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The Resilient Garden

In Alix, Alberta on February 29, 2020 at 2:57 PM

From “Alix Free Press and Mirror News Record” June 9, 1949:(1) CCF Meeting (2)2,4,D ad

In Alix, Alberta, Farming, Political Parties on February 29, 2020 at 1:22 PM

Alix Free Press Jan. 16, 1931

In 1930s Depression, Alix Arena, Alix, Alberta, Business, Farming, Organizations, Sports Teams on February 27, 2020 at 9:09 PM

Alix Whirlwinds Hockey Ads

-Garden Talk at Alix on April 1 has had to be postponed until the coronovirus has run its course.

In Alix, Alberta on February 27, 2020 at 8:16 AM

From “Thomas and Margaret Semple History – By Jean Hutchison and Margaret Rice”

In 1930s Depression, Alix, Alberta, Farming, Mirror AB, Pioneer Farming, Pioneer Medical Health, Pioneer tools & Machinery, Railway, School, School Teachers, Settlers, Stone School District on February 16, 2020 at 4:40 PM

From “Thomas and Margaret Semple History – By Jean Hutchison and Margaret Rice”

Pioneers and Progress Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

In 1910 Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Semple emigrated from Scotland, arriving in Calgary in a snow storm on the first day of June.

They spent the first winter in the village of Alix, moving onto a farm (N.E. 6-39-23-W4) about nine miles south west of Alix in the spring of 1911.

Mother found it quite lonely in a new country, after life in the city of Glasgow.  A trained nurse, she was much in demand when illness struck a family…. Mother helped to deliver a good number of babies…. It might mean a drive of 10 to 15 miles with a team and sleigh or buggy.  She would be expected to take care of the mother and new baby, as well as the other children in the family, cook the meals and do all the other household chores.

We used to walk to Stone School, going across the Stone fields part of the way.  Jean started with Miss Clowse (1918).  The old double desks had been dismantled, and we used them to coast down the hill.  Slates were just on the way out.  Miss Clowse got some clay from a nearby creek bank and we did our own version of ceramics.  We used willows for weaving small articles, had plasticine, colored pegs, paper mats to weave etc. The old Waterbury heater took till about recess to throw out much heat in the winter.  We sat around the stove until we thawed out enough to walk around.

There was little, if any, playground equipment, perhaps a bat and ball.  We played steal sticks, run sheep run, drop the handkerchief, fire on the mountain and other favorites.

Later, Stone School was moved to a different location….

Early teachers were Miss Green in 1912 or 1913, Miss Skeuse, Miss Clowse 1918, Miss Edith Code, Miss Bradshaw, Miss Freddie Halpin, Miss Gough, Miss Treena Hunter 1922-23, Miss Harriet Stone, Miss Graham, Lorne Trace, Miss Hawthorne, Miss Chisholm.

We lived about half a mile from the C.N. Railway on the Mirror-Nordegg (Brazeau) line.  I recall a crew of Chinese building or repairing the line in the early days.  Probably the coal from Nordegg made up most of the freight that was hauled.

In the early days coal from the mines on the Red Deer River was the main source of fuel and it was hauled many miles.  Long strings of teams, often with four horses and sleighs would pass our place all winter.  The men sometimes wore buffalo coats and quite often walked beside the sleigh to keep warm.

Dad made trips to Lacombe occasionally, a distance of 30 miles, with a team and wagon to deliver lambs to market.  This took two days for the round trip.  Dad had been accustomed to raising sheep as a boy in Scotland and continued to do so after he came to Canada.  During the depression years of the 1930’s, the price for wool was very low.  I remember once, instead of a cheque for the wool we shipped, we received a small bill for the freight…. In later years, he built up a herd of Aberdeen Angus cattle.

The first car our parents owned was a Model T. Ford, purchased about 1924 0r 1925.  Learning to drive was a real experience.  The roads were narrow and usually had mudholes at the foot of each hill.  Gravel wasn’t available and when it rained, we just stayed at home.  Living on a hill was the most convenient, as when the car wouldn’t start we would haul it around with a team of horses.

From Hiland H. and Frederick Mann – By Kathleen Mann

In Alix, Alberta, Pioneer Farming, Ripley, Settlers on February 11, 2020 at 5:37 AM

From “Hiland H. and Frederick Mann – By Kathleen Mann”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

It was during the years around the turn of the century that the Canadian West gave an urge to many people for a new venture.  People came from Eastern Canada, United States and many parts of Europe.  Ripley District was one of many formed at this time.

