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Archive for the ‘School’ Category

SCHOOL GARDENS

In Alix, Alberta, Gardens, Organizations, Pioneer Farming, School, U.F.W.A. on April 18, 2021 at 5:21 PM

“Children’s Gardens- By Alice Nielsen”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix-Clive Historical Club, 1974

Before 4H groups were formed in Alix, I thought of having small gardens for children.  Since I belonged to the local U.F.W.A., I presented my idea to the Ladies and they went along with it whole heartedly.  So in the spring of 1947 we bought packages of seeds and portioned them out in small envelopes. That first year the age limit was 14 years and under but the next year it was lowered to 12 years and under and somewhere along the way it was changed to under 12 years.

The D.A. gave us advice but now [1973] 26 years later plans are being made for improvements in the general set-up.  Last year we gave extra plaques to winners as 25th Anniversary mementos.

The first year the gardens were divided into town and country as the country gardens had so many hazards and no water sprinklers, as the town gardens were so much better.  Some of the country hazards were pigs, gophers, and even a gosling. Of later years the gardens have reversed and the country gardens are of far better quality.

The winners of the first gardens were – town – 1st Ross Lyle, 2nd Hugh Thorp, 3rd Connie Lyle. Country – 1st Larry Primus, 2nd Elaine Primus, 3rd Walter Hopkins. There were 47 children that took seeds, the youngest was Alder Nielsen.  True, he did get weeds and plants mixed up much to his older brother Eric’s disgust.

Seeds have been distributed to as many as 90 children, then in the fall teams of women and children drove around eliminating the poorest gardens so the judges had less to do. After a few years it was decided to have a Children’s own Show with a tea, bake sale, and a raffle to help with expenses, the last week of August. These made them pretty well self supporting. The raffle has been a stuffed toy that the Lacombe Globe gave away with subscriptions, and Mrs. Rouse has kindly gotten the necessary subscriptions.  With the higher cost of seed, it has been harder.  There has always been a set of rules with cultivation given 25 points so an industrious youngster can win more points even if one of its plants didn’t grow.  However, this hasn’t stopped ambitious little folks, all through the times, from going home and planting their seeds period. No one knows just where.

All through the years since 1950, trophy cups have been given to the aggregate winners.  Also shields with the winner’s name for each year are kept for display. In 1964, Alberta Nurseries and Seeds presented the F.W.U.A. with a marble-based, silver rose bowl with nine shields to be used each year.  The winner keeps it for a year and gets the privilege to polish the bowl before returning it. 

Now daughters and sons of mothers and fathers that had gardens earlier have won many prizes in these later years.

[Some of these prizes can be seen at the Alix Wagon Wheel Museum.]

John and Muriel Hennel

In Alix Arena, Alix, Alberta, Business, Dairy Pool, Farming, Pioneer Farming, Pioneer tools & Machinery, School, Settlers, Sports News on April 2, 2021 at 5:52 PM

From “John Christian Hennel – by Muriel Hennel and B. Parlby”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

John Christian Hennel was born on April 23, 1909 of Esthonian parents whose country was at that time under the control of Russia.  His father, William, and his mother, Ida Anete, and their seven children emigrated from the city of Tver to Canada and settled to the south of Stettler.  John, the youngest of the family, was only one month old.

After their arrival in Alberta, three more children were added to the family before tragedy struck in 1915 when William died suddenly…. Ida faced the challenge of bringing up all ten [children] as a close-knit family as well as operating the family farm very successfully.  With her help, all her sons were gradually established on farms of their own.

John was educated at Descendo School near his family home….

While living and working on his mother’s farm, John hauled cream to the Central Alberta Dairy Pool at Alix, then under the management of Mr. Nels Larson.

On December 21st of 1935, John married Muriel Knight whose parents were among the Alix District’s early settlers.  In 1936, the Hennels built their first little house in Alix….

About this time the C.A.D.P. purchased a fleet of trucks to collect cream…. John was now put in charge of servicing the entire fleet and operated the shop to the north of the plant.

