County of Ponoka GenWeb Project: Pioneer Biographies pg11
The William KNELLER Family The Herman KNELLER Family
The William NYSTEDT Family The Jack MALMAS Family
The Henry STEDEL Family The Frank STEPHAS Family
If any of these bios refer to a family that you are researching, & you wish to have your name/email/website
added here, or have additional information that you would like to contribute, please contact us!

Navigator Bar for site HomeDistrictsPioneers indexBiographies IndexHistory IndexLinks IndexLocal Business Indexponokagenweb@yahoo.comPonoka County QueriesResources IndexSchool Index

The Herman KNELLER Family
The first week of March, 1945, Herman and I and our year and a half old son, Rodney moved to our farm 5 miles west of Hobbema in the Poplar Forest district from Rolly View, east of Leduc. This was the farm originally owned by Fenn Robinson.
The next year, while I was in Lacombe hospital after our second son, David was born, hail completely destroyed our crop. What a sad home-coming!
In October 1948, we spent two months in B.C. and upon our return, we bought the Poplar Forest store from Mr. Art Holt. Here our other 2 children were born, Valerie and Terry.
When Rodney was six and ready to go to school, the Poplar Forest School was closed. All children were bussed to town under the new County School system.
In 1954, Herman began driving a school bus and later began working for Stickel Plumbing, where he has been to this day.
So in 1965, we moved to Ponoka. We still own the farm but rent it to Cliff Fenske. We built a nice home in Riverside and I have been teaching in the Riverside School.
Three of our children are married and away. So only Terry is with us.
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973)
Kneller Family researcher: unknown

The William Kneller Family
Mr and Mrs. William Kneller and family, Edna and Gladys moved to this district from Calmer in 1944. They bought the land from Emil Vogel. They were quite happy on the farm there.
Then their two daughters decided to get married and on July 23, 1954 they had a double wedding. Edna married Dale Kary and Gladys married Robert Hunter.
With the girls gone they seemed lonely and in 1955 decided to move to the town of Ponoka. There Mr. Kneller first took the job of driving a school bus and mechanic and worked his way up to School Bus Supervisor and Mrs. Kneller worked for Brody's two years and then in the beginning of 1957 she became manageress for Shillington Shoes.
In 1956 they rented the farm to Herman Kneller and in 1957 they rented it to Adolph Shabert. Then in July of 1957 they sold the farm to Ignis Scheidl who moved on to it August 12, 1957. In 1960 Gary Wagner bought it.
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973)
Kneller Family researcher: unknown

The William NYSTEDT Family
William & Signe emigrated from Sweden in 1912. They homesteaded a 1/4 section in the Matiskow area. Myself (John), my sisters Elizabeth (Essery) and Myrtle (Angell) were born there.
In 1919, we moved to the Calumet District where Dad farmed a 1/4 section owned by Elmer Hagglund, now by Jake Stemo. My brother Harold was born there. In 1929 we moved to Ladner, British Columbia.
My folks died in the early 1970's. Harold passed away in 1976. Elizabeth lives in Port Coquitlam, British Columbia, and Myrtle lives in Burnaby, B.C. I'm retired and live in Vancouver and cherish many fond memories of the district and the beautiful people."
Based on a excerpt from Mecca Glen Memories (1968)
Nystedt Family researcher: unknown

The Jack MALMAS Family
SE 1/4 - 35-41-26-W4th
Mr. and Mrs. Jack Malmas came to Morningside in 1949 from Lacombe and bought the SE 1/4 - 35-41-26-W4th from Mr. Frank Reed. They farmed there until 1964 and sold to Beverly Hughes and moved to Winfield. They had three children, Joan who married Bill Horchuk in 1954. They have 3 children, Doug, Mary and Don, and live in Grande Prairie. Jackie was married to Shirley La Monte in 1971. Reg married Sharon Snell in 1865. They live in Kamloops, B.C. they had two children.
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973)
Malmas Family researcher: unknown

The Henry STEDEL Family
s.w. 14-43-22-4th
In 1893 Henry and Caroline (Johann Furst's sister) came from Russia to Rosenfelt, Manitoba, Canada where they worked for a year for the Mennonites to raise enough money to move to the Ponoka area. They staked S.W. 14-43-22-4 in 1894, building a sod shack with door and windows of wood, and nary a nail.
Christmas of 1895, Henry passed away and was buried on his homestead, which became the burial ground for others until the graves were moved to the St. Peter's Lutheran cemetery around 1908.
Caroline then hired Beelor as a farm hand, and they were married in 1907. Beelor bought the land for $400 when Henry Stedel's father came from Saskatchewan, Canada to settle the estate. Caroline died in 1898 when her daughter was born, and she was buried beside Henry. Carl Riskes took the baby. Beelor sold the land to Mr. Falk in 1901 and moved to British Columbia. His daughter joined him there.
Based on a excerpt written by Esther Orom from Mecca Glen Memories (1968)
STEDEL Family researcher: unknown

The Frank Stephas Family
Frank was a bachelor who spent a number of years freighting and working around Livery Stables in Lacombe before coming to Rimbey.
Frank was a great lover of horses and kept his own Clydesdale stallion for a number of years. He was very adept and successful in curing a lot of horse ailments in those early days before there were any modern medicines.
Frank left the farm and devoted most of his years to working in the sawmills. Probably the last place that he worked was the Dave Adams mill. Here he helped with anything that needed to be done, and could even turn out a good meal if the cooks needed a day off. After the mill closed down, Frank continued to live on the campsite as long as his health permitted, but the Dave Adams family cared for him, through his last days, and he is buried in Rimbey.
Based on a excerpt from "Over the Years: A History of the Rimbey Area" (1983)
Additional notes on Frank Stephas
Information provided by a family researcher's email: Frank was born to John and Minnie Stephas. When he moved to Canada the family no longer heard from him, and assumed that he worked in the lumber industry.

Looking for more information ? Check out these sites....
Come, visit our Archives site for more bakground info about the County of Ponoka
County of Ponoka ARCHIVES
Come, visit our Historical Archives for more about the development of the County of Ponoka
Visit the Alberta GenWeb Project
Visit the Canada & Alberta GenWeb Projects...
Visit the Canada GenWeb Project
Deb's logo... All articles & graphics were developed, compiled or created by D.A. Owens. 1997 - 2003. All Rights Reserved. The information provided is for research purposes only, and it's accuracy is subject to confirmation. Commercial use of this information is prohibited.