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Page Index of Forest to Field Volume One
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In 1928, Gotfrid and his crew, which included son Herbert and brother-in-law David Carlson, built the first cottage on the North Shore of Clear Lake, a log structure which belonged to D.O. McDonald of Dauphin. Other cottages to his credit were built for Bert Scrace of Dauphin, B.J. Hales of Brandon and Frank Clement of Russell, to name a few. His crew was instrumental in the construction of many of the large log buildings evident in the park today, including the golf clubhouse, the superintendent's home, the present day museum, the old administration building, and the fire hall. Gotfrid was asked to display his talents in log construction at the Brandon Exhibition. As a teenager, Herbert became known as "Little Grey Owl" because of his keen interest in the wildlife of the area. A film produced by the National Film Board of his work in raising animals can be seen today. In later years Herbert was very active in the Wasagaming Chamber of Commerce when he operated Wasagaming Lodge.
Mr. Smart, the superintendent of the Park recognized Gotfrid's qualities in meeting people and suggested he apply for a permit for a hotel or tourist lodge. As he was busy himself on log construction of park buildings he hired George Bergman and Axel Nelson to do most of the construction on Wasagaming Lodge. At this time Herbert, working for John Anderson, built the doors and interior fixtures of the log theatre. The Lodge was completed in time for the official opening of the park in July, 1933. With his son-in-law, Ernest Gusdal, the Johnson Cabins were gradually added to the enterprise. A large central building containing living quarters and other services necessary to run the operation became their home until retirement to a new home in Erickson. Usually the winter months were spent with Ernest and Lillian and family in Erickson in the intervening years.
In Wasagaming, Gotfrid helped organize the first Chamber of Commerce, served on the board and also as a provincial director. He was a member of the Erickson Chamber as well. He also supported the skating and curling rink projects. Gotfrid was active in the Bethlehem Lutheran Church on a local level and in the Canadian district of the Augustana Synod. This gave him and Olga the opportunity to travel in both Canada and the U.S.A. to attend conventions.
Gotfrid and Olga spent their last years in the Hillcrest Home in Brandon. He passed away in 1973, and Olga in 1979. Their graves are in the Bethel Cemetery in Danvers.
JOHNSON, ANDREW AND SELMA
by Selma Skoglund
Andrew, was born on September 11, 1865. He came to Canada in 1894 from Kalmar, Sweden. He is the son of Johnas and Ingrid Larson. His sisters Hilda and Christine came to Canada first; they found employment at Brandon Mental Hospital and earned enough money to bring Andrew to Canada. Other brothers and sisters settled in Canada and Minnesota and some remained in Sweden. Andrew worked at various jobs and in 1900 he married Selma Oman, who had also emigrated from Sweden with her parents, Lars and Emma Oman.
They homesteaded on S.E. 18-17-17W. He received title in 1909. Andrew was best known for his carefree jolly personality while Selma was a serious conscientious person, with a talent for hand work. Selma died in August, 1908, at the age of 32 years. Andrew died in July, 1946.
Joe and Jennie Johnson.
People seldom get dizzy from doing good turns.