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The Royal North-West Mounted Police

ONE undertaking to write a history of such a redoubtable corps as the Royal North-West Mounted Police, a corps which might be said to be constantly on strenuous active service, and consequently peculiarly prolific of stirring story, is tempted to dwell rather upon the dramatic and sensational incidents of the records of the force than upon the more matter of fact and historically valuable annals.

I have tried to resist this temptation as far as possible, my desire being to produce a volume of some sort of historical valueŚrather an authentic record of the origin, development and work of the force than a spicy collection of stirring adventures, more or less apocryphal in character. A few, comparatively a very few, thoroughly authenticated stirring incidents of the service of the force are related in the following pages, but no more than enough to intelligently illustrate the character of that service.

The late Inspector Dickens upon one occasion informed me that he had for some time been collecting, with a view to their publication, a number of the well-authenticated stories of daring and adventure within the force, and it is greatly to be regretted that his intention was never put into execution, for what a stirring volume might have been added to Canadian literature.

As to the present modest volume, the record of the Royal North-West Mounted Police is so largely the history of Western Canada that the preservation in some sort of an endurable form accessible to the reading and writing public, of the annals of the force seemed an actual necessity, particularly with the control of the force undergoing a change as at present.

Every care has been taken to secure accuracy of fact, and I must especially express my thanks to Lieutenant-Colonel Fred. White, the Comptroller, for his courtesy in assisting me greatly, not only with personal information, but by placing documents and photographs in his possession at my disposition. I feel that grateful acknowledgements are also due to Assistant Commissioner J. H. Mclllree, for assistance in securing many of the portraits used in the illustration of this work, and to Mr. D. A. McLaughlin, Chief Government Photographer, Ottawa, for a number of excellent illustrations procured from him.

I have drawn to some extent, too, upon Dr. H. J. Morgan's volume,  Canadian Men and Women of the Day," for some biographical information. It is rarely one produces a Canadian book of historical character without doing so.

Having resided for some time in the North-West, having gone through the rebellion of 1885. including the chase after Big Bear, and having many friends among the officers and men of the Royal North-West Mounted Police. 1 have had the privilege of knowing something of the way the force does its work and of the excellent spirit pervading all ranks, and I only hope this volume may do something towards perpetuating the record of the invaluable contribution towards Empire building in this Canada of ours, made by this truly admirable body of men.

The Senate, Ottawa. September 1, 1906.

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