1848 – 1919 Soldier, Policeman
Steele was born in Ontario and first served in the military during the 1866 Fenian Raids. He participated in the 1870 Red River Rebellion expedition before joining the regular army the following year. He was the third officer sworn into the North-West Mounted Police (the forerunner to the RCMP) in 1873 and rapidly rose through the ranks. While in the NWMP, he was at the border to meet Sitting Bull, who was fleeing to Canada following the Battle of the Little Big Horn. Near the end of the century, Steele was sent to the Yukon gold fields to deal with the lawlessness there. In 1900, he accepted command of a cavalry regiment being formed for service in the Boer War. Following his service in South Africa, he returned to military duty in Canada, leading a division to France during the First World War. Knighted in 1918, he died of influenza the following year. Steele’s papers have recently been returned to Canada and are held by the University of Alberta.
Lisgar Lodge No. 2, Selkirk, Manitoba