This page is a text version of the Beckoning Hills History Book. This is the story of the Turtle Mountain Area of Manitoba. You can get a PDF copy of the book on our full version page. The PDF copy is an exact page by page representation of the original book. This text version has been reformated for the web and contains text recognition mistakes. These mistakes do not appear in the full version. The full version also includes each image in the original book.

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for the night, I heard a lot of yelling and drum beating from across the meadow. Putting on my clothes I hurriedly walked, ran, and crawled to within sight of a big camp of Indians in war paint. Some three hundred were holding a pow-pow in preparation to going west to support Riel. I did not return to my cabin that night, but chose a clump of wolfe willow half a mile away, and was very pleased when morning came. They never harmed anyone in our area, left the next afternoon by the Commission Trail to the west.

Sam Kellam, Bill Barber, John Barber and another fellow by the name of McFayden were sworn in as border wardens by the R.N.W.M. Police to prevent Indians from North Dakota from joining the Reil uprising. They were paid a salary and were given powers to call anyone into service should assistance be needed. They had to report each week to the Pembina Police Detachmnt concerning any incidents, and were assured a quantity of Long Tom guns (British L.A. 1860 issue) with ample ammunition. The guns and ammunition were stored in La Riviere's Trading Post and grist mill.

It was Bill Barber and Sam KelIan with an Assiniboine Indian named Will Moon who uncovered a plot to smuggle a Gattling gun to the Duck Mountains in Saskatchewan by a large band of Indians. They had come up from North Dakota by the way of the Missouri Trail and has passed through Wakopa and proceeded about two miles beyond when they were asked to stop and uncover the so­ called coffin. Even though they outnumbered the patrol by forty to one they did not offer any resitance and uncovered the box when asked to. It was Will Moon who had suspicions when the band stopped in Wakopa to rest for a few hours. The braves who were guarding the wagon with the box in it acted rather odd he thought, when they told Sam Kellan that they were going to bury an old Indian chief at the head waters of Turtle Head Creek on the west end of the Turtle Mountains.

In conclusion, I believe our district was much like the others north of the Turtle Mountains. We had our share of swell neigh­ bours, always ready to help a family in need regardless of roads, weather, or time of year. One person who was known for her leader­ ship and kindness and her attention to the sick was Mrs. Tom Coulter. She was largely responsible for the success of the Wakopa Picnic for a period of thirty years. Races were held in the trail and lunch was served where the Missouri and the Commission join. No doubt other districts have people of such sterling character, but she was sadly missed by the people of our community when she left.

We had many hardships in those days but there was much happiness too. Often during the evening by the fireside, or sitting on the doorstep of our modest home during the cool of the evening, my mind goes back to the days when the settlers came into this area over what remains of our "fading trails."

J ames Henderson, Wakopa.

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