There is no doubt that I am a proud Canadian. In fact, on my Dad’s side of the family my great nephew and niece are eighth generation Canadians, possibly ninth. From what I have found out the first Whyte that we have knowledge of came to Hemingford, Quebec in 1823, from Cavan County, Ireland. They came on the advice of a relative; however we are not sure if it was a sibling or a parent. The information on Robert and Elizabeth’s children, is missing so the next one in line that we know of is my Great Grandad Whyte, Frederick John Cockerline Whyte, born in 1870 in Hemingford. I actually remember meeting him when I was very young. He was quite an intimidating big man for a small girl, with the biggest head of wavy pure white hair, parted in the middle. His companion was a cockatoo who sat on his shoulder and could talk. At six he was pretty daunting! He lived to be 94 years old. The story that I just recently heard was that Grandad Whyte had come out West to work on a farm for the summer and thought it would be a wonderful life for him and is family. He purchased a quarter section of land and in 1904 crossed the country to Craik, Saskatchewan with his wife and four small boys. According to one of the sons, my Uncle Roy, seven at the time, they travelled across the country by CP Rail in a box car or what was referred to at the time as a settler’s car, with all their belongings, two teams of horses and some chickens on a journey that took seven days. My Grandpa and the three brothers settled nicely into farming life until the family moved to Florida for a few years. Grandad Whyte’s wife contracted TB and was told that would be the best place for her. But the boys missed Canada and moved back to Hussar, Alberta in 1919. According to my Grandmother they were cowboys, traveling to Montana to catch wild horses, break them and then selling them. It was on one of these trips that my Grandpa came down with Typhoid Fever. He died at the early age of 28 leaving behind a wife and two young children. My Dad was one of those children. He grew up in the Brooks area, moving to Calgary in 1950. Here, he met my mother, married and had five children. He now lives a good life at the age of 90; and says he wants to live to be 94. I’m sure he will. My brothers have the children, a total of nine altogether; seven boys, two girls. My oldest nephew, Trevor, has the children that are eighth generation Canadian. I think there may still be time in my life time for my great nephew to have children making them ninth or tenth generation Canadians. Not a small feat in this young country of Canada.
Cheryl W – Coril Holdings Ltd.