The Western Inter-provincial Football Union was formed in 1936 from charter members the Calgary Bronks, Regina Roughriders and Winnipeg Rugby Club (Winnipegs, to become the Blue Bombers in 1938). The Edmonton Eskimos joined in 1938 before withdrawing after the 1939 season. After a three year suspension from 1942-1944 during World War II, the WIFU reconstituted with Winnipeg, Regina and the Calgary Stampeders replacing the Bronks. The Edmonton Eskimos joined as the fourth team in 1949, followed by the BC Lions in 1954.
The WIFU joined the IRFU under the CFC in 1956, though it continued to operate autonomously. When the CFL was formed in 1958, the WIFU continued to operate as its own identity as a division of the league, handling things such as scheduling until a partial inter-locking schedule was introduced in 1961, at which time it was renamed the Western Football Conference. The entity of the Western Football Conference wasn’t eliminated until 1981 when it was dissolved, the conference renamed the West Division and the league taking control of all matters.