Holland_Marsh_Dutch_Settlers.jpg

Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers

Privacy Level: Public (Green)
Date: [unknown] [unknown]
Location: Holland Marsh, Ontariomap
Surnames/tags: One_Place_Studies Canada Dutch_Roots
This page has been accessed 415 times.
This profile is part of the Holland Marsh, Ontario One Place Study.
{{OnePlaceStudy|place=Holland Marsh, Ontario|category=Holland Marsh, Ontario One Place Study}}
[Holland Marsh Google Map][Holland Marsh Plaque]

[Holland Marsh Wikipedia Profile]

Contents

Original 17 Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers

The original 17 settlers consisted of the following people:

  1. William Valenteyn;
  2. Jan Rupke;
  3. John van Dyke;
  4. Gerrit Brouwer-1792;
  5. Abraham Havinga;
  6. Harm Prins;
  7. Arie Barselaar;
  8. Marinus van Dyken;
  9. Ties Oosterhuis;
  10. Albert Biemold;
  11. Eeltje de Jong;
  12. Louis Boonstra;
  13. Adrianus (Jack) van Luijk;
  14. Karsjen Miedema;
  15. Simon Winter;
  16. Henry Nienhuis; and,
  17. Jacob van der Goot.

The Store

Henry Nienhuis was the first store owner in the Marsh. He and his wife first sold groceries out of their house in The Settlement and then later built an addition on their house for the store likely around 1940. The store had been called Holland Marsh Groceterias when owned by Cor and Marie Radder in the 1950s to 1961. Radders moved to the end of The Settlement when on February 27, 1961 they sold the store to Gerritje and Marinus van de Vis who renamed it Marsh Food Store and grew the business till 1967. Initially Oshawa Wholesale and then later National Grocers supplied the wholesale groceries to the store. Bob Lollinga was the long-time butcher at the store and lived to be over 99 years old. Lucia and John Warnaar bought the store from the Vandevis' in 1967 and held it till the 1970s. Warnaars later opened a variety store in Queensville. The building still stands in its original location but is in very poor condition. Radders moved to Calgary in the 1970s. Vandevis' moved to the Prins house on Bernhart Road in 1967 and then the Jackson farm in Tecumseth Township in 1968.

Holland Marsh Christian Reformed Church

The following ministers served the Holland Marsh CRC. They include:

  1. Rev. Martin Schans 1940-1945
  2. Rev. John Van der Meer 1946-1951
  3. Rev. Peter Lagerway 1954-1959
  4. Rev. John Hanenburg 1959-1966
  5. Rev. John de Pater 1966-1970
  6. Rev. Peter Breedveld 1970-1973
  7. Rev. Max Lise 1975-1981
  8. Rev. Hendrik Bruinsma 1982-1988
  9. Rev. Brenny van Daalen 1989-2008
  10. Rev. Richard Bodini 2010-2019
  11. Rev. Benjamin Gresik 2020-Present

Holland Marsh CRC

A listing of Marsh settlers and residents of Dutch ancestry follows:

Settlers and Residents of "The Marsh"

