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Archive for October, 2020|Monthly archive page

Billy & Leone (Haynes) Gilbert

In Cattle, Farming, Ghost Pine, Haynes, Hopedale, North Star, Pleasant Valley, School, School Teachers, Settlers on October 31, 2020 at 3:06 PM

From “Billy Gilbert”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club 1974

In the summer of 1893 Billy Gilbert and his friend Billy Morrical left Randolff, Iowa, bound for Canada, driving a team of mules and a covered wagon.  They came through the Dakota’s and Montana and reported a very dry season on these parts.  Water had to be carried in a barrel, on the wagon, for men and mules, and it was hoped it would last until the next source of water could be reached.  The dry weather created large cracks in the ground, near what is now Lethbridge country, that had to be driven around as they were too wide to cross.

In September they arrived in the Pleasant Valley District, four miles north of the present village of Haynes.  Billy Gilbert homesteaded theS.E.28-39-24 W4 and some years later bought the N.E. ¼ of the same section from a Mr. Kenear (homesteaded by W.O. Chapman.)

A log house was built after some difficulty on the homestead quarter. The logs which were cut near the Red Deer River, were washed away during highwater, and a second lot had to be cut.

In 1895 he went to Nelson, B.C. and obtained work in an ore mine. While there he met a girl whom he had met before at Haynes.  She was Leone Haynes, daughter of another early settler, that the town of Haynes was named after.  They returned to Haynes and were married at Innisfail in 1898.  Their daughter Jessie was born in 1900 and became a school teacher, teaching in many places like Brookfield, Hopedale, North Star and Ghost Pine, where she met and married Earl Ruby….

Herbie Gilbert, Jessie’s adopted brother… lived in Red Deer where he started the Red Deer Auto Racing Club.

The Gilberts improved their land and operated a post office from their house about 1905 to 1911, then they moved to Edmonton … until [in] 1914 they came back to take up farming and raising cattle….

He bought the NW ¼ of 21-39-24-W4 from the CPR and the SW1/4 21-39-24 from J.L. Jackson….

In 1921 Billy was seriously hurt when his Fordson tractor reared over backwards breaking his pelvis and leg.  As a result he suffered ill health…. [H]e managed to stay with the old homestead until he passed away Christmas Eve 1933.  In 1944 the place was sold to Dick Waddy….

Mrs. Gilbert passed away in June, 1957….

Vincent Duffy

In Alix, Alberta on October 28, 2020 at 3:35 PM

from Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

Vincent Duffy bought this property S.E. 25-39-25-4 from Harry Archibald in 1958. He married the former Jean Kenworthy. They have three children…. In 1963 they sold the farm to Dan Ziegler and moved to a farm at Grande Prairie.

From “Mr. and Mrs. Charles Coote – By Margaret Duffy”

In Churches, Clive AB, School Trustees on October 25, 2020 at 5:25 PM

From “Mr. and Mrs. Charles Coote – By Margaret Duffy”

Pioneers and Progress Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

Mr. and Mrs. Charles Coote moved to Edmonton from Ontario in the year 1911 due to my father’s health.  In 1915 Dad came to Clive and felt so much better we moved down in August 1916.  Dad farmed for three years and then took over post office and telephone office from Mr. B.E. Allison and was postmaster and telephone agent from 1919 to 1945.

Dad… was on town council and Mayor of the town for several years.

Mother was very active in all the town activities, was a real worker in Red Cross during both World Wars I and II…. She was a provincial worker in the Women’s Christian Temperance Union, also president of the Ladies Aid…served on the Board of the Clive United Church and was on the School Board for years and years.  She was a life member of the Clive United church and also took her turn when we were short of help on the switchboard.

Dad and Mother had five children, Mrs. Charles Eblen (Elsie Margory)…Charles McCloy (Loy) married Esther Allison….Milton Clarmont married Helen Reyolds…Violet married W.J. Cunningham….Margaret married Vincent Duffy….