The Mann brothers, Hiland H. and Frederick A. were fortunate to find homesteads in the Ripley District. Uncle Fred had been out as far as Saskatchewan on a “Harvesters Excursion” about 1901…. Also, letters had been received from former Petrolia, Ontario, telling friends of the Lacombe area.  Money and experience were in short supply; but Uncle Fred knew how to harvest a team, and Dad could harness a single horse.  So they pooled their resources and on March 3rd, 1902 headed for Lacombe, North West Territories.

On arrival some six days later, they learned all the land in the Lacombe area had been filed on, and they would have to look elsewhere.   Fortunately, they met a friendly American from Kansas.  He knew of two quarter sections some forty miles around sloughs and through brush, east of Lacombe. Better still, this new friend had good friends, Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Barritt, already settled in the area…. In April 1903 Dad filed on the N.W. quarter of S. 32-Twn 39 Rge.22 and Uncle Fred filed on the N.W. quarter….

Logs and cattle barns were erected on each quarter, and livestock and some machinery bought.  Cattle were to be branded….

Breaking the land, tilling, seeding, haying and harvesting and countless other tasks filled each day. Almost before it could be realized the Fall season had arrived.

October saw the reunion of Dad with his wife and two children from Ontario.  Olive, the eldest child did not come West until three years later.  This was an especially happy time for Uncle Fred.  His bride-to-be Miss Phoebe Smith of Petrolia, Ontario came West with Mother, Mark and me…. [They] were married by Dr. George Kirby.

Uncle Fred and Aunt Phoebe had five children…Audrey…Allyn….Marjorie…May…[and] Ira.

Mother and Dad… spent their latter years in Lethbridge.  Mother passed away in 1950 and Dad in 1958.

Of their family of six: Olive…Mark…Kathleen…Isobel…Emmett…[and] Grace.

Yerburgh, Richard Eustre Vertue

In Alix, Alberta, Churches, Farming, Hickling, Lamerton, Pioneer Farming, Settlers on February 4, 2020 at 8:57 AM

From “Yerburgh, Richard Eustre Vertue – as told by R.E.M. Yerburgh and H. Parlby”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

Rev. R.E.V. Yerburgh (Dick) was born in England in 1879, came to Canada early in 1906 and bought the S.E. ¼ of 14-40-22.

He married Gladys Eileen Marryat, a daughter of Colonel Ernest L. and Mrs. Marryat, on December 11, 1906 in the little log church of St. Monica’s near Lamerton.  The marriage ceremony was going very smoothly when suddenly the whole congregation were startled by a hoarse but determined voice, “This marriage must stop!  Miss Marryat is going to marry me!”

A young Englishman by the name of Burrows had risen at the back of the church and drawn a revolver.  Quickly several of the men present took the interrupter in hand and hustled him out of the church.  Then the ceremony went on.

Three children were born to this marriage:

  1. Richard Eustre Marryat Yerburgh, January 12, 1908.
  2. Robert, born April 1, 1910 and died at about six weeks old.
  3. 3. Ernest Robert Marryat Yerburgh, born November 4, 1910.

Tragically the mother did not survive, but died on November 6, 1910, and her husband was left with two small sons. Members of the Marryat family living near came to his assistance in caring for the little ones.

Some time later Dick Yerburgh returned to England and took as his second wife Mary Eleanor Thorhill on April 18, 1915.  Returning to Canada and Alix they settled down on the land.  “Mary Yerburgh” as she is called by her old friends became in every way a real mother to “Dickie” and “Bob.”…

With the Yerburghs came Celia Giles, later Mrs. John Mansbridge….

The Rev. R.E.M. Yerburgh (Dickie) writes… “Our house was called “The Hill” after Dad’s old school…. Water was a problem and the remains of many old wells were scattered around…. My last remembrance was of water being hauled from a well dug close to a small slough on the way to Dartmoor Ranch. (Parlby’s).”

Like a lot of other people, I expect, we were chronically hard up, and one year about all the meat we had was that of rabbits which Dad shot.  The next year came the disease that killed off the rabbits every few years.  That year there was very little meat.   I remember my father spotting a partridge or a prairie chicken, and to make sure he got it he stalked it, but got too close and blew it to pieces,”

In 1916 the Yerburghs sold out and went to Victoria B.C. to live.

Calendars: Horse Shoe Brand Collars 1934 and Alix Livery Barn 1917

In Alix, Alberta, Business, Farming, Horses on February 3, 2020 at 10:32 AM