  1. Jacoba Andela Andela-13
  2. Keimpe Andela-12
  3. Sid Andela-1
  4. Martha Lollinga Baar-20
  5. Everett Baker-52608
  6. Trudy Baker Unknown-572380
  7. Ann Barselaar-3
  8. Arie Barselaar-1
  9. Arie Barselaar-2
  10. Betty Beintema-33
  11. Bouke Beintema Fokkens-24
  12. Clarence Beintema-28
  13. Florence Beintema-29
  14. Grace Beintema-30
  15. Hans Beintema-77
  16. Henry Beintema-27
  17. Joanne Hoving Beintema-24
  18. Johannes Beintema-41
  19. John Jr. Beintema-31
  20. John Sr. Beintema-26
  21. Peter Beintema-32
  22. Theresa Dawn Beintema-82
  23. Adriana Benschop-67
  24. John Berg-4539
  25. Wilma Bergsma-332
  26. Albert Biemold-3
  27. Eise Biemold-4
  28. Gertrude De Jong Biemold-6
  29. Harmke Biemold Van der Heide-74
  30. Hilda Rupke Biemold-1
  31. Katriena Verrips Biemold-9
  32. Dena Bierling-22
  33. Dick Bierling-6
  34. Henry Bierling-5
  35. Louwe Bierling-8
  36. Maartje Bierling Bolt-342
  37. Pieter Bierling-7
  38. JoyAnna Bodini-3
  39. Philip Bodini-2
  40. Rev. Richard Bodini-1
  41. Jane Bos-1424
  42. Titia Boswijk-33
  43. Martje Bierling Bolt-342
  44. Jean Boneschansker Miedema-230
  45. Robert Boneschansker-8
  46. Steve Boneschansker-11
  47. Ann Boonstra-142
  48. Bert Boonstra-146
  49. Betty De Haan Boonstra-643
  50. Henry Boonstra-144
  51. James Boonstra-147
  52. Lieuwe (Louis) Boonstra-140
  53. Lydia Guldemeester Boonstra-145
  54. Maaike Boonstra-453
  55. Marie Boonstra-143
  56. Tietje Boonstra Mozes-15
  57. Corrie Bootsma Unknown-572382
  58. Ted Bootsma-97
  59. Joh Brands-97
  60. Gertrude Brands Van Luyk-6
  61. Michael Brands-154
  62. Wendy Vandertol Brands-104
  63. Rev. Peter Breedveld-30
  64. Casey Brouwer-613
  65. Cornelis (Kees) Brouwer-608
  66. Daniel Brouwer-614
  67. Gerben "George" Brouwer-960
  68. Gerrit Brouwer-1792
  69. Jannetje Brouwer-611
  70. Johanna Toorenaar Brouwer-610
  71. John Brouwer-1794
  72. Martha Brouwer-1793
  73. Peter Brouwer-612
  74. Rev. Hendrik Bruinsma-49
  75. Jane Bruulsema-1
  76. Jim Buys-890
  77. Peter Buys-850
  78. Maria Havinga Colenbrander-84
  79. Gay De Boer-2206
  80. Wilhelmina Winter De Boer-539
  81. Albert De Jong-2946
  82. Ed De Jong-3393
  83. Eeltje De Jong-897
  84. James De Jong-2947
  85. Kathy De Jong-3395
  86. Klaas De Jong-1843
  87. Harriet Bierling De Jong-916
  88. John De Jong-3394
  89. John De_Jong-3510
  90. Martinus De Jong-898
  91. Teresa (Tess) De Jong-899
  92. Marie DeJong-52
  93. Alice De Pater-9
  94. Alice De Pater Teunissen-136
  95. Bea De Pater-7
  96. Jan (John) De Pater-8
  97. James De Pater-10
  98. Rev. John De Pater-5
  99. Margo De Pater-6
  100. Stephen De Pater-11
  101. Kathy De Valk-46
  102. Tjitske De Jong de Vries-832
  103. Jane Drost-399
  104. Gerard Eek-29
  105. Johanra Eek Wiegers-55
  106. Mae Eek Kearns-1506
  107. William Eek-6
  108. Albert Eisses-6
  109. Carl Eisses-10
  110. Ed Eisses-8
  111. Harry Eisses-4
  112. Henry Eisses-7
  113. John Eisses-5
  114. Larry Eisses-9
  115. Ron Eisses-11
  116. Catharina de Schutter Engelage-19
  117. Fred Engelage-85
  118. Hemmo Engelage-83
  119. Juanita Engelage-147
  120. Margaret Engelage-143
  121. Jane Buys Engelage-145
  122. William (Bill) Engelage-133
  123. Elze Van Hemert Essselink-1
  124. Johanna "Hannie" Van Dyke Eygenraam-1
  125. Ann Feddema-15
  126. Henry Feenstra-332
  127. Saapke Nicolay Ferwerda-62
  128. Wytska "Winnefred" Brouwer Ferwerda-75
  129. Edith Flach Petrusma-37
  130. Frank Flach-42
  131. Gea Flach Bos-804
  132. Harry Flach-64
  133. Irene Flack-1006
  134. Tom Flack-1005
  135. Boukje Beintema Fokkens-24
  136. Ebel Geertsema-243
  137. Ted Godron-2
  138. Benjamin Gresik-1
  139. Anne Greydanus-26
  140. Adrianna Guldemeester-3
  141. Danny Guldemeester-2
  142. John Guldemeester-1
  143. Pat Hagan-1598
  144. Timon Hagan-425
  145. Agnes Kramer Hamstra-106
  146. Dorothy Hamstra-101
  147. Frances Hamstra-105
  148. Hank Hamstra-102
  149. Jacob Hamstra-100
  150. Lena Weber Hamstra-103
  151. Shirley Hamstra-104
  152. Ann Hanemaayer-13
  153. Annette Hanemaayer-12
  154. Bert Hanemaayer-10
  155. Bram Hanemaayer-8
  156. Catharine Hanemaayer-11
  157. Jacqueline Hanemaayer-9
  158. Jennie Stevens Hanemaayer-2
  159. Catharine (Cathy) Holtrop Hanenburg-5
  160. Irene Hanenburg-9
  161. James Hanenburg-8
  162. Rev. John Hanenburg-4
  163. Rick Hanenburg-6
  164. Ted Hanenburg-7
  165. Abraham Havinga-29
  166. Corrie Miedema Havinga-71
  167. Donna Havinga-70
  168. Johanna Havinga-32
  169. Jean Eisses Hessels-48
  170. Rudy Heydens-4
  171. Klasiena Hamstra Hofman-1015
  172. Annette Herrema-101
  173. Adrianus Hordyk-20
  174. Anita Sikma Horlings-14
  175. Ann Horlings-10
  176. Bill Horlings-2
  177. Brenda Horlings-8
  178. Catriene Horlings-9
  179. Dave Horlings-61
  180. Elsie Horlings-1
  181. Elsie Horlings-28
  182. Frank Horlings-39
  183. Jane Horlings Maan-8
  184. Jean Horlings-37
  185. John Horlings-40
  186. Gail Horlings Unknown-402668
  187. George Horlings-13
  188. George Horlings-59
  189. Harm Horlings-3
  190. Harry Horlings-6
  191. Harry Horlings-12
  192. Henry Horlings-21
  193. Henry Horlings-41
  194. Kevin Horlings-45
  195. Kimberley Horlings-47
  196. Michael Horlings-46
  197. Murray Horlings-42
  198. Ray Horlings-62
  199. Rick Horlings-4
  200. Tim Horlings-44
  201. Tom Horlings-38
  202. Trien Horlings-7
  203. Veronica Horlings-63
  204. Walter Horlings-43
  205. Wolter Horlings-5
  206. Jane Horzelenberg-5
  207. Bas Hoving-53
  208. Bill Hoving-59
  209. Elizabeth Hoving-62
  210. George Hoving-56
  211. Harry Hoving-54
  212. Jane Hoving-60
  213. Jean Hoving-57
  214. John Hoving-61
  215. Markus Hoving-55
  216. Mike Hoving-63
  217. Suzanne Visser Hoving-58
  218. Bob Hovius-7
  219. Jake Hovius-6
  220. Jeanette Hovius-9
  221. Ninka Hovius Storm-865
  222. Rob Hovius-11
  223. Sid Hovius-8
  224. Ann Louis Huizingh-7
  225. Larry Huizingh-8
  226. Lambert Huisingh-6
  227. Alice Hyma-23
  228. Bob Hyma-19
  229. Dick Hyma-20
  230. Florence Hyma Unknown-452971
  231. Richard Hyma-5
  232. Rudy Hyma-22
  233. Gladys Jager-1158
  234. Elsie Janse Israels-23
  235. Doreen Janse-245
  236. Frank Janse-229
  237. Harriet Janse-246
  238. Jim Janse-233
  239. John Janse-232
  240. Marvin Janse-247
  241. Patricia Jansma-216
  242. Betty Jaques-811
  243. Ed Jaques-813
  244. Gail Jaques-810
  245. Helen Jaques Smith-253012
  246. Mary Ann Jaques Coffey-4676
  247. Nancy Jaques-812
  248. Ronald Jaques-809
  249. Terry Jaques-808
  250. Mary Schoenmaker Kapteyn-26
  251. Harmina Kiers Katerberg-10
  252. Albert Keep-247
  253. Gezina Keep Ros-340
  254. Greta Keep-248
  255. Kars Kiers-14
  256. Winnifred (Win) Knight Kiers-16
  257. Jo-Ann Meyer Kallenbach Kiers-20
  258. Mary Schoemaker Kapteyn-26
  259. Tietje Miedema Kloosterman-30
  260. Emma Knapper-196
  261. Rev. Peter Lagerwey-1
  262. Francois Le Roy-1050
  263. Arend Lieverdink-21
  264. Ralph Lise-7
  265. Rev. Max Lise-4
  266. Reny Lof-106
  267. Bauke (Bob) Lollinga-1
  268. Brian Maan-28
  269. Irene Maan-27
  270. Jean Maan-26
  271. Johanna Maan-25
  272. Hedy Van Dyke Matthews-3842
  273. Jean Matthews-10351
  274. Casey Mennega-3
  275. Clarence Mennega-4
  276. Shirley Mennega-5
  277. Ann Andela Miedema-278
  278. Art Miedema-276
  279. Ann Miedema-307
  280. Audrey Miedema-193
  281. Barb Miedema NN-1322
  282. Charles Miedema-210
  283. Charley Miedema-197
  284. Charlie Miedema-198
  285. Corrie Miedema-315
  286. David Miedema-213
  287. Ed Miedema-205
  288. Elisabeth Miedema-306
  289. Faye Willeboordse Miedema-190
  290. Frances Miedema-281
  291. Frank Miedema-192
  292. Grace Horlings Miedema-280
  293. Griet (Grace) Miedema-200
  294. Ina Vaandering Miedema-277
  295. James Miedema-201
  296. Jim Miedema-336
  297. Jean Boneschansker Miedema-230
  298. Joanne Miedema-199
  299. Joanne Colangelo Miedema-212
  300. John Miedema-207
  301. John Miedema-345
  302. Karsjen Miedema-214
  303. Karsien Miedema-333
  304. Kathleen Miedema-204
  305. Kenneth Thomas Miedema-273
  306. Klaske Visser Miedema-236
  307. Klaaske Vander Kooij Miedema-222
  308. Marylin Miedema-344
  309. Mary Ann Miedema-334
  310. Michelle Miedema-206
  311. Mike Miedema-221
  312. NN Miedema-213
  313. Rachel Miedema-203
  314. Sid Miedema-279
  315. Sid Miedema-308
  316. Sidney Miedema-189
  317. Simon Miedema-211
  318. Terri Mozes Miedema-208
  319. Thelma Miedema-335
  320. Theo Miedema-202
  321. Wally Miedema-228
  322. Tom Miedema-220
  323. Thomas Miedema-272
  324. Tom Miedema-332
  325. Wiebe (Walter) Miedema-188
  326. Winnie Jaques Miedema-209
  327. Ann Mozes-31
  328. Gary Mozes-22
  329. Gerrit Mozes-23
  330. Gerrit Mozes-30
  331. Jim Mozes-16*Tietje Boonstra Mozes-15
  332. Bertha Hanenburg Mouw-9
  333. Anne Mein Mulder-2487
  334. Jane Mulder-2497
