By Cliff Swarbrick – Lacombe, Alta.
I lost my dad in 1934 when I was only 15. We were a family of six boys and two girls. I was the oldest boy. Mother hired a man for two years and then I took over, along with my brother.
We had no crop in 1937 and 1938. What there was, the grasshoppers took. We did get some hay out of the sloughs and we got a straw pile from a neighbour to feed the cattle.
A field of Russian thistle that we decided to cut, made enough for a large stack. We let the cattle eat it if they wanted to, but they wouldn’t touch it so my brother and I decided to put a fence around it – but not too good a one.
The cattle knocked it down and they cleaned it all up.
In 1939, the rain came back so we could grow some crop again.