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Bruce Peel Special Collections North West Mounted Police (Canada)
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Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (16 December 1884)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Regina to his mother in Ontario. He asks for photographs to be sent from home, with a promise to send some of himself to his family too. He talks about the upcoming Christmas Day plans, his general contentment with his life at the NWMP post, and describes in some detail the task of being on guard duty; a small sketch of the guard room, prison and court is included with the letter.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (25 December 1884)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Regina to his mother in Ontario. Roger describes his Christmas day, and goes on to discuss in detail his activities, books he is reading, names of the officers at the Post, and comments on the family pictures he was sent, etc.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to father (2 November 1884)

A handwritten letter from R.P. to his father. Roger is enroute from Ontario to the west, travelling through the United States and then on through Manitoba, stopping at Winnipeg. He describes the scenery he encounters on his trip, and is writing on the eve of reporting for duty to the NWMP fort at Winnipeg.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to father (21 November 1884)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Regina to his father in Ontario. Roger comments on his father's last letter, and goes on to describe his activities at the NWMP fort and comments about the community of Regina. Included is a sketch of the barracks and buildings at the NWMP fort at Regina.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to father (1 March 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Regina to his father in Ontario. Roger talks about how he is out of the Quartermaster's Store, and describes his current duties of stable work and prison guarding, etc. He discusses rumors about Riel and a potential rebellion, promising to write more as he learns further details.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to father (1 August 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock at Prince Albert to his father in Ontario. In the letter, Roger talks about the study of the bible as a scientific exercise, discusses the Egyptian pyramids, and talks about his lack of desire to settle down. The last part of the letter appears to be missing.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (14 October 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocok in [Prince Albert] to his mother in Ontario. Roger writes about new NWMP recruits, and changes of command within the NWMP. The letter is written in two parts, and the second part of the letter is dated 15 September, but may have actually been written 15 October. Roger talks about his inability, for a variety of reasons, to come home to Ontario to be nursed for the winter. He also describes some of the crime in the community and problems with some of the members of the Force.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (20 October 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Prince Albert to his mother in Ontario. Roger describes the winter quarters the NWMP are moving to, including a different building used as their hospital. Roger also discusses clothing he has purchased, his pay, the NWMP Post lay-out, and native customs and clothing. The last part of the letter is missing.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (21 February 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Regina to his mother in Ontario. He discusses the loss of his manuscript which the NWMP did not approve of, and goes on to describe in detail his fellow 'chums' at the Regina NWMP post, including a Charlie Sinclair who served in 1874 with the Wolseley expedition.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to father (March 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Regina to his father in Ontario. Roger is about to depart from the NWMP fort at Regina, en route for Qu'appelle with a party of other NWMP constables. Two small sketches of a marching patrolman (Pocock) and the Fort is included in the written letter.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother ([March 1885])

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan to his mother in Ontario. This letter provides a detailed account of Roger's journey with NWMP troops travelling from Regina to Fort Qu'appelle and on to Prince Albert. While on this journey, Roger froze the toes of his right foot and is under medical supervision as he writes, describing the great pain he is experiencing. He includes a small map showing the route from Regina to Prince Albert.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (1-11 May 1885)

A composite handwritten letter from Roger Pocock at Prince Albert to his mother in Ontario. Pocock is confined to a sick bed, while he recovers from having five toes of his right foot amputated due to frostbite. His letter is full of details about fellow NWMP force members, and he talks about his hoped-for reorganization of the Force; his observations of their skirmishes, marches, and dress, and asks for reading material to be sent to him while he recovers. Roger describes the march, his bout of frostbitten feet, toe amputations, skirmish at Duck Lake, and his days healing from the surgery.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to father (1 July 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Prince Albert to his father in Ontario. Roger continues to be in sick bay in the "detachment station 1 1/2 miles from Fort Prince Albert" as he recovers from his toe amputation surgery. His letter is long and filled with his observations, comments, and responses to questions his parents have asked him in earlier letters.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (3 February 1885)

Handwritten letter from Roger Pocock with a NWMP detachment [in the Prairies] to his mother in Ontario. His letter is very descriptive about what he is doing, his fellow officers, the barracks, and his thoughts about the current political situation in Europe and Great Britain, etc. He also discusses the Force's relationship with nearby townspeople (not good) and with Indigenous people. Pocock talks about Indian unrest and the potential for war; he refers to the "scalp market".

