Saskatchewan Government Telephone Department History

Saskatchewan, Canada

Became Sask Tel

The History of the Saskatchewan Government Telephone Department
starts May 1, 1909, when the Saskatchewan Government
bought the Bell Telephone System in Saskatchewan.
Bell Telephone Company office was located at 1761 Lorne st in 1908
Thomas Leonard Graham was the Manager at that time
He remained a local Telephone manager until Apr 1911
Price at the time was Cash, not Provincial Bonds as what happened in Manitoba prior to this.
Alberta Government bought out Bell Telephone Company in that province in 1908 for $675,000.00

1884- Nine sets were in operation in Regina
1887- First switchboard was installed in Black's Bookstore at the corner of Hamilton and South Railway Street.
Mr. Frank G. Walsh, the Manager from the Winnipeg Bell Telephone Office came to install it, with Peter Lamont left in charge.
A total of 20 telephones were working at that time.
First Operator (Known as a Hello Girl back then) was Emily Lillian Lander
She was hired by Peter Lamont the First Bell Telephone Agent in Regina SK

Emily Lillian Lander
b- Dec 25, 1869 in London, London, England
d- Apr 10, 1953- Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, Canada, age 83
buried in Regina Cemetery
she came to Winnipeg in 1883 and to Regina in 1885
she had a twin sister Lucy Lander
also an older sister Edith Lander.
Emily married Malcolm “Callie” McIntyre, in 1897,
She later moved to Moose Jaw SK

Peter Lamont
b- Jan 8, 1860 in Eldon, Queens County, PEI, Canada
d- Feb 4, 1941 in Vancouver, BC, Canada, age 80
buried in Mountainview Cemetery in Vancouver.
Peter was a famous Regina Businessman in the day.
Came to Regina in 1882
In 1883 he started a stationary store with Robert Martin
It became Martin & Lamont Co. Ltd.
In 1896 this store merged with other book and drug stores and became the Canada Book Company Ltd
President was Robert Martin, Vice-President -W. G. Pettingell, and Treasurer- Charles H. Black
Peter was a major Shareholder in the First Power Company in Regina,
He became a co-owner of the Canada Book Company, one of the oldest chartered businesses in Saskatchewan
Moved to Nelson BC and opened a branch of the Canada Book Company there,
Then later in Kaslo, Revelstoke and Trail as well.
son of Peter Lamont and Catherine MacKenzie
He married (1) Gertrude Beatrice Price on Nov 13, 1888, in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
b- 1860 in New Brusnwick
d- June 15, 1894 in Regina
He then married (2) Mary Thom Jan 13, 1898 in Revelstoke District
They had three children together, one daughter, and 2 sons
Mary Thom was one of the earliest CPR Telegraphers in Regina

Frank “Francis” Graham Walsh
b- Mar 22, 1858 in Lindsay, ON
d- Feb 2, 1917 in Los Angeles, USA
Father- James Walsh
Mother- Margaret Graham
married Mary Charlotte Armstrong June 6, 1882 in Durham, ON
daughter of Joseph and Margaret Armstrong

Thomas Leonard Graham
b- May 31, 1874 in Craven SK
d- aft 1933 place and date unknown
shown as a farmer in 1921 born in ON?
married Amy Brooks Robertson Nov 20, 1907
b- June 8, 1880 in ON
d- Oct 30, 1935 in Regina
She was taken to Craven to be buried but does not appear in the records there?
They had 1 daughter and 3 sons
I know 2 sons died young.

Bell Telephone Company had following at the time of the sale

they had a total of 234.2 miles of lines
- Regina to Fleming- 182.3 miles
- Hague to Duck Lake- 27.8 miles
- Regina to Lumsden- 25.1 miles

  1. Balgonie
  2. Battleford
  3. North Battleford
  4. Grenfell
  5. Indian Head
  6. Moosomin
  7. Prince Albert
  8. Fort Qu'Appelle
  9. Regina
  10. Rosthern
  11. Sintaluta
  12. Wolseley
  1. Broadview
  2. Condie
  3. Duck Lake
  4. Fleming
  5. Hague
  6. Lumsden
  7. Mclean
  8. Red Jacket
  9. Summerberry
  10. Wapella
  11. Whitewood

The Government encouraged the formation of Rural Telephone Companies, to tie into theirs.
Farmers and small towns joined together to form these companies, all over the Province


  • Last modified: 2021/06/15 20:08
  • by dlgent