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The Honourable Amédée E. Forget, 1898-1905

The Honourable Amédée E. Forget was the last Lieutenant Governor of the Northwest Territories and the first Lieutenant Governor of the Province of Saskatchewan. His long tenure as Clerk of various territorial administrations made him well-qualified to oversee the transition of the Territories to provincial status. He served longer than any Lieutenant Governor of the Northwest Territories.

Amédée Emmanuel Forget was born at Marieville, Canada East (Quebec), on November 12, 1847. He was the son of Jeremie Forget and Marie Guenette. Amédée E. Forget was a Roman Catholic.

He was educated at Marieville College and was called to the Lower Canada (Quebec) Bar in 1871.

In October, 1876, he married Henriette Drolet, daughter of Colonel C.E. Drolet of Montreal, Quebec. They had no children. His wife became well-known for her service as Honorary President of the Daughters of the Empire and the National Council of Women. In 1901, she entertained the Duke and Duchess of York, the future King George V and Queen Mary, at Government House in Regina.

For several years, Amédée E. Forget served as Secretary of the Council of the Montreal Bar and then, in 1875, he entered the Canadian federal government civil service with his appointment as Secretary of the Métis Commission in Manitoba. Ten years later, he would similarly sit as a Commissioner seeking settlement of Métis claims following the Northwest Rebellion. When a separate territorial government was established in 1876, he was appointed the first Clerk of the Northwest Council as well as Private Secretary to the Lieutenant Governor. Later, he also served as Clerk of the Territorial Assembly. On August 3, 1888, he was appointed Assistant Commissioner of Indian Affairs for Manitoba and the Northwest Territories, a position he held until 1895. From 1893 until 1895, he also served on the Council of Public Instruction of the Northwest Territories. He then served as Indian Commissioner for the same jurisdiction from 1895 to 1898.

On the advice of Prime Minister Sir Wilfrid Laurier, Amédée E. Forget was appointed Lieutenant Governor of the Northwest Territories effective October 4, 1898. This appointment was made by Lord Minto, Governor General of Canada. He was reappointed for a second term and continued to serve as Lieutenant Governor until the Provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan were created on September 1, 1905.

On September 1, 1905, Amédée E. Forget became the first Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan and served in that capacity until 1910. In that year, he moved to Banff, Alberta. However, in 1911, he was appointed to the Senate of Canada and served there until his death.

Amédée E. Forget served as President of the Incorporated Soldiers' and Sailors' Society for the Northwest Territories (1902), a Director of the Western Canadian Settlers' Mutual Company, Vice-President of the Canadian Patriotic Fund and the British Empire League, and Provincial (Saskatchewan) President of the Dominion Forestry Association.

Amédée E. Forget died on June 8, 1923, at Ottawa, Ontario, and was buried in the Notre-Dame-des-Neiges Cemetery at Montreal, Quebec.

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