proved to be too unwieldy to enable it to grasp the real business opportunities that existed, and it was still costing the Prince money when he reluctantly sold it to a local rancher in 1962. Over 40 maps and illustrations were commissioned or borrowed from the Glenbow Archives, Calgary, and the National Archives, Ottawa.
Simon Evans is a professor of geography at the Memorial University of Newfoundland.
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