What’s in a Name – Alphabet Railway

#history #Canada

What’s in a name….lots apparently!

Punnichy, Quentin, Raymore, Semans, Tate, Viola, Undora, Watrous, Xena, Young, Zelma.

Do you see a pattern here?

I grew up near Nokomis, Saskatchewan.  Dad was into history so we heard often about the naming of the little prairie towns along the Canadian National Rail line.

We’d head for Saskatoon to visit relatives and rattle off the names as we travelled.  After Zelma the alphabet would start over with Allan, Bradwell, Clavet as we flew by the towns.

Just about every letter of the alphabet was represented across the prairies, in a line along the CNR stretching from Portage la Prairie, Manitoba west to Alberta.

There were very few breaks in the Alphabet Railway naming system.  Nokomis being one of them (there is another story there which I’ll share with you one day).

Here is a great website listing the Alphabet Railway town names along the CNR from 1922 maps.

Author: © Joan Miller - Luxegen Genealogy.

The Luxegen Genealogy and Family History blog presents the family history stories of Joan Miller.