County of Ponoka GenWeb Project: Pioneer Biographies Pg 4
Pioneer Biogrphies pg4
The William E. TURNER Family The Joe BERANEK Family
The Wallace H. TURNER Family The Joseph REES Family
The Clyde E. BUSH Family --
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William E. TURNER Family
Mr. and Mrs. W.E. Turner arrived in Ponoka in 1900 from Benkelman, Nebraska with their four children: Willie, Cora, Fred and Wallace.
They bought C.P.R. land for $3.00 per acre; a half section 3˝ miles east of Ponoka. While living here, they had two more children, a boy, John, and a girl, Ava.
Mr. Turner was the Justice of the Peace for many years, was a charter member of the Britania Lodge of Free and Accepted Masons formed in 1905, and was on of the first people to serve on teh Sylvan Side School Board.. Mr. Turner was also the owner of the first Massey Harris implement business in 1900, located at Railway (50th) Street and 49th Avenue (Lot 10, Plot 1) which he later sold to Mr.J. West O'Brien. These business transactions were carried out while the W.E. Turners still lived on the farm. Mr. Turner drove a horse and buggy to town regularly.
The older boys did some clearing of land and farmed. After many years on the farm, Mr. and Mrs. W.E. Turner moved to Ponoka in 1925 and Mr. Turner died in 1931. Mrs. W.E. Turner then moved to Chicago and married Will Waddle and lived on a farm in Pennsylvania, U.S.A. Some years later Mr. Waddle died, and John's mother went to live with Cora in Arizona, and died there at the age of 96 years.
Willie - the oldest boy, was married to Maggie Rees of Ponoka . They had two sons, Willie and Clifford. Willie Sr. was killed overseas in 1918. Some years later Maggie married Milt Stevens. They had two children, Evelyn and Ernest and lived in Cranbrook, British Columbia, and then moved to Kelowna, B.C. where Milt died and Maggie died a few years later.
Fred - married Altha Bush of Ponoka in 1915 and died of ill health in 1917. They had one son Arliegh. In later years Altha remarried and now lives in Dorenlee, Alberta.
Cora - went to Chicago in 1918 and took her nurses training there. She nursed there until she moved to Arizona. Cora made several trips back to Ponoka to renew old acquaintances and was always interested in Ponoka. Cora's health deteriorated and she died in 1965, in Arizona.
Wallace (Bunn) married Gertrude Hinkley of Ponoka and farmed on the home place for many years. They had one son Eugene, now married and living in Edmonton, Alberta. Eugene has a family of four, two boys and two girls. The second son, George - a plumber, is married and has a family of three children. They live in Red Deer, Alberta.
Gary - the third son, married Lois Chalmers from Rocky Mountain House, Alberta. They have one daughter. Gary is also in the plumbing business and lives in Calgary, Alberta.
Cherrie - not married, is nursing in British Columbia, and her mother is living with her at the present time.
John - married Amy Beranek of Ponoka and farmed on the home place until 1943. They had one son, Robert John, who was born on the farm in the same house as his father John. John and Amy Turner lived on the farm for a few years after John's parents had moved to town and their son Bobby had his first schooling at Sylvan Side. "Bob" is married to Erva, daughter of Dr. Sweet from Islay, Alberta and they have three boys, Timothy (Timmy), Todd, and Garth. John later sold the farm to Jim Ross, then it was sold again to Otto Zerbie of Ponoka. John and Amy are living in the town of Ponoka at the present time.
Ava - married Mr. Charlie Hall. They live in Tucson, Arizona and have an electrical store there.
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973) originally written by Mrs. John Turner (nee Amy Beranek)
TURNER Family researcher: Gayle Carson

Wallace H. Turner
Section 20, N.W. of 20
Grand Meadow District
The late Mr. W.H. Turner owned this land for many years. His son Wallace married Gertrude Hinkley, and has farmed it while living in Ponoka. Although Mr. Wallace Turner has had part of one leg amputated and is living in Northcott Lodge , he still continues to farm this land with the help of his son Gene (Eugene) from Edmonton, Alberta. Eugene has a family of four, two boys and two girls.
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973)
TURNER Family researcher: Gayle Carson