  335. Katie Rupke Mulder-679
  336. Pieter Mulder-1330
  337. Haye B. Nicolay-23
  338. Peter Nicolay-24
  339. Edgar Niebuur-4
  340. Jeanette Niebuur-7
  341. John Niebuur-1
  342. Julia Niebuur-8
  343. Mary Niebuur-5
  344. Patricia Niebuur-6
  345. Rita Niebuur-2
  346. Rita Summers Niebuur-3
  347. Henry Nienhuis-149
  348. Akke Van Dyke Nieuwhof-27
  349. Gerard Nonnekes-11
  350. Homer Noordhuis-28
  351. Rita Biemold Nunnikhoven-2
  352. Bill Nydam-4
  353. Charlie Nydam-1
  354. Elsie Nydam-2
  355. Jean Nydam-5
  356. Shirley Ann Nydam-3
  357. Allan Oosterhuis-94
  358. Anne Oosterhuis Unknown-543030
  359. Gary Oosterhuis-145
  360. Gertie Van Luyk Oosterhuis-89
  361. Grietje Oosterhuis Boneschansker-7
  362. Jack Oosterhuis-144
  363. Ruth Noordhuis Oosterhuis-172
  364. Stoffer Oosterhuis-92
  365. Stuart Oosterhuis-93
  366. Ties Oosterhuis-91
  367. Rev. Dr. Tom Oosterhuis-143
  368. Hester Oussoren-21
  369. Jeanette Van de Ruitenbeek Oussoren-19
  370. Klaas Oussoren-20
  371. Grace Post-969
  372. George Postema-18
  373. Leni Posthumus-266
  374. Daniel Prins-159
  375. Harm Prins-154
  376. Henrietta Prins-153
  377. Henrietta Prins-961
  378. Herman Prins-156
  379. Penny Prins-551
  380. Winifred Prins-155
  381. Teena Procee-3
  382. Andrew Radder-4
  383. Cornelis Radder-11
  384. Cornelius Radder-5
  385. Cornelius Radder-8
  386. Christina Radder-46
  387. Darlene Radder-43
  388. Diana Radder-3
  389. Henry Radder-45
  390. Leanne Radder-47
  391. Nancy Radder-6
  392. Neil Radder-44
  393. Patricia Radder-42
  394. Paul Radder-7
  395. Florence Brouwer Rothman-141
  396. Alvin Rupke-28
  397. Dirk Rupke-140
  398. Donald Rupke-29
  399. Erick Rupke-30
  400. Fran Rupke Johnston-23130
  401. Gerald Rupke-141
  402. Helen Rupke-139
  403. Jan Rupke-26
  404. John Rupke-27
  405. Margery Rupke Collings-857
  406. Rev. Marten Schans-6
  407. Trudy Schuringa-36
  408. Christian Rupke-19
  409. Neltje (Nelly) Sneep Brands Rupke-35
  410. Sierk Rupke-25
  411. Hank Schaly-4
  412. Rene Schoenmaker-128
  413. Johanna Barselaar Schouten-634
  414. Gezina C. Keep Unknown-402639
  415. Riek Van Mazyk Sikma-6
  416. Margaret Smouter-30
  417. Anne Vandekuyt Sneep-8
  418. Jantje Herman Bierling Sneep-4
  419. Anne Marie Sneep-8
  420. John Sneep-9
  421. Neil Sneep-5
  422. Tony Sneep-3
  423. Frank Speziali-1
  424. Jim Speziali-4
  425. Linda Speziali-2
  426. Nancy Speziali-3
  427. Sieuwkje De Jong Stapert-13
  428. Albert Stevens-5191
  429. Annette Vandevis Stevens-5190
  430. William (Bill) Stevens-6605
  431. Betty Tamminga-41
  432. Ann Tjepkema Vlas-1
  433. Betty Tjepkema-22
  434. Christine de Faria Tjepkema-24
  435. Dorothy Farrell Tjepkema-21
  436. Gary Tjepkema-18
  437. Henny Popadynec Tjepkema-19
  438. Janie Whiteman Tjepkema-23
  439. John Tjepkema-20
  440. Sidney Tjepkema-17
  441. Nellie Toorenaar-5
  442. Willem Toorenaar-1
  443. Jacob Uitvlugt-2
  444. Jacob Uitvlugt-3
  445. Kitty Uitvlugt-5
  446. Peter Uitvlugt-4
  447. Eelkje van der Goot-7
  448. Jacob van der Goot-6
  449. Jacob van der Goot-10
  450. Linda van Voorst van der Goot-9
  451. Ted van der Goot-8
  452. Wilma Oosterhuis van der Goot-5
  453. Elsje De Jong Van der Heide-32
  454. Harmke Biemold Van der Heide-74
  455. John VanderMeer-727
  456. Rev. John Van der Meer-174
  457. Klaaske De Jong Vander Meer-416
  458. Helen Vander Sleen-7
  459. Limke Rupke Van der Veer-35
  460. John van Dijk-2155
  461. Audrey Van Dyk-301
  462. Gloria Van Dyk-302
  463. Karen van Woudenberg Van Dyk-303
  464. Mark Van Dyk-304
  465. William (Bill) Van Dyk-300
  466. Andrew Van Dyke-1324
  467. Albert Van Dyke-366
  468. Bob Van Dyke-369
  469. Debbie Van Dyke-411
  470. Eleanor Van Dyke-368
  471. Faye Van Dyke-410
  472. Glenda Van Hemert Van Dyke-367
  473. Hannie Van Dyke-382
  474. Dr. Janice Van Dyke-343
  475. John Van Dyke-1368
  476. Kevin Van Dyke-412
  477. Linda Van Dyke-1367
  478. Richard Van Dyke-1323
  479. Sid Van Dyke-342
  480. Terry Van Dyke-371
  481. Wally Van Dyke-370
  482. Wopke Van Dyke-364
  483. Betsy Van Dyken-40
  484. Beverly Van Dyken-59
  485. Celina Horlings Van Dyken-46
  486. Ed Van Dyken-56
  487. Frances Van Dyken-57
  488. Jake Van Dyken-64
  489. John Van Dyken-41
  490. Lynn Van Dyken-58
  491. Marinus Van Dyken-34
  492. Marvin Van Dyken-39
  493. Murray Van Dyken-42
  494. Murray Van Dyken-48
  495. Peter Van Dyken-38
  496. Susan Lise Van Dyken-47
  497. Wiert Van Dijken-82
  498. Joanne Tulp Van Gelderen-116
  499. Alex Van Hemert-22
  500. Audrey Van Hemert-18
  501. Christine Van Hemert-16
  502. Harry Van Hemert-24
  503. Irene Van Hemert-20
  504. Jacobus Van Hemert-23
  505. Jim Van Hemert-15
  506. John Van Hemert-25
  507. Nelly Van Hemert-19
  508. Sara Van Hemert-21
  509. Jacob Van Kessel-140
  510. Adrianus (Jack) Van Luijk-2
  511. Adrian Van Luyk-1
  512. Art Van Luyk-13
  513. Gertrude Van Luyk-6
  514. Greta van Luyk-9
  515. Irene van Luyk-7
  516. Peter van Luyk-2
  517. Peter Van Luyk-12
  518. Peter Van Manen-99
  519. Doreen Hainsworth Van Mazyk-3
  520. Janet Van Hemert Van Mazyk-2
  521. John Van Mazyk-1
  522. John Anthony Van Mazyk-2
  523. Bill Van Rooyen-2488
  524. Ann Van Schepen-23
  525. Dave Van Schepen-21
  526. Joanne Van Schepen-22
  527. Rev. Brenny VanDaalen-1
  528. Harry Vander Kooij-1
  529. Neeltje (Nelly) Van Hemert Van der Kooij-87
  530. Audrey Van der_Kooij-433
  531. Corrie Van_der_Kooij-432
  532. Aart Van Veld-3
  533. Barend Van Veld-5
  534. Evelyn Van Veld-6
  535. Franklyn Van Veld-9
  536. Geurtje Van Veld Hall Unknown-571831
  537. Henk Van Veld-8
  538. John Van Veld-10
  539. Timothy Van Veld-11
  540. Teunis Van't Veld-2
  541. Rita Van Westenbrugge-5
  542. Wilma Vander Kooi-101
  543. Sara Vander_Kooij-430
  544. Ray Vander Ploeg-256
  545. William Valenteyn-1
  546. Dictus Vanderby-2
  547. Jane Vanderby De Vries-3859
  548. Klaas Vanderwal-701
  549. Geraldine (Gerry) Noordegraaf Vandevis-10
  550. Marietta Stevens Vandevis-15
  551. Marinus van de Vis-11
  552. Dr. Theodore (Ted) Vandevis-11
  553. William (Bill) Vandevis-12
  554. Luktje Van Dyken Veld-15
  555. Ann Van Hart Hoekstra-869
  556. Anna Van Hart Nieuwland-90
  557. John Van Hart-18
  558. Joyce Van Hart-20
  559. Willy Van Hart-21
  560. Ron Van Hart-19
  561. Trudy Verheul-35
  562. Gerritje Vandevis Verhoog-2
  563. Arlene Kooring-Murray Verkaik-71
  564. Anthony Verkaik-69
  565. Arie Verkaik-57
  566. Charlie Verkaik-58
  567. Carol Weening Verkaik-64
  568. Debbie Vos Verkaik-70
  569. Doug Verkaik-52
  570. Elizabeth Verkaik-21
  571. Erin Verkaik-65
  572. Gary Verkaik-63
  573. George Verkaik-62
  574. Jack Verkaik-53
  575. Jacob Verkaik-50
  576. Jeremy Verkaik-68
  577. Joanne Verkaik-54
  578. Kelly Bellar Verkaik-67
  579. Laurie Verkaik-59
  580. Linda Verkaik Unknown-573413
  581. Margaret Verkaik Miedema-347
  582. Marvin Verkaik-55
  583. Nicole Vroom Verkaik-66
  584. Paul Verkaik-56
  585. Pieter Verkaik-26
  586. Trish Verkaik-61
  587. Trudy Verkaik Unknown-573415
  588. Victoria Verkaik-60
  589. Wynda Verkaik-51
  590. Al Verrips-8
  591. Dick Verrips-36
  592. Helen Verrips-35
  593. Agnes Visser Unknown-422620
  594. Brian Visser-4050
  595. Cynthia Visser-4051
  596. Lisa Visser-874
  597. Sam Visser-868
  598. Simon Visser-4052
  599. Peter Visser-3773
  600. Rick Visser-4049
  601. Rita Visser-4048
  602. Taeke Visser-1936
  603. Taeke Visser-873
  604. Teltje Visser Van Schepen-26
  605. Tena Visser-2628
  606. Bas Visser-1937
  607. Bastian Visser-2217
  608. Bastiaan Visser-1715
  609. Carol Visser Miedema-236
  610. Jim Visser-3772
  611. Mike Visser-3775
  612. Valerie Visser-2220
  613. Wayne Visser-2219
  614. Zoetje Visser Van Elderen-2
  615. Helena Brouwer Vogel-582
  616. Cindy Bodini Vording-1
  617. Harry Warnaar-11
  618. Johannes (John Sr.) Warnaar-8
  619. John Jr. Warnaar-13
  620. Kim Warnaar-14
  621. Lucia Warnaar-15
  622. Lucille Warnaar-12
  623. Andrew Weening-102
  624. Frank Weening-95
  625. Fred Weening-94
  626. Fred Weening-99
  627. John Weening-98
  628. Peter Weening-100
  629. Sid Weening-97
  630. Trudy Weening-101
  631. Walter Weening-96
  632. Albert Wierenga-56
  633. Arendina Wierenga-120
  634. Yvonne Wierenga-57
  635. Jake Wierenga-58
  636. Michelle Wierenga-60
  637. Richard Wierenga-59
  638. Geertruida Willemze Kool-615
  639. Hendricus C. Willemze-5
  640. Anne Verkaik Winter-6292
  641. Bill Winter-5811
  642. Charles William Winter-6223
  643. David Brian Winter-6325
  644. Dorothy Miedema/Middel Winter-1739
  645. Glenda Winter-6326
  646. Gloria Jean Winter-6324
  647. Jacob Winter-4905
  648. Jeanne Winter-6327
  649. Rita Winter Nydam-6
  650. Simon A. Winter-1740
  651. Wayne Winter-6322
  652. David Witt-3727
  653. Shirley Witt Unknown-572383
  654. Jane Wyngaarden-10

