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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"plop, plop" of the clumsy hooves of the oxen as they patiently did their job. It was cruel, back-breaking labor to pitch that mud with forks, but when it was done it made a home that was beautifully cool in summer and perfectly warm in winter. The deep window seats, with no storm windows, were usually filled with mother's favorite geraniums, which never froze in winter. There was a seventy barrel cistern in the north end of the east room, and when it was dry in winter, we melted great blocks of ice for soft water. I believe ours was the first adobe house in Canada, at least in West­ ern Canada, though many made their first homes of heavy prairie sods.

Father did not believe that every foot of land should be devoted to utility purposes only and one of the first things he did was to plant maples along the south and west sides of our house. This was not only that some beauty might be brought to the treeless bleakness of the landscape, but also as protection from the severe northern winds. He had reserved a large plot for the houe, with room for flower-beds, croquet ground, a driveway and large swing for the young folk. Neighborhood picnics and church and Sunday School picnics were frequently held at "Maple Grove Farm" as the homestead was named, for dad and mother were sociable folk and liked to see not only young people have a happy time, but both would join in the fun.


Old deep buffalo trails were to be seen everywhere about the Turtle Mountain area, and several of these criss-crossed our farm. Not far from the house one of these trails led down into a deep depression around a huge boulder. This stone was about five feet wide, two or three feet high and perhaps ten or twelve feet long. H was a glorious place on which a tom-boy could sprawl on a sum­ mer day, to dream her "long, long thoughts."


Many incidents, some amusing, some tragic, are vivid pictures on the indestructible film of memory. In the year 1890, just when the bumper crop was ready for the binders, disaster struck. It was a blisteringly hot day, turning sultry and stifling toward afternoon. Suddenly heavy black clouds began to pile up from the southeast and southwest, while a menacing purplish color darkened the whole sky. It was so hot, breathing became difficult, and all at once the great banks of clouds converged in a head-on collision, with crash­ ing thunder, wild flashes of lightning, and a cyclonic wind. Hail followed with such a rushing, roaring noise that it was impossible to hear anyone speak, even though shouting. To save the windows we all grabbed pillows and pressed them against the panes. Hailstones were of various sizes, from marbles to even larger than eggs. At Deloraine (for this devastating storm swept over thousands of