OF AMELIA MARON

By:  Amelia Maron as told to her eldest son Oswald (Ossie) Bauer.

From: the Michael Maron and Karolina (Croissant) Family History by Joyce Martin and Joan Sam (Muhlbier) - Published 1984.


Amelia Maron was born 27 February in Friedrichsfeld, Russia and Died 5 August 1987 in Vermilion, Alberta. She was the 3 rd child of of Michael Maron and Karolina Croissant. She married Christopher Bauer on the 19 of December 1915.

My Mother's (Amalia Bauer) life as I remember it when she cane over from Russia and, as we lived as a family.

Mother was born In Southern Russia. She had her schooling in the Russian and German languages in the villages of Eyorenst and Friedrichsfeld, the latter being the village where her dad Michael Maron was Mayor for several years. He also operated a fair sized flour mill.

Mother had 4 brothers and 5 sisters. Jacob, John, Katherine, Christina, Elizabeth,  (twins) Gustav and Lydia, Reinhold and Anna.

Jacob Maron being the oldest had emigrated to Canada before 1912. He had been in the army and claims to have been in training with Joseph Stalin, who later was leader of Russia. Jacob Maron said it was time for him to leave Russia as a war was pending.

The family followed In 1912. They were to sail In April 1912 on the Titanic but due to some real estate matters they had to postpone their sailing until October 1912. The family landed in New York on October 1912 and cleared customs at Portal, North Dakota and arrived in Lacombe, Alberta for a stay of approximately ten days, then on to Coronation, Alberta.

At that time there were no railways east of Coronation, Alberta. it was a memorable day for the Maron family when they finally arrived in Coronation, Alberta. Some relatives by the name of Kary happened to be in Coronation for supplies as this was the end of steel and was the nearest supply center at that time. There was one train per week, so the Karys thought they should check to see if the Marons had arrived, and sure enough there they were, "needless to say that this was a very happy reunion indeed".

In a very short time all their belongings were loaded onto the wagons for the long trip of some 40 miles southeast of Coronation. As the railroad came farther east the little railroad station was called Loyalist, which does not exist today.

The Marons spent their winter months with their eldest son Jacob and some of the family stayed with Karys who settled there earlier, as he felt during his military training that a war was pending.

How well I can remember him telling of his experiences In the army. He also said he trained with Joseph Stalin who was not popular, as he was very determined to get to the top. He also spoke of the Manchurians, Turks and Kozoks coming into the Ukraine, all this convinced him that Russia would be in trouble.

In the spring Marons settled in the municipality of Wiste, south of Loyalist, Alberta in the Freda School District. They also attended Freda Lutheran Church.

About 1914 Amalia and Elizabeth Maron started to work as waitresses at the Stettler Hotel.

Elizabeth met Gotfried Riedwig  who was a cook for C.P.R. passenger train that ran between Galgary and Winnipeg, Manitoba. With Gotfried Riedwig's persuasion, Amalia and Elizabeth Maron went to work at the C.P.R. hotel in Galgary, which is known as the Palllster.

Elizabeth and Gotfried were married and had one son Ernest. It was about six weeks after Ernest's birth that Elizabeth passed away. On the death of her sister, Amalia came back to live with her parents Michael and Karolina Maron, who also provided a home for Ernest Riedwig their infant grandson. (Ernest later changed his name to Maron.)

In 1914 Amalia met Christopher Bauer, a persistent young fellow (as Mother often helped with all farm chores etc.).

Christopher was helping her  to shingle Michael Maron's hip roof barn when the scaffold broke and they both fell to the ground, as Chris Bauer was always being concerned about his fellow partners and friends, he picked Mother up and said "are you hurt" as Mother started to laugh she said "of course not you dumb ox".

This was the beginning spark that kindled a close relationship which ended up in marriage. Amalia and Christopher were married  in the Freda Lutheran Church December 19, 1915.

Christopher (who was soon nick-named Chris) was a very jovial man and a great provider for his wife and family who was always first and foremost on his mind.

Dad and Mother rented land south of Loyalist. Dad had a case steamer and thresher, which he used for custom threshing and also for breaking the prairie sod.

I remember them telling me of stubble fires caused by sparks from the smoke stack of the steamer. There was one incident when the stubble. field caught fire causing quite a concern to save the steamer, thresher and straw pile, luckily the grain was always hauled away to bins in the yard. In order to put out the fire the men put Michael (Amalia's  father) soaking wet on a wet binder canvas and poured more water over him as he dried off and proceeded to pull him thru the fire and fortunately saved everything. Dad and Mother spent a lot of time digging in dead mew and hauling rocks to get the steamer out of a gumbo flat, anyone who has seen a gumbo flat will understand. These are patches on the prairie that could cover an area of ten square feet to several hundred acres. These areas appear dry, you can walk over them, they have a thick crust and will support a lot of weight, but have soft spots that support about 200 pounds, if the crust breaks you are In something very slippery and very sticky, which will stick to boots, plow sheers and horses fetlocks. I have seen horses with balls of gumbo on their fetlocks the size of golf balls, that would have to be cut off. Often we had to clip the fetlock to avoid this.