The Marsh and the Pyramids

An autobiography of Teddy Vandevis' childhood growing up in The Marsh from 1961 to 1968. This poignant memoir chronicles Teddy's story as he goes from playing pranks to working diligently in his parent's store and on an epic 14 km paper route during the harsh Canadian winters. Follow his journey of growing up in the Canadian village of Holland Marsh.

For copies, please go to: https://www.lulu.com/shop/teddy-vandevis/the-marsh-and-the-pyramids/paperback/product-22130947.html?page=1&pageSize=4

Vandevis, Teddy. (2015). The Marsh and the Pyramids. United States. Lulu Press.

One Place Study

This study has been registered with the global One Place Studies site and can be found at Ontario One Place Studies

Holland Marsh

by Harry Vander Kooij

In 1791 Samuel Holland, a major in the British Army and Surveyor General of Upper and Lower Canada, came to survey the area northward from Toronto. The region contained a water route from Lake Ontario to Georgian Bay via Lake Simcoe, with a portage west of present-day Aurora. Holland’s name came to be associated with the river that originally drained about 20,000 acres, including the area of the marsh, flowing into Lake Simcoe. The river had a landing at the southeastern boundary of the marsh. Although a corduroy road (logs laid crosswise) and a floating bridge were built between Holland Landing and Bradford in 1824 by Robert Armstrong, the area did not attract early settlement. In places the river’s course was barely discernable from the marsh reeds, which were flanked by swamps and hardwood brush on the higher elevations. John Galt of the Canada Company, a venture attempting to open former crown land to settlement, observed that the area was “a mere ditch swarming with mosquitoes, flies, bullfrogs and water snakes.”

A number of early settlers ventured onto the marshland and attempted to partially drain sections. Peat from such drained areas was used for fuel, or as rich soil for agriculture, but the area remained too wet, so these efforts were abandoned. Still, the idea of using the bog persisted. The plan that came to be favored called for lowering the Washago outlet of Lake Couchiching, north of Lake Simcoe, thereby lowering the water levels of Lake Simcoe and the Holland River, which would allow the Holland Marsh to drain. But shoreline property owners on Lake Simcoe, who anticipated great damage from such a scheme, prevented this idea from progressing beyond the talking stage. The first significant industry on the marsh developed after 1880 with the harvesting of grass and reeds. The hay was much in demand in Toronto and other urban centers as mattress stuffing. Initially strong hands and scythes were used. Later horse-drawn mowers did most of the work. Horses were ferried across flooded areas in flat-bottomed scows. To prevent the horses from becoming mired in the soggy ground, flat boards were strapped across the bottoms of their hoofs. With these the horses could step along, much like someone on snowshoes. This haying business reached its peak about 1915.

A few years previous to this, David Watson, a young farmer from the Scotch settlement, a hamlet just west of Bradford, of which only a Presbyterian church remains, sparked renewed interest in draining the marsh. He was convinced that large parts of the Holland River Valley could be developed into agricultural land once it was drained. He invited William Henry Day, a professor of physics at the Ontario Agricultural College (now the University of Guelph) to do some testing in the marsh to ascertain the feasibility of draining. About 1910, after carefully examining the marshland and surrounding watershed, Day concluded that draining some of the marsh was possible without lowering the water level in Lake Simcoe.

Watson’s enthusiasm for the project had a contagious affect on Day. The next year Day built up a small plot of land from one to two feet and planted it with produce. He reported, “All the vegetables matured, the quality being excellent, the celery carrying off the prize at the local fall fair.”

He found that the black muck and organic material was almost identical in composition to the well-known onion lands of Point Pelee, south and east of Windsor, Ontario; the celery land at Thedford, Ontario (west and north of London); and the well-known celery fields of Kalamazoo, Michigan. As a result of these satisfactory results, he was able to form a development syndicate that purchased about 4,000 acres of marshland. In spite of his enthusiasm, Day was not able to convince the nearby municipalities to become involved. When World War I began, the effort was shelved. In 1923 Day resigned from his position at Guelph and moved to Bradford.

He began an energetic campaign to interest the townships of King and West Gwillimbury (the Holland River is their common boundary), the Village of Bradford, and the owners of over 7,000 acres of land in the vicinity in draining the marsh. Following the circulation of a petition, the proposal to drain the marsh was approved under the province’s Municipal Drainage Act. On 16 April 1925 a contract amounting to $137,000 was awarded to the Toronto firm of Cummins and Robinson to drain the marsh. Initial calculation indicated that the cost of the work would be $21 per drained acre. Key to the effort was the digging of a drainage canal around the project area. Plans prepared by Alexander Baird, an engineer from Sarnia, called for a canal 17.5 miles long, with an average depth of 7.5 feet and a width from 38 feet to 70 feet. Excavated material was to be dumped on the marsh side of the canal, wide enough to carry a road. As with many major projects, there were unforeseen complications, and delays were time consuming and costly to overcome. Furthermore, the early economic ill effects of the Great Depression took a toll. But in 1930 the canal project was complete.

During this same time an area of about 200 acres, known as the Bradford Marsh, was diked and drained. Also in 1930, Day had thirty-seven acres under cultivation, on which he had grown lettuce, celery, onions, carrots, and parsnips. These sold for a total of $26,000, or an average gross yield of $702 per acre. These were striking numbers and boosted the professor’s optimism. He had two acres of lettuce maturing each week for eleven weeks and looked forward to the time when Holland Marsh would supply head lettuce for all Canada during the summer season, rather than having to be imported from California and other places in the United States. But, due mainly to complex land entanglements with the ownership syndicate, depressed agricultural conditions due to the economy during the Great Depression, and the general lack of experience of the landowners in muck farming, little progress was made in dividing the land and developing farms. Within a few years many of the plots had been abandoned or taken for tax arrears (non-payment of taxes).

