The McLaren family found little future in farming in Eastern Canada. They determined to move to the Red River of the North. Land there was cheap, and it offered the opportunity for a new start in life.
Upon their arrival, they purchased a half section of land and bought livestock. Patrick and Ian found work with the railroad, Mary taught school and the family thrived.
They were soon aware there were renegades in the area due to the influx of labor for the new railroad. Sheriff Charley Brown was doing his best to cope with local gangs.
That winter, Ian McLaren, together with civilians and the military, were involved in a hanging. An attempt was made to burn Ian?s grain crop. Two soldiers from Fort Pembina mysteriously disappeared. Arson beset the town when the largest local stable was torched with a heavy loss of expensive horses. Criminals were active.