THE BOORSMA FAMILY
The Boorsma family set sail to Canada in 1950. Seip and Dieuwke had made their home in Canada in 1949.The boys had started talking about immigrating to America, Australia, Canada ect.It was decided before they had children in different countries all over the world it would be better to move the whole family to one country and Canada was the choice to make mostly because Siep and Dieuwke were already settled there.
It took the family nine days to cross the ocean.Because it was a large family they had to go to the west first.The first stop was Alberta.From the time they arrived it was another five days on a train.Finally they arrived in Lethbridge.
Tired, dirty and not a word of English spoken.A farmer soon picked them up in a truck and brought them to “Sterling”. Once there they moved into a two room house on the prairie. A two room house for all nine of them. Here is where they had to look after 50 acres of sugar beets. The whole family went to work.
Some of the children helped Dad, some worked in “Raymond”and some even were able to go to school.
Mother had to bake her own bread.Because she spoke no English she would go to the neighbors house and go to her cupboard and point out the groceries that she needed.The farmer then would take her and Gerritje to the nearest store and help them find the groceries needed.
Between headaches from the heat and the home sickness they suffered this was not a very easy time for them. But strong minds and bodies they survived that first 6 months.Then in the fall of that year came another move. The farmer had no work for them. So it was everything back in the big crate and on to the train headed for Ontario. Siep and Dieuwke had found a farmer who had work for them and a house to live in.This was in Moffat,Ontario. The farmer was Mr. Grant Campbell.
Dad,Dave and Ted worked on the farm.Gerritje worked for
In 1952 Gerritje married Albert VanderVliet.
In 1955 John married Clara deJong.
It was in 1952 the first family picnic was held.It was held at the house in Moffat with all the family and friends from Nijland, Friesland.We held the next picnic the following year in 1953 there also.The picnic was moved to Coral Park in 1954 and 1955. This park is located on Twiss Road in the Campbellville area.
After some years it was decided to buy a farm in the areaof Moffat. At this time there was nothing available. Dad found a place in Dunnville.Dad bought a farm with some cows and barns and there was a house on the farm. He purchased this for $27,000. It was between milking cows and growing tomatoes and cucumbers.Who can forget the 3 tons of tomatoes coming back from the factory...we did not take the stems off!After the whole night of working in the garage they soon became Grade A and...good pay!
Disaster struck in 1961.Disaster in the formof“Floride Poison”.Most of the cows were lost and there was to be no milk from the calves.Dad and one of the boys were interviewed on television about this tragedy. They called it “Air of Death”.This was very bad for the Boorsma family as Ted became very ill and was in Toronto Hospital for quite some time.Ted had lost a lot of weight and bone density before any one had admitted that the cause was fluoride.
After some years Dave and Anne, Ed and Wilma, and Gerrit and Margaret were all married. It was now that Dad along with Ted, Reints and Gerrit bought a second farm. This is where Gerrit and Margaret live. The third farm was purchased and that is where Dave and Anne lived for a long time. It was decided to build a
home for Mom and Dad. This home was built on the Canal Road.
Reints and Riemke were married and moved into the “Home Farm”. After some years later Ted and Brenda were married and lived in town.
After a life time of hard work and their involvement in the Reformed Church where Dad served as an Elder and Mother as President of the Ladies Group. Mother wrote for the Church newsletter and