Even before the drainage work promoted by Professor Day began in 1925, the marsh was widely known throughout Ontario for its production of “swamp whiskey.” Police raids rarely ended in arrests, as the moonshiners knew the ways of the swamp and were able to escape the pursuing police officers. Marsh stills reached their peak production period between 1923 and 1928 when all legal sale of liquor was banned in Ontario. In spite of the numerous police raids and eighteen liquor-related deaths, people still came from miles around to buy a jug.

In 1930 John Snor became sufficiently interested in the marsh, so much so that he came to visit Bradford and some people who had started farming. At that time Snor was the representative of the Netherlands Emigration Foundation. Among the Foundation’s mandate was investigating potential settlement locations for Dutch emigrants. During the 1920s several Dutch families had come to Canada. Some had settled in the Hamilton and Chatham areas, where they had found seasonal farm work. As the Great Depression took root, however, such work became scarcer and those who were not naturalized citizens were in danger of being deported if they continued to be a financial burden. Snor sought ways to avert such deportations. Under the federal settlement program and in association with some major landowners he developed a plan to relocate immigrant families to the marsh.

In 1933 he arranged to have 125 acres of undeveloped land subdivided into five-acre parcels and further divided the strip in Concession and King Townships into lots with 50-foot frontage and set aside for houses the settlers would build themselves. He further arranged financing—with each family getting $200 from the federal government, $200 from the provincial government, and $200 from the Dutch government. With this $600 the settlers could make new beginnings. Each would spend $200 on material for a house, a two-story frame structure measuring 16x20 feet; the material was just enough to complete the shell without insulation. Another $200 was used as a down payment to acquire the five acres which was considered a normal-sized market garden in those days. The remaining $200 was set aside for living expenses for the first twenty months. The remainder of the $500 land cost—$95 per acre plus $25 for the house lot—would be paid in the years following.

Snor enrolled fifteen Dutch families, an Englishman, and a German. In June 1934 the men arrived to start developing the land and building their houses. One of the men moved a 20x20-foot hen house section to the marsh from Hamilton, and it became the communal living quarters for about a dozen men, most of who slept on the floor. There were no conveniences; the men used the canal to bathe and wash their clothes. The building materials provided included eleven 8-foot cedar poles for each house which enabled the men to build their dwellings three feet above ground level, a precaution against possible flooding. In the fall the houses were completed to the point where the families could move in. None had running water, which was carried by pail from a community artesian well; an outhouse was built in each backyard.

That first winter was cold and harsh, so cardboard and other materials were used to cover the cracks in the walls to reduce drafts from the cold winds that swept across the open terrain. Stoves were kept red hot by burning tree roots that had been plowed up from what must have been a forest on the site many years earlier. The residents in nearby Bradford were relieved on cold winter mornings when they saw smoke rising from the chimneys of the settlers’ houses.

With spring came the field work. The settlers also decided that their colony needed a name. It was agreed to name it Ansnorveldt—a combination of the Dutch words “aan,” “Snor,” and “veld;” meaning “on Snor’s field.” In a ceremony to mark the official naming, they raised Canadian and Dutch flags and spoke a few words.

An important question that faced the settlers was education for their children. The Glenwith Public School was two and a half miles away, over a road with steep hills, and there were also concerns about their children getting lost in snowstorms, so a school was built on a one-acre lot at the north end of the settlement (today a youth center is on the site). The land was donated and most of the work was done by volunteers. It was completed in time for the start of the school year in September 1935. William Mulock, Postmaster General, was one of the guests present at the official opening of Public School S. S. 26.

For the men in the henhouse in the summer of 1934, Sunday had been a welcome day of rest. In keeping with their Calvinistic background, they adhered to the biblical instruction “six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God, on it you shall not do any work.” And so, for as many as had transportation, they would return to their respective communities. Those who stayed behind conducted their own church services by reading a prepared sermon and singing hymns.

After the houses were completed and the families had moved in, the residents gathered in their homes each Sunday to worship; each home hosting the worship service, in turn. This arrangement came to be known as the “traveling church,” with each person old and young alike required to bring his own chair. That first winter some fifty people crowded into the small houses twice each Sunday, attending services where the men took turns reading Dutch sermons, since they had not yet sufficiently mastered English.

When the floors in their houses began to sag from the weight during the meetings, they knew something had to be done. They did not have much money but, after many collections, a cash balance of $75 was on hand and a loan of $175 was secured with the signatures of a dozen or so men who had little other security to offer. They constructed a 20x20-foot church building on a vacant lot at the south end of the settlement and, on 21 June 1935, dedicated it to the Lord’s service, with Rev. John Balt from Hamilton officiating. The first wedding, on 17 October 1937, was that of Tony Sneep and Nelly Rupke. Sneep was the carpenter of the community; he had taught the men the basics of construction for their houses and was the only worker paid in the building of the school and the church.

In 1938 the Holland Marsh Christian Reformed Church was organized with a membership of eighty-eight people. In 1940 the congregation received its first pastor, Rev. Martin Schans, who had previously served the Christian Reformed Church in Redlands, California. The Holland Marsh church played a cardinal role in the development of the marsh as a community. While difficulties abounded, its members found comfort and courage in the Bible and in the congregation’s fellowship, especially on Sundays; all wrestled with similar problems. Once a year they forgot about work and loaded into trucks and whatever vehicles they had and traveled to Innisfil Beach, on Lake Simcoe, for a picnic, games, and fellowship.

As the community grew, so did the number of children attending the local public school. The public school board included members who did not have the same Christian perspectives on education as the founding members. When enlarging the school building to accommodate growth was to cost the local taxpayers $5,000, some of those in the Reformed faith decided to establish their own school. It would offer the same basic education but with a fundamental difference: it would be Christian rather than public. Most of the adults in the settlement had attended Christian schools in the Netherlands and they desired to have the same spiritual care for their children. A school society was established and in 1942, for $150, a three-acre lot was purchased. Due to the wartime shortage of building materials, however, they could not obtain a building permit. They then obtained permission from the church to rent the consistory room and on 15 February 1943 the school opened with nineteen children. Since that time and several buildings later, the school has grown to about 275 students.

Some have called 1947 the year of the great invasion of the marsh, as in June of that year the first wave of post- World War II immigrants arrived. Ten or more families settled in the marsh as farm help. I was among them—with my parents, one brother, and five sisters. We came over on the Waterman, a troop carrier with no conveniences for family travel. But it was an exciting experience for an eleven-year-old boy wearing coveralls and wooden shoes. Dad, who had been a self-employed market gardener in the Netherlands, went to work in the fields of his sponsors. I also went to work in these fields together with a group of kids ranging in age from ten to fifteen years. We crawled up and down the 2000-foot-long rows of onions and carrots, pulling weeds. When the foreman gave us a break at the end of the row we often engaged in wrestling matches or would see who could jump across the ditch if we were near a wide one.

In 1949 my dad bought one of the original settlement houses which had been enlarged but still stood on its raised foundation of cedar posts. A modest down payment made him the owner of a $2,600 house to accommodate the family which had grown to nine children. During the following years, while he worked for other growers, Dad rented some land which we worked in the evenings. In 1953 Dad thought the time was right to start his own business; he rented fifteen acres. Much of the work was done by hand, his and those of the many other capable members of the family. That year I had a full-time job in the local grocery store (Holland Marsh Groceterias), which provided just enough cash to pay for the family’s groceries. A bumper harvest in the marsh that first year led to very low prices and made for a poor start. The farm income was just enough to pay for the rent, seed, custom work, containers, and other items. Dad returned to his former employer for work during the winter.

