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Alfred Matiisen

Arnold, Alfred and Voldemar Matiisen pictured in Estonia, ca 1929. Alfred emigrated to Alberta in 1929, and he was followed by twin brother Arnold in 1937, and Voldemar in 1948. Alfred Matiisen was born in Estonia in 1906 and emigrated to Canada in June 1929. He worked for three years on various farms in southern and central Alberta before arriving to Eckville in 1932. He worked on the farm of John and Anna Moro, a pioneer family who arrived in Canada in 1904 from Voru, Estonia with their four children. In 1933, Alfred married Amanda Moro and a year later they bought their first farmland.

Alfred was a successful lifetime farmer in the Medicine Valley. He was also active in social and business activities of the Medicine Valley Estonian Society. The Estonian Hall was nearby and was a centre for Estonians in the community. His brother Arnold and wife Salme farmed across the road. Together these families were the social hub for Estonians from near and far. Alfred generously sponsored many Estonian immigrants to Alberta after the war, including his brother Voldemar and family.

He retired from farming in 1970 and moved to Summerland, B.C. The winters were spent in Hawaii. Alfred and Salme are both buried in the Gilby Kalmu Cemetery.

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