alixwagonwheelmuseum

The Harris, McMillan, and Beebe Family

In Museums, Pioneer Farming, Urquhart, Westling on April 30, 2019 at 10:39 AM

From “The Harris Story – by Ethel Harris”[nee Beebe]

From Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

How can one, in a few short paragraphs, reveal the true story of any pioneer family, the courage, faith, and endurance?  I am proud to have become a member of one such family when I married Ray Harris in 1925.

Ray’s parents, father Eph and mother Annie Harris [McMillan] were married in November 1889 at Bronson, Kansas – Father Eph was 16 and Mother Annie 18 years of age…. Forced by prolonged drought conditions in Kansas in the latter part of the 1890’s, the McMillan families sought better farming conditions, and found these conditions in the Urquhart District, Northwest Territories, Canada.  The families made a mass migration to Lacombe, arriving there with all their effects, on April 1, 1900.  From Lacombe, the journey to the various homesteads, near what are now Clive and Tees areas, was made by wagon. 

Grandfather McMillan had filed on land 3 ½ North East ofpresent village of Clive, while Father Eph had filed on a quarter section 1mile west of Grandfather’s (2 ½ miles North East of Clive.)  Ray at this time was 8 ½ years of age,Flossie 7, Frances 5, Norris 2 ½ – still a young family.  Louis was born here in Sept. 1901…. Busy years ensued and in 1903, Father received title to their land and Canadiancitizenship for the family.

School districts had been formed and teachers secured.  The Harris’ were in the Westling school district….   Father Eph [died] in Feb. 17, 1908….

Ray was now 15 ½ years old, and was faced with the heavy responsibilities of heavy farm management and labour.  Flossie, now 14, was a great help, while the younger ones were soon to realize they could be of help also….

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