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Books by Gertrude Balmer Watt
Stories about Alberta


A Woman in the West

A WORD of explanation is due the reader of this modest volume. The writer has for two years past been a staff contributor to The Edmonton Saturday News, conducting a department entitled "The Mirror" under the pseudonym of "Peggy." Several kind friends have represented to her that if extracts from the mass of what she has written during that period were put in permanent form, it would not only be appreciated by those who have read her page from week to week, but would serve a useful purpose in giving those in other parts of the globe a glimpse of the Canadian West, as viewed from a woman's stand point. Most of those who have written of this great heritage of ours have adopted a distinctly masculine attitude in dealing with it. The few women journalists who have visited us and published their impressions have been mere birds of passage. But the present volume is the work of one who has lived her daily life in the centre of the activity that has been exciting the interest and the wonder of the world and whose good fortune it has been to come into touch with many of the men who are making history in our midst. For this reason it is thought by those, whose suggestions are responsible for this volume, that it should be of value quite apart from that which it would have in the eyes of the friendly readers of The Saturday News. As a true daughter of the West, the writer earnestly hopes that their belief will not prove to be ill founded.

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Town and Trail

THE present volume is issued as a result of a successful experiment of a year ago. At that time, in response to the representations of numerous readers of the Edmonton Satuiday News, to which she had for a considerable period been a staff contributor, the writer published abooklet, entitled "A Woman in the West," containing a number of her sketches of Western Canadian life. It was thought, by those responsible for the undertaking, that a useful public purpose would be served in giving a glimpse of life in this part of the Dominion, as viewed by a woman. Certain it is that widespread interest was evoked. From newspapers, reviews and magazines over two continents came most flattering notices, which served to indicate that the little volume fulfilled its mission. It is because of the reception accorded "A Woman in the"!West" that "Town and Trail" is now presented to the public. Most of the matter which it contains has already appeared in the columns of The Saturday News and The Alberta Homestead. While the principal object of the publication is, as with the last venture, to give its readers a better appreciation of life in Alberta, in the capital city of which it is issued, a few other sketches are introduced, which have no particular reference to the province. This is merely by way of variety. Typographically, this year's offering is a trifle more ambitious than its predecessor, while in deference to those whose kindly criticism of "A Woman in the West" was that there was not enough of it, more matter has been included. It is launched with the fervent hope that it may help in giving the world at large some idea of the charm of life in Alberta, of the spirit which animates our citizens and of the opportunities which this wonderful province, so dear to the hearts of its sons and daughters, has to offer to the right kind of men and women.

Download Town and Trail here (pdf)


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