Located on Treaty 4 and Treaty 6 territories and the Homeland of the Métis, the Western Development Museum (WDM) is the largest human history museum in Saskatchewan. With a collection of over 75,000 artifacts ranging from pins to locomotives and four locations in the province, the WDM shares the Saskatchewan story from the beginning of settlement to present day.
Each museum location focuses on different aspects of Saskatchewan history – transportation in Moose Jaw, farm and rural life in North Battleford, 1910 Boomtown and innovation in Saskatoon and stories of immigration in Yorkton. The WDM also has a Corporate Office located in Saskatoon for administrative and curatorial functions as well as collections storage.
The WDM is a registered charity and was established in 1949 when the Saskatchewan Government passed the Western Development Museum Act.
The WDM serves the people of Saskatchewan through its exhibits, educational and public programs, special events, and research about the history of the province. Each Museum location works closely with local community partners. These partnerships range from featuring local histories to developing and delivering programs that meet their community’s needs.
The WDM’s mandate is to collect, preserve, and exhibit objects of historical value and importance connected with the economic and cultural development of western Canada and to stimulate interest in western Canadian history. Our vision is a Saskatchewan where everyone belongs and histories matter.
The Western Development Museum is a legislated agency of the Province of Saskatchewan and operates within the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Parks, Culture and Sport. The museum is governed by a 7- member Board of Directors appointed by the Lieutenant Governor of Saskatchewan through an Order in Council. Staff responsibilities throughout the WDM are varied and include collections care and conservation, visitor services, gift shop sales, food services and catering, program development and delivery, fundraising, marketing, general and financial administration, and management functions.
Much of the behind-the-scenes work of the Western Development Museum is undertaken at the WDM’s Corporate Office. Located in Saskatoon, the Corporate Office coordinates programs and exhibits for the four Museum locations in Moose Jaw, North Battleford, Saskatoon and Yorkton.
The four WDM locations and the Corporate Office provide a grand total of 307,100 square feet of covered area – 262,875 square feet for exhibit/programs and 44,225 square feet of office and storage space. Total land area is 165 acres, slightly larger than the original prairie farm unit of a quarter section (160 acres).
A Saskatchewan where everyone belongs and histories matter.