Constable Adam Wahl

Born in Ontario, Canada about 1863

Died on the Missouri River, Montana Territory on May 25, 1882




Note about Adam Wahl
from Ed Smith

"In my research I found that one of their recruit constables, Adam Wahl, was placed on the Montana Law Enforcement Officers Memorial at Deer Lodge, Montana. He died on the Missouri River, below Coal Banks, Montana Territory May 25, 1882.  At this time I have no other personal information on Adam Wahl, but the following is an excerpt of Senior Surgeon Jukes of the NWMP in his report to Lt. Col. Invine, Commissioner of the North West Mounted Police, describing the tough times on the trip from Ontario to Fort Walsh, NWT and the death of Adam Wahl."


". . . left the new Fort Toronto . . . in medical charge of the newly formed detachment, 214 in number . . . for Fort Walsh, North West Territory, via Sarnia, the Sault Ste. Marie, Duluth and the Northern Pacific Railway to Bismark on the Missouri, from which point we ascended the river by a dreary voyage of thirteen days to the Coal Banks below Benton, Montana Territory, and thence by bull-train across the intervening plain, a no less tedious journey of twelve days to our destination, where we arrived on the evening of June 12th, thirty-two days having been occupied in reaching this post.


The voyage by steamer ONTARIO from Sarnia to Prince Arthur's Landing was attended with much personal fatigue . . . The voyage of thirteen days up the Missouri was no less trying . . . The Steamer RED CLOUD on

which we embarked at Bismark, containing, in addition to our own men, who still numbered 212, . . . not less than 170 more in passengers and crew, the former of an indigent class of Missourian emigrants en route to the mines, besides cattle, horses, and sheep, making a total of 382 souls confined at all hours to the narrow hampered space constituting the decks of a vessel one hundred and eighty feet long by forty feet wide, the greater portion of which was occupied by the engine, boiler and machinery, merchandise and livestock below, and above by saloons and cabins, leaving little space available for the use of the men. The weather during much of the passage was windy, wet and cold, and the

men, greatly restricted for space to lie down in, were much exposed to the influences of the weather and malaria (in which latter the Missouri Valley abounds) . . . Under such circumstances, sickness among the men was to be expected . . . remittent fever . . . diptheria . . . measels . . . intermittent fever . . . parotitis, and almost universal diarrhoea, produced by drinking the Missouri water . . . Much disease prevailed also among the  Missouri emigrants and crew, who crowded the fore part and lower waist of the vessel in the foul space between decks among the cattle and sheep . . . a steamer passed us on her way to Benton, when six days out, having small pox on board, which exposed us at every stopping place where she had touched before us, to increased danger, necessitating the vaccination of all those not previously protected."


Only one paragraph alludes to the fate of recruit Adam Wahl.


"We were overtaken on this voyage by one other fatal casualty, occasioned by the falling overboard, at a dangerous and rapid part of the river, of one of the recruits named Wahl, whose body we were unable to recover."



Taken from Canadian Virtual War Memorial

In memory of
Adam Wahl
May 25, 1882
Missouri River, Montana

Royal Canadian Mounted Police:

Service Number: 957

Age: 19

Additional Information:

Enlistment: April 17, 1882

Constable Wahl was born in Ontario. He had a sense of duty by wanting to serve his country as well as an eye for adventure. After three weeks of basic training, he set out for Fort Walsh, Northwest Territories. His long journey west had him go aboard the Sternwheeler, Red Cloud in Bismark, North Dakota. Constable Wahl drowned in the Missouri River, USA, while en route with other recruits from Fort Toronto to Fort Walsh, Northwest Territories.

Commemorated on Page 5 of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Honour Roll Book.