When the trucks were later sold, John bought the Creamery equipment and went into his machine shop business on his own.  On the first day of December 1945, John moved into his newly built Hiway Machine Shop which the Hennels have operated ever since. [1974]  Muriel has always been his right hand assistant, keeping the books and looking after repair parts.  Muriel was also a car saleslady for Adamson Motors for two years and was top saleslady for her district.

Gradually John obtained first class papers in mechanics and welding so in demand in a country area.  Oil field welding is his specialty.

The Hennel’s daughter, Maxine, was born on July 18th, 1943 and obtained her public and high school education in the Alix Schools.  Later she took a business course in the Key Secretarial School at Red Deer.  Maxine’s skating talent in the carnivals in the Alix Arena will be long remembered.  In 1964 Maxine married Eugene Winchester of Red Deer.

They have three children, a boy, Gerry, Gay and Gid.

Alix Residents of the Past

In Alix, Alberta, Business, Infrastructure, Organizations, Railway, School, Settlers, Stettler, World War II on March 26, 2021 at 12:23 PM

From “People of Alix as suggested by Gordon and Flora Wilton”

Gleanings from Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1981

Blairs had the Hotel during and before 1916.  They were very good friends of the Patricks.

Bogus, Frosty …was a barber in Alix in the 1930’s.  After the barber shop burned down, the family moved to Stettler.  They now live in Red Deer. [1974]

Boyston was a barber who was very fond of wrestling.  He wrestled with Morris Schnepf and others out at the Alix Fair Grounds.  He was also the drummer in Frank Brooker’s band.

Brookhart, Mrs.: lived in thehouse where the Mortimers lived later.  She kept many boarders.  Mrs. Brookhart was admired for her courage as she did her work from a wheelchair having had one leg amputated. She was most wonderful cheery person and raised her family of boys by herself.  Cliff Brookhart served in the Armed Forces in world War II.  Later the Brookharts moved to Stettler.

Chinn: Chinn and Fisher operated the garage which later became W.E. Jennings’. The two families were related.  A great tragedy occurred when Mrs. Chinn tried to clean clothes with gasoline.  The vapour caught fire and Mrs. Chinn was burned to death….

Cole: The Cole family lived on a place with a little house close to Highway 12 near Alix.  The family consisted of the parents and four children: Henry, Ida, Patricia… and Wesley; all of the children attended school in Alix.  Henry Cole worked for “Caterpillar” for many years….

Collins: Mr. and Mrs. John Collins lived in the C.P.R. Railway Station as John Collins was the station agent for Alix in the 1930’s.  They were active in community affairs, especially curling. Two children, Jack and Illene, attended school in Alix.  Jack joined the Navy during World War II….

Ditto, Ella nee Toepfer was for some time telephone operator in Alix.  She married Andrew Ditto some years after his first wife died and lived with him on the Ditto place just north of town.  They retire to Kelowna after the farm was sold to John Henry Ditto.

Ferguson, Mr.: owned the Drug Store in the 1920’s.  He was also agent for Watkins Products.  Willie Ferguson, the son, attended the school in Alix.

Ferguson: Another family of this name lived in North Alix during the 1920’s.  Carmen married Mrs. DeZutter’s daughter.

Cuthbert and Margaret (McRoberts) Wolferstan

In Alix Creamery, Alix, Alberta, Churches, Dairy Pool, Famous 5 Persons Case, Farming, Hickling, Lamerton, Mirror AB, Organizations, Pioneer Medical Health, Political Parties, Ripley, School, School Trustees, Settlers, Trails, U.F.A., Wheat Pool on March 8, 2021 at 1:53 AM

From “Cuthbert Wolferstan – by Peggy Wolferstan Purkis”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

Cuthbert Wolferstan was born in Plymouth, Devon, England, where he was educated and grew up.  His father was a solicitor (barrister) and had as one of his clients the Rev. John Hall Parlby … whose two sons Walter and Edward had settled earlier in the Buffalo Country.   It was natural then that Cuthbert (Bert) should come out to Canada with a nephew of the Parlbys, Jack Arbuthnott, and that they both should make their first Canadian homes at Dartmoor and Long Valley Ranches.