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to [father] ([17 or 19] March 1885)

A handwritten letter on a paper scrap from Roger Pocock at Fort Qu'appelle to his [father] in Ontario. Letter is dated "March 17 or so" but also describes the day as "Thursday" meaning that is was likely 19 March 1885. Roger describes the journey with a large party of NWMP men and horses from Regina to Fort Qu'appelle. In this letter, he mentions his wet and cold feet.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (12 July 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Prince Albert to his mother in Ontario. He describes the art work he has hanging near his bed, sketches he has completed, books he has read, prairie flowers, etc. and outlines the mail schedule for both sending and receiving letters.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: letter to mother (16 September 1885)

A handwritten letter from Roger Pocock in Prince Albert to his mother in Ontario. He mentions the photographs he recently had taken, the jacket he is tailoring, and describes his daily routine and the people he meets and spends time with. Among other incidents, Pocock describes the situation of some of his colleagues, including two who deserted, and he states that he won't be vaccinated against small pox as there are no cases of the disease for 500 miles of Prince Albert.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: sketch of Monty a NWMP officer

A watercolor sketch of a seated NWMP member, wearing his NWMP uniform, including a pill box hat and tall boots. The sketch is most likely drawn by Roger Pocock, but the only name appearing on the bottom corner of the sketch is Montgomery (Monty), and the year 1885 also appears on the page.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to sister Ethel (30 March 1886)

A handwritten letter from R.P. to his sister Ethel. Roger talks about a memorial service being held in honour of the anniversary of the Duck Lake Fight as well as a sermon held on the anniversary of the 'panic'. Roger talks of the mail he received, including a revolver; he then goes on to describe the revolver and includes a sketch of it. He also discusses the watercolour paintings he has been working on. Lastly he talks of a new order from his commanding officer that "any man found wearing any article of civilian clothing" has to pay a fine of two dollars. Roger implies that this will lead to a mutiny if enforced.

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (February 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated February 1886. He writes about a party from Regina of new recruits to be added to their troop and about the improvements he has been doing to the camp's recreation room. He also goes over his debts and how his troop bands together to help someone in debt through a raffle system. He closes the letter by writing about the weather in January, the average, high, and low temperatures.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (17 August 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated 17 August 1886. Pocock anticipates that he will go with a party of about 30 men to Battleford on 25 August 1886. Pocock describes four men from Montana who were falsely arrested and have been staying in their camp. He ends the letter with a description and sketches of 'Mexican type' spurs.

Pocock, Roger

NWMP Correspondence - Incoming, 1885-1886

Letters and documents relating to a claim by Trooper Edward Cole for payment of a horse used by Steele's Scouts in the North-West Rebellion of 1885; includes a letter from General Strange.

Steele, Samuel B. (Samuel Benfield), 1848-1919

Pocock Scrapbook (1886)

Pocock's 1886 scrapbook contains handwritten entries (many dated), numerous tipped and pasted in original sketches and paintings, autograph letters, and clippings. A few pages have clippings pasted over diary entries.
It is bound in quarter brown leather and marbled boards, with paper label on the cover (labeled "1886" in picture-like font). A bookplate states "Be Traist" ("Be Faithful", the crest of the Innes Clan).

Scrapbook contains:
Diary entries of important events, which were either personally experienced by Pocock or gathered first-hand from those directly involved.
Sketches and watercolour paintings of people, NWMP personnel, and scenes of life in camps and forts.
Letters to his mother, father, and sisters.
Imprint cuttings of various barracks and forts located on the Canadian Prairies, prairie wildlife and scenery, events, cities and towns on the Canadian Prairies, Indigenous people, scenes of ranching and hunting.
Handwritten entries of poetry and short stories, costs of goods, and pay rates of the different ranks within the NWMP.
Hand-drawn map of a section of the North Saskatchewan by Goshen (now Prince Albert), Saskatchewan.
Newspaper clippings related to the prairies and NWMP, and of anecdotes and jokes.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (30 March 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated 30 March 1886. Pocock's manuscript about the [Riel] Rebellion was rejected by the Brockville Times. He also speaks of a petition he started to have the bodies of deceased members of his Troop relocated from Carlton to be buried 'here', presumably Prince Albert. Pocock writes that he has started selling cigars and notes how much he is selling them for. He also describes the tension between his old comrades and the new recruits.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to parents ('Wednesday afternoon' 1886)

