John Powell Writes from Canada

From the May 26, 1899 Skidmore Standard, page 1:

Canada Letter
John Powell Writes From His New Home

South Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
May 19, 1899

To Skidmore Standard:

We take pleasure in giving to our many friends this means of hearing from us in our new country home.

Leaving Omaha the 4th of April amid snow and rain, landing in South Edmonton the 7th, we find pleasant weather and moderately good roads.  On our arrival we found our car had landed after a ten days journey, with the contents in the best of condition.  Quite a number have lost stock through careless shipping.

Of the number that have arrived so far, several have not been able to secure rental farms.  And still they come.  Just last week there came in an “extra” bringing 240 foreigners.  In fact every train brings some one to our fine country.  So vast has been the emigration to this place that board could hardly be secured to accommodate the throng.

This country is being settled quite fast and the price of land is advancing rapidly; while back from the railroad about 25 or 30 miles good land can be secured, yet near it land is all taken.

Land that we purchased last summer for $3 per acre is now worth $6, and in the same vicinity all government and railroad land is taken.

At this writing most all seeding is done.  Wheat and oats growing nicely, fields green, and never a better prospect for good crops.  Grass affords good pasture, as cattle have been on the range for two weeks.

We have had fine weather, so far, with the exception of a few days.  Had a 5 inch snow the 1st of May, but the sun came out warm and it was soon gone.  Did not stop farm work at all.  Had a fine rain last night.

Seed oats are very high this spring, being worth 40 cents per bushel.  This is caused by the great quantity shipped from here to Manitoba for seed.

Wages are not very promising owing to the great number wanting work.

We are in best of health.  Feel very much at home with good, sociable neighbors around us.

Respectfully,
John E. Powell

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