After working for Edward Parlby some little time, Bert Wolferstan went to work for … Edwin Goater who had homesteaded west of the present site of Mirror.

In 1905 he filed on his own homestead six miles north of [Alix.]

Having proved up on the homestead, he sold his livestock and went to work for a time in and around Edmonton.  It was just then that the University of Alberta was being started.  Bert … was called upon with his team to turn the first sod.  This was done the evening before the official beginning.  The site was carefully ploughed, then the sod was rolled back in place as though undisturbed.  The next day, with Premier Rutherford driving the team and the University President Dr. H.M. Tory at the handles of the walking plough, the first furrow turned over without a hitch.

Bert’s next adventure was an exploratory trip into the country north of Edmonton … and he returned to the homestead.  In December of 1910 he married Margaret McRoberts, who had come from Belfast, Northern Ireland, and was nursing in Edmonton….

It was during these early years that Bert Wolferstan and John Bailey with their teams opened up a wagon trail which wound through the hills to the little hamlet of Alix.

Between the years of 1912 and … 1916 three children were born…: Margaret, or Peggy – now [1974] Mrs. Ronald Purkis- lives on the homestead; Nancy – Mrs. Joe Drushka of Alix; and a son Thomas who now lives in Mirror.

In 1916 Bert Wolferstan became the proud owner of a Model T Ford.  Before he had time to become a practical driver, he took his young family for a little ride. The car was going well but he wanted to stop it and was not sure just how to accomplish this. His solution was to drive it into the soft butt of a haystack.  The car stopped.

Mrs. Wolferstan, as a trained nurse, was often called upon to help in emergencies. She brought many of the children of pioneers into the world.  She nursed with Dr. A.E. Chown.  Dr. McLellan was a very good doctor….

The Wolferstans were always very active community people and members of the Anglican Church. Bert was vestryman and warden, first at St. Monica’s Lamerton (later Mirror), and in his later years at St. Pancras, Alix…. Bert was one of the prime movers in the building of the Hickling School…. later he became a trustee and then Secretary-Treasurer of the Alix Board.

Bert Wolferstan was active in the Farm Movement… and one of the first members of the United Farmers of Alberta…. Working with George Bell, a farmer of the Ripley District… he scoured the country for contract signers for the Alberta Wheat Pool…. With Fred MacDonald and Jack May he spear-headed a drive to organize the Buffalo Lake Livestock Co-operative.

When the United Farmers of Alberta entered politics he became Secretary of the Constituency Association, and was returning officer during the Honorable Irene Parlby’s campaigns. An original member of the Central Alberta Dairy Pool he served on that Board as delegate, and then as Chairman.

Vivian (Murdoch) Clarke

In 1930s Depression, Churches, Clive AB, Entertainment, Fairs, Farming, Organizations, Pioneer tools & Machinery, Railway, School, School Teachers on February 11, 2021 at 11:01 AM

From “My Memories of Clive – by Vivian (Murdoch) Clarke”

Gleanings After Pioneers and Progress Alix-Clive Historical Club, 1981

Who could forget the Village of Clive and the people who lived there during the Nineteen Thirties?  The events that took place at the Community Hall, the School Fair, the movies, plays, dances, and the Christmas Concerts?  The skating, the carnival, and hockey in the winter at the rink?  Ditzler’s ingenious toboggan on runners that was pulled behind the car.  The opening of the baseball season every 24th of May, with the parade and the Maypole dance.  The Strawberry Socials, the Swedish Picnics, the Chicken Suppers, the Box Socials, when the ladies’ decorated lunch boxes went to the highest bidder.

Septembers, with Arbor Day cleanup and tree planning ceremony at the school. George Vanderzyl, our Principal from the year I started school until the year I graduated.  Vic McCormack, jumping on his bike at recess, and racing to his Dad’s barber shop for the score during the World Series.  The school picnics at “the spring” on Grose’s Hill.

Mrs. Brereton’s Mission Band, Mrs. Allison and the United Church Sunday School, with its small church replica to receive our birthday pennies; the Baptist Church’s summer Bible School, and their annual Christmas Concert.

