Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Sunday, March 30, 2014

Being Remembered


The quilt presented to my parents when they moved away...
In 1974, My parents sold their long-time holdings in Milk River, Alberta and bought a ranch in the Spring Point community nestled in the beautiful Porcupine Hills west of Fort Macleod, Alberta.
It was a difficult time for the entire family, leaving the home we had known for generations and putting down fresh roots in a place eighty miles away.
Okay, yes, our family members came with us.
As did our cattle and horses and daily chores.
But the scenery – and the neighbours – were different.
Especially the neighbours.
No longer did we have anyone who could reminisce with us about our years without phones.
Navigating sketchy gravel roads.
Trips into town.
Brandings.
Barn dances.
School bus rides.
Everything that simply went into being ‘neighbours’.
For a short time, we felt bereft. (Ooh, good word!)
Then, slowly, the people who lived in nearby ranches introduced themselves.
They proved to be kind, wonderful people.
All of them.
And we were welcomed.
We attended new celebrations.
Brandings.
Dances.
Mom introduced the Spring Point community to the concept of quilting and started their first, ever, quilting club.
I met and married my Husby.
They were warm, wonderful years.
Our family was loved.
As Mom’s health worsened, my father took a position in another town and retired from ranching.
The rest of the family followed within a couple of years.
We do tend to stick together.
And the name ‘Stringam’ disappeared from the town rosters.
Moving ahead . . .
I was back in the ‘old stomping grounds’ once more.
I walked the old streets, but recognized no one.
Then I toured Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump, a World Heritage site which almost directly overshadows the old ranch.
And visited Heritage Acres, ditto.
I was speaking to one of the employees.
I mentioned that our family had lived just below the site.
She immediately asked who I was.
I told her.
“The Stringams!” she exclaimed. “Of course we remember you! Your Mom started the quilting club! It still meets. Every week!”
It’s been forty years.
In Fort Macleod, there are only a few people who remember the Stringams and their few short years there.
But those that do . . .


Details from the quilt.

16 comments:

  1. A litle bit of history...nice to be remembered isn't it?

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love this! What a legacy your mother created for the people there and for her children. Love the quilt!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ginger! I was thrilled to be her daughter!

      Delete
  3. Replies
    1. Sadly yes. But only as the girl who ran her horse through the neighbour's shed wall . . .

      Delete
  4. What a sweet, tender post...to be remembered 40 years later is a testimony to your family.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was truly amazed. And so proud of my Mom!

      Delete
  5. That must have been a lovely feeling. Imagine - the quilt group still going after so long!

    As a child, teen, young adult ... I never understood my parents' "boring" inquiries of those they met about where they lived and what their parents' and grandparents' names were ... now I understand and do it too. It's so nice to find the connections!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And now I wish I was there to listen to the answers!

      Delete
  6. I gazed at that gorgeous quilt so long, I almost forgot to read the post.
    It's so nice that you are all remembered.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I snuggle under that quilt every time I go to visit my Dad. It makes me forget, too. And remember . . .

      Delete
  7. Making your mark is especially nice when it's for something as heartfelt as this.

    ReplyDelete
  8. A very sweet post and I love the moments when I have returned to the town I was raised in. I think I don't have memories but when we drive through the town and look for homes I lived in the memories flow back. It is nice to be remembered too.
    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Isn't it amazing what a picture or a visit can dredge up?

      Delete

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