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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major U.S. highways. No. 3 Provincial Highway serves traffic East and West. The International Peace Garden lies South on No. 10, where modern customs buildings and residences have just been completed. The town is beautifully treed and main streets paved. A new Memorial Hospital has recently been built, as well as a three-sheet curling rink and a modern theatre. What is considered to be the most efficient water and sewage system in the province has been put into operation, the water coming from the bush lakes and impounded in a dam close to the town. Boissevain boasts many thriving businesses, outstanding among them being the Dring Laminated Rafter Factory. This firm, with a floor space of 21,000 square feet, and an annual pay roll of $100,000.00, sell their product from Montreal to Victoria, north to The Pas, and South to U.S. points.

The town is fortunate in having live and up-to-date civic bodies and other organizations who are doing a commendable work.


The story of Deloraine and the district round about ties in with the history of Southwestern Manitoba. Deloraine, as it was then located, was the jumping-off place for the settler, who felt that this was his destination ... here was the objective: the rolling land, with good soil, plenty of water and firewood in the foothill reaches of the Turtle Mountains, was all that was needed to round out a pleasant place to venture into the business of farming and stock­ raising. The area supplied all that was required. The building of homes was after the fashion of early settlers in many other newly inhabited areas: log shacks, with sod roofs, were the make-shift until better times and easier means of transportation provided the settler with better building materials. Roads also came later, schools and churches followed the homesteaders.

The desire for the accustomed combination of wood, land and water resulted in settlement appearing first in the semi-wooded ravines north of the Turtle Mountains and in the wooded parts of the Souris River Valley. The plain beneath them remained unoccupied for almost another two years, and it was comparatively sparsely settled for another fifteen years.

Oliver and Herb Smith are said to have been the first two settlers to have constructed a dwelling-place on the land sloping from the Turtle Mountains to Whitewater Lake. They had been employed with a survey party working in the district and in 1879 they constructed a shanty on the S.E. quarter of 17-2-22, not far from the Boundary Commission Trail. They lived in this home during the winter of 1879-80, but in the Spring they went away, returning later to work in a sawmill on the Mountain.

"The first settlers," says Norman Wright, M.A., in his book, "In View of the Turtle Hill," "to reach the Turtle Mountain district