The trains, with their steam engines, that flattened small objects we placed on the tracks; and the dray that was always waiting at the station for trains to arrive; in winter; hitching our small sleighs behind the dray or  the farmers’ sleighs that were hauling grain to the elevators.

Watching Mr. Shore at work in his blacksmith shop; the Minstrel Shows, piano recitals, and chivarees.  The list is endless…. 

I can’t think of anywhere I would rather have gone to school or spent my childhood.

Fred and Annie Stalia Fisher

In Clive AB, Enterprise School, Farming, Infrastructure, Lakeside District, Pioneer Farming, Pioneer tools & Machinery, Railway, School, Settlers on February 1, 2021 at 9:58 AM

From “Mr. and Mrs. Fred B. Fisher”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

Mr. and Mrs. Fred B. Fisher came from Kearney, Nebraska to Lacombe, Alberta and on March 1st, 1900, [they] and five daughters moved out 7 ½ miles south-east of Lacombe to the Lakeside district.  The family lived on a quarter section of land owned at that time by Mr. Darling.

Mr. Fisher purchased a team of horses, a walking plough and two sections of harrows. No one in this area owned a seed drill.  Mr. Fisher sowed his feed by broadcasting.  In his spare time Dad walked to his homestead in the Clive area and built a log house and barn on NW-20-40-24-4.

In 1903 we moved to the homestead 1 mile south-east of Clive.  The land was cleared by cutting huge trees and roots with an axe.

Directly across the trail was… the land [where] the first school was erected by Dad and some of the neighbors.  All of the labor was volunteered with no wages for anyone.

The name of this first school in the area was “Enterprise” No.701….

During this time several of the men, Dad included, prepared the site for the village of “Valley City” which was later named Clive – with a team of horses and a bob-sleigh.

Dad hauled lumber, groceries, etc. from Lacombe to Lamerton, Erskine and Alix as there were no railroads yet….

Dad, Mother and we children lived in the log house until 1918, when we moved to the Lakeside district.  Dad bought a half-section of land from Mr. Mole, who had built a lovely brick house here, in 1915.

There were quantities of delicious wild fruits, including saskatoons, chokecherries, raspberries, strawberries….

My mother’s name was Annie Stalia Fisher and our family consisted of 11 girls and I boy. They were Daisy, Myrtle, Ida (myself), Mildred, Lorena, Minnie, Rosie, Fred Jr., Josephine, Violet, Annie and Ruby….

Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Johnson and their daughter Sarah, later she married Jim Grose; Mr. and Mrs. Fred Fisher and five daughters; Mrs. Ernie Short, Clem, Bill, Jennie and Grace, a baby in her mother’s arms; Mrs. Aden Joslin and her daughter rode on the same train coach from the States until we all landed in Lacombe.  Gussie, their daughter, teaching school in Minnesota, followed them here when summer holidays took place, later marrying Jim Tees.

Clive Community Hall

In Clive AB, Coal & wood heating, Entertainment, Infrastructure, Organizations, School, Settlers on January 24, 2021 at 10:28 AM

From “The Clive Community Hall”

Pioneers and Progress, Alix Clive Historical Club, 1974

As the population of the Village of Clive and of the surrounding area was increasing, the need was felt for a building to hold large meetings, or in those early days funerals… J.T. Reynolds, F. E. Allison and R.N. Longstreet were then council members and at their council meeting of July 30, 1928 a motion was passed to sell lots one, two, three and four in Block 22, plan XLVII to the newly formed Clive Community Hall Company Limited for the sum of one dollar.

The new company then proceeded to sell shares to finance the building they wished to construct.

E.L. Reynolds was president of this new company and H. B. Scott secretary.  They sold 114 shares.

The next year the Hall was built and open for many activities, dances, suppers, concerts and local talent plays when the seating of the hall was taxed to capacity.  It was a great entertainment centre but rental prices were low and power and fuel costly, so financially they were in the red and owed the bank approximately 3000.00 dollars.  In November 1943 a shareholders’ meeting was called…. <r. Eb Wagner and Mrs. Somervillle seconded a motion that we try to borrow the money in small amounts to pay the bank and try to pay off our debts within the next three years.  This motion carried by a large majority and a new board was set up with Mrs. W.H. Somerville as president.  The Clive council gave a donation as did the Clive School Board.  They felt indebted to the hall for its use for school fairs and Christmas concerts.  Several amounts of one to four hundred dollars were loaned.  Now the work began, suppers, sports days, plays and other entertainments were held.  All the people in the district were wonderful.  They donated time and food and in less than three years the money was paid back with interest.

