Cattle ranching

Cornelius O'Keeffe by Tyson Newman

Dates and time

All the cattle were ion Oregon but the people needed them in the Okanagan. So people would have to ship the cattle to the Okanagan. The first shipment was in 1846. The Hudson Bay company had a license to raise cattle so people started to get their own ranches in the Okanagan. They brought the cattle from Oregon and used the old brigade trail, and cross lakes and rivers. The ranches flourished when the miners and other workers needed more meat because then the people had a business.


Cattle ranchers provided food for the miners and the railroad workers. If there wasn't cattle ranchers the people would not get enough food. That means that the miners would not be able to work because they would have to wait too long to get cattle from Oregon.

Role of Brigade trail

The fur brigade trail used by the Hudsons bay company and used to transport furs, goods and other things. It was used in the fur trade but people didn't like hats anymore so it was changed into a route to transport cattle and meat. It took a long time for cattle to get from Oregon to the Okanagan area. Then people started getting their own ranches closer to the Okanagan. The people got rich and some got famous.

Early history

Cornelius O Keefe was the seventh son of a farmer from the County Cork(Republic of Ireland. He was raised on a family farm in upper Canada. He had a basic education and he worked in construction as he helped build the caribou road.

Reasons for settlement

Cornelius lived in Canada but the reason he wanted to go to the Okanagan was because he wanted to be a gold miner.

Early accomplishments

In Cornelius's early accomplishments he helped construct the caribou road. He also had his own store that was the first store made on his land.


He had his own ranch and was the first person to make a general store on his property. He was also a post office master for 40 years.


The O'Keeffe name lives on because his ranch is still up and running in Vernon, British Columbia It is a big tourist attraction and lots of people go to visit it every year.

Driving question

Cattle ranchers were important on the growth and development of the Okanagan valley. People like Cornelius O'Keeffe is one of the reasons the Okanagan valley flourished. If it wasn't for him, his ranch, and his store development in the gold rush would have been delayed. He impacted the Okanagan because people didn't have to wait for cattle from Oregon. They could get their meats and other things from the Vernon O'Keeffe ranch.

Interesting facts

The O'Keeffe ranch is still up and is a tourist attraction. Cornelius was 91 when he died and was born 1838 and died on 1919.