History of Afforestation

Saskatchewan archives week is February 4-10, 2018. 

The afforestation areas are wetlands, woodlands, green spaces, how does Saskatchewan archives week fit in with an afforestation area?


Images of St. Barbe, credit
University of Saskatchewan,
University Archives & Special Collections,
Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds, MG 71

The Richard St. Barbe Baker fonds are held at the University Archives & Special Collections.  Encompassing boxes and boxes of letters, correspondence, books written by Richard St. Barbe Baker, photographs, it is a treasure trove of documents, history, biography, and lifestyle of the internationally renown silviculturist, St. Barbe.

The city of Saskatoon archivist, Jeffery O’Brien, was invaluable in tracing Richard St. Barbe Baker’s family tree, and finding information about James Scott St Barbe Baker employed at the Engineering Department, City of Saskatoon.

Additionally City archives also found the history of the afforestation tree planting, and naming documentation of the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area Urban Regional Park, and ‘George Genereux’ urban regional park.

  1. The Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area has as its namesake, Dr. Richard Edward St. Barbe Baker, O.B.E., Hon. LL.D. (Sask), F.I.A.L., For.Dip.Cantab., A.C.F. (9 October 1889 – 9 June 1982) silviculturist, environmental activist, humanitarian and author who founded the International Tree Foundation and Children of the Green Earth.
  2. Whereas ‘George Genereux” urban regional park honours George Patrick Genereux, B.A., MD, CM (March 1, 1935 – April 10, 1989) was a 1952 Summer Olympics Canadian Gold medal-winning trap shooter, recipient of the Lou Marsh Trophy and the Viscount Alexander Trophy, inducted into the Canada, and Saskatchewan and Saskatoon’s Sports Hall of Fame and physician.

Two book manuscripts of Richard St. Barbe Baker and photographs are housed at the University of Regina Dr. John Archer Library.

In the Saskatoon Public Library local history room is the history of the Meewasin Valley Authority formation, and their inaugural management of the afforestation areas.

The local history room staff also knew about Bert Wellman, and Bill Graham, and how they were ecological pioneers starting a green belt around Saskatoon in 1960.  One of the library staff having partaken in the writing of Saskatoon: A History of Photographs by O’Brien, Ruth W. Millar, William P. Delainey . Edition illustrated.  Publisher Coteau Books, 2007.  ISBN 1550503669, 9781550503661.  This book was familiar with Saskatoon’s amazing pioneers who envisioned a green city.

The Provincial Archives of Saskatchewan is home to the homestead application documents of Richard St. Barbe Baker, and his brother, James Scott St. Barbe Baker.

In searching for a pre-1930 land record, it is revealed that Richard St. Barbe Baker applied for the NW quarter section 25 township 34 range 6 west of the third meridian , and James Scott, his brother was on the SW quarter of section 36 township 34 range 6 west of the third meridian.  These homesteads were near the Beaver Creek Conservation Area in the Rural Municipality of Dundurn 314 near the current ‘Baker Road.’

In this way, the history of the Afforestation areas, are, in fact, housed in the various archives of Saskatoon.  The heritage festival of Saskatoon From Many Peoples Strength, Celebrating Diversity, is indeed, a fantastic way to celebrate the history of the afforestation area.

Saskatoon led the way in 1972, as 660 acres of afforestation are definitely pioneers in afforestation and the city residents have reaped a great value from the planting trees for carbon sequestration.

“It is with a spirit of reverence that I approach God’s Creation, this beautiful Earth. The ancients believe that the Earth was a sentient being and felt the behavior of mankind upon it. As we have no proof to the contrary, it might be as well for responsible people to accept this point of view and behave accordingly.” – Richard St. Barbe Baker

For directions as to how to drive to “George Genereux” Urban Regional Park

For directions on how to drive to Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

For more information:

Blairmore Sector Plan Report; planning for the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area,  George Genereux Urban Regional Park and West Swale and areas around them inside of Saskatoon city limits

P4G Saskatoon North Partnership for Growth The P4G consists of the Cities of Saskatoon, Warman, and Martensville, the Town of Osler and the Rural Municipality of Corman Park; planning for areas around the afforestation area and West Swale outside of Saskatoon city limits

Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area is located in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada north of Cedar Villa Road, within city limits, in the furthest south west area of the city. 52° 06′ 106° 45′
Part SE 23-36-6 – Afforestation Area – 241 Township Road 362-A
Part SE 23-36-6 – SW Off-Leash Recreation Area (Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area ) – 355 Township Road 362-A
S ½ 22-36-6 Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area (West of SW OLRA) – 467 Township Road 362-A
NE 21-36-6 “George Genereux” Afforestation Area – 133 Range Road 3063
Wikimapia Map: type in Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area
Google Maps South West Off Leash area location pin at parking lot
Web page: https://stbarbebaker.wordpress.com
Where is the Richard St. Barbe Baker Afforestation Area? with map
Where is the George Genereux Urban Regional Park (Afforestation Area)? with map

Pinterest richardstbarbeb

Facebook Group Page: Users of the George Genereux Urban Regional Park

Facebook: StBarbeBaker

Facebook group page : Users of the St Barbe Baker Afforestation Area

Facebook: South West OLRA

Twitter: StBarbeBaker

Please help protect / enhance your afforestation areas, please contact the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc. (e-mail)

Support the afforestation areas with your donation or membership ($20.00/year).  Please donate by paypal using the e-mail friendsafforestation AT gmail.com, or by using e-transfers  Please and thank you!  Your donation and membership is greatly appreciated.  Members e-mail your contact information to be kept up to date!

QR Code FOR PAYPAL DONATIONS to the Friends of the Saskatoon Afforestation Areas Inc.
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Membership : $20.00 CAD – yearly
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“St. Barbe’s unique capacity to pass on his enthusiasm to others. . . Many foresters all over the world found their vocations as a result of hearing ‘The Man of the Trees’ speak. I certainly did, but his impact has been much wider than that. Through his global lecture tours, St. Barbe has made millions of people aware of the importance of trees and forests to our planet.” Allan Grainger

“This generation may either be the last to exist in any semblance of a civilised world or that it will be the first to have the vision, the bearing and the greatness to say, ‘I will have nothing to do with this destruction of life, I will play no part in this devastation of the land, I am determined to live and work for peaceful construction for I am morally responsible for the world of today and the generations of tomorrow.'”
Richard St. Barbe Baker


“We stand in awe and wonder at the beauty of a single tree. Tall and graceful it stands, yet robust and sinewy with spreading arms decked with foliage that changes through the seasons, hour by hour, moment by moment as shadows pass or sunshine dapples the leaves. How much more deeply are we moved as we begin to appreciate the combined operations of the assembly of trees we call a forest.”~Richard St. Barbe Baker



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