You may recall a couple years ago when I got “the” pelican shot and figured my pelican photography days were over.  The photograph was a hit with my family and ended up getting blown up quite large and is in my front entrance.

Last summer before our BC trip I bought myself a lens that was going to force me to photograph a new, not so dangerous and easier to find subject, birds and wildlife.  While I have taken a couple photos with that lens, namely the owls and the blue heron, I am not overly happy with the lens and just posted it for sale a couple days ago.  I am on the fence about this because everything I read and everyone I talk to tells me to give it more time, read more, watch more videos.  So I’ll try but patience is not my virtue.

Anyways, I wanted to share this photograph I took the other night while fishing with Colton down at the beach.  I took the lens with to play with, without having done any reading or watching.  While its not a great photo, its different and okay.  I certainly like the colors it picked up in the sky.

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One night last winter on my way home from exploring an abandoned town, I couldn’t help but notice the sunset.  I was really close to a location that I thought would make a great photo.  A spot that I have driven by many, many times.  I wanted to get a photograph of this machinery up on the hill.

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I couldn’t get a decent shot so I turned around to head home and found this!

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I took a couple shots from the road and wrote down the location to investigate and find landowner information for.

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A couple weeks ago I was speaking to a gentleman about another property and asked about this one and he gave me the information I needed.  I thought I better get out there before the grass gets to long.

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Unfortunately, I cannot confirm who lived here first (and any info I do have I cannot confirm with any written history that I have access to) nor can I confirm who built what buildings, when.

As you can see from this new photo, the caragana or peashrub have taken over and the bees were buzzing around like crazy.

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Bill was born on a farm south of Cartwright on July 11, 1916.  He never married but was said to be a dedicated family man who was always there for those in need.


Bill, an enthusiast with the Heritage Village in his community and served on the committee for many years.   Bill purchased this land in 1944 and proudly displayed the advertisement for the Heritage Park on his property where everyone that went by it could see it.

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Bill began farming as a young boy with his father and his love for farming kept him busy until he was in his 70’s.  When he wasn’t farming, Bill sang with the United Church choir and served on their committee for many years.

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After a trek through the farm yard I headed out to the pasture and up the hill.  I cam alone some old wagon wheels and then almost tripped on a piece of wire in the grass.  I also picked up a lot of hitchhikers on my journey.

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Being alone I also started to think about skunks, badgers and of course, well holes.  I am a chicken shit.  Not sure that exploring is really for me, lol.

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I have passed by Bill’s old threshing machine (or separator) and Cockshutt tractor many, many times.  I never did notice this little machine way up on the hill until I walked closer to it.

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I do not know anything about tractors except that this is what they call McCormick Deering or a Cockshutt tractor.  I believe this one is approximately built in 1924.  At least that’s what a quick search on Google tells me.

On my way back to my car I again started to think about all the critters and as I was going through the ditch I found two lady slippers, all alone.  Of course I searched for more but I couldn’t find any.

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The family of Patrick & Mary is one of the first to settle into this municipality. To date, 6 generations have lived in the area. Patrick (1821) & Mary (1850) left Ireland in April, 1879 bound for Montreal on a ship called The Circassian. Upon their arrival in Montreal, they traveled by train to St. Paul (Minnesota?) in the USA and then to Winnipeg via Red River steamer.  Together, Patrick and Mary had 10 children.

When the family arrived in Winnipeg, the women were settled in to their new home while the men carried on in search of suitable land to homestead on. After purchasing a wagon, a team of oxen and the necessary provisions, they set off. After several days of travel, in and out of sloughs, the men arrived at Badger Crossing. They then made their way to Morden to file land claims. They returned to the land and built a “sod shanty” and Patrick and his sons began working the land. The first two winters in Canada (1879 and 1880), the men would travel back to Winnipeg to stay with the women. The boys would work on the new railroad being built and in the spring they would head back to farm. By 1881, a 1 1/2 story home and outbuildings were built and the entire family was reunited and began their new life on their homestead in Manitoba, Canada. Mary passed away in 1889. She served as a Justice of the Peace for many years. Patrick passed away in 1902. He was a valued member of the community serving as a warden and the President of the local agricultural fair for many years.

I must add that their oldest son Joseph served in the military in Ireland before coming to Canada with his family. Upon his arrival in Canada he was selected as an auditor for a new local school. He purchased his own land and farmed for a few year but was never married. He decided to move to Boston, Mass., and in 1917, while en route to deposit church funds, he was beaten to death.

Patrick and Mary’s son, John was a successful business man. In 1898 he purchased a section of land which was later farmed by his son and his grandson. His grandson just happens to be my neighbors Dad. When I stumbled upon this house on the way home from photographing another, I thought, I’m going to pull into this yard and see if they will let me take a couple photos so that I do not have to come back. When the young fellow came out I thought, he looks familiar. Well turns out, I had seen him before. He is the nephew of my neighbor.

This house was built in approximately 1906.

Great-Grandpa John started his own livery and feed business which he later sold. In 1902 he built the necessary building and started an implement business which he later sold in 1910. In 1915 he was appointed the Police Magistrate. He was also involved in the local agricultural society and served two terms as reeve. Great-Grandpa John was also actively involved in the church and educational affairs within the community. Great-Grandpa John and his wife Bessie had two children.


Great-Grandpa John left the farm to his son, John Jr. who married and had three children of his own.  One of his children, Jack is the father of my neighbor.  John Jr. and Mary raised two children of their own in this home.  Jack’s son now lives in a new home on the land, where he can still see the home he grew up in.  

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There are still many outbuildings on the property but I didn’t want to stay to long and poke around to much.  I could have photographed for some time on this property.


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It was nice to see the windows and doors intact on this home.  As you can see from the older photos, it was always well kept and at one time had a large porch.  I guess this is the benefit of having someone living on the property with the old home.

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The young man who answered the door asked me if I would like to go into the home but I declined as I didn’t want to be pushy and thought it was nice enough that he let me take photos as it was.  My neighbor has offered to take me back to go inside if I would like.  

Aside from making a connection to this property and knowing someone who actually lived inside the home, and my neighbor sharing the old photos with me, here is a photo of her inside the house.  That’s pretty neat.