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Table 10 Religion and Origin of Gretna Inhabitants, 1901

Religion Origins

Roman Catholic Anglican Presbyterian Methodist Baptist Mennonite Lutheran

Jew

Various Sects Unspecified Total

137 19 118 22 II 118 223 7

10 I 666

Source: Census of Canada

British French German Scandinavian Russian Jewish Belgian Chinese Unspecified

127 I 503

12 6 7 6 I 3

666

Erdman Penner and his wife. Erdman Penner was born on February 22,1837, in Burwald Ukraine. In 1858 he married Marie Eyzen. After he immigrated to Manitoba with the first Mennonite wave in 1874 he established stores in Niverville, Neuanlage and Tannau. When the railway came to Gretna in 1882 he relocated there establish­ ing a large general store with branches in Plum Coulee and Reinland. A prominent merchant of Gretna, Penner served as the first mayor of the town, and was promi­ nent in Conservative politics running for election in the provincial riding of Rosenfeld. He was an ardent supporter of the MEl, and became a Liberal when Ewert was fired as School Inspector by the Conservative Roblin Administration in the early 20th century. He died on November 26, 1907 of throat cancer and was buried in Gretna beside his wife who had died seven years previously. On the day of his funeral a half day holiday was declared in Gretna, and special services were held in both Altona and Gretna.

Credit: CMCA

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