Early in 1954 my father bought thirty acres of excellent land without a down payment. This was a very large parcel for that time and it kept us all very busy during daylight hours. In early fall there was a lot of rain which made harvesting very difficult. Then, on Friday, 15 October 1954, everything came to a sudden stop when remnants of Hurricane Hazel roared in and flooded the marsh. The rainfall of more than seven inches was too much for the surrounding canals, which also collected the runoff from the surrounding highlands. The rain, together with the strong northerly winds, prevented the water from its normal flow into Lake Simcoe, causing sections of the dike walls to washout. By late evening, attempts to sandbag and close several gaps were abandoned; all night long the water kept pouring in. People were evacuated and others moved to the second floors of their homes to be rescued by boat the next day. The depth of the water ranged from about two feet at the east end of the marsh, where we lived, to about the ceilings of the houses at the west end. Fuel tanks, crates, outhouses, wagon platforms, houses—anything that could float did. The De Peuter family and our family, then with twelve children, were startled when our houses began to float. To keep the houses somewhat level, we kept running from the low areas to those rising in the bobbing houses. After a few miles’ journey the house lodged against Highway 400. That same night, after bringing my parents and siblings to Bradford, I returned to our house with my buddy who worked for us. We went to bed upstairs, since all work was abandoned. The next morning I looked out and saw a tranquil lake under a bright sunlit sky. The only thing wrong with the view was that houses, barns, trucks, and farm equipment were sticking out of the water.

The big cleanup began shortly after the closing of the breaches in the dike. Pumps were brought in and with twenty-five of them in place, running constantly, they moved 200,000 gallons per day. On 17 November, after nearly four weeks, the marsh was cleared of water. Everyone got involved with cleaning and repairs. Busloads of Mennonites from the Kitchener area tackled some of the toughest jobs. The beautiful late fall weather was ideal for the cleanup and repairs. By spring everyone was ready to get on with the task of working the fields and the relatively normal process of seeding and harvest resumed.

Life goes on in the Holland Marsh, which is the richest vegetable-growing land in Ontario (referred to as the salad bowl of Ontario). Just one acre of this good organic soil will produce nine hundred 50-pound bags of onions, or 1,200 bushels of carrots, or 25,000 heads of lettuce. It has come a long way from the time that Professor Day harvested his first crop and won a prize for his celery at the local fall fair.

With his family, Harry vander Kooij immigrated to Canada in 1947 and the Holland Marsh region became his home. Now retired and living in Barrie, Ontario, his career was with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation. This work was first published in the 2006 Volume XXIV - Number 2, "Origins"

My Canada... Growing up in the Holland Marsh

Another biographical story is now told by another resident of the Marsh:

LIFE My Canada... Growing up in the Holland Marsh By Walter Prokopchuk, Special to the Bradford Times Monday, April 17, 2017 2:12:13 EDT PM

You could say that my parents were pioneers, for like many of the other original settlers in the Marsh, like the Kanyos and the Verkaiks, they acquired their farmland and developed the virgin soil into a thriving family business.

This was manual, back-breaking work, for most of the immigrants could neither afford the cost of the the then “modern machinery”, nor was that equipment nearly as efficient as today's technology.

The farmhouse that our Dad built fronted on a back road – which meant that my brother and I had to walk across the 1,500' long field (half a kilometre) to catch the school bus on Canal Road. In winter, we walked on metre-high snow drifts. During spring and summer we trudged through mud. We waiting on the road's shoulder with our Gorecki and Jagodics neighbours, and our bus driver was Webb Orr.

During those 13 years that I rode that same bus piloted by that same driver, we slid off the road once on an icy hill on the 5th Line, with no injuries to anyone. Back then, there were no modern phenomenon like “snow days.”

Our elementary school was Scotch Settlement No. 4, located in the country at the corner of Line 5 and 10 Sideroad. The one-room, 8-grade school house was organized and disciplined by our teacher, Dorothy Turner, and kept heated and clean by neighbouring farmer John Lloyd.

On warmer days we walked home before the bus was scheduled to pick us up. Our course took us eastward along Line 5, stopping along the way to gorge ourselves on the apples in Clarence Baynes' orchard – cutting south through the abandoned gravel pit, crossing the canal over the rickety Sutherland bridge, finally walking westward for the remaining 4K along Canal Road to home.

Indoor plumbing was not yet affordable in our neighbourhood; our outhouse accommodated our toileting needs. Every Saturday afternoon witnessed my brother and I quickly have our weekly bath, in a 1 metre diameter round steel tub in the middle of the kitchen floor. Mother drew the water from the outside well and warmed it on the wood stove. Being I was the younger brother, I was always second to share the same bathwater. Thankfully, we had upgraded to electricity, from kerosene lamp light.

We were in the Township of West Gwillimbury. In the Village of Bradford, Holland St. was gravel, and the occasional pothole revealed the underlying corduroy (log ) road. Holland was the main street,where most of the commercial shopping was located in “downtown” Bradford, when Joe Magani was its first elected Mayor.

Mother drove us to Town to shop for the next week's groceries at Compton's IGA, medicine at Ritchie's Drug Store, tools and nails at Barron's Hardware, other items at Bannerman's 5¢ to $1 Department store.

Law and order was maintained by Police Chief Jim Hastings and Constables John Dudgeon and Jim Thompson. The Fire department was made up entirely of resident volunteers like Ed Gapp and Roy Saint.

Doctors Gilbert Blackwell and Stephen Hecking looked after our medical needs. Charlie and Brock Evans ran the local lawyers' office, and Ken Tupling looked after our insurance. Ruth Yarmoluk and Rita Alebeek were two of the tellers who served the customers at the Bank of Commerce.

Next to the current Village Inn was Rees' Theatre. We could purchase our 10 cent movie ticket from Linda Spence. Once inside, another dime could get us a box of popcorn, or an ice cream bar or pop from the refreshment concession – our parents' occasional reward to us for working in the fields during our summer school break.

1954 brought us Hurricane Hazel. Like most families, we were forced to abandon our house in the Marsh to reside on higher ground in Bradford. The Willis family generously took us in and made us feel right at home. Eventually, we were transferred to our own accommodations in the trailer camp, on the current site of the Bradford Community Centre on Simcoe Rd.

For me, those were the “good old days.” We were trained to work hard and respect our elders; we learned the value of a dollar and knew how to behave in public. We survived without fancy toys and gadgets – and one pair of pants either sufficed for the entire school year, or was outgrown – and yes, I wore hand-me-down shirts and shoes, and learned to ride on my brother's old bicycle.

We are now known as the Town of Bradford West Gwillimbury and, sadly, most of the above mentioned folks are deceased – but not forgotten, because it was the unrelenting determination of the people of that day that built the foundation of this area. Their children and grandchildren have honourably accepted the torch of responsibility, to keep our town both a safe and economically-thriving community. We pay tribute to those residents in the name of our parks, arenas, streets and other landmarks. Fuller Heights. Bob Fallis Sports Centre. Langford Blvd., and more. We thank them all, past and present.

The First Holland Marsh Settlement

by Ina and Stewart McKenzie, Editors & Publishers of The Bradford Witness. 1957

A group of Dutchmen, with their families, came to the marsh in the autumn of 1934 to become the first year-round settlers on the area. Their little settlement was named Ansnorveld and comprised a row of small houses. The pictures of those first homes, which formed the first settlement, and of the first little church, built a couple of years after the arrival of the settleers, tell their own story.

John Snor, representative of the Netherlands Immigration Foundation, was instrumental in arranging for this settlement and naming it.

The Holland Marsh Garden Development

by Ina and Stewart McKenzie, Editors & Publishers of The Bradford Witness. 1957

The Holland Marsh garden development is a story of progress which, during a period of less than one-quarter century, has advanced the living conditions of its residents from pioneer existence, comparable to the life of Bradford's first settlers, to prosperity and the ultimate in modern living, and has transformed thousands of acres of marshy waste land into the finest gardens in Canada. Because this transition took place within less than thirty-five miles of the world's fastest growing city, and beside broad highways leading to and from that city, because it was accomplished by people of varied racial origin, Dominion wide interest has been aroused in the enterprise.

The Holland Marsh borders two sides of Bradford, and through it winds the Holland River. Until less than thirty years ago this land produced only marsh hay, frogs and mosquitoes, and of these only the hay was a marketable crop. In the late 1800s and the early years of this century marsh hay was cut, curled, dried and shipped for mattress-making. The horses drawing the mowers to cut this hay wore snow-shoe like boards tied to their feet, to carry them over the bog. Mattress-making was a small industry in Bradford during the early 1900s, when this curled marsh hay was used to fill the mattresses.

The story of marsh hay is now obscured by the Holland Marsh vegetable gardens, and the industries associated with marsh vegetables, which today have made this former waste land famous across the continent.

