A World We Have Lost: Saskatchewan Before 1905


This publication is featured frequently in the Timeline Resource

This book is an introduction to the history of the territory now known as Saskatchewan prior to 1905. It should also be noted that Waiser’s book Saskatchewan: A New History, published in 2005 is meant to complement A World We Have Lost. That said, topics, themes etc. that are covered in Saskatchewan: A New History are purposely left out of A World we have Lost. Further, as Saskatchewan borders were artificially implemented in 1905, this book has a larger geographical scope in some instances, such as the northern United States. This book covers the explorations of Henry Kelsey working for the Hudson’s Bay Company and highlights that during this period; First Nations, Inuit, and Métis were the “dominant force” in the early history of of the West.

Waiser also discusses that there is more than three hundred Indigenous generations that are rooted in the territory which is now known as "Saskatchewan." Throughout this time they’ve adapted to the environment, have established petroglyph and spiritual sites. Waiser also covers the trading between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, as well as the relationships between the Hudson’s Bay Company and the North West Company. Finally, Waiser discusses the creation of treaties, including Fort Carlton, the creation of the North West Mounted Police and the influx of settlers and farmers into the greater Saskatchewan area that sparked an agricultural colonization of the terrain, and the subsequent resistance over dwindling access to land for Métis and First Nations. A resistance of which the Canadian government expected as they refused to settle land claims or meet with local governments to negotiate terms. Métis communities were particularly concerned as the Canadian Government had, so far, been unwilling to negotiate or include them in the numbered treaties. 


Publication Information

Waiser, Bill. A World We Have Lost: Saskatchewan Before 1905. Markham, ON: Fifth House, 2016.

Waiser, Bill
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