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Page Index of Forest to Field Volume One
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garage business, known as Chris' Garage, and rented the building from Oliver Johnson. He later purchased a building from Hartvig Hanson and built an addition to it.
In 1945, Chris took ill and was hospitalized at Ninette Sanitarium for a year. In 1947, the garage was rented out and was destroyed by fire. Again, upon his return, he rented a building until his new garage was built. For the gala opening a dance was held, with the proceeds going to the Erickson and District Memorial Arena. Chris also rented the Esso service station at Clear Lake for several summers. In 1959, Chris and Martina sold the garage, moved to Brandon, where he operated a service station, and again returned to Erickson in 1963.
Over the years, Chris served on the local School Board and was a member of the Erickson Lions' Club. They were active in getting the first Skating Arena built.
Chris passed away on October 14, 1980, at Erickson.
Martina resided in the home they had built before moving to Brandon, and in September, 1983, she moved to the Parkland Home, Erickson.
Chris and Martina had two children, Gordon and Janet.
Gordon Peder was born on February 21, 1936, in Erickson, where he received his education. He worked for his father, Chris, and later managed the Esso Service at Clear Lake. On September 15, 1956, Gordon married Allyn Moncur of Boissevain, Man. They resided at Erickson and later at Onanole before moving to Calgary, where he worked for Gulf Oil. He was later transferred to Medicine Hat, Alta., Fort St. John, B.C., and Weyburn, Sask. Gordon, Allyn and family then moved to Medicine Hat, Alta., where Gordon is presently in a Taxi business.
Gordon and Allyn had three children. Laurie, married, and has three children: Kevin, married, and has two children; and Darren.
Janet Marie was born on September 12, 1940, at the Minnedosa Hospital. She received her schooling at Erickson and was a member of the 4H Sewing Club. Janet married Irving Vince on January 4, 1958. (refer to Townley, Walter and Edith).
Gordon Skovmose Family. Back Row, Left to Right: Darren, Kevin, Gordon. Front Row: Laurie holding Nathan Rubin, Lynn holding Angela, Allyne, Hattie Moncur holding Shaylene Rubin.
SLOBODIAN, MIKE AND ANN
by Peter and Mamie Slobodian
Mike Slobodian was born on November 15, 1877, in Alhowitz, Austria, and came to Canada with his parents Gabriel and Wasylina Slobodian, brother Peter and five sisters in the spring of 1901. They boarded a ship at Hamburg, Germany, and attempted to carry nine year old Peter in order that passage would not have to be paid for him. This was necessary for the family only had enough money for the passage payment for six children. They were noticed by the Captain, who stated one child had to stay behind. The Captain discovered Mike could speak German, a language he learned while serving three years in the Austrian army. Due to his language skill, Mike was asked to act as interpreter during the voyage and in return, his brother would be allowed free passage. During the long sea voyage, the ship ran into several storms and many passengers became sick.
After arriving in Canada, the family travelled by rail to Neepawa where Mr. Mike Baraniuk Sr. journeyed by team to pick up the new arrivals. As there were too many individuals for the wagon to carry, he transported the luggage and children while the adults walked twenty-four miles to Mountain Road. The Slobodian family stayed at the home of Mr. Matt Baraniuk and other settlers who had arrived a year earlier.
The family obtained an eighty acre homestead on the S.E. 7-17-16W and quickly constructed a log shanty from the logs that were plentiful on their land. A clearing was made for a garden and a little grain. For several years Mike went to work for farmers in the Franklin area clearing land for 50 cents a day. In the winter he cut and hauled wood to Neepawa by oxen for $1.50 a load. With this money, only staple items as flour, sugar, salt and matches were purchased. He often carried flour from Neepawa to the homestead on foot during the early years.
In 1904, land was selling for $1.00 an acre and Mike purchased 80 acres of the S.W. 5-17-16W where he built a log shanty. On February 5, 1905, he married Ann Kostenchuk.
On September 12, 1910, Mike paid $10.00 and applied for a homestead patent on S.W. 2-18-17W in the Kerr's Lake area of the Rural Municipality of Clanwilliam. He immediately went to work constructing log buildings and on June 18, 1914, he received his homestead title. The ladies did the plastering on the log buildings and land clearing was now easier since Mike owned a team of horses.
Mike and Ludwig Johnson accepted a contract from the Municipality to clear three miles of road from his farm to Norland school. Without the aid of surveyers, the two men cut the line three times before the road was straight. Mike often spoke of visiting the neighbors by following trees marked with an axe blade. These trails were used for many years.
In 1916, on the corner of the N.E. 35-17-17W, Mike erected a wooden cross which became a meeting place on Sundays for prayers and to give thanks to God for their new home and country. This cross and fence have been repaired many times and it still stands today as a reminder of the difficult times the pioneers had in a new