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.

Page Index of Beckoning Hills History Book

Previous - Page 206 or Next - Page 208

Wood. The license was issued by John Morrow, Boissevain's first magistrate. Their wedding trip was the six mile ride home in the wagon.

By that time the influence of the railroad was showing in the district. Horses and better machinery were shipped in from the East to replace the oxen and the reaper and the horsepower threshers of the early eighties. The crops were all stacked as some­ .times the threshing machine didn't arrive till early winter and stacking was the only method of insuring the harvesting of the crop. I don't know how the first small acreages were harvested but I believe Bill Lambert and Bob Orr had the first portable steam threshing outfits in the district.

An account of the pioneer days around Whitewater Lake wouldn't be complete without mention of the myriads of waterfowl that inhabited the lake in those days. It is hard now to visualize the numbers of the different species of waterfowl that thronged to Whitewater each spring and fall during the migratory periods in the days of the eighties, nineties and up until around 1910-12 when some species, notably the whooping crane and sandhill crane began to show a marked decline. Every species of ducks nested in or around the lake by the thousands, as did also the Canada geese and sandhill crane, though in much lesser numbers of course. Father once hatched two sandhill eggs under a hen and had two fine young cranes which grew rapidly, both in size and in becoming a nuisance, till their unfortunate ends, one at the hands, or teeth, of a neigh­ bor's dog and the other through gorging itself with worms from an old manure pile that was being moved.

The Canada geese were far the most predominant of the geese with the Lesser Canada, the White Fronted, which were usually called Brants, and the Hutchinson making up the rest of the goose flocks. The Snow Geese, or Wavies, appeared only in straggling flocks until later years, when they apparently changed the course of their spring flight to this part of the country. The cranes were

. almost as plentiful as the geese and offered a real problem to the settlers in the spring when they would settle on a freshly sown field, many of which were broadcast sown, and proceed to rake out the seed with their big feet and gobble it up. In the fall they would light on the stocks and send the sheaves flying while they picked off the heads of grain.

As mentioned it is hard to imagine the density of the flights of ducks and geese in those days. I have often heard both mother and father say that if the morning or evening flight was going over the house they couldn't hear each other speak if they happened to have the door open. Tom Brodie and father shot eighty Canada geese one morning before seven o'clock. One stormy September

Early view of Main st. and No. 10 Highway from west ­ Photo courtesy W. Moon