Letter from P to parents dated as 'Wednesday afternoon' 1886; the exact date of the letter is unknown. Pocock writes that most of his troop has gone, leaving only himself and about 20 other men; he lists the duties he has been assigned while the troop is away. In response to his father, Pocock will try to put together sketches that illustrate some of his stories submitted to Harper's. In the future, Pocock plans on writing a series of stories about every region that he has visited and will visit. He is currently reading 'Vestiges of Creation' and describes the subject matter of it.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother ([19 May] 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated [May?] 1886. Pocock writes about having ennui and how he is unhappy with the men in his troop, calling them 'piebiters'. He then describes in great detail his friend, Monty. He writes that he is also sending a picture of his camp from the perspective of his room. It seems he also sends a group photo of his troop and identifies and describes some of the men in the photo. He also sends several sketches of men in typical costumes and a 'roll of dogs'.

Pocock, Roger

NWMP Manual and Firing Exercise

Manual printed for the Winchester Carbine and the Enfield Revolver; printed in Ottawa by MacLean, Roger & Co. Includes some added hand-written annotation to the text.

Steele, Samuel B. (Samuel Benfield), 1848-1919

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother and father (20 April 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother and father dated 20 April 1886. Pocock writes about how the recovery of his foot has regressed and how the camp doctor had moved on to Fort McLeod. He also describes the spring weather conditions including the ice break-up and prairie fires. Pocock's cigar selling is going well and he records his sales and profits. He has moved into the barracks and is very happy about the move. Pocock is then reading "Life of Christ" by Frederic Farrar. The most popular sport for the troop is curling. He ends the letter by worrying about upcoming payments for a dance and mess expenses and how he had to pay to replace stolen items.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to father (19 May 1886)

Letter from Pocock to father sent from Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, dated 19 May 1886. Pocock writes of how he is not suited for deep study or thoughts; he would rather be a 'gentleman and a soldier'. He then writes about a nightmare he had while he was unconsciousness from chloroform during the removal of his gangrenous toes. This nightmare caused anxiety and new avenues of studies for Pocock. He then shares his thoughts on the subjects of pain and God. He then brings up that the NWMP is being reorganized and he may be asked to leave the force because of his injury. The last part of the letter is missing.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: first-hand description of a desertion

A description of three men deserting from Pocock's troop. Covers the conversations that Pocock had with the deserters and with those investigating it the next day. The desertion happened on the '9th inst' (meaning the 9th of this month), though exact month is unclear. Incident likely happened in early spring according to another letter.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (June 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated June 1886. Pocock is sending his mother his diaries. He first describes some of the highlights for each diary covering the years 1883-1886. Pocock the describes an incident of that week where he helped the drunk quarter master back into his building, which he was locked out of. Captain Perry has departed and the troop has been celebrating and drinking the whole week. Pocock writes about the changes within the camp because of Perry's departure. He also describes several other happenings around camp.

Pocock, Roger

Sketch of NWMP Camp (1886)

A watercolour sketch by Pocock of a NWMP encampment in 1886. Writing on front reads "NWMP F. Troop Detachment Camp - Moon of Berries 1886".

