Hopedale District

In Alix, Alberta on April 5, 2017 at 9:30 AM

From “Early History”

Hopedale District lies mostly within Township 39, and partly in Township 38, Range 24, West of the 4th Meridian, originally containing 53 quarters of land…. Wild fruit was to be had for the picking….One lady recalls that a fire once got out of control and burned off most of a quarter section.  In the following years wild raspberries sprang up, and families for miles around came to pick.  Raspberries were taken out by the washtub full.

First to settle in the community was the Isaac Haynes family…. Since water was a concern, they established their home on the creek, which was later officially named Haynes Creek.  Their homestead patent was filed in 1894…. In 1899 Stephen Nichols filed for his homestead…. Nineteen hundred brought the greatest influx of settlers, most of them hailing from the U.S.A.  These families included Cundiffs, Thomas”[sic], Bronsons, Bucknells, Philips and Hoppus’.[sic]

The Buffalo Lake Trail ran across the district, south of Haynes Creek…. and travellers could ford the creek to the north and go to Stettler, or turn south-west to Red Deer…. Gradually, the trails were replaced by roads, and horses by automobiles, although not without incident.  The story is told of the time when Milo Baker bought his first car, and took Sam and Ethel Hornseth for a drive.  As they roured along, they overtook a horse and rider.  The road, of course, was of the dirt variety, and it had rained earlier that same day.  The rider put his horse to the gallop, trying to outrun the car, with the result that the mud from the horse’s hooves flew back, plastering the open car and its [sic] occupants.  What with Mrs. Baker pounding Milo on the back and yelling at him to slow down, and Milo driving for dear life and yelling that no *%!’& of a horse was going to outrun him, and everyone else collapsed with laughter and dodging mudballs, we never did find out who won the race!

In 1910 and 1911, the railroad cut its way through the district…. The hamlet of Haynes came into being with the coming of the railroad.

Excerpted from Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974.

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