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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was there any of the first crop marketed. Part of it was used by the farmer for his own use, ground at the grist mill at Wakopa or Crystal City, and the remainder could always be disposed of to newcomers for seed. There is no exact record of the types of wheat used. Part may have been of the Red River variety, purchased in Winnipeg or Emerson, and part was Red Fife, brought from Ontario. In the beginning, the motive power was supplied by oxen and later by horses. In the eighteen-eighties the grain was cut, stooked and stacked before any threshing was done, and threshing operations might not be completed till spring. It was a decade later that the farmers conceived the idea of threshing direct from the stook to save extra labour.

In no type of machinery has there been so great progress as in the threshing machine. In the earliest types used in the district, the machines were hand fed and the straw was bucked away from the carriers at the back of the machine with a horse on each end of a pole or plank. The power to run the machine was supplied by a horse-power. In the eighteen-nineties, steam engines supplied the power, and in 1906 gas engines were introduced into the district, and were the standard type until the thirties when the combine came on the market. Larger and heavier machinery of all kinds came into use with the introduction of the tractor, and the increased power of the tractor has led in turn to heavier and larger types of machinery.

Although the primary interest of the early settler was wheat, they realized that successful farming operations could not be carried on without the raising of livestock. It is noteworthy that at the first fair of the Turtle Mountain Agricultural Society held on the Jas. Burgess farm in 1882 there were no entries of horses. There were prizes for the best decorated oxen, and a race for teams of oxen. At the fair held two years later there were numerous entries of horses. By 1890 oxen had been replaced by horses and many of the farmers in the district had made a valuable contribution to the breed. Such names as Finlayson, Washington and Robertson Bros.­ John, Chas., Jas., and Peter-recall many fine animals imported, and also many fine ones raised here. Competition at the local fairs was very keen. In modern times A. J. Arnold has been one of the most successful exhibitors, both at local fairs as well as at Toronto and Brandon.

From the beginning of the settlement of the district, cattle formed a necessary part of the wealth of the community, and as early as 1886, efforts were made by John Hettle, the local repre­ sentative in the legislature to improve the breed. He purchased. half a dozen pure-bred Shorthorns in Ontario and introduced them to the district. One of these was purchased by J. G. (Joe) Washington and was the foundation of what was one of the finest herds in Western Canada. Joe purchased several females from Ontario, and

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