The Waterman Story

In 1918 "Spanish" Flu, Alix, Alberta, Clive AB, Eclipse, Farming, Pioneer Medical Health, Settlers on October 15, 2020 at 8:57 AM

From “The Waterman Story- By Mrs. Margaret Waterman”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

I went west with my father, W.C. Henry, early in April, 1917.  Dad had bought a section of land in the Eclipse District, years before.  We arrived in Clive in pouring rain, and drove through a sea of mud, it seemed to me, out to the Fred Sissons farm, just half a mile from Dad’s place.  We had known the Fred Sissons at home in Thornton, Ontario where I was born … and I well remember we had to build a log road through the mud to the barn before we could get Dad’s horses home.  I had come straight from the Toronto General Hospital, in Toronto, and for a while I doubted my sanity for coming west at all.  Also, I was very lonely.  Soon, however, I was busy doing some nursing under very primitive conditions, I thought.  One of my first cases was with Dr. Montgomery, whom I learned to have great admiration for.  He was a very clever man.

I learned to ride and spent many hours inn the saddle roaming all over.  In June, I think it was, we went to a picnic or some such thing, and there I met Jack Waterman, and married him the following summer, and went to Alix. It was not long before the dreadful 1918 Flu’ broke out, and I was nursing again until I became ill myself.  Early in the following year Dad took me to Crossfield where my sister lived, and there Jean was born. Bill, Bob and the twins were born on the farm near Alix.  We later moved back to take over Dad’s farm in Eclipse, and it was there that Jack and Margaret were born. Two years later we all moved to Vancouver

The Biography of Irene Parlby by Barbara Villy Cormack, Sherwood Park: Professional Printing, 1969, 160 pp. $20 softbound.

In Alix, Alberta on October 12, 2020 at 4:53 PM

Perennials and Politics

Perennials and Politics by Barbara Villy Cormack, Sherwood Park: Professional Printing, 1969, 160 pp. $20 softbound.

Barbara Villy Cormack was born in England, and came to Canada in 1914 with her parents and sister.  She attended school in Calgary and graduated from the University of Alberta in Edmonton. She married Eric Cormack, and they had three sons.  As well as farming in the Alix area, she wrote novels, poetry, nonfiction, and was a newspaper reporter.  She and her husband  received the Order of Canada and honourary doctorates from the University of Alberta for their work in establishing education for the handicapped.

Irene Parlby nee Marryat, was born in 1868 in England, the eldest child of Elizabeth Lynch and Colonel E. L. Marryat.  She lived in England and in India, where her family was acquainted with the Byng-Hall family. Alix Byng-Hall married Charles Westhead, and they had gone to ranch in the Buffalo Lake District of the Northwest Territories in Canada.  In 1897, Irene went to pay them a visit. There she met Walter Parlby, a neighbouring rancher, and they were married in 1898.

Perennials and Politics is mostly about Irene’s life as a pioneer Albertan.  Although she is best remembered for her role in the “Persons Case” as one of the “Famous Five”, Irene participated in several other important historical events, including the rise of the U.F.A. government in Alberta, where she served as a Cabinet Minister, and  being Canada’s delegate to the League of Nations in Geneva.  Her husband and their son, Humphrey, were staunch supporters of her work.

Those years saw many changes in government as the western provinces gained more population very rapidly, and their relationship with the federal government evolved rapidly.  Irene worked on establishing health and education services. She saw many events, including some that remain controversial to this day such as the Brownlee Seduction Case and the passage of the Sexual Sterilization Act for Mental Defectives.

Irene worked very hard and did a good deal of travelling in her government work, and her health suffered.  She retired from politics in 1935, to Alix.

Irene was not only a politician; she enjoyed drama, music, and community activities to which she contributed time and effort.  She was one of the organizing founders of the library at Alix, among many worthwhile endeavours.   She was also a keen gardener, and experimented with the growing of many plants in the Alberta climate, contributing articles to gardening publications.

