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Pioneering in Alberta—Maurice Destrube’s Story

After tennis. From left to right: (standing) Maggie, Dan, Nora (Maggie's sister), Maurice, and Sylvie; (sitting) Paul and Georges.The following excerpt has been reprinted from Pioneering in Alberta–Maurice Destrube’s Story. Destrube was a settler of both English and French origins who, reflecting back on his early years in Alberta, describes a brief encounter with a group of new French-Canadian settlers and the colonizing agent who had encouraged them to settle in the Canadian prairies.

From Chapter Five: Settling In

by Maurice Destrube

With spring came a number of French Canadian habitants, escorted by Father X, who was also an immigration officer. He recruited them in Québec and the state of Maine. Instead of coming out first to look over the situation for themselves, he induced them to sell everything  The Destrubé famliy in front of the log cabin, 1912. From left to right Geroge, Sylvie, Guy, Ernest, Maurice, and Maggie.and come west with their families. His brother, he said, would find them good land to farm. Many were bitterly disillusioned and went back east. Those that remained quickly adapted themselves to the new conditions and formed a strong Roman Catholic settlement a few miles east of Moose Lake, bringing with it a good deal of traffic between it and the mission in St. Paul de Métis. As the trail passed quite close to our shack, which was midway between these two points, we had many seeking a night’s shelter and feed for their teams.


  • Destrube, Maurice.; Hendrickson, James E.; Macleod, R.C. Pioneering in Alberta: Maurice Destrube’s Story. Calgary, Alberta: 1981.

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