Mission District History

The district we call home within Calgary is named Mission. Framed by the Elbow River to the south and east, 17th Avenue to the north, and 4th Street to the west, it took its roots in 1883 with the return of Father Albert Lacombe, an Oblate Missionary, who had been absent from the area for several years. He obtained two quarter sections of land to found a “Mission District”, with a mandate to promote and strengthen the French speaking Catholic community in the region. The remaining land that forms the district was accumulated and then incorporated as the Village of Rouleauville on November 2, 1899 in what was then the Northwest Territories. The name honoured Charles and Edward Rouleau, two brothers who had promoted the idea of a French village; however, over time the prominence of the French language began to decline as an English population settled into the area. In 1907 the village was annexed by the City of Calgary, and the French street names were replaced with the current numbering system.

Here is a link to the walking tour brochure of the area produced by the City of Calgary. There are many interesting buildings that still line our streets, each one with a rich history. As well, here is a link to the "Historic Stroll" brochure for walking the Historic Promenade along 26th Avenue SW.