Clyde E. Bush and Family
Rural Ponoka East
March 11, 1902, Clyde Bush with his wife and two small daughters, Altha, four years and Glendora, Two years, came to the town of Ponoka along with 13 other families from the State of Iowa, USA.
Mr. Bush and family moved onto a farm along the old Calgary-Edmonton Trail about 1˝ miles north of town. This farm was owned by Neil McGilvary, a cousin of J.D. McGilvary. A son Clarence was born September 19, 1902 and later that fall the family moved into town where they resided until October, 1906, when they moved to their homestead east of Ponoka, which Mr. Bush had filed on in 1904. While residing in town a third daughter, Frances was born June 23, 1905.
Mr. Bush was born August 16, 1896 near Whiting, Iowa, USA, and passed away June 16, 1932 at his home at the age of 63 years. His eldest daughter married Fred Turner December 21, 1916, to this union was born a son Arleigh Frederick, who now lives at Brooks, Alberta. Fred Turner passed away December 28, 1918. Altha remarried May 8, 1931 to R.E. Smithson, to this union seven children were born. Three died in infancy and one daughter, Ruth at the age of 22 years. There remain two sons Floyd and Charles and one daughter June. Mrs. Smithson resided on the farm 6 miles north of Bashaw, Alberta for many years, until 1971 when she moved to Ponoka (Riverside area).
The second daughter Glendora married Julius Petersen in May 1925 and they had two daughters; Ada, now Mrs. Ernie Johnston of Parksville, British Columbia and Donna, now Mrs. Alex Moffat of Sayward, British Columbia. Glendora passed away January 11, 1951 at Duncan, British Columbia.
Clarence married Bessie Thew and to then one daughter Alwyn Marie was born. Clarence passed away September 20, 1935 in the Wetaskiwin Hospital, Wetaskiwin, Alberta.
Frances married Grover Calkins of Lacombe, Alberta, April 1, 1925 and passed away March 6, 1967. She leaves four sons and two daughters; Jack and Wesley of Edmonton, Alberta, Allen of Calgary, Alberta; Corkie of Lacombe, Alberta; Joan (Mrs. Morgan) of Pincher Creek, Alberta; and Beth (Mrs. Bates) of Foremost, Alberta.
Mrs. Mary Bush resided on the farm with her grandson Arleigh Turner until 1941, they then moved to Sylvan Lake and several years later to Brooks, Alberta. In 1946 she moved to Bashaw district to live with her daughter Altha. Mrs. Bush was born November 12, 1865 in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, USA and moved to Onawa, Iowa with her parents, brothers and sisters at the age of 7 years. She grew up on a farm there and at the age 19 years began her career as a school teacher until the time of her marriage. Mrs. Bush passed away June 9, 1966 at 100 years and seven months in the Ponoka General Hospital, several days after suffering a fall at Northcott Lodge, Ponoka.
Mr. Bush was greatly interested in gardening and due to the farm being situated between two lakes, (one of these known as "Lucas Lake") was able to raise many vegetables such as corn, tomatoes, pumpkins and cucumbers. Strawberries and raspberries were to be found in his garden which many people enjoyed visiting. He often shared his produce with other besides selling to the stores and people in town. In the summer people were always welcome to enjoy picnics, camping and swimming at the lake and when winter came it was skating.
In the spring of 1907 the Bush family planted a number of spruce trees around their home. The buildings are now gone but most of the trees still remain after 66 years. The farm is now owned by Ken Stickney.

Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973) originally written by Mrs. Altha Smithson, formerly Mrs. Fred Turner (nee Altha Bush)

Joe Beranek Family
Town of Ponoka
Joseph and Frances Beranek, with their children, emigrated from Czechoslavakia, settling in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1907. They moved to Ponoka in 1919. Mr. Beranek found employment as a section man for the C.P.R. A fatal accident involving the motor car he was operating and a train caused his untimely death in 1922. … Children were: Six children: John, Mary, Amy, Annie, Lily and Anton ….. …..Amy - married John Turner and farmed in the Eastside district, later moving to Ponoka. They had one son, Robert, who married Erva Sweet. They have three sons. Bob works at Alberta Hospital Ponoka…… …Mrs. Joseph Beranek - Grandma as she was affectionately called, moved back to Ponoka from Daysland (where she was living with her son Anton) to live with her daughter, Amy (Mrs. John Turner) until her passing in 1943….
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973) originally written by Mrs. Anton (Tony) Beranek (nee Helen Cave)

Joseph Rees Family
Joseph Rees was born in 1861 in Pembrokeshire, South Wales and in 1910 came to Canada with his wife Martha (nee Davies) and children, Herbert, David, Maggie and Tom. In October of that year he bought N.E. 1/2-34-42-35-W4 from W.L. Steele, who had only cleared about 27 acres of land, which he had homesteaded in 1900. In 1918, the south quarter was purchased from Mr. Fraser, with about 8 acres cleared. Mr. Fraser's house was moved to the farmyard to become a pumphouse that is still in use. In 1911, a tornado cut a hundred-foot swath through the heavy timber on the south quarter. This same tornado wrecked Turner's barn, killing some of the livestock. Joseph's son Tom, had journeyed east to collect a rake and mower purchased earlier and not liking the look of the storm, stopped at Jenkin's home to gain refuge. John and Tom, in the safety of the barn, clung to the barn door as dirt and dust were blown about. On venturing out, they found the Johansen boy plucking money from the willows. He had tied his horse to the trees and the storm had tossed h is wallet and money around, skewering money on the branches. In 1920, Joseph and Martha moved to Vancouver, British Columbia until their deaths in 1949 and 1943, respectively.
Based on excerpt from: Ponoka Panorama (1973)


"Pioneer Biographies"
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