|Selkirk Settlement. National Archives of Canada / C-008714|
"proved vicious and was killed, though the scarcity of food may have had as much to do with its end as its viciousness, and, calamity upon calamity, the first, now the only remaining, bull was drowned while drinking at the water-hole in the ice on the river. Selkirk urged Miles Macdonell to send out horsemen to drive quietly into the settlement a herd of heifer buffalo (they grazed apart from the bulls except in the rutting season), and to attempt a cross with a European bull. This surely was a counsel of despair." (Morton, 16)
150th Anniversary Stamp. Credit: Library and Archives Canada Copyright: Canada Post Corporation (stamp)
Copyright: Isobel M. Assad (cover)
It was not until 1821 that a substantial herd of cattle was brought in from the United States. Livestock numbered 3 bulls, 6 oxen, 45 cows, and 39 calves with a number of sheep, horses and pigs as well. As Morton notes, it took eleven years and much suffering to establish a healthy herd of livestock at the Selkirk Settlement.