Monday, January 11, 2021


       My Dad, Emil Kline, was born on the homestead in 1912. They'd been on the homestead for seven years but he often said he missed it. He wished he had been old enough to be a pioneer like his Dad or grandparents.

      However my Dad always said he had a good childhood. He had two older  brothers who worked on the farm so Dad had more time to play with younger siblings. He also helped his mother in the yard. He carried water by pail to her garden. He looked after chickens, weeded the garden and brought wood into the house.

      The one room country school was on their farm and only about 400 m from their house. Dad liked school and considered himself a good speller. For some years he was paid 15 cents a day to light the fire and have the school warm by the time kids got there. His sister was paid 10 cents a day to sweep the floor. 

    The economy was good in the 1920's and many of the pioneer's children pursued higher education and left the farm. Dad was in gr.10 in 1928-29. He boarded with a farm family who lived right beside the town. He did farm chores in exchange for his board and room. Apparently most of his gr 10 consisted of playing pool. As a result he did not do well in Gr. 10. We all know that the depression began in 1929 so that was the end of his education. 

     He worked on a farm for the summer and fall of 1929. He didn't want to go home and stay on the farm with his parents so he took a train to Grand Prairie Alberta and lived with an uncle and his cousins. His uncle had a small sawmill so they sawed lumber and brought in more trees to saw up. In the spring of 1930 Dad knew he had to move on as his uncle had enough kids to look after. . He asked his uncle for money and the uncle pointed to a pile of lumber and said that's your pay. The uncle couldn't sell lumber so how would a 17 year old kid sell lumber so Dad moved on. 

    Sometime during this time he decided to change the spelling of his name. More on the spelling later. 

    His next move was to the Okanagan in British Columbia. He had two sisters in the area and an uncle. He picked up work where ever he could. He worked on a dairy farm, picked apples, cut timber, and worked in a saw mill. When He didn't have work he had to be creative to find a place to live. For a while he lived in a wooden granary on someone's farm yard. 

     Dad said he was happy through this period of his life as he said none of them had money so they were all the same.