As early as 1910, Wm. H. Day, Professor of Physics at Ontario Agriculturual College, Guelph, became interested in the then wilderness of swamp, but before any action was taken regarding his ideas, the outbreak of war in 1914 interrupted progress. Professor Day did not forget and, with the war over, he resumed his investigations and in 1923 he resigned his position at the College, moved to Bradford, and began an energetic campaign to interest municipal councils in a drainage scheme for the Holland Marsh. Two years later his efforts were rewarded when the council of Bradford, in which the late Denis Nolan was reeve, the council of West Gwillimbury township, with the late J. F. Hambly as reeve, with councillors L. A. Neilly, Percy Selby, W. J. Dales and the late Herman Lennox, and the council of King township, signed a contract for the drainage of the Holland Marsh. The late T. W. W. Evans Q.C., was legal advisor for the transaction.

The first crop on the drained marsh land was grown in 1927 on the section of the marsh located within Bradford's boundaries. In 1930 a triumphant Professor Day reported to the councils that a $26,000 crop had been sold off thirty-seven acres of marsh garden land. Thus began the Holland Marsh garden industry, which during recent years has calculated its acres under cultivation in the thousands, and the sale of vegetables in the millions of dollars.

The Holland Marsh Drainage System

by Ina and Stewart McKenzie, Editors & Publishers of The Bradford Witness. 1957

The Holland Marsh drainage system serves two purposes - it drains, and it irrigates. The beautifully cultivated fields on the marsh are bounded by ditches which drain into the drainage canals. This network of ditches serves a twofold purpose. The huge pumps, which control the water levels, pump the water from the canal and ditches in periods of heavy rain; and in seasons of drought, these same canals and ditches irrigate the soil when water is pumped into them.

Land values on the area have soared, the price per acre now frequently reaching the thousand dollar mark.

Early Settlers on the Holland Marsh

by Ina and Stewart McKenzie, Editors & Publishers of The Bradford Witness. 1957

Winter was early the first year; the snow was deep, and the little settlement was frequently isolated. Those fine people were strangers then and the winter was grim. Wood was their only fuel and it was green and wet. Independence and pride caused them to withhold an account of the hardships of that winter, but today these well established, successful and esteemed folk recall sitting up all night to keep the fire stoked, and shovelling their way throught deep snow to come to Bradford for supplies. Bonds of friendship were established that winter, and during the following few years , when the number of settlers increased rapidly, and those friendships created a loyalty and friendly understanding which laid the sound foundation on which the marsh gardens developed. Among the settlers who followed those first Dutch Canadians to the marsh were representatives of practically every country in Europe. The outbreak of World War II found representatives from all countries at war in Europe living in peace, side by side, on the Holland Marsh.

The war brought Bradford and Holland Marsh residents into closer relationship. The marsh residents wanted to assist with Red Cross work. Each autumn, a banquet served to the men of the marsh, and their ladies, and catered by Bradford ladies, was followed by an auction sale of fruit and vegetables donated by the growers. These occasions provided wonderful opportunities to get acquainted; and the Red Cross usually benefited by over a thousand dollars on the night. The arrangements for these occasions were made by the Holland Marsh Ratepayers' Assoication, which was the first organization formed by the growers themselves, and which accomplished tremendous results in opening up the marsh.

Vegetable and Pre-Packaging Industry Brings Prosperity

by Ina and Stewart McKenzie, Editors & Publishers of The Bradford Witness. 1957

The post-war years were rewarding ones for agriculturalists. The marsh garden population grew rapidly and prospered. Farmers on the high lands received good returns for their labour, and these satisfactory conditions were reflected in Bradford where business expansion began to be noticeable.

Holland Marsh vegetables have never been excelled, and have seldom, if ever, been equalled. The producing of quality produce has never been a problem. The growers' problems revolve around marketing their vegetables, and this is a game requiring shrewd business ability. Some of the growers possess that business instinct and these have become dealers and packers of marsh vegetables, and the wise grower has learned to valuate his own business ability. If he finds marketing his vegetables difficult he sells to the dealer and packer and confines his energy to growing. The need for cold storage, to permit vegetables being placed on the market in good condition throughout the early winter months, resulted in the erection of the Bradford Co-operative Storage in 1946. The same year the first big vegetable pre-packaging plant, Holland Rover Gardens Co. Limited, was built, ready for the harvest season. This plant washed, packaged in individual packages ready to place on the green grocer's counter, and iced the beautiful Holland Marsh vegetables. The idea was an immediate success and other plants were built in rapid succession - Federal Farms Ltd., Superior Packers, Hochreiters, Bradford Shippers, Dominion Fruit, International Fruit Distributors Ltd., United Farms, Molokachs, all located in Bradford, while such pioneer growers as the Verkaik brothers, the Davis brothers, the Rupkes, Wm. Horlings, and many others carry on the preparation of vegetables for the retail market on their marsh properties, as well as owning their own storgage plants. Every new idea in making vegetables more attractive, and in preserving quality is adopted here and local vegetable processors lead all Canada in modern ideas and equipment.

An example of this leadership was the installation three years ago of two vacuum cooling plants in Bradford. The idea was experimented upon in California the previous winter. The alert local processors who went to see the southern plant in operation were "sold" on the idea, and at the cost of tens of thousands of dollars two such plants were erected here - the first vacuum cooling plants in Canada. Cooling by vacuum is the best process known for cooling and preserving leaf vegetables, such as lettuce, celery and spinach. The former wide open spaces fronting on highway 11 and backed by the C.N.R. tracks have become a continuous row of industrial buildings, with loading platforms on either side of each building, one for loading refrigerated cars on private railway sidings, and the other for the packing of vegetables into the huge refrigerated trucks. The value of shipments from Bradford has soared into the millions as Holland Marsh vegetables have gained fame for excellence of quality.

Local vegetable processing plants, though rivals in business, have sensibly adopted a business pattern. For example, the two earliest plants, Holland River Gardens Co. Limited and Federal Farms Ltd., vary in type of business. Holland River Gardens specializes in variety and is an experimentor in new ideas. It pre-packs practically every variety of vegetable grown on the marsh and in addition has such features as peeled potatoes and sliced potatoes, ready for potato chips, all treated against discoloration, and these are in big demand for hotels and restaurants. These processes making use of the high quality undersize and oversize potatoes from the graders, make marketable what would otherwise have been waste in quality vegetables. Federal Farms specializes in volume with emphasis on potatoes, carrots and onions. A picture of what volume means in the vegetable business can be estimated by the fact that during the period of heaviest marketing, the shipments from this plant total an average of two hundred and fifty tons per day. To estimate average gross shipments for the entire marsh area and the associated dealers and pre-packagers is impossible, but it is known that long lines of refrigerated railway cars, and a parade of refrigerated trucks, leave Bradford, daily, for points across Canada, and in the United States, to deliver "garden fresh" vegetables from Canada's big vegetable garden.

Church and Social Life on the Marsh

by Ina and Stewart McKenzie, Editors & Publishers of The Bradford Witness. 1957

Dutch Canadians comprise nearly one-third of the Holland Marsh population and of these a big proportion are members of the Christian Reformed Church. The Roman Catholic parish church is the third church building on the marsh, and Rev. F. R. McGinn of Holy Martyrs church, Bradford, serves as its priest.

A public school was built in Ansnorveld in the thirties, the first teacher being Miss Aileen Nolan, (now Mrs. E. Grise of Midland). Mr. Dan Blake of Bradford is the present teacher. When the Christian Reformed Church congregation became large enough to support a school, the church people of that congregation built a private Christian school for the education and training of their children. Mr. Jacob Uitvlugt was, and still is, the principal. The four room school in Ansnorveld is too small for the attendance and during the past few years Springdale too, has had its own Christian school. A new, and larger, Christian school is being built in Ansnorveld this year. The children of the Roman Catholic church attend St. Mary's school in Bradford, travelling by bus.

For a number of years the marsh residents had their own hall, or community centre, in Ansnorveld. This building was in almost continual use and served as a happy, social meeting place. The weakness of this arrangement was that it inclined residents of the neighbourhood to isolate themselves from Bradford socially. When the plans advanced for Bradford District Memorial Community Centre, the good people of the marsh area joined wholeheartedly in assisting with its cost, and sold their own hall.