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (28 February 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated 28 February 1886. He writes about attending a kit inspection and how it gave him the opportunity to claim a buffalo hide coat as his personal property; the coat was a gift from a friend by the name of Gilchrist who had since passed away. He also writes about rumours of the NWMP being turned into a militia corps, which in Pocock's opinion is damaging to the positive reputation that the NWMP has developed. He also talks about his income and debts and asks his mother to inquire about cigar prices; he plans to sell cigars to his troop at a discounted rate than is currently offered. Pocock also describes how he was charged and tried for a misunderstanding regarding his duties conflicting with his sick leave. The last part of the letter is missing.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (20 July 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated 20 July 1886. Pocock describes a recent highway robbery, his debts, and the weather. He also describes an incident of dealing with an intoxicated man who was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct the night before. The man had drunk a concoction of copper sulphate and tartaric acid, which was called 'cider'. The man selling the 'cider' was fined $50; Pocock then writes about how the 'cider' has become a problem in Prince Albert.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (6 August 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated 6 August 1886. Pocock writes of his anticipated sick leave. He will receive treatment in Regina, but does not want to stay there for the recovery; he will put in a request to have his sick leave in either Toronto or Banff. He then anticipates being discharged and having to find a place to settle that has mild winter temperatures because of his frostbitten foot. He writes about setting up a cigar shop in Vancouver and selling the land once real estate prices go up.
He mentions an incident involving his friend Monty over a revolver; he then describes the revolver in detail supplied with a sketch of it. Pocock writes about his new found confidence and his preferences in fashion and personal grooming.
He mentions that there was a hailstorm the previous night from which there was "immense damage"; he sketched the size of the hail stones. Pocock purchased four [paintings?] of Lake Superior by Fred Bingham. He is writing essays on religious topics and is not ready to submit them.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother (30 August 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother dated 30 August 1886. Pocock details a conversation he had with Captain Perry, the leader of his troop. They had a discussion about Pocock's injury, where Pocock wanted to go to Regina to receive treatment but Perry warns against this because Pocock would miss the commission on all cases of injuries received during the Rebellion. Perry also informed him that through this commission Pocock is likely to receive a life-long pension. After this conversation, Pocock learns from others that the pension will likely be larger than Perry had said.
Pocock writes that the F Troop in Regina was inspected by John A. McDonald and thus received the nickname "Sir John's Pets." He also writes how many who were under fire during the rebellion were receiving medals and land grants, of which Pocock had received neither.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1886 scrapbook: letter to mother ([28-31 May?] 1886)

Letter from Pocock to his mother. This multi-part letter describes his surroundings and the events as he and his troop move west along the prairies, starting at Sugar Creek [a tributary of Lake Winnipeg] on a Friday, moving to Eagle Creek, Saskatchewan, on Saturday, then to Battleford, Saskatchewan, on Sunday. There is then a final entry dated the 31st written from outside Battleford. If the dates given are sequential, then the letter dates from the 28-31 May 1886. Includes three sketches and a sketched map of the area around the confluence of the North Saskatchewan River and Battle River.

Pocock, Roger

NWMP Hand Book

Printed 'Hand Book of Ready Reference, Police Duties for Non-Commissioned Officers and Constables of the North-West Mounted Police, Yukon Territory'; hand-written inscription at front of book reads: "Colonel S.B. Steele, C.B.M.V.O. With Compliments of [W.A.?], RNWMP of Canada, Dawson, Yukon, 1904".

Steele, Samuel B. (Samuel Benfield), 1848-1919

NWMP & the Liquor Question

Approximately twenty (20) items regarding the regulation of liquor in the North West Territories of Canada in the late 1880s and early 1900s. The difficulties faced by the North West Mounted Police (NWMP) in enforcing the unpopular permit-based liquor laws of the time are given particular attention.

North-West Mounted Police

General Correspondence - 1892

General Correspondence – Includes a letter of apology from L.W. Herchmer, re: remarks about SBS and Mrs. Steele. Handwritten.

Herchmer, Lawrence William, Commissioner, NWMP

General Correspondence - 1898

General Correspondence – From friends and family including H.B. Runnall, H. Oliver, cousin Esther Miller, J. [Acten], etc. Handwritten.

MacGregor, Esther Miller (Marian Keith)

General Correspondence - 1899

General Correspondence – Telegrams and letters, as above; queries about Steele’s possible service in South Africa. Handwritten; Typewritten.

Steele, Samuel B. (Samuel Benfield), 1848-1919

General Correspondence - 1909

General Correspondence – Personal letters, re: various matters; includes letters from colleagues and friends such as: [H.?] Irving; A.L. Haydon; R.J. Gwynne; E.B. Edwards; Hugh Davidson; E.G. (Teddy)Rundle; and others. Handwritten.

Gwynne, R.J.

