Bashaw was incorporated as a Village in August 1911 and was called Forster. According to the Bashaw & District, Over 100 Years of Memories book, there are conflicting reasons for its naming. One is it was called so after Mrs. Steers brother, or the other after a man who was killed when putting in the rail in 1910”. Given that there was also a Forster, Saskatchewan, it was decided that the name would be changed to Bashaw after the man that had done so much to develop it and keep it going.
The land where Bashaw is situated, was being homesteaded by Joe Louis, a Metis. Mr. Bashaw was involved in a very interesting land deal. According to the history book, Joe Louis, Frank Allan, Alec Salmon and Art Robinson were involved in a serious poker game. Joe Louis ran out of money and put the title to his land in as security for the pot. On the turn of a card, Joe Louis lost his land. Andy Allan, the victor, later sold the quarter section to Mr. Bashaw for five hundred dollars.
Mr. Bashaw started a homestead at the narrows. Mr. Bashaw started a lumber business in Alix. When the railroad started to develop in the area (1909), Mr. Bashaw took the opportunity to sell lots of the town section. He disposed of his lumber business in Alix and devoted his attention to this upcoming community, which was later named after him. Interestingly, the Railway would not have come through our town if not for Mr. Bashaw. When Eugene heard of plans for the Railway to extend to Jarvis rather than through Bashaw, he headed to Camrose and struck a deal with the GTP. This deal ensured the town would gain the railway. This was instrumental for the growth of our town.
The Town of Bashaw now….
Bashaw is a small picturesque town with a big heart for country charm and warm, friendly atmosphere. Nestled in the valley near the shores of Buffalo Lake, at the crossroads of Highway 21 and 53, Bashaw is centrally located in Prairie Parkland Country. Being less than an hour drive from Red Deer, Stettler, Ponoka, Lacombe and Camrose makes Bashaw perfectly situated for those who desire access to larger centers but value the small town lifestyle.
Primarily a farming community, the area around Bashaw is known for productive croplands and a diverse livestock industry. Lakes, campgrounds and golf courses skirt the surrounding area for added activity and relaxation.
Bashaw features an agricultural facility that is second to none. With its tree lined white rail fence and manicured grounds it welcomes visitors to our vibrant community.