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Acaster, David W., 1919-2018

  • Person
  • 1919-2018

David Warris Acaster was born November 11, 1919 in Winnipeg, Manitoba as the fifth son and ninth child of John and Florence Acaster of Brokenhead, Manitoba. Acaster had sisters Fanny Madill, Margaret Cubbon, Jessie Horrell, Catherine Puff; and brothers George, Arthur, Walter, Douglas and Fred. His family moved to a farm near North Battleford in 1922 where after attending Mount Hope School and completing his Grade 11 by correspondence, Acaster attended Saskatoon Technical School to pursue machine shop and welding. Thereafter, he travelled to Fort William for work at Canada Car Foundry and then in November 1941 enlisted in the Royal Canadian Force. Following training, he embarked for England in the fall of 1942 where he was attached to 428 "Ghost Squadron" and posted at Middleton St. George as part of No. 6 Bomber Command. He returned to Canada in 1945 and was discharged from the Air Force that fall. Upon his return Acaster completed Grade 12 at the Canadian Vocational Training School in Saskatoon and entered the College of Engineering at the University of Saskatchewan. Acaster subsequently became employed in various positions in Lloydminster, Regina, Victoria, Winnipeg, and Vancouver, but returned to North Battleford in 1958. In North Battleford, he was a car salesperson for a local dealership until 1969 and then went to work for the Saskatchewan Hospital as an accounting clerk and then payroll clerk until his retirement in 1984.

In his retirement, Acaster volunteered for Meals On Wheels, enjoyed gardening, camping and travel, carpentry and photography, as well as working at the home farmstead. He also worked on a local history book and published two of his own books. Acaster died in North Battleford on January 29, 2018.

Almighty Voice, c. 1875-1897

  • Person
  • 1870-1897

Almighty Voice (also known as Jean-Baptiste) was born around 1874 near Duck Lake or Batoche, Saskatchewan as the son of Plains Saulteaux Indian Sinookeeesick (Sounding Sky) and Natchookoneck (Spotted Calf; Calf of Many Colours). He grew up on the One Arrow Indian Reserve in Saskatchewan where he developed into a prolific sharpshooter and hunter. On October 22, 1895, the Northwest Mounted Police (NWMP) arrested Almighty Voice for killing a government steer that he contended belonged to his father. While being taken to prison, he escaped his guards and travelled to his mother's house on the reserve. Thereafter he managed to elude the police for a few days, but on October 29, police tracked him to near Kinistino, Saskatchewan, yet when police closed in to arrest him, Almighty Voice shot and killed a sergeant before slipping away. He remained at large for the next nineteen months during which the police attempted to exert pressure on him to surrender by bringing his father into custody and offering $500 reward for information leading his apprehension and conviction, but these initiatives were unsuccessful. In late May 1897, Almighty Voice (or one of the persons travelling with him), shot and wounded a Metis scout near Duck Lake; this incident led the Northwest Mounted Police to establish a patrol of a dozen men who set out from Duck Lake to track Almighty Voice. In the Minichinas Hills located near Batoche, the patrol caught up to Almighty Voice and his companions. Following a firefight in which a NWMP inspector and sergeant were seriously wounded, additional civilians from the area were enlisted special constables to reinforce their efforts. However, the Duck Lake postmaster and a constable were killed, additional police and civilian reinforcements, including volunteers from Prince Albert, to take him into custody. In addition, more men from Regina who brought with them a nine-pound field gun and an artillery team supplemented the police, with which they surrounded Almighty Voice. On the morning of May 30, 1897, the police forces bombarded his position and after no fire was returned from the location, the police attacked the position and found the bodies of Almighty Voice, his brother-in-law Topean, and a cousin Little Saulteaux.

During his life, Almighty Voice is believed to have had four wives and one child.

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