The Mistaseni Cairn (Mistusinne) is located at the edge of the Harbor Golf Course and the Marina. It was erected as a tribute to the Mistaseni (Cree for "Big Rock"), a 400-ton glacial boulder that once played an important part in traditional native religion. This huge rock was blasted in a failed attempt to move it prior to the flooding of the Qu'Appelle Valley in the 1960's. The cairn contains small chunks of the original rock. Other pieces were incorporated into a memorial to Chief Poundmaker on the Poundmaker First Nations near North Battleford.
One of the first written records of the Mistaseni rock is from the writing of Henry Youle Hind, who traveled here in 1858. Coming down the Qu'Appelle Valley he wrote, "about fourteen miles from the south branch (of the Saskatchewan River) there is a gigantic erratic of unfossiliferous rock on the south side of the valley. It is seventy-nine feet in horizontal circumference, three feet from the ground, and a tape stretched over the highest point, measured forty-six feet. The Indians place on it offerings to Manito, and at the time of our visit it contained beads, bits of tobacco, fragments of cloth, and other trifles".
The Elbow Museum is situated on Saskatchewan Street. In the early 1900's wood was so scarce on the prairies that many homesteaders built their first homes out of the sod. In 1965 the first replica of an authentic sod house was constructed as part of the celebrations for Saskatchewan's 60th anniversary as a province. In the summer of 2000 the house was rebuilt from native prairie sod, and furnished with period pieces. Operated as part of our museum, the "Sod Shack" is a symbol of the past, giving visitors a glimpse of how thousands of settlers lived when they homesteaded to the Canadian prairies in the early 1900's. ***Attractions Canada 2001 Nominee.
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