Tuesday, 18 August 2009

Trip Alberta & Saskatchewan Part 5 Wishart & Wynyard - the little town that time forgot

Wishart began in 1909 and the railroad came in 1928. When the the railroad spur was removed in the early 1980's, farmers needed to take grain to nearby Wynyard which became the center for many small towns. The hotel offered a visitor a room and meal ... but, no more.
Roads are incredibly wide. The town sites were set aside when the homestead properties were laid out.The buildings have been used by many businesses over the years. The town never had a chance to become more developed. How many have passed through this door? This general store closed last year. The residents in Wishart go to Wynyard. The solution? The automotive repair shop starts to branch out, including a liquor store and it also carries many basic items.My husband met many long lost cousins in the little town of Wishart and the larger community of Wynyard.They were friendly and helpful. Ukranian hospitality is well known and seems to often include a meal with progies and sausage ... comfort foods linked to the past. In such a small town it seems as if everyone is related in some way and they all know each other.

On our first visit to Skaskatchewan two years ago, we visited with Stella and her husband Tom. They were kind enough to introduce us to many in the community. Sadly, Tom passed away in May. Stella's daughter Bev. is with her in the photo and Stella's mother Nettie is below.Nettie at 95 lives by herself and was able to tell us about her trip from the Ukraine when she was a young girl. It is great that small towns have neighbors who lend a helping hand when needed. It takes a whole village to raise a child and to assist elders to stay in their homes.Agnes who lives in Winnipeg was lots of fun. She said she felt as if she had known Tony all her life, even though these cousins had just met.Eva married Frank Bozak and was a niece of my husband's grandfather. They had several children, cousins to my husband's dad. The photo below is Frank's parents.
Members of the family all say that Eva was the kindest and most patient woman they had ever met ... a great tribute to a mom!
We met with two Eva's daughters Mary and Jean, lovely ladies! Mary's daughter Sherl has been very helpful with tracing Tony's relations.Sherl drove her mother and neice, Ashley to see the CQA/ACC quilt show in Saskatoon.Another small town has even greater problems.We never saw a hotel ... or a person on the main street.This store had it's sign ... general repairs. The only sign of life was the local dog. The sunsets were always breathtaking ... whether the sun was glowing through trees or reflecting off clouds.
You can purchase a little house for $20,000. If you don't mind the cold winters!


comicbooklady said...

oooh I love ghost town photos! There is this great little Canadian tv show called Rabbit Fall and they film it in a town in Saskatchewan that looks an awful lot like Wishart.

Anonymous said...

Wishart isn't quite a ghost town! I still have relatives there! :)

Jameson said...

I grew up on a farm between Wynyard and Wishart. I actually went to elementary school in Wishart until we moved to Abbotsford when I was in Grade Six. Many nice memories of a simpler time then, I don't take that for granted.


Anonymous said...

As a child I used to go to Wishart every summer in the early 1980s, to visit my Uncle Gordon W it was very much more alive then. Thanks for the pictures.