Pictures of a few of the beautiful homes on the Holland Marsh today indicate the prosperity enjoyed by a big percentage of the growers. The homes are equally as attractive within as without. Furnishings and all conveniences are as lovely and modern as would be found in a new city home.

Many of the residents of the marsh have beautiful costumes, perculiar to the land of their birth, which they don for special occasions when requested. They are talented people and, though loyal Canadians, enjoy to entertain with the cultures for which their particular motherland is famed, and to wear the dress which is customary in that land. The same young men and women wear Canadian styles with a distinction which would do credit to stylist models. An example of this occurred this year when at the Sportsman's Show, a young lady from the Holland Marsh, and a former "Holland Marsh Vegetable Queen" was chosen "Miss Outdoors Girl of Canada." The Holland Marsh and the Holland Marsh people are regarded with pride and affection by the residents of Bradford.

Historical Sketch of the Holland Marsh Christian Reformed Church

by Rev. P. Lagerwey, B.A., Th.M.

It is almost a quarter of a century ago that members of the Christian Reformed denomination held their first religious service in the Holland Marsh area. The date was July 15, 1934; the place, the only building then available, a chicken house; the attendance, four persons, with the late Mr. A. Havinga in charge. The beginning was small, but it was marked with a sincerity of faith, a humbleness of heart, and a profound love for the Almighty God revealed unto men through Jesus Christ. Their mistakes and sins were without a doubt many, but forgiveness and grace were always found in abundance with their heavenly Father. From a chicken house the meeting places became the various homes of the growing group. With a Bible in one hand and a chair in the other, they went for worship now to this home - then to that. This practice gave it the name of "The Travelling Church." October 21 of 1934 showed the membership to be forty-seven individuals. The first celebration of the Lord's Supper was in December of 1934, conducted by Rev. J. Balt, and the first baby to be baptized was Ted Vander Goot in the Vander Goot home.

The first regular church building which the group erected was very simple. It was 20 by 20 feet, consisting a total of $185. on material, with 554 man hours donated by the members of this nucleus. The pews were donated by the Methodist church in Ancaster, Ontario, and the hydro consisted of one Coleman gas lamp near the pulpit. The doors were opened Jun 21, 1935. Organization of the group as a congregation took place on March 23, 1938 with sixteen families, thirty-six communicant members, and fifty-two baptized members, a total of eight-eight souls as charter members. The first pastor to serve this congregation was the Rev. M. Schans, who came in July of 1940. The Rev. J. Vander Meer served from 1946 to 1951. The present pastor is Rev. P. Lagerwey.

Three times the church building has been enlarged to meet the demand for an expanding congregation. Though fifty families left the group in May of 1952 to form the Springdale Christian Reformed Church, there is at present again a demand for more room. Plans are being made for the eventual construction of a new building. In this centennial year of Bradford, the Holland Marsh Christian Reformed Church is also celebrating the centennial year of the Christian Reformed Church as it has come to exist in North America. Thanks are due to God who through humble beginnings has done great things. May He give this part of His Church the grace to be of spiritual blessing to this its Canadian community.

The Christian Reformed Church and The Bradford Centennial

by Rev. R. Wildschut, B.A., B. Th.

The year in which Bradford was founded marks the beginning of the Christian Reformed Church. Having its roots both in the Protestant Reformation and in the spiritual awakening which swept Europe in the early part of the ninteenth century, the Christian Reformed Church was established on American soil in 1857.

A lack of religious tolerance in their native Holland, long known as a cradle of liberty and democratic thought, led a number of people to immigrate to the United States in 1846 and 1847. One group chose Michigan, settling in the forests and swamps on the east shore of Lake Michigan. Another group chose the bleak, but fertile prairies of Iowa. In the years that followed, wave upon wave of immigrants caused the Dutch communities to grow rapidly. Pushing towards the West, American-born persons of Dutch descent and newly-arrived immigrants acquired homesteads in Southern Alberta. The first Christian Reformed churches in Canada were organized in 1905, shortly before Alberta was admitted into the Dominion as a province. The growth of the denomination in Canada was gradual, but not spectacular in the first twenty-five years. Apart from the congregations in Winnipeg, Edmonton and Vancouver, the Christian Reformed Church was a rural church.

It was not until about 30 years ago that the Christian Reformed Church came to Ontario, with a congregation being established in Hamilton in 1928. The early members of the Holland Marsh and Springdale congregations were originally affiliated with the Hamilton church, with additions from Chatham and Windsor.

The Holland Marsh Christian Reformed Church was organized as an independent congregation in 1938. Its first regular pastor was the Rev. M. M. Schans, who came from Redlands, California. He was succeeded by the Rev. J. Vander Meer, formerly a missionary among the Navaho Indians and an army chaplain with the U.S. forces on the European front. The present pastor is the Rev. P. Lagerwey who was ordained in the Holland Marsh Church in September 1954.

The Sprindale church was built in 1952, when the building of the Holland Marsh congregation became too small to accommodate its members. After the Springdale church was completed in April of 1952, the congregation was organized with some forty-five families as charter members. This organization took place on October 30, 1952. In July 1953, the Rev. R. Wildschut arrived to become the first minister of this new congregation. Both Marsh churches have seen a steady growth and together have over 850 members. A daughter church organized at Newmarket in 1955 and numbering 40 families, expects to call its own minister this summer.

The Christian Reformed churches have grown with Bradford and the surrounding townships, keeping pace with the development of the Marsh as Canada's "Vegetable Basket" in the same way the Christian Reformed Church is growing with Canada. Nearly one hundred and twenty-five new congregations have been established throughout Canada, from Vancouver Island to Prince Edward Island in the past ten years.

1974 Black Magic Video

  1. [[1]]
  2. www.ontario.ca/archives


Dutch Roots Project

See also: * Dutch Roots Project

Sources

  1. Bradford Times. My Canada: Growing up in the Holland Marsh, Bradford, Ont, Canada.
  2. Lagerwey, Rev. P. (1957). Historical Sketch of the Holland Marsh Christian Reformed Church, Holland Marsh, Ont, Canada.
  3. McKenzie, I & S. (1957). Bradford, 1857-1957, One Hundred Years in Picture and Story. Bradford Witness Publishing Co. Limited, Bradford, Ont, Canada.
  4. Oosterhuis, Rev. Dr. Tom (2021) Personal Recollections of over 100 Marsh residents facilitated contextual familial relationships.
  5. Prokopchuk, W. (1957). My Canada...Growing up in the Holland Marsh, Bradford, Ont, Canada.
  6. Vander Kooij, Harry, (2006). Holland Marsh, Origins, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA.
  7. VanderMey, A. (1994). And the Swamp Flourished. Vanderheide Publishing Co. Ltd. Surrey, British Columbia, Canada..
  8. Vandevis, Dr. Ted, (2014). Trent Lakes, Canada.
  9. Vandevis, T. (2014). Personal recollections. Trent Lakes, ON, Canada.
  10. Vandevis, T. (2015). "The Marsh and the Pyramids" United States, Lulu Press.
  11. Wildschut, Rev. R. (1957). The Christian Reformed Church and the Bradford Centennial, Springdale, Ont, Canada
  12. www.calvin.edu/




Collaboration
Comments: 8

Leave a message for others who see this profile.
There are no comments yet.
Login to post a comment.
As of Mar 2, 2021 500 residents of the Marsh have been identified. Thanks to Rev. Dr. Tom Oosterhuis for helping to identify contextual familial relationships for about 100.
posted on Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers (merged) by Dr. Ted Vandevis
As of Dec 7, 2019 431 Holland Marsh founders and residents of Dutch heritage have been identified and listed in this "One Place Study."
posted on Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers (merged) by Dr. Ted Vandevis
Hi Ted,

Sorry it took a while but I started a G2G for the Sticker for you now ;) wishing you a very happy and healthy 2019 and see you this weekend eeh :)

Bea x

posted on Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers (merged) by Bea (Timmerman) Wijma
Hi Ted,

Not sure if there are many profiles who where Marsh Settlers, but perhaps you would like a Sticker you can add to those profiles linking to your free space page and perhaps a category for Marsh Dutch Settlers ?

Greets,

Bea :)

posted on Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers (merged) by Bea (Timmerman) Wijma
Aw you wouldn't have messed it up by adding it to the portal yourself. * Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers A free space managed by Dr. Theodore Vandevis is all you needed to add
posted on Holland Marsh Dutch Settlers (merged) by Melissa McKay