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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With his one ox and another he hired, Mr. Cumpstone broke eight acres on which he sowed some Red Fife wheat, another red wheat which proved unsatisfactory, and some oats. With a scythe rigged like an "Ontario" cradle, the Cumpstones and Pattersons cut their first crop together. The Pattersons swung the cradles and Cumpstone tied the bundles. The grain was threshed by the Porritt brothers' threshing outfit run by an eight horse-power steam engine. Nelson, who lived on east half 24-2-20, was the engineer. When Nelson's grain was threshed, it was poured into a wagon box on the ground. After the outfit was moved to Tobias', a fire which started on the marsh at Whitewater swept southeast, burned Nelson's straw, wheat, and wagon-box, and threatened Cumpstone's and Patterson's buildings, Prairie fires were to be feared in those days as there was very little plowing anywhere to stop the fire sweeping through the grass.

Life became easier as more settlers came into the country and as they obtained more implements and household utensils. The Cumpstones still drove oxen until 1886 but did have a pair of ponies in 1884. In that year Cumpstone, Sr., got a second homestead on east half 30-3-20 near Whitewater and later William, Jr., home­ steaded the northwest quarter of the same section. They put up hay on this land in 1884 and 1885 and moved on to it with the family in January 1886 with the intention of going into the cattle business in a big way. No land was broken on this new homestead for a number of years. William, Sr., resided here until he retired to Boissevain where he died April 11, 1911. His wife had died December 25, 1909. Both were buried in Boissevain.

In 1896, William, Jr., had rented the old home place from his father. That fall he took a trip to the Old Country for four months with Dune, Holditch of Boissevain and Billy Sparks of Minto. In 1897 he dug a cellar and stoned it ready for a new house which was not finished until 1898. August 9, 1898, he married Eva Chambers in All Saints Church. They lived On the old home place where their three children, Edmund, Edith, and Bessie were born. This farm was sold to Tom Patterson, Jim and William's brother, while Wil­ liam Cumpstone, Jr., purchased west quarter 24-2-20. In 1901 William and his brother Ned purchased their first threshing outfit. It was a Battle Creek Advance outfit. The separator was 36 by 56 and was driven by a 20 horse-power tractor steam engine. It was fully equipped with blower, weigher, and bagger.

A. J. VENABLES, 1887

We came to Canada from England in the year 1887 in the month of June. My brother Tom came out during 1886. By trade my father was a confectioner and baker while in England, although he did not carryon this trade in Canada.

I remember very clearly our trip from Montreal by train. As we neared the Lake Superior district we saw Indians for the first