County of Ponoka GenWeb Project: Pioneer Biographies pg 14
The SCHEIRER Family The BURWASH Family
The A.E. EASTES Family The A. SCHABERT 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

Magic & Eastside Districts
Charles Schierer married Miss Margaret LEINVERT in Peoria, Illinois, USA. They later moved to Lincoln, Nebraska, USA, with their young son, Will (born September 1880). The family then moved in September of 1888, to Benkelman, Nebraska, USA where they homesteaded, timber-claimed and purchased land until they owned 800 acres. The family again relocated to a new homestead in 1892, this one being only 1 1/2 miles outside of Benkelman. Drought eventually forced them to consider making yet another move to Ponoka, Alberta, Canada.
Charles, accompanied by son Will (then aged 20), arrived in Ponoka, on the 5th of October 1900 to set up the new homestead in advance of the rest of the family joining them. By this time there were 4 children: Eva, Will, Edgar and Rosa.
The years of the 1880's were good crop years, and most of the land being prairie, crop raising was carried on progressively. Stove fuel was very scarce in Nebraska and often "cow chips" and sagebrush were used. Coal was $10.00 per ton and had to be hauled 30 miles by wagon. Corn stalks and cobs comprised the fuel later.
Charles Scheirer, a blacksmith, kept at his trade until moving to Canada. The severe drought years of the 1890's caused them to seek another place and by 1900 with reports of Western Canada being opened for settlement the family was again on the move. Disposing of their crop standing, and much of their property, they kept 7 horses, 1 cow, 2 pigs and about 50 chickens. With their belongings, loaded in a box car, Charles and Will began the long journey which was to last nearly 9 days.
The first stop in Canada was in Medicine Hat, Alberta, where enthusiastic land agents did their best to persuade the father and son to homestead in the Cypress Hills. This they declined, and continued to north to Ponoka County.
Accommodations were secured for the stock in Myers' livery barn, and Charles and Will stayed at the Cook Meyers Hotel where meals were served at reasonable prices.
Both the summer and fall had been very wet in Ponoka, some snow was lying about and mud was deep in the streets. The frost was so severe their first night in town that the frozen mud carried the weight of the loaded wagons that next morning. Will recalls that he and his dad did not take advantage of the Government tent to store their belongings, but hauled them out to the W.E. Turner farm.
Later in October when sunny days came again, they loaded their 2 wagons with lumber and one morning at daybreak, began the trek to the new homesteads. Charles had filed on the N.W. 1/4 of 28-42-24 W of 4 and Will had chosen the S.E. of 32-42-24, seven miles east and one mile south of town. The trip was a long, tedious journey, and a trail had to be cut for five miles of the way. At sundown, their journey completed, they made camp for the night. With the hoot of the owls and the yap of the coyotes along with the innumerable mice playing hide-and-seek, there was not much sleep for the venturesome new settlers. The next day, Will was given the task of hauling more lumber while Charles stayed to commence the building of shelters ere the winter set in.
Oat bundles were purchased from Herb STRETCH for horse feed. Later a supply was bought form Granddad DEWHIRST. It was not long before a shack was ready and a shelter erected for the stock. . Margaret soon arrived with the children, Rosa and Edgar, while older sister Eva chose to marry and moved to Texas with her new husband instead of making the trek north. The Scheirer's new home was established before winter struck.
Spring came early in 1901. One day while out gathering fuel, brother Edgar came running to the house, saying a bear was by the pig pen. Will took the rifle, "a 32 rimfire", and killed it with the first shot. It was a large cinnamon, but not too fat. A majority of the meat was given to the neighbours who considered it quite a treat.
A new house was erected the summer of 1901,and land was cleared and broken. Some crop was seeded in the sod and did well. The density of the timber and brush prevented the new arrivals from claiming any large fields for crops and progress seemed slow.
The first few years on the homesteads the men were able to buy seed and feed from the Asker Valley.
Industrious folk, the Scheirers took advantage of the opportunities to work, cutting out roads, trapping, logging, and hauling polewood to Ponoka, commanded their attention to make a living; the system being barter and trade - not much money in those days. It is interesting to note in those days the wages were $1.00 per day and board. Government wage was $1.50 for ten hours, board and bed not included. Selling prices for fat cattle were 2 1/2 cents per pound, hogs 5 to 6 cents, wheat, oats and barley were 50 cents, 30 cents and 25 cents per bushel. Potatoes were 20 cents per bushel in trade. Muskrat pelts sold as low as 7 cents a piece, seldom more than 10 cents. The first neighbours of the Scheirer family were the Ed Petersons who stayed only a year, and then moved farther east. About 16 families from their old home town in Nebraska were eventually settled near Ponoka. Some did not stay, but those who did prospered and learned to love the "Land of the Maple".
The early settlers provided their own entertainment and the literary and debating societies along with the occasional dance, concert and oyster suppers, proved a source of good fun and memorable times. Picnics were quite common in the summer.
Charles Scheirer passed away on January 11, 1929 and Mrs. Margaret Leinvert Scheirer passed away on July 25, 1927.
Will - married Dessie Eakin at the J.T. Eakin home on June 15, 1915. Reverand George Driver officiated. Their honeymoon was spent in Calgary and Banff, Alberta. When they returned and their new house was completed on their Eastside farm, they moved in and lived there for 14 years until the summer of 1929, when they purchased land adjacent to the north side of the town of Ponoka (Lucas Heights). They lived there until 1944 when they moved to British Columbia where they remained until 1953. In 1973, Will and Dessie had 21 grandchildren and 9 great-grandchildren most of whom lived in the County of Ponoka.
Blanche married T. Hill
Laura married Iorwerth Davies
Dorothy married R. Ragan
Alice married Lee Spelrem
Edgar - married Loretta Magedans and moved to British Columbia, Canada
Rosa - lived on the family homestead until 1962 before moving to Rimoka Lodge.
Based on excerpt from:

