the spring of 1903 my parents, TA (Tom) Iddings and Elizabeth
Pridgeon-Iddings with Glenn
and Verne (my half brothers),
Alta (my two year old sister), and Don
Burdette (my one year old brother), came from Danbury, Iowa,
U.S.A. to make their home on land 3 miles south of Rimbey. Father had
previously come to find a location, purchased 2 quarters, and filed
on a homestead.
The household goods, stock and machinery were shipped by rail to Ponoka,
and the family came by train. They first lived in the "Joiner Place"
which was 1 1/2 miles south of Rimbey. That house was in use up until
the time Walter and Essie Peabody built a new dwelling. While living
there, young Don Burdette died in an accident when his clothes caught
fire from sparks that came from the heater. Donnie was the first to
be buried in the Rimbey Cemetery.
That first summer a barn was built in an eastern style with siding running
vertically. Four rooms were built into the northwest part of the barn
to be used later for grain, but initially became the family's living
rooms until the new house was built. There was timber in the country,
and sawmills were already in operation, and all other supplies had to
be hauled from Lacombe or Ponoka.
Uncle Dick Pridgeon, mother's brother,
also immigrated to the area with his sister Emma
and her husband, Wes Diamond. They lived across the creek 1/2 mile
east of where the school was later built. In June 1904 Aunt Emma died
when her first child, Alvin Diamond,
was born. She too was laid to rest in the Rimbey Cemetery. My mother,
late with child herself, cared for baby Alvin who was six weeks old
when I (Bernice) was born. My birthplace
was the new barn, with Mrs. Grueneuch (also called Mrs. Greeneye), a
midwife in attendance.
Mrs. Grueneuch was from Russia, and had taken the same medical studies
as doctors, but because she was a woman was not allowed to continue
with her education, nor practice as a doctor. She lived down towards
By the time my brother Homer was born in 1906, the house
had been built.
The people I remember while very young were the Coverdales,the Langmuirs,
Mike Uhls, the Symonds, the Bowkers, Uncle Dick
Pridgeon and Mr. Springer. I played with dolls upstairs in the Symond's
log house. My first teacher was Miss Smith from New York City.
Iddings & first family: Thomas, wife Elizabeth Dean, and sons
Lynn, Glen & Vern
Photo from "Over the Years: A History of Rimbey"
notes on Iddings family:
Thomas Iddings (born 31 December 1856 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania,
USA) was the 2nd husband of Elizabeth Pridgeon (born on 5 November
1872; died: 29 June 1960 in Oto,Woodbury County ,Iowa, USA)
whose parents were Isaac Pridgeon and Nancy Ann Martin. Thomas
and Elizabeth married on 29 October 1899. They had the following
Alta (born 23 October 1900 Anthon,Woodbury County,Iowa,
USA; married Charles R. Wilton)
Bernice Helen (born 17 August 1904 Rimbey,
Ponoka, Alberta,Canada; married Donald Frisken born 5 September
1901 Napanee,Ontario,Canada; children Donna & John E Frisken)
Homer (born 2 January 1906, Rimbey,
Ponoka County, Alberta, Canada)
Genealogy" database by M.W.