Manitoba Historical Society
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Manitoba Organization: Manitoba Forestry Association

The Canadian Forestry Association (CFA), founded in 1900, was organized by a group of Eastern Canada businessmen who were concerned about the future of forestry and felt that education was a very important part of establishing public interest and support. The CFA and all subsequent associations were non-profit, charitable organizations devoted to conservation, i.e. the wise use of all the natural resources with emphasis on forests and the importance of planting trees.

In 1919 the Board of the CFA decided it would be advantageous to expand their educational programs to Western Canada and a proposal was put forward by the Manager to do this by using a railway coach. The first coach was refitted by the Canadian Pacific Railway as the Tree Planting Car (TPC) and began to tour across the prairies in 1919.

By 1946 the western operation was becoming more autonomous and Alan Beaven was appointed Manager of the Prairie Division, CFA. The main emphasis was still on the operation of the TPC, but soon in-school presentations were being presented in urban centres to complement the programs on the Car in rural areas.

In 1959 Alan Beaven became Manager of the Prairie Provinces Forestry Association (Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba) when the Western operations became independent from the CFA. The Sandilands Forest Discovery Centre was established in 1962.

In 1971 the three provinces decided they would prefer to operate on their own so the Alberta Forestry Association, Saskatchewan Forestry Association, and Manitoba Forestry Association came into being. Alan Beaven was appointed Manager of the Manitoba Forestry Association and continued in that position until he retired.

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: Alan Butler Beaven (1903-1988)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Sandilands Forest Discovery Centre (Sandilands Provincial Forest, RM of Reynolds)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Interlake Forest Centre (RM of Fisher)

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Heritage Tree Program Plaque (Argyle Street, Winnipeg)


“Provincial forestry,” Winnipeg Tribune, 15 January 1901, page 2.

“Forest tour for students,” Winnipeg Tribune, 17 May 1962, page 11.

“Money does grow on trees for farmers,” Winnipeg Tribune, 4 June 1965, page 9.

Manitoba Forestry Association wants to inspire, educate Manitobans to care about environment” by Kevin Rollason, Winnipeg Free Press, 30 June 2018.

This page was prepared by Dianne Beaven and Gordon Goldsborough.

Page revised: 5 December 2022

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