I remember Dad and Mother talking about some of the farmers using oxen for plowing etc. and in the mosquito season the oxen would run into the water and could not be brought out until the cool of the day and anyone who was fortunate enough to have horses usually had a smudge pot on a pole between the horses, this would consist of sage grass and wet manure to keep a smoke, so man and beast could cope with mosquitoes and flying sand ants.

Over the years things weren't improving, Dad and Mother got the pioneering spirit again and thought prosperity was ahead so decided to go west of Rimbey, Alberta, what is known as the Lo-La Mae District, to homestead.

This didn't Prove to be a good move, as they got a few acres cleared, Mother got sick and had to go to the Lacombe Hospital for most of the winter, Gustav Maron and Emanuel Bauer came to Rimbey for part of the winter to cut tamarack poles to ship east to the prairies. They worked very hard but this also proved to be a loser. In the spring Mother was able to come home but was very weak. One summer day Mother was baking bread and there was a chimney fire. Dad was clearing brush out back, but he was too late to save anything. They then moved into the hamlet of Rimbey.

Dad was a qualified old country black smith and started a black smith shop, times were hard and Dad gave too much credit and this did not pay off.

They moved back to try their luck again south of Loyalist. A lot of this was during the flu epidemic of 1918 and 1919. Dad built himself a water well drilling machine and drilled a number of water wells, some of these are still pumping today. (from 1919 to 1985).

Through all the hardships they loved each other and shared their good times with the bad. They lived a happy life together which to this day reflects on their sons.

The land they were able to rent South of Loyalist was always of the less productive land so once again Dad returned to black smith work for the farmers of the area to supplement their income. He sharpened plow sheers by hand at 25 to 35 cents a sheer.

Due to frost and light crops at Loyalist they decided to move to Veteran in 1925. There seemed to be a climatic dividing line, North of the R.R. track 'wet' belt, what the government at that time called the 'wet' and 'dry belt' and credit seemed to be easier on the North side. It was one of the best moves Mother and Dad made. They bought a section of land from Fred Davis who owned the Veteran Hotel and rented a quarter section from Doc Ballentine. (He got his nickname 'Doc' from applying first-aid to one of the ball players who got hit with a ball  while he was umpire at the game.)

Next cane the depression, the dirty thirties and the dust storms darkened the skies for three days at a time. It used to get so dark Mother lit the coal-oil lamps in the middle of the afternoon and put wet towels on the window sills and door thresholds so the dust wouldn't get so bad In the house. Often a farmer would string a wire from the house to the barn so he could find his way back to the house as  these storms of dust would obscure all vision. In 1934 the grasshoppers also came and ate what little crop there was.

Can well remember Mother and my oldest brother Reinhold and myself roaming the pasture each packing a twine bag into which we gathered dry cow chips which were carefully put away to keep dry, these we used to cook and bake the summer meals as there was no wood for miles.

Times were hard In the thirties, eggs 20 cents a dozen. A 200 lb. hog - $1.50. A thousand pound steer  for $7.00. Oats at  50 cents a bu., wheat at 18 to 20 cents a bu. depending on the grade of wheat.

Mother took her place In the field, driving a six horse team, seeding, plowing, harrowing and driving the 15~30 McCormlck Deering steel wheeled tractor in those dusty days. My brother and I did the chores and kept the house clean after school.

In October 1935 the family moved to a farm south of Mannville where they farmed until 1950 when Dad passed away, he had cancer of the pancreas. Mother moved to Vermilion in 1951 and ran a boarding house for years. After she started to slow down she quit the boarding house and lived in her house and enjoyed her garden and her flowers until December 1980 when she had stroke and she was admitted to Vermilion Health Care Complex in poor health and was not able to feed herself for approximately five months. She rallied after a lot of loving care and was able to transfer to the Alice Keith Nursing Home in 1981. She enjoys the convenience of the Home and has her friends close that visit her.

In July 1982 the government bought her house for Highway #41 right of way as the highway was re-routed through Vermilion, Alberta and went past the front of their house.

Mother was 87 years young on February 27, 1984. She is in fair health and still gets about by herself and enjoys the homey atmosphere which is practiced at Alice Keith Nursing Home and will enjoy her remaining years if her health stays.

(Amelia Died 5 Aug 1987 following a stroke 14 July.)

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