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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prairie sad being piled one upon the other, with the usual pole and sod roof. There was at one time an adobe house on the old G. C. Wright place, where Arnott Wheeler now resides. The main part of this house is still as built, with only the adobe part removed and replaced with siding. A further use of mud was in the construction of chimneys, many being of straight mud, and though homely, were quite serviceable.

In the Turtle Mountains, the settlers had many varieties of wild fruit: raspberries, gooseberries-both red and white, currants, juneberries, saskatoons and strawberries. There were hazelnuts and wild sage used for seasoning fowL Wild hops were used for yeast in bread making. Besides all the fruit, the mountains provided the settlers with all their firewood and oak fence posts. Many of the first ox-yokes were made of oak also.

Jas. Rae opened the first Post Office, called Nimitaw, in this district on his homestead three miles northwest of Boissevain. The first mail was brought in by wagon along the old Commission Trail, which ran along the north side of the International boundary and the Turtle Mountains.

The first threshing machines took a great number of men to keep them going. The straw 'was taken away from the machine by carriers into a heap at the back of the machine, then every few minutes, when the heap got up near the top of the carriers, it was "bucked" away with a long stout pole, hauled by a team on each end. The sheaves were fed ipto the machine by two men, w40 had to cut the bands, then shove the sheaf in. The grain was all bagged, wich made a tremendous lot of extra work. Most of the early machines were driven by portable engin~s, though some of the very early ones were driven by horse-power. Harvesters in the early days usually came from Ontario, and worked from dawn to dark for a dollar a day. One of the fir~t threshers in this district was owned and operated by Duncan and Peter Henderson. They always had a big stock-ring to thresh, to be followed by stack-threshing. As machines were scarce, many farmers stacked their grain and then had a machine thresh it later. The Henderson men often threshed stacks till Xmas, working ~ll the way from the Turtle Mountains to the Souris River.

Many interesting and painful stories are told about the early pioneer days. The first settlers near Wakopa heard from the Indians about a lake near the "Turtle's Back." A number of the men with axes, wagons and oxen cut' a way through the bush to this lake. They called it Lake William, as that was the first name of most of the men in the party.

In the early days, many places on the prairies were white with Buffalo bones. When Mr. Latimer took his homestead in the summer of '81, he found a buffalo skull with the hide still on it, lying on a knoll near the spot where Caranton School now stands. Apparently it had been shot shortly before. The last buffalo shot in North