from “The McDonald Family – by Hector McDonald”

In Alix, Alberta, Museums, Pioneer Farming, Stone School District on April 7, 2019 at 10:03 AM

From “The McDonald Family – by Hector McDonald”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

On June 3, 1926, …[w]e left Inverness, Scotland by train for Glasgow, sailing on the “Athenia” to Quebec City.  We then boarded the immigrant train westward across the prairies to Alix, where we were met by the Soldier Settlement Board Supervisor, Sam Pocklington, and George Collingwood.  They drove us to the farm, north half sec 30, T38, R23, W4M, twelve miles southwest of Alix in their Model T Fords.  Jack Nixon was in town with a team and wagon to transport our trunks and a few groceries.  A hired hand in Scotland was promoted to a farmer in Canada with 320 acres!

Alexander McDonald was born at Leanach, near Inverness in 1882, and joined the Boer War forces at age 17 and later served as a regular in the Scots Guard, then with the Seaforth Highlanders in the First World War.  Margaret Allcorn Spittal was born in Glasgow in 1888, moving to the Inverness area, where she met and married Dad in May, 1912.  With seven children, ranging in age from twelve years to nine months, they immigrated to Alix and the Stone School District No. 657.

Our early years on the farm were a struggle.  One of the first problems facing us was well water unfit to drink. In the fall of 1927, our log house burned with all of our possessions. After living here and there with the neighbours, we fixed up one half of the cowbarn for living quarters.  Then, through the kindness of our neighbours, we moved into our new house in the spring of 1928.  Winters were spent getting out firewood and brushing land for the next summer’s breaking, sometimes up to 45 acres with a twelve-horse outfit.

Ewen married Pauline Bascombe …. Robert Ypres married Ethel Presho.  Catherine MacKenzie married Robert Stone…. Jean Wilson married Thomas Knight…. Mary married Oral Carter….Alistair… married Hazel Bray.  Hector McBean married Shirley Hanson.

During the Second World War, Dad served with the Veterans Guard, looking after prisoners of war.  Ewen and Alistair served with the Royal Canadian Artillery and Robert with the Air Force.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s