Monday, 17 December 2018

Olive Parks, my Mom, she was about 3 or 4 in this photo. It would have been taken at my Grandparents farm south of Esther in the Hudson Heights district. Mom started school at Rush Centre and continued on to Hudson Heights for High School. As the story goes, she met my Dad at a dance at St. Julien School, they hit it off and got married in 1946 and moved to the Old Short Farm southeast of Esther 5 miles. As the years went by they acquired more land and the family farm began, I and my three siblings were raised and grew up on that farm. Mom was born in Loverna Sk, April 27, 1924, even tho Esther was our home town, Loverna roots ran deep in the family and we always considered Loverna as our other hometown. Mom was very active in the community and instrumental in the writing of the Sagebrush and Sifting Sands History Book that was published for the 1991 Esther homecoming. it was a grand book with 1200 pages and she was always proud of the communities accomplishment. Mom passed in November 1996, it was a sad day for us all but with all of the wonderful memories we have of her, she lives on in our daily lives today. Merry Christmas to all of my family and friends, have a happy and safe Christmas.

Thursday, 29 November 2018

I have posted this a few years ago, however thank you to Patti Evaskevich, we now have a photo with names of people on the platform. Thank you Patti for this photo.
In 1911, the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway surveyed the route of their branch line from Bigger, Sk to Hemaruka, Ab. In 1912 the grade for the railroad was constructed to Loverna and the following summer the steel arrived. Along with the railroad arriving in the area, the town of Loverna sprang up, with restaurants, a Chinese laundry, a poolroom, and a lumber yard.
It was a grand celebration the day the steel was completed to Loverna, people were invited to drive some of the Last Spikes, as Loverna was the last station in Saskatchewan. That night, homesteaders from near and far gathered in the pool hall, they danced and celebrated. The line was completed to Hemaruka, Alberta in 1924.

Tuesday, 27 November 2018

The Pratt family was always a big part of my life growing up in the Esther community. Jim was one of the early settlers in the community, after he and Beatrice married, they had three sons. Bruce and his wife Ann on the left, George and his wife Phyllis in the middle back, George worked for my Dad in his younger years and taught me how to drive at a very young age. You could always count on George to come and help with anything you needed help with. He was a magician with a pair of pliers and a table knife, able to repair anything. Roy and Roxie on the right, always family friends, Roy and I worked together, played ball together, hunted together and curled together for many years. I do remember some of the all night sessions with our friends making sausage at Roy and Roxies house. Jim and Beatrice seated in the center were the matriarchs of this family, Beatrice often babysat my siblings and I when Mom and Dad were off curling. Beatrice made a sauve called Pratt's Sauve, and I am sure it would cure anything that ailed you. Phyllis and Roy and Roxie still live in the Esther community and are active in the happenings about the community.

Monday, 26 November 2018

Welcome back all, after some time I have rejuvenated my blogging and hopefully everyone will enjoy what I have to offer. The photo here, is the house my Great Grandparents built in the 1800's near Candiac Saskatchewan, I had the opportunity to travel there and photograph it a week or so ago. My Grandmother Edith Hewines was born in this house in 1898, she lived there until it she went on to further her education and become a teacher. My Granddad came from London England to Canada and arrived in Glenavon Sk to work for a local farmer. He wanted to file for a homestead so he travelled to Alberta, landed in Sibbald on the train and heard there were homesteads available north towards Esther. He walked several miles and found a 1/4 section that he liked and filed for homestead there. A few years later he and Grandma were married and moved to the homestead a few miles south of Esther and that is where my part of life began. My Mom was born in Loverna, Sk. and later on met my Dad at one of the local dances and the rest is history for another blog.

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Another Esther Pioneer.
Ed Affleck was one of the early pioneers in the Esther Community, he came to the area in 1913 and set up his farming operation southwest of Esther. Ed, like so many other pioneers, played the violin and Marge, Leonard Westerlund and Ed played for many of the local dances. Ed met Mildred Purcell, on Dec.29 1938 they were married in Camrose. All the years they lived on the farm, they never had power in the house, only propane lights, propane fridge and propane stove. Ed was one of the true pioneers of the West. Pictured above is Mrs. Purcell, Mildred’s mother, holding her great-grandson, Delbert Pratt. The other is a photo of Ed cutting Frank Cartwrights hair.

Delbert now ranches on the Esther flat, raising a fine herd of cattle and even doing a bit of travelling with his lovely wife Sheila.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Esther, Alberta Artifacts.
Many Artifacts have been in the Esther, Alberta area over the years. First Nations people traveling through the area left behind a puzzle which has been a challenge to Archeologists for many years. One Artifact that was left behind is located North West of Esther a few miles, it is a human effigy consisting of stones placed upon the ground in the shape of a stickman, it is approximately 8 ft in length. Nearby there are also clearly defined tent rings which are also made of rocks. These vary in sizes, but are generally from two to seven meters in diameter, they were used to hold down the edges of the hides which made up the teepees.

Monday, 25 September 2017

From 1925 until 1963, the train came through Esther three days a week with freight, mail and grain cars. There never was a station or a station master in Esther. This little building served as the storage shed and a small waiting room. Sometime after 1963, groceries and freight were no longer hauled by train and this little building was purchased by Bruce Pratt and moved to his farmyard where it remains today. It is a small piece of the community history that has been preserved and is still standing straight and proud.

Olive Parks, my Mom, she was about 3 or 4 in this photo. It would have been taken at my Grandparents farm south of Esther in the Hudson He...