The History of Bow Crescent

Bow Crescent is a stretch of land along the Bow River that can trace its roots of habitation back thousands of years. Long before the homes we see today were built along its banks, it was home to First Nation settlements that recognized the land as not only beautiful, but an incredible natural resource. 

Many tribes sought out the land Bow Crescent now occupies over the years, including the Nakoda, Tsuu T'ina, and Blackfooot Confederacy. The clifftops on the northside provided optimal Buffalo jumps for hunting, and the water itself attracted wildlife such as deer, moose, beavers, rabbits, foxes, and more. The banks of the river had berries, nuts, roots and more for tribes to gather, as well as natural shelter from the elements.  The First Nations named the Bow River after the word Bow, which refers to the bows that grew along the banks of the river that they used to make their bows. In the Blackfoot language it is called the Makhabn, which means 'the river where the bow reeds grow.'

When European settlers came to the land, they also saw it is a great natural resource and beautiful area to set up a homestead. Small settlements began popping up in the Bow Crescent area, particularly as the city of Calgary grew thanks to the railroad system. Despite its lack of infastructure, Bow Crescent was promising and prized land. While not everyone saw its potential, Joh Hextall did. 

Hextall purchased the Bowness Ranche and over two-thousand acres of land along the Bow River, which is now the community of Bow Crescent. He paid just $94,000.00 for all of this prime real estate, receiving the official title on August 4, 1910. Today, that would be a multi-million dollar investment! Thankfully, those hoping to live in Bow Crescent do not have to purchase the entire community. Check out the Bow Crescent listings!

You can learn more about John Hextall on our History of Bowness page. While his original plans did not come to full fruition, he did become the pioneer of Bow Crescent. Today, Bow Crescent is a thriving and exclusive community. Homes along the bow retain their large lots and historic charm. Easily connected to inner-city Calgary, but with quick access to the mountains, Bow Crescent is highly sought after. 

Since the very beginning, Bow Crescent has been attracting people who are looking for a home sweet home. Could you be next?

All photos curtesy of the Bowness Historical Society!