Coleman

Discovering Coleman, Alberta: A Community Nestled in the Rocky Mountains

Coleman, Alberta, is a charming community nestled within the Rocky Mountains in the Municipality of Crowsnest Pass in southwest Alberta, Canada. Previously incorporated as a town, Coleman amalgamated with four other municipalities in 1979 to form Crowsnest Pass. Today, it is part of Census Division No. 15 and the riding of Macleod, with Highway 3 (Crowsnest Highway) and the Canadian Pacific Railway providing access to this picturesque location.

The Rich History of Coleman, Alberta

The history of Coleman, Alberta, dates back to 1903 when a new townsite was established to service a coal mine operated by the International Coal and Coke Company. Initially known as Paulson's Camp or McGillivray Hill, the post office finally settled on the name Coleman, derived from the mother's maiden name of the president and mine owner A. C. Flumerfelt's wife, Ada, and the middle name of his youngest daughter, Norma Coleman Flumerfelt.

Coleman was incorporated as a village on 11 January 1904 and later as a town on 10 September 1910. The town was known for its 100 (later 216) coke ovens located at its outskirts, which operated from 1906 to 1952. Coleman quickly grew, surpassing its neighbour Blairmore as the largest in the region. The town even boasted an opera house from 1908 until it burned down in 1948.

Despite enduring strikes, floods, and fires, Coleman persevered. However, as the coal mines in the region gradually closed, Coleman's commercial importance waned in favour of Blairmore. On 3 November 1978, the Government of Alberta passed the Crowsnest Pass Municipal Unification Act, leading to the formal amalgamation of the Town of Coleman with the Village of Bellevue, the Town of Blairmore, the Village of Frank, and Improvement District (ID) No. 5 on 1 January 1979.

Today, Coleman's coal mining heritage is evident in its several historic buildings, a regional museum, the ruins of its coal plant and coke ovens, several nearby abandoned mines, and the "biggest piggy bank in the world" made from a 36-inch (910 mm) gauge air driven thermos bottle mine locomotive. Much of the downtown section now forms the Coleman National Historic Site.

The Geography and Climate of Coleman, Alberta

Coleman, Alberta, is blessed with a subarctic climate (Dfc), characterized by mild to warm summers and cold, snowy winters.

Demographics of Coleman, Alberta

According to the 2021 Census of Population, the urban population centre of Coleman, as delineated by Statistics Canada, recorded a population of 1,441 living in 722 of its 907 total private dwellings, a change of -2.3% from its 2016 population of 1,475. With a land area of 1.99 km2 (0.77 sq mi), it had a population density of 724.1/km2 (1,875.5/sq mi) in 2021. As a population centre in the 2016 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Coleman recorded a population of 1,475 living in 696 of its 891 total private dwellings, an 8% change from its 2011 population of 1,366. With a land area of 1.97 km2 (0.76 sq mi), it had a population density of 748.7/km2 (1,939.2/sq mi) in 2016.

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