My husband's roots in Hythe qualify him to be a member of this organization. His great grandfather Aubrey Hawksworth made the journey in 1912 had a look a round and walked out again. He liked what he saw as he was back the following year to apply for a homestead. This was not any ordinary walk as there wasn't a road, and it was about 500 kms. Reading about other people's experiences dealing with the mud, swamps, mosquitos tells me this was not for the faint of heart! Here is a map that shows the journey.
Clayton's great great grandmother Susan (Whitman) Armstrong was also a pioneer to Hythe. She was living in Ontario and sent her two sons David and Edward Armstrong out to Hythe to see if they should relocate. The boys came back to Ontario and told the ladies to pack up. The next year Susan Armstrong a 55 year old widow made the move West with her two daughters Illa, Dessie and her explorer sons.
With so few people settled in and around Hythe it didn't take long for the bachelors to find out that young ladies had moved in. In 1919 Aubrey and Dessie Armstrong were married and their 2 daughters were raised on the farm. I recently came across this news article about the happy couple.
The Daily Herald Tribune - c.1969To most people, New Year's day simply means celebrating and welcoming the new year. But to Mr. and mrs. Aubrey Hawksworth it means a great deal more, especially the most recent holiday. Jan. 1 marked the 50th anniversary of marriage for the Hawksworths and friends and relatives came from far away to help celebrate the occasion. There were some 250 that filled the Legion Hall to wish the couple their best.
Aubrey Greber, a grandson of the couple was the master of ceremonies, and stories and anecdotes were recalled by Howard Smith, Frank Gaunt and others.Such stories brought to the mind of Aubrey Hawksworth, how he came up to Hythe district in 1913 from Lunenburg, N.S., by walking the Edson Trail from Edmonton.
"I came out of curiosity," he said. He cleared his land and homesteaded. He has been in this district ever since.
Mrs. Hawksworth listened to how her husband had landed in the area, and then explained that her initiation to the Peace River Country had been not quite as rough. She had come three years later in 1916 with her family as a young girl. The Armstrongs came all the way from Bruce county in Ontario, but when they came into the Peace, it was by train.
It was three years later when Dessie Armstrong and Aubrey Hawksworth decided that there was no better way of starting off the new year than as man and wife.
And so it was two children, seven grandchildren and three great-grandchildren later that the Hawksworths were meeting with old friends and relatives and aquaintances at the Hythe Legion Hall. Mr. Hawksworth, at a young 80, is now retired from farming, and he and his wife, at 70, now live in the town. He still takes a walk downtown when the weather is descent or when its not, sits in a warm house and reads. And how have the 50 years been?
"They've been good..."
My husband is pretty proud that his family settled in Hythe 100 years ago this year and hopefully soon he will officially be an Old Timer!!