A history of Gambling in Saskatchewan Part 1

Today we’re carrying on with the history lesson, but in a bit more recent period. So, today we’re going to have a look at how gambling evolved after Europeans started settling in Canada. So, today’s video is going to take us all the way back to the 16 hundreds.

Just pre-face this with a quick history lesson – The Vikings where the first Europeans to land in Labrador about a 1000 years ago. This site is now called I’Anse aux Meadows – means Jellyfish Cove, it’s a world heritage site now if you ever wanted to check it out I’ve got a link down in the description. Then about 500 years later in 1497 you have John Cabot, who was an Englishman.

He lands on Canada’s eastern coast line. Cabot is the one who gave Newfoundland it’s name, New – Founde land. Then in 1534 Jacques Cartier, a Frenchman, officially lands 3 voyages to Canada from across the Atlantic. Cartier is how Canada got its name – Kanata, it was an Iroquian word for village and by the 1550’s Canada just ended up on most maps and the name just kinda stuck.

60… years later in 1608 the French establish Quebec City and for about 60 years the French control most of the fur trade here in Canada. Then in 1670 the Hudson’s Bay Company comes along. There’s about 100 years of French and English competition on the fur trader until around 1760 when the English defeat the French and become the dominant Europeans in Canada. The next hundred years end up a mix of wars, treaties, and eventually, in 1867 the confederation of Canada happens and Canada becomes its own country.

At this point in history things like card and dice games were really just forms of entertainment more then anything else. There really wasn’t a formal place people were going to play them. It was just kind of, if you could, do it. If not, Well… you were just trying not to die from the elements.

It was a rough time at the beginning of the 19th century. Now, here’s really where we come back into our story. After confederation we had the Constitution Act of 1867. This was followed by the Criminal Code of Canada which was written in 1892. This is really where we find most of “Saskatchewan’s”, Early Gambling Laws, really, it’s Canada cause, Saskatchewan wasn’t a province yet. **long drawn out “Nooooooooo”** So what were those laws?

Well things like gaming houses, lotteries, and gambling on public transportation. Which would be things like trains or buggies. were all considered illegal.

Those laws don’t change, but a few years later in 1901 raffles and playing bingo at religious and charitable events gets legislated and made legal. But, the prizes had to be less than $50 dollars. A couple years later, in September of 1905 BOOM, Saskatchewan becomes a province! And the people rejoice! Ok, so now we’re looking into the 1900’s… 19 hundreds… 20th century…