Now many of the shareholders had passed on or moved away, so it was difficult to get a quorum for a shareholders’ meeting.  All the shareholders left were notified by registered mail of a meeting to be held on March 15, 1952.  There was a very good turnout at this meeting and a motion was passed that a Clive Community Hall Association be formed with a board of six members elected at the annual meeting.  These members were to appoint a secretary-treasurer who would also be a member of the board.  This board was to administer the current business and welfare of the hall.

The new board members elected were E.L. Reynolds, Eb Wagner, V.G. Duffy, M. Oro and W. Morton.  K. Nelson was the new secretary….

from “Rude-Rottenfusser by Mrs. Jenny Rottenfusser” part 2

In Alix Creamery, Alix, Alberta, Boy Scouts, Carroll, Cattle, Farming, Hairdressers, Horses, Organizations, Railway, School, Settlers, World War !! on December 1, 2020 at 8:38 AM

Pioneers and Progress, Alix-Clive Historical Club, 1974

Albert Rottenfusser bought the W1/2-26-39-22-W4 in the spring of 1940.  This was Hudson’s Bay land which had been farmed by Jim Carroll. On May 4th Albert and his brother John came from Stettler bringing horses and machinery with which to farm.  As there were no buildings on the place they hauled out a granary in which to live.

During the summer John and Albert bought a cottage at Buffalo Lake which consisted of three rooms and a screened-in veranda.  It was not lined inside so was terribly cold in the winter; the tea kettle would freeze on the stove. Ten head of horses were moved to move the building until they came to the sand hill between Ira Mann’s and home.  To get up the hill it took fourteen horses, Tony De Wald’s tractor, blocks and tackle.  A brother-in-law, Vernon Bignell, also helped.

Mr. and Mrs. John Rottenfusser Sr. had homesteaded in the Botha district, after coming from the state of Washington.  Mrs. Rottenfusser, and her eldest daughter, Mary, then a baby, were on the first passenger train that ran from Lacombe to Stettler in the fall of 1905.  In December 1940 they moved to the Alix district, buying the Peterman farm in the Ripley district….

Vernon and Frances Bignell came to the old Abe Carroll homestead west of Lee and Carl Carroll’s in 1945….

During the war years Albert served in the R.C.A.F.  His brother John and his wife, Alice, lived on the farm.  In 1944 the taxes for the north quarter were $39.09 and for the south quarter $$41.16; in 1973 the taxes on the same were $136.80 and $130.72.  In March 1947 Paul Winters drilled a well for Albert.  It was 210 feet deep, total price $329.75….     Albert and I were married in Lacombe….

Brian was born September 4, 1947, and Wanda on July 4, 1949.  When Wanda was a baby, we got a new roof and remodelled the house, turning the veranda into a kitchen and dining room.

We bought Mrs. Sibert’s land, NW1/4 27-39-22 through the V.L.A. in 1952. We also got our first tractora Model D Case….

Carroll School closed in June 1953.  In September, when Brian started school, the children were bussed into Alix.  Ned Barritt was our bus driver, a job he held for sixteen years.  The Carroll Community Club bought the school as a community center….

We had Aberdeen Angus range cows, but Holstein milk cows, and shipped cream to Alix Creamery.  It was much easier after we got electricity and a milking machine.

Albert took an active interest in the Canadian Order of Foresters and was Leader of Boy Scouts until his illness and passing in 1966.

Some years the berries were in abundance.  It would be like a picnic, with neighbour ladies coming to pick and having coffee….

Brian is working for his Masters in Geology at the time of this writing [1974] …. Wanda and I stayed on the farm  until she graduated from grade 12.  In 1967 we moved to Calgary when she entered university….

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….

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….