1884 Calgary municipal election

The 1884 Calgary municipal election was held on December 3, 1884 to elect a Mayor and four Councillors to sit on the first Calgary Town Council from December 4, 1884 to January 18, 1886 (Or possibly April 3, 1886, or possibly October 21, 1886).[1]

1884 Calgary municipal election

← None December 3, 1884 (1884-12-03) 1886 (January) →
E. R.
Candidate George Murdoch E. Redpath
Popular vote 202 16
Percentage 92.66% 7.34%

Mayor before election


Elected Mayor

George Murdoch

Background edit

Even before gaining town status, Calgary had a form of municipal organization under the name Citizen's Committee.

Elected by a vote held on January 14, 1884, the Citizens Committee lobbied for town status, a Territorial member for Calgary and increased assistance from the North-West Territorial government to cover the cost of a bridge, all achieved that same year. In the vote, 24 Calgary men put their names up for election, which was perhaps 10 percent of the adult male population of Calgary at the time. Major James Walker took the most votes (88) and was declared chairman of the Committee. Dr. Henderson, G.C. King, Thomas Swan, George Murdoch, G.D. Moulton and Captain Stewart were the most popular after Walker and were also declared elected. (Voting was by Plurality block voting).[2]

Calgary was officially incorporated as Town of Calgary on November 17, 1884, under provisions of the newly passed North-West Territories Council Municipal Ordinance of 1884.[3]

Only days after the incorporation was announced, a "mass meeting" was held in Calgary where those assembled demanded federal representation and to bring federal government attention on certain other matters that affected the lives of local residents.[4]

The right to vote in town elections was provided to any male British subject over twenty-one years of age who are assessed on the last revised assessment roll with a minimum property value of $300.

The 1884 election was held under First-past-the-post voting for mayor and Plurality block voting to elect four councillors, where each elector was able to cast up to four votes.[5]

Length of Council Term edit

The first municipal council for the Town of Calgary was intended to sit from December 4, 1884 to January 18, 1886, however judicial interference by stipendiary magistrate Jeremiah Travis in the January 1886 election resulted in Territorial Ordinance 1-1886 "An Ordinance Respecting Municipal Matters in the Town of Calgary" voiding the results of the January 1886 election and declaring no council or mayor for the Town of Calgary exists.[6]

The City of Calgary recognizes George Murdoch as Mayor of the Town of Calgary from December 4, 1884 to October 21, 1886, which implies the City either recognizes Murdoch as the winner of the January 1886 election, or recognizes Murdoch remained Mayor until the November 1886 election.[7]

Results edit

  • The results of the elections, as reported in the December 3, 1884 edition of The Calgary Herald, were as follows:

Mayor edit

Candidate Votes Percent
George Murdoch 202 92.66%
E. Redpath 16 7.34%
Total 218

Councillors edit

Election conducted using Plurality block voting. Each voter could cast up to four votes. Perhaps 221 cast a ballot in the aldermanic contest. (Percentage indicated is percentage of voters who endorsed the candidate, not percentage of votes.)

1884 Calgary municipal election: Councillor
Party Candidate Votes % Elected
- Simon Jackson Hogg 183 83.94%  Y
- Neville James Lindsay 179 82.11%  Y
- Joseph Henry Millward 170 77.98%  Y
- Simon John Clarke 147 67.46%  Y
- Issac Sanford Freeze 103 47.25%
- Archibald Grant 52 23.85%
- J. Jarrett[8] 56 11.93%
- Total 884


Election was held under Multiple non-transferable vote where each elector was able to cast a ballot for the mayor and up to four ballots for separate councillors.

1885 Council By-election edit

Simon Jackson Hogg would resign from council effective May 20, 1885. A by-election was scheduled for June 17, 1885. Following the cut-off for nominations, Isaac Sanford Freeze was acclaimed and installed June 10, 1885.[10]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ "The Contest. Murdoch Elected to the Mayor's Chair". The Calgary Herald. No. 14. December 3, 1884. p. 4. Retrieved March 8, 2020.
  2. ^ Grant MacEwan. Colonel James Walker Man of the Western Frontier, p. 115
  3. ^ "Location and History Profile: City of Calgary" (PDF). Alberta Municipal Affairs. June 17, 2016. p. 15. Archived (PDF) from the original on March 25, 2016. Retrieved June 18, 2016.
  4. ^ Calgary Herald, Dec. 3, 1884, p. 1
  5. ^ Ordinances of the North-West Territories (1884 ed.). Regina, Canada: Queens Printer. pp. 47–94. Archived from the original on March 19, 2020. Retrieved March 14, 2020.
  6. ^ Ordinances of the Northwest Territories, Canada (1886 ed.). Regina, Canada: Regina : Government Printer. 1886. Retrieved March 9, 2020.
  7. ^ "Biographies of Calgary's Mayors" (PDF). calgary.ca. The City of Calgary. Archived from the original (PDF) on April 11, 2008. Retrieved March 14, 2020.
  8. ^ spelling confirmed by Calgary Herald, July 23, 1884
  9. ^ "The Contest. Murdoch Elected to the Mayor's Chair". The Calgary Herald. No. 14. December 3, 1884. p. 4. Retrieved March 8, 2020.
  10. ^ Hunter, Frederick. "THE MAYORS AND COUNCILS OF THE CORPORATION OF CALGARY". Roots Web. Archived from the original on March 3, 2020. Retrieved March 14, 2020. Isaac Sanford Freeze, (1st Term), by-election for duration of unexpired one-year Term originally scheduled for 17 June 1885 but acclamation declared upon close of nominations 10 June 1885, sworn 10 June 1885, assumed Office 10 June 1885, Installation 10 June 1885

Sources edit