© Southwest Booster photo by Jason Kerr.
A member of the Gannon family from Gouldtown accepts a copy of the Gannon's historical land grant at the 2014 ISC Century Family Farm Awards. A total of 71 family farms were recognized in the Swift Current area, out of 308 across the province.
An important piece of Saskatchewan’s past was recognized at the Credit Union iPlex in Swift Current on June 3rd.
Over 70 local farming families were honoured for their longevity at the 2014 Information Services Corporation (ISC) Century Family Farm Awards. The awards recognize the contributions of families who have farmed the same land in the province for 100 years.
“It’s an honour,” award winner Doug Davidson said. “I’m pleased to be here with so many other people to get our 100 year award. I think it’s a real privilege.”
Davidson, who farms in the Ponteix area, took a humorous view of the family’s success.He said it takes plenty of stubbornness and perseverance to make a farm work.
“I have and I’m sure that my father and grandfather before me had reason to think that,” Davidson said with a chuckle when asked if he ever wondered why he became a father. “My son’s now coming along, he’s fourth generation. We take the good with the bad, the ups and the downs.”
Davidson’s aunt, Ann Robins, was also on hand for the ceremony. Ann was one year old when she first arrived at the Davidson homestead with her parents. She was introduced to an ovation from all those in attendance.
The Century Farm Awards originally started in the 1980s, and after a brief absence reappeared in the mid-2000s. There were 308 such families recognized across the province this year, providing a rich showcase of Saskatchewan perseverance.
“We wanted a way to give back and recognize those farm families here in Saskatchewan who’ve given so much,” spokesperson Colleen Hawkesford said. “This is our way of saying thank you to the province of Saskatchewan.”
Recipients of the Century Award receive their choice of either a wall plaque or a gatepost, along with a copy of their original land grant. The ISC has books full of original grants and titles, which they scan and copy for each family.
“We are the keeper of important historical documents like land titles, geographical information, maps and things like that,” Hawkesford explained. “This allows us to use the information that we’re responsible for keeping and to give it back.”
It’s a moment of pride for the families who were recognized, but also an opportunity for reflection. For his part, Davidson said any farmers that love what they do will last, despite the difficulties.
“If farming is in your blood, and you love farming, and you love doing what you’re doing, yeah, you’ll be there as long as you want to be there. I’m sure that you’ll find a way to do it, and it’s a good life.”
This year's honourees were saluted during events in Regina, Swift Current and Saskatoon.
Regional recipients were:
Craig Reynolds - Abbey.
Kevin Braaten - Aneroid.
Lance Esson - Beechy.
Edward and Ella Holden - Beechy.
Richard and Cindy Camphaug - Cabri.
Jay Jones - Cadillac.
Doug Mackie - Chaplin.
Jim Mackie - Chaplin.
Thomas Shopa - Chaplin.
Frederick Shopa - Chaplin.
Boyd Coburn - Climax.
Allan Mything - Climax.
Dianne Nerada - Climax.
Stanley Peterson - Climax.
Darrell and Howard McKelvey - Consul.
Pat Armstrong - Eastend.
David Banford - Eastend.
Richard Banford - Eastend.
Kenneth and Todd Humphrey - Eastend.
Randy and Shannon Morris - Eastend.
Stuart David - Eastend.
Patricia Atkinson and Evelyn McCuaig - Eastend.
Monty and Bev Poirier - Fir Mountain.
Tim Hudec - Fox Valley.
Beth Querengesser and Peter Lodoen - Fox Valley.
John Wagner - Fox Valley.
Robert Akre - Frontier.
Alan Dumontel - Frontier.
Richard Schlageter - Glen Bain.
Grant McLean - Glentworth.
Archie Gannon - Glentworth.
James and Dawn Kalinowski - Gull Lake.
Doug Logan - Gull Lake.
Carl, Lois and Darrel Anderson - Kyle.
Richard Bull - Kyle.
Wendell Gunderson - Kyle.
Stuart Marshall - Kyle.
Robert Peterson - Lacadena.
John and Agnes Smith - Lafleche.
Alfred Elsasser - Leader.
Clifford George Nagel - Leader.
Jerry Seifert - Liebenthal.
Vince Topola - Limerick.
Denis Chabot - Mankota.
Walter and Dwayne Gerhart - Mankota.
Brian Highsaw - Mankota.
Olga Williamson - Mankota.
Neil Christie - Maple Creek.
Kevin Kriwokon - Maple Creek.
Irene A. Peecock - Maple Creek.
Gertrude Prentice - Maple Creek.
Alfred and Freda Wakelam - Maple Creek.
Arthur and June Schmidt - McCord.
Gaetan and Joanne Girardin - Meyronne.
Vance Sanderson - Piapot.
Pierre and Peter Dudragne - Ponteix.
Gordon and Shiela Henderson - Ponteix.
Claude Picray - Ponteix.
Patrick and Donna Kunz - Richmound.
Darcy Johnson - Robsart.
Russell Buscholl - Sceptre.
Gerry Filyk - Sceptre.
Wayne Bassendowski - Shamrock.
Manly and Janet Magnuson - Shaunavon.
Arthur Buckingham - Swift Current.
Ronald Button - Swift Current.
Robert Kruse - Swift Current.
Jack E. Martens - Swift Current.
Gordon Olson - Swift Current.
Lynn Thomas - Swift Current.
Ernie and Melva Wallin - Tompkins.