General Correspondence - 1910

General Correspondence – Personal letters, re: various matters; includes a letter from A.W. Strange. Handwritten; Typewritten.

Steele, Samuel B. (Samuel Benfield), 1848-1919

Letter to Marie from Fred White

Typewritten letter from Fred White, N.W.M.P. to Marie, discussing Sam's pay and mail delivery to the Yukon; the letter is dated November 22, 1898.

Steele, Marie (de Lotbinière Harwood), 1859-1951

Letter to Marie from Fred White

Typewritten letter from Fred White, N.W.M.P. to Marie, re: a Militia Department cheque issued SBS for his pay and outfit as an Officer of the Transvaal Contingent; the letter is dated January 10th, 1900.

Steele, Marie (de Lotbinière Harwood), 1859-1951

Letter to Marie from Fred White

Typewritten letter to Marie from Fred White, N.W.M.P., informing her that SBS's leave from the police force has been extended one year without pay; the letter is dated May 30th, 1902.

Steele, Marie (de Lotbinière Harwood), 1859-1951

Letter to Marie from Fred White

Typewritten letter from Fred White, N.W.M.P. to Marie discussing the Pension Bill, and hoping to see Marie before she departs for South Africa; the letter is dated August 8th, 1902.

Steele, Marie (de Lotbinière Harwood), 1859-1951

Pocock Scrapbook (1885)

Pocock's 1885 scrapbook contains approximately 70 pages, with entries (many dated) in a very legible hand, numerous tipped-in and loosely inserted original drawings, autograph letters, illustrations, and clippings. A few leaves have clippings pasted over manuscript entries.

It is bound in quarter maroon leather and marbled boards, with paper label on the cover (labeled "1885"). A bookplate states "Be Traist" ("Be Faithful", the crest of the Innes Clan).

Entries record important events, which were either personally experienced or gathered first-hand from those directly involved. Shortly after his entry into the N.W.M.P., Pocock was immersed in the official response to the uprisings known as the North West Rebellion of 1885. His 1885 scrapbook conveys the activities related to the military operations, as he had access to direct information. He also records valuable observations of his life as a N.W.M.P. officer. He compiled a list of duty-related statistics (kit prices, N.W.M.P. personnel statistics, expenses, deaths, distance, and important dates with incidents noted), and transcriptions from other sources (including Riel's personal diary). The scrapbook is illustrated with his own pencil and ink sketches and drawings. Included are letters written to his family telling of his experiences with the N.W.M.P. and events relative to the North West uprising, some illustrated with drawings and maps, apparently retrieved for inclusion in the diary books which were to become the source for his planned autobiography. Interspersed throughout the scrapbooks are short stories, poems, and other jottings. Notably this scrapbook contains an early and very faded photograph of Big Bear.

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: supplies list

A handwritten listing of supplies including food and non-food items written on one side of a lined and folded sheet of paper; on verso a line of writing and two numerical figures. The supplies list was possibly created for a NWMP journey/expedition.

Pocock, Roger

Loose item from 1885 scrapbook: John George Donkin quote and letter fragment

On one side is a handwritten extract from a book written by John George Donkin: "Trooper and Redskin in the North-West, Recollections of life in the North-West Police, Canada 1884-1888" likely describing Roger Pocock's experience with his frostbitten feet. On verso is one page of a crossed through letter, probably sent to Roger Pocock, but re-used for writing the quotation described above.

Pocock, Roger

Photograph of RCMP officer and woman

Photograph of an RCMP office and a woman embracing each other over a fence. Appears to be a still from an unidentified film. Writing on reverse reads "The Royal Mounted Police "From information received".

Correspondence - Individuals: Father Albert Lacombe, 1889, 1890, 1902-1909

Letters sent to SBS from Father Lacombe, declaring his support of Steele's potential promotion, and general descriptions of his work; includes a hand-written declaration from Father Lacombe on the 6th of January 1890, declaring that Steele is unmarried, and of good character. Handwritten and typewritten documents

Lacombe, Albert, Father

Pocket Diary, Personal - 1890

Black leather-bound; hand-written entries Memos and cash accounts maintained at back of diary Separate file of loose items retained

Steele, Samuel B. (Samuel Benfield), 1848-1919

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