Quick Facts

  • Location of the first attempt at Potash mining in Canada 
  • Location of the first rural radio broadcast
  • Location of the first rural natural gas transmission system.
  • Location of Kevin Kerr's play, Unity (1918).
  • Location (and crossing) of the main CN and CP rail lines. 
  • Location of Compass Minerals' Salt Mine (Sifto Salt)
  • Location of two Head Offices of Saskatchewan's top 100 companies (NWT and Delta Coop)

A Brief History of the Town of Unity

Settlement of the area began in 1904 and Unity began to develop with the arrival of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway in 1908. By the early 1920s, Unity-s population was over 600 and growing. The community experienced somewhat of a decline during the 1930s, but subsequently recovered, particularly after World War II. Much of the community-s return to prosperity and future growth was due to oilfield exploration. After natural gas was discovered near Unity, local furnaces and coal stoves were converted to burn the gas and, in 1944, Unity became one of only three communities in Saskatchewan with their own domestic natural gas system, prior to SaskPower being given the authority in the 1950s to establish the provincial utility. Drilling for oil in the Unity area also revealed a substantial deposit of sodium chloride (common salt) laid down when much of Saskatchewan was covered by inland seas. In the late 1940s, a salt mine was developed and, today, the mine, operated by Sifto Canada, is the community-s largest employer with 60 employees. Further, exploratory drilling also revealed extensive deposits of potash, and the first attempt at potash mining in Saskatchewan, indeed, in Canada, was made near Unity in the early 1950s. The industrial activity in the area, combined with modified and more successful agricultural practices after the dry years of the 1930s, caused the town-s population to skyrocket. The community-s numbers rose from 682 in 1941, to 1,248 in 1951, and, between 1955 to 1965, approximately 100 new homes were built in the town. By 1966, the population was 2,154. Today the Town of Unity's population has grown to 2573.