Barbara Cormack has shown Irene’s life and the changes in her surroundings and in the world at large.  Barbara was a personal friend, neighbour and admirer of Irene, and has shared many insights, and even some photographs. Barbara’s twenty-five years of farming in the Alix gave her a real understanding of Irene’s life and context, which makes the book enlightening from several angles.

This book is available at Alix Wagon Wheel Museum.

J. A. Waterman

In Alix, Alberta, Eclipse, Pioneer Farming, School, Settlers, Trails on October 6, 2020 at 8:00 AM

From “The J. A. Waterman Story – (June 1971)”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

My people were of English descent …. I was born in Monaghan township, Peterboro County, Ontario.  I had public school education.  I had one little Scotch Grandmother who used to…  give me sound spankings, which I knew I had coming to me, owing to my insatiable curiosity about everything….

I came to Calgary in 1907.   There was no work there, so I went over to Kelowna … until February 1908, when I went back to Lethbridge.  While there, there came a terrible wind.  It made the gravel rattle on the windows like hail….

I went to Lacombe and on to Alix where I knew a man who helped me acquire a homestead, which another man had given up.  S.W. 6-40-23 West of the 4th meridian was the number and there was a small log cabin there, for which I paid a reasonable amount.  The main trail went through my quarter, which was six miles from Alix.

Carpenters were working for $1.00 per day.  I began to wonder how I was going to make a living. There were no roads and no schools.  However, I secured a tender for building a school and with the money I bought a team of horses and I was away.  The people around were a fine type.  They were honest and everyone helped each other….

Well, the years went by, about ten, and I was sick and tired of batching, so I met a girl. We seemed to be getting along pretty good, so we got married.  She was of Irish descent and had a wealth of beautiful bronze red hair.  We had five boys and two girls.  One boy, a twin, died at four years old. At present all these children are scattered from Ontario to Honolulu….

Comment by A.N.

Mr. Waterman was very shy about his accomplishments, he acquired a very large herd of cattle and several quarters of land.  The school he built was the Stanton school….

George and Myrtle Wilson

In 1930s Depression, Cattle, Pioneer Farming, Railway, School Teachers, Veterinary Medicine on October 1, 2020 at 11:11 AM

From “George Wilson – by B. Parlby”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

George Wilson grew up in Victoria, B.C., where his parents and their family lived.  He came to the Alix district in the early Twenties, and married Myrtle Moore who had come north from the U.S.A.

The Wilsons lived on Old Dartmoor Ranch north of Alix for some years.  When the Walter Parlbys moved closer to town George undertook to buy a portion of the ranch containing the house.  He and his wife kept and milked dairy cows.  In addition, he raised a considerable herd of Suffolk sheep.  Unfortunately the depression of 1929 and the Thirties made it too difficult to make the payments.  The Wilsons gave up farming and moved to Mirror where George worked over twenty years for the C.N.R.

As a young man George Wilson worked with a veterinarian in Victoria and learned skills in doctoring animals which he used all the rest of his life.  Whether on the farm or in Mirror he was always greatly in demand to assist his neighbours in the care of their animals.  Floating or pulling horses’ teeth, treating a horse for colic, a cow for bloat, or helping a prize dog to give birth to pups, each to him was a job worth doing. … Kindly, generous, hardworking and humourous, George was a general favourite with his neighbours, especially on the threshing gangs when he and Len Siddons would make uproarious fun.

Myrtle Wilson worked hard in her role of farm wife, cooking, baking scrumptious pies, milking cows at chore time, as well as caring for their two children, Jean and Donald (Bud). After they moved to Mirror, she had time to garden, for she loved flowers….

Donald works [1974]] on the C.N.R.  He married Dorothy Heuman of Mirror and they have three sons, David…Douglas…and Dan.   Dorothy, their mother, is teacher librarian at Mirror School.