|Death: ||Sep. 26, 1903|
Northwest Territories, Canada
Northwest Mounted Police
Honour Roll #27
Staff Sergeant Brooke was another fatal victim of the dangerous, powerful rivers of the North West Territories.. His story is best told told through some actual documents of Commanding Officer of "E" Division, Superintendent G.E. Sanders, reads (in part) as follows:
"On the afternoon of the 26th September, S/S Brooke, Interpreter Beaupre, J. Didsbury J.P., left Gleichen for the purpose of proceeding to Dunbow, to get evidence re death of "Wolfchild", and in a case of supposed horse-stealing against John Clarke of Crowfoot.
The party left Gleichen about 5 pm, with a half-spring waggon and team horses 2504 and 2534. Indian Scout McMaster also went with them to the ford near Axe's camp on the Bow River about ten miles south of Gleichen. The party intended reaching Colonel Wyndham's that night, and had they gone to the ferry it would have taken them some ten miles out of their way. No one saw what actually occurred; the Indian Scout's story is as follows:"
The Indian Scout's actual deposition reads as follows:
NORTH WEST TERRITORIES.
"I 'Red Wolf' commonly known as Frank McMaster a Blackfoot Indian employed as special Constable by the North West Mounted Police, do solemnly declare, that I was with Staff Sgt. A.F.M. Brooke on Saturday the 26th of Sept. A.D. 1903. I met him a little before 6 o'clock in the evening on the Reserve. I was on horse back. Intptr. J. A. Beaupre was driving, S.S. Brooke was sitting behind. The Intptr. Told me they were going to cross the river near Axes place & they wanted me to come with them. It was not dark when we reached the ford, I went in just ahead of the team on my pony, I turned around and told Beaupre the river had risen high. Then I heard Beaupre and Didsbury talking in English. Then I spoke to Beaupre again, & said the river was running high, they talked again, S/S Brooke then told me to go ahead we will have to go across, I then went on, the team followed about seven yards behind. About the middle of the river I looked back, & the team was following me all right & then my pony got in a hole. I heard S/S Brooke shout but I do not know what he said, I fell off my horse & managed to get hold of his tail and it hauled me out some distance below the ford. I saw no more of the team & those in it, I was nearly drowned myself, it took me quite a while reaching shore. I looked back when I got ashore & thought I would see the high seat in front of the waggon some distance down the river. There were no men."Fly Calf" of Yellow Horses band came to see me quite a while after & took me to his home. I have never seen S/S Brooke, J.A. Beaupre or J. Didsbury since. I am satisfied they are drowned & I have been with the Whites & Indians looking for their bodies ever since, & I make this solemn declaration conscicutiously (sic) believing it to be true & knowing that it is of the same force & effect as if made under oath, and by virtue of the Canada Evidence Act 1893."
his mark X
(Signed) Red Wolf
Supt. G.E. Sanders' report continues:
". . . but this is certain the wagon was taken over the edge of the ford into deep water, and the horses drowned.
When the men left it, it is hard to say, but probably at once, thinking it would turn over on them. The wagon, with the drowned horses attached, was found about 3 miles below, the next day; it was upright and had two guns, a revolver, cup, cartridges, pair of handcuffs, a slicker and buffalo robe, which shows that it had never upset or been apparently deep enough in the water to float out the slicker and robe.
It would also appear that if the unfortunate men had remained with it there would have been good chances of saving their lives.
Indian Agent Markle wired what happened, and myself and Consts. Seller, Large and Phillips left for Gleichen that night. The next and following days search was made by whites and Indians for the bodies, but so far without success.
S/S Brooke was an excellent N.C.O., and his demise is a great loss to the Force. The sadness of the affair is accentuated by the fact of his leaving a wife and 2 small children to mourn his loss."
A $20.00 reward was paid to a native named Two Guns who found S/Sgt. Brooke's battered body on October 27, 1903, about two and a half miles below the ford where the accident took place. The sergeant's watch was stopped at 6:10.
S/Sergeant Brooke was a NWMP member with 20 years service. He and his brother, A.R. Brooke, had joined the Mounties on the same day in 1884. Their regimental numbers were 1102 and 1103. His brother served as a member of the engineering party that surveyed the site of Saskatoon. He rose to the rank of Sergeant Major and retired from the Force in 1909. A.R. Brooke passed away in 1936.
Arthur's widow, Margaret, received a gratuity of one year's pay, which amounted to $547.50, plus a pension of 75 cents a day to be paid to her until such time as she remarried. Their two children received a gratuity of $182.50 each and a pension of 15 cents a day until the daughter, Annie, reached 21 years and the son, Arthur became 18.
Claresholm Census Division
Created by: Ed Smith
Record added: Jan 04, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 46347882
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Added: Jul. 14, 2013
Thank you for your commitment, courage and sacrifices to your family and to your country. May you now find God's eternal peace.|
Added: Mar. 1, 2010