Written History from Local History Books
Martin Ullrickson had a run-in with some of the most notorious dwellers of the Battle River at that time. “Alberta’s Cattle Rustler King”, Jack Dubois, and his gang of cattle rustlers stole many branded cattle in the Forestburg/Galahad area. Many local residents still remember the name Jack Dubois to this day. For those of you unfamiliar with the story, the following history is worth the time it takes to read. The run-in between Dubois and Ullrickson was like a real life western film.
Ullrickson, Andrew. “Martin Ullrickson Family”. Golden Echoes: A History of Galahad and District. 1st ed. Galahad: Galahad Historical Society, 1980. Print.
Kuefler, Patrick E. “Jack Dubois: Alberta’s Cattle Rustler King.” Yesterday and Years Ago: A History of Forestburg and District. 1st ed. Forestburg: Forestburg and District Historical Book Committee, 1983. Print.
“Homestead Map” from Golden Echoes: A History of Galahad and District. This photo shows Township 40 and Rage 14, West of the 4th Meridian. Note the names of the two Solway brothers who were members of Jack’s gang. Abraham and Louis Solway homesteaded SW 30 and NE 20, respectively, along the Battle River.
In our modern-day world, and in history, perspective is everything. In Edith Clark’s history book of Tail Creek Country, the picture of Jack Dubois is not one of evil. Instead, he is painted as a normal homesteader, but not without a few faults.
The entry starts on page 403 of Trails of Tail Creek Country, “I have read lately the biography of inspector J. D. . .”
Wells, George A. “Life of an Early Pioneer in Buffalo Lake Area of Alberta.” Trails of Tail Creek Country. 1st ed. Erskine: Edith Clark, 1968. Print.
Clark, Edith. “Red Willow – Jack DuBois – 1904.” Trails of Tail Creek Country. 1st ed. Erskine: Edith Clark, 1968. Print.
Horan, J.W. “Chapter XVII: The Stettler Cattle Rustlers – 1907-8.”On the Side of the Law: Biography of J.D. Nicholson. 1st ed. Edmonton: The Institute of Applied Art, Ltd, 1944. Print.
The capture of Jack Dubois was critical for many Albertans. The fact that he and his gang could evade the authorities for such a long time infuriated people all across the province. Many newspapers of the time printed stories around the issue. Click here to see the master list of stories on Jack Dubois. You can find the following issues in that master list.
Jack Dubois and his gang settled, “near the tranquil edge of the Battle River Valley.”
*Additional information on Jack Dubois can be found on pages 33 and 34 of “Wrong Side of the Law: True Stories of Crime” by Edward Butts (2013).