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Dr. C. Wiebe of Winkler became the first Mennonite to sit in the Manitoba Legisla­ ture when he was elected in 1932.

Between 1920 and 1932 voter registration in the provincial riding of Morden-Rhineland increased from 2,835 to 7 A53 and for the first time a Mennonite, Dr. Cornelius W. Wiebe, was elected to the Provincial Legislature in 1932.32

During the years of the school crisis many Mennonites had with­ drawn from provincial politics and non-Mennonite, non-German repre­ sentatives were elected in the riding between 1920 and 1932. The exodus of the most conservative Mennonites and the arrival of the more pro­ gressive Russian Mennonites in the 1920's, however, did much to change attitudes in Rhineland. Similarly, the growth of the co-operative movement in Rhineland, raised the political consciousness in the Mu­ nicipality.

The co-operative movement also affected town dynamics in the R.M. of Rhineland. Altona had been ascendant in Rhineland since the tum of the century, but it was the co-operatives of the 1930's that clearly established it as the district's commercial and trade center. The first two co-operative ventures in the area, an Oil Station and a Store, were established in Altona, enlarging its trading hinterland. Farmers who came to buy their oil, gasoline and binder twine from Rhineland Consumers Co-operative, also did their other business in Altona. Many of the original members of the Rhineland Consumers Co-op came from the Edenthal, Edenburg, Halbstadt, Silberfeld, Schoenhorst areas, which were or had been in Gretna's trading hinterland. When the co­ operative oil station was established in Altona, many of the farmers from these areas made Altona their trade center.

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