Back  Next 

Introduction |  
Origins of the Postal Service |  
Dog-Teams |  
Types of Dogs |  
Dog-Team Equipment |  
Weight Allowances for Dog-Teams |  
Dog Food |  
Hardships |  
Conclusion |  
Mail Routes |  
Mail Routes Map |  
West Coast Map |  
Philately |  
Endnotes |  
Bibliography |  
Credits |  


The Yukon's increasing population
during the late 1890s called for the services of both a police force and a post office in this far corner of the Dominion. In the summer of 1894, Inspector Constantine and Staff Sergeant Charles Brown of the North-West Mounted Police (NWMP) ventured as far as Fort Cudahy. They examined the territory and arranged to send in a detachment the following year; Inspector Charles Constantine sent his report of the situation to the NWMP Comptroller in Ottawa.5

North-West Mounted Police Officers, Yukon, ca. 1899
North-West Mounted Police Officers,
Yukon, ca. 1899

© Public domain
National Library and National Archives
of Canada, C-063175

In addition to maintaining law and order, these officers were often made responsible for the mail service.

The Commercial Company was responsible for the one mail run that took place in 1894; its steamer ran along the Yukon River, once a year during the summer. In addition, miners would sometimes bring letters with them from Juneau or Dyea, Alaska. In light of the very real need for a more reliable mail service, on October 1, 1894,6 the first Canadian post office in the Yukon was established "at Fort Cudahy, at the mouth of Forty Mile River, under C.H. Hamilton, of the North American Trading & Transport Company. At first there were no regular contracts for carrying the mail. They went by the river steamers, or otherwise by individual arrangement."7