Baker Street looking
East, circa 1925 (Cranbrook Historical Archives)
- The earliest
known people to use the basin, in which Cranbrook is located, were the
"Ktunaxa" who have roamed the upper (East) and the lower (West)
Kootenay regions for several millennia.
- By the
late 1860's, this basin was occupied by the Robert Galbraith family,
and about 1887 was purchased by Col. James Baker, who named it "Cranbrook
Farm" after his ancestral home in Cranbrook, Kent, England. Baker
is the founder of Cranbrook as we know it today.
as an urban centre, was created by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1898
when it completed a strategic major branch through the Crowsnest Pass
in the southern Canadian Rockies. The railway made Cranbrook the Divisional
Headquarters for the administration of this line, a position it still
holds. Cranbrook was incorporated in 1905 and today is the largest city
and major service centre in the south-east part of the Province with
20,000 population. Nelson, 230 km to the west, is the second largest at 10,000.