The Adam Proctor BURWASH Family
Lundgren District
Adam Proctor Burwash came to the Lundgren district, and with Mr. Allan FRITZ bought the "Tyner Ranch" on SW 1/4, 36-43-27 in about 1904. The two gentlemen also operated the Ferrybank Post Office and Store, and were both preachers, conducting prayer and Bible study meetings in the homes of the pioneers.
Adam Proctor Burwash's great great grandpa, was Nathaniel Burwash, born June 7, 1743 in Stockbury Parish, Bredgar, Kent, England.
Adam Proctor's father was the Dean of Theology and Chancellor at U.C.C., and he had studied theology as a result. He was a very colourful man, and a most interesting storyteller. He engaged in many activities such as surveyor, forest ranger, and manager of a fishing co-operative at Cold Lake.
He married Mary McLEAN and they moved to Edmonton. Mary and A. Proctor Burwash had 3 children.
The children...
Margaret - served in the Navy, and graduated from University with great distinction
Isabel - served in the Navy and graduated from University with great distinction
Ronald - served in W.W.II and graduated from University with great distinction
Based on excerpt from:

The A.E. EASTES Family
Town of Ponoka
Born in Cambridgeshire, England, came to Canada with with the Union Bank, Officer in the Royal Flying Corps, W.W.I. Manager of bank branches at Jenner and Duchess, Arthur arrived with his family in Ponoka September 26, 1928. Opening a general insurance business in the Theatre building, he began what proved to his life's work. A local boy Luther JONES joined him and they moved to Andy Lundgrin's building where they provided conveyancing and Notary service. Soon this partnership dissolved and Art put up his shingle at the Elk's Hall. He was official auditor for Fertile Valley M.D., Town of Ponoka and rural School District books; issued auto-license plates, and was Secretary-Treasurer of Ponoka School District #423. He had the first travel agency in these parts. During the depression many a load of wood was accepted from customers in lieu of cash. Fishing trips with MacDonald, Paterson, O'Brien, Shaw and other cronies and hunting partners, Ranks, Richmond, Cassidy McIntosh, to name a few were his delight. On his office wall he displayed his fisherman's rule (8in., one foot) and a prayer motto: "Lord, give me grace to catch a fish, so big, that even I when talking of it afterwards, may never need to lie". In 1956 he sold his insurance business to Jones Bros. and 5 years later he closed his conveyancing and travel business. A life member of the Masonic Order and Canadian Legion he kept busy with gardening and his Gull Lake property.
His wife Nena, helped out at the office, raised a family of 3 girls, lead C.G.I.T. groups and summer camps, was a Wartime Regent of Fort Ostell I.O.D.E., Matron Battle River S.S. and Missions Band, substituted in the schools, and in 1945 was instrumental in forming the Ponoka Art Club.
Arthur Edward Eastes and his wife Nena had 3 children:
The children...
Geraldine - married Elwyn G. JONES, moved to Calgary, Alberta and had a son.
Janet - married Mr. SANDERSON, moved to Vancouver, British Columbia, and had 2 daughters and a son
Helen - married J. David JANTZIE, moved to Edmonton, Alberta and had 2 sons and a daughter.
Based on excerpt from:
"Ponoka Panorama" (1973)

The A. SCHABERT Family
Poplar Forest District
After surviving prison for nearly a year in Poland during W.W.I, and almost losing 2 children to starvation, Mr. A. Schabert moved his family to the Edmonton district in 1927, and later in 1928 to the farm bought in the County of Ponoka, Poplar Forest district. The older daughters, were married by then, so only one son, Adolph lived on the farm, until another son, Rudolph was born.
Mrs. Schabert worked hard to learn the English language, carely studying the Eaton's Catalog, and the Farm adn Ranch Review. Her English was very good, considering that she learned it as a second language later in life.
The Schaberts lived on the farm until Mrs. Schabert's death in 1948, after which Mr. Schabert moved to the Morningside district until 1961 when he moved to Rimoka Lodge.
The children...
Amelia - married Mr. Kolke
?? - married Mr. Hahn
Adolph - married in 1947. Took over the family farm in 1951. Worked on the Section (C.P.R.) for nearly seven years; three years of that time he lived at Morningside. In 1958 he purchased and moved his family into the Roy Donaghy home place. Had 1 daughter who moved to Vancouver, British Columbia and one son who was farming.
Rudolph - born in Wetaskiwin, Alberta and schooled in Poplar Forest, he married and moved to Calgary where he bacame a prosperous businessman
Based on excerpt from:
"Ponoka Panorama" (1973)


"Pioneer Biographies"
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 - 2002. 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.