Despite having demoralizing duties in the Second Boer War which Sam Steele hated, Lord Strathcona's Horse did see its fair share of conflict. Canadian soldiers fought bravely in several battles, even under heavy fire. Sam could have easily died on several occasions, but whether by chance or by fate he led his men triumphantly through the war, often under gunfire and artillery assault.
During the Second Boer War, Mohandas Gandhi volunteered to form a group of stretcher-bearers as the Natal Indian Ambulance Corps. According to the historian Arthur Herman, Gandhi wanted to disprove the imperial British stereotype that Hindus were not fit for "manly" activities involving danger and exertion. He served at the same time that Sam Steele was there performing his duties in the war. Had the two ever encountered each other?
When Britain was again at war with the Boers in South Africa, they received aid from Canada. Canadian Pacific Railway tycoon Donald Smith (Baron Strathcona) asked Sam to lead his privately raised cavalry unit named Lord Strathcona's Horse. Sam commanded it as lieutenant colonel, leading Canadian soldiers with such competence that he was knighted and made a member of the Royal Victorian Order in 1901. Though Sam despised many of his duties during the war, his experience allowed him to personally prepare Canada for the approaching First World War, which he would do to extraordinary measure.
I've found the best villain character since 'Curly' Bill from Tombstone! Jeff 'Soapy' Smith was the most notorious swindler in the States and he'd built up criminal empires, ruling two American cities! He came to Skagway, Alaska to profit illegally off the Klondike Gold Rush in Canada. He built up a new criminal empire there. Sam Steele helped to oppose him, and the Vigilance Committee (Committee of 101.) A woke was performed after his death across the States by people each July 8, honouring him as a kind of folk anti-hero (Robin Hood figure of sorts.) Several sources refer to him as the Wild West's greatest con man and he was incredibly brazen. It makes for quite a colourful story, adding to Sam Steele's time in the Yukon! This is research for my upcoming Sam Steele novel, but I still have a lot of research to do!