Hi there Canada and The Senior Paper:
I am not a Canadian, nor am I a senior, however, I am seeking help from the senior citizens of Canada and especially those with connections to Saskatchewan. My name is Kenneth Frost Lie. I am 36 years old from Norway. For some years now, I have been a genealogist researching my heritage.
My maternal grandmother was born on July 4, 1929, in a place called Sokndal in Norway. She was born into a very poor family. At night, after her mother put the kids to bed, the older ones remember hearing their mother cry because she was so hungry and didn’t have anything to eat, as she had given them what little food they had.
A month before my grandmother was born, her father (my great-grandfather), Peder Ingvald, took the long journey from Sokndal to Canada. Like many others, he emigrated to America to work and provide for his family.
I believe he saw and ad in a local newspaper from Canadian National Railways and their Department of Colonization and Agriculture program – a cooperative program directed by the Canadian government and railway companies CNR and CPR to boost the economy, settle people, and build towns along the railway.
Some came to buy land and some came to work as farmhands. My great-grandfather was a farmhand working on at least two or three farms. My problem is that I don’t know where.
I do know that he came to Canada by ship from Southampton, England in June 1929. He disembarked in Quebec and a passenger list shows him going by CNR to Winnipeg. He was a landed immigrant, so his papers were arranged before he came.
No evidence so far
Peder Ingvald returned to Norway in late 1932. He died tragically in an accident in 1946 and never revealed any details about his time in Canada. He did send some photos home to Norway though.
I cannot say with any assurance where they were taken, however, some of them were developed in Melfort and Regina.
I have tried many things to track down where he might have lived or worked, but I haven’t found any evidence so far. I have tried contacting several museums and genealogical societies, hired a professional historian, and more.
He may be listed in the 1931 Canadian Census, but that is not available until 2023.
My grandmother is turning 90 this year and I would be so happy if I could inform her about her dear father and his time in Canada.
One thing that is known about his time in Canada is a minor fact, but maybe there is someone out there who can remember things connected to this event.
Some years after he returned to Norway, between 1933 and 1946, he got a letter from Canada telling him that one of the farm owners he worked for was kicked to death by one of his own horses. According to family stories, the farm owner was known to be hard and strict on his horses.
I have searched newspapers’ archives about this, but haven’t found a story that fit the timeline.
Answers urgently sought
It is impotant for me to find an answer about this before my dear grandmother passes. Her health is not getting better with age. This has brought her and I closer together and nothing would please me more than if I were able to make her happy.
I am hoping that maybe readers may see something or someone they recognize in these photos, and maybe a house, building, landscape typical of a specific place, or something else.
I have tried everything online and hope those who read The Senior Paper and those old enough to remember stories from that far back may be able to help.
I would love to come to Canada to do research, but as a single father with a daughter of almost 13, I cannot afford to do that for now. I wish you all the best and would like to thank you for any assistance.
Publisher’s note: Anyone with any recollections, memories, or other information on Peder Ingvald of Norway, or farm(s) he may have worked on in Canada is asked to email Kenneth at his email address above.