The Original Mountie Store
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The Original Three Hundred
The idea for a mounted police force to bring order to the Canadian west was proposed in the Canadian Parliament. Sir John A. Macdonald, Canada’s first Prime Minister made the suggestion. He proposed that the primary responsibility of this force would be to establish friendly relations with the prairie Indians (First Nations/Aboriginals) and to maintain the peace as settlers arrived.
Initially to be called North West Mounted Rifles, more astute minds decided that ‘mounted rifles’ might not be a good choice. Our American neighbors to the south had just been decimated in their Civil War. The threat of an “army” on their frontier might be disconcerting. Instead the preface ‘Police’ was employed with a more peaceful ring and so the world-famous North-West Mounted Police were born in May of 1873. The recruits primarily came from Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes. English or French language skills in writing and reading were required and each was required to serve for a period of three years.
The Musical Ride of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police is a formal event showcasing the equestrian skills performed by 32 cavalry who are regular members of the force. The event is held in Canada. The first official ride was held in 1887 in Regina, then known as the “District of Assiniboia”, Commanded by Inspector William George Matthews this famous first has been a tradition for nearly 130 years. It has been a special event throughout the U.S.A. and European capitals including Zurich, Switzerland, London..
The Musical Ride was featured on the reverse of the Canadian fifty-dollar bill of the Scenes of Canada