Snow Rollers

I was interested in the mention of snow rollers in this account of a weird winter storm. In the late 1970s there was a storm like this here. The storm itself was a bit frightening, with the very high winds and drastic change in temperature and the power was out for several hours. I remember going out the next day and seeing all the snowballs rolled up in the yard around town. (The picture is of the Anderson house in Wembley, which was an airport house, and now belongs to the Wembley Arts, Culture and History Society).

Written and researched by Kathryn Auger

A Visit to the Pattersons & Stickneys of Hythe

The wandering newspaper editor J.B. Yule visited the Hythe area in 1943.  He noted some impressive buildings on the Patterson Bros. Stock Farm, and a modern home on the Stickney farm.  A visit to Balderston’s down the road followed, where he was shown the strange sight of a goose which roosted on a pig at night.

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

*Note – clicking on the news clipping will open the clipping in a format that can be zoomed in for easier reading

The Herald-Tribune ~ April 8, 1943

The First Chinese Woman in Grande Prairie

Richmond Avenue, ca. 1945

When I first saw this article, I read it because I remember Mrs. Wong well.  I was very surprised that she was the first Chinese woman to come to Grande Prairie.  We shopped at the Grande Prairie Department Store, owned by Arthur Wong, and I remember her always so neatly dressed, usually wearing a sweater set, and with tightly curled hair, which I assume was a perm.  She worked on the dry goods side of the store, and as I recall, she never learned very much English.

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

The Herald-Tribune ~ January 27, 1949


A Magnificently Modern Store

The opening of Bird’s new store in 1941 seemed to be a pretty big occasion.  There had been a special edition of the Herald Tribune the week before, and the Mayor officially opened the store, with several speakers, including the local MLA.  The opening was broadcast on radio CFGP.  After reading some of the articles in the previous newspaper, I am wondering if this was the first “self-serve” grocery store in town.  The articles mentioned the special shelving, the fluorescent lighting, and describe it as having a “most citified layout.”

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

Grande Prairie Herald-Tribune ~ January 23, 1941

Dear John…

Wayne Fell and Marlene Frantzen, skating champions of the Peace River Figure Skating Champions, 1953, pose for the camera.

I have read this several times and I’m still not sure if it’s on the up and up, but it’s a bit of fun nevertheless!

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

Grande Prairie Herald ~ January 30, 1923

Trading Squirrel Skins for News

This very well written letter was sent to the newspaper, along with a bundle of squirrel skins for the Editor to sell to pay for a subscription.  That’s pretty unusual, but this woman seems to live in a very remote area and may be short of ready cash.  She may not have a lot of people to talk with either, and her very chatty letter comments on recent news stories and the new Social Credit government in Alberta.  The “no relation to Richard” at the end is significant because of her last name.  That name was in the news, as Richard Hauptman, convicted in the Lindbergh kidnapping and murder, was slated to be executed in April.

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

Grande Prairie Herald ~ January 17, 1936

Grande Prairie Herald ~ January 17, 1936

A Headline We’re Not Likely to See Again

The newspaper called it a “unique condition in civic finances” and claimed that “probably” no other municipality in Western Canada was in such a position.  However, the population was just over 1000, and municipal services of any kind were pretty limited.

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

Grande Prairie Herald ~ January 13, 1920

Keeping the Roads Clear

Another bright idea for farmers from the city folks in Edmonton!  Farmers using wider sleighs in the winter would be a cost effective way to keep roads open, according to the Edmonton Good Roads Association, reducing the heavy burden of taxes to pay for drags and snowplows.  The Association planned to petition the government to enact regulations to ensure the use of wide bench sleighs as a means of keeping winter roads open.

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

Grande Prairie Herald ~ January 26, 1925

A Trapped Trapper

When a large bear took over his cabin, Jim Fells of Bezanson retreated to the attic, where he was trapped until the next day. His rescuers didn’t believe there was a big bear in the cabin which wouldn’t leave, so Jim shot at the bear with his .22. When the bear attempted to leave the cabin through a window, the visitors believed him!

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger
The Herald Tribune – Jan 31, 1946

Photo description – Cabin in Winter, [1915]
A cabin in winter showing icicles along the roof edge.
Location: 0344.02.07

A Beaverlodge Soldier’s Christmas Party

David, Mary Jean, and Jim Carlisle decorate their Christmas tree, 1939

For the last post of this year, I found this feel-good story which shows why Canadian soldiers still hold a place in the hearts of the Dutch people.  Thanks everyone for your interest in the blog this year, and I look forward to continuing it in 2017.

Captain Don Little of Beaverlodge organized a party for seventy-five Dutch children with the help of his unit.  The men even sewed little cloth bags for the treats, which were contributed from their own Christmas parcels.  Sinterklaas and Black Pete attended the party, which was the first for the children in several years.  In appreciation, the soldiers were presented with a little dog named Dutchy as a mascot for their unit.

Researched & written by Kathryn Auger

The Herald-Tribune ~ January 4, 1945