My Canadian history to be elected to parliament and

My family has developed and grown
dramatically throughout one hundred years. Technology, power, cable, and
individual rights have greatly influenced the lives of my family members and
has changed their perspective of Canada. One hundred years ago, my family
arrived to Canada from Russia. My second great grandmother, Phillipina, was
born in Strombine, Bessarabia, Russia and immigrated to Canada in 1906 when she
was just five years old. I took a look on Ancestry and found this quote, “When Phillipina Adams and her twin sister Katherine (Katie) were born in
1901 in Moldova, their father, Jacob, was 18 and their mother, Katie, was 18”
(Ancestry 2006). Her family decided to make this big
trip to pursue their farming career. There was a plentiful amount of land found
in Canada and the winter wasn’t as harsh, allowing for longer growing seasons
for crops. During this time, women were seen as the ones to clean and take care
of children. As time moved on and technology developed, new jobs were
available. As Phillipina grew older, she married Henry Daunheimer at the young
age of eighteen. It was the year of 1919 and at this time, the First Wold War
had just ended. I came across a website that talked about the war and one quote
said, “The war ended with a raging influenza epidemic which spread through
Canada in part by infected soldiers returning from overseas.”1
Approximately 50, 000 Canadians were killed by this influenza epidemic, an
article states, “symptoms included fatigue and cough, quickly attacking the
immune system and causing mucous build-up in the lungs; victims could pass
within a day of coming in contact with this illness” (Wartime Tragedies, 2008).
From losing many soldiers fighting in war and the influenza, this greatly
impacted the population of Canada. Canada is a country that is constantly
developing and changing in many ways which has affected the way my family has
grown.

In 1921, a woman by the name of Agnes
Macphail was the first woman to be elected to parliament. Henry and his parents
would have both still been alive during this time according to Ancestry, “Agnes
Macphail became the first woman in Canadian history to be elected to parliament
and became a highly influential politician from Ontario” (Ancestry, 2006). From
what I have read, Agnes faced and struggled with much opposition with everything
from her religion to what she wore since she was a woman. She fought for
equality for women, prison reform, and peace. This, however, did not seem to
change the Supreme Court of Canada’s opinion. An article reads, “In 1928, the
Supreme Court of Canada ruled that women were not considered as people under
the BNA Act” (Russel, Andrews). This was called the “Persons Case of 1928” and
five women including Emily Murphy and Nellie McClung  was said to have “appealed to the Privy
Council of England which changed the court’s opinion in 1929” (Russel,
Andrews). The year of 1921 changed the Daunheimer’s lives as they had decided
it was time to have a family. They welcomed their first son, John into the
household. John would be the oldest of four other siblings, Margaret, Doreen,
William, and Frederick. All married and continued the path that life lead them
towards. John married a woman named Francis and they had four children together.
He died at the age of 63 from lung cancer caused from grain dust as he was an
elevator agent. Many discoveries were made during the 1900’s as this quote
explains, “The 19th century saw the birth of scientific oncology
with use of the modern microscope in studying diseased tissues” (American
Cancer Society, 2018). The microscope helped many understand what was happening
as cancer progressed throughout the body. This disease could now be easier to
explain to patients as doctors now have proof of what is happening and
understanding how to control it.  A
website I read from explains the success with the microscope, “This method not
only allowed a better understanding of the damage cancer had done, but also
assisted in the development of cancer surgery; Body tissues removed by the
surgeon could now be examined and a precise diagnosis could be made; The
pathologist could also tell the surgeon whether the operation had completely
removed the cancer” (American Cancer Society, 2018). Phillipina and Henry’s
second child, Margaret was born in 1924 and was the first daughter of the
family. She married George Lay and had two children with him. Margaret was a
bowel cancer survivor and was the first woman in Saskatchewan to have a
colostomy. According to my research, a colostomy is “a surgical procedure in
which an incision in the abdomen which is then used to draw the healthy part of
the large intestine or colon through to the outer abdominal wall. This is then
covered with a plastic bag that will be used to catch and fill with your bodily
excretions” (Health line Media, 2005). She passed in 1989 at the age of 65 of a
heart attack. The third child born to the Daunheimer’s was Doreen. She was born
in 1927 and had married Joseph Wihlidal on October 18, 1949. She gave birth to my
grandma, Joanne, and my uncle, Barry. She later died in 1986 at the age of 59
from heart bypass surgery. This surgery helps “restore normal blood flow to an
obstructed coronary artery” (Wikipedia, 2018). It looks like my family has had
a lot of health issues and diseases relating to the heart. What was
hospitalization like back then? Were doctors as educated as they are now? In
1931, William was born. He married Sharon Auckland and passed in 1976 at the
age of 45 from diabetes. There was an extreme infection in his blood stream which
ultimately became fatal. The fifth, and final child to be born was Frederick
who was born in 1934. He married Ruth Capewell and at the age of 83, is still
alive. Even though I wasn’t able to meet any of these people, I came to realize
that they would be my great grandfathers and grandmothers. This astonishes me
because I never realized how large my family tree was. Although we have a small
family compared to others, I cannot believe how much my family has grown.
Phillipina had been married with her husband for seventeen years when Henry had
passed from a meningitis outbreak in 1936. He was only 37 years old and passed
in Neudorf, Saskatchewan. According to my research, “134 cases of meningitis
was reported in 1936, which only increased as time progressed” (Bacterial
Meningitis Google Books, 2017 edition). She later re-married to John Assman on
August 28, 1942 when she was 41 years old. They were married to each other for
38 years when her second husband died at the age of 94 in Melville,
Saskatchewan. Phillipina was the last child of Katie and Jacob Adams to have
passed away. She was a diabetic and became blind for a short while until she
passed in the year of 1984 at the age of 83. Diabetes seems to runs in my
family and who knew one person would be able to discover a medical treatment
for it? Frederick Banting was a medical student who discovered insulin in the
year of 1921. The discovery of insulin was a major accomplishment as it has
helped may overcome this disease.

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Doreen was one of five children born to
Phillipina and Henry Daunheimer. She had two children with her husband, Joseph
Wihlidal. My grandma, Joanne was the first child to be born and the second was
my Uncle, Barry. Doreen was only 24 when she gave birth to Joanne and 29 when
she had Barry. Both children grew up on a farm doing household chores and rode
their bikes in the summer to school. They learned how to respect others very
early in life and how important family was. Doreen had many health problems. At
the young age of 40, she had a stroke which ultimately made her lose her
speech. She overcame a lot of challenges, which made both of her children
realize how to become of the same strength. In the 1960’s there was also a huge
improvement made with health care. An article I read states, “Premier Tommy
Douglas of Saskatchewan held up a belief that all residents should have a basic
level of health care” (Russel, Andrews). This changes the health system
substantially and helps others get the care that they need and deserve.

Joanne was born in 1951, which means
that she was born as a baby boomer. When I asked how it was back then she
replied with the wise response of, “Things were very different from now. There weren’t
the dangers we have today. We had a lot more freedom growing up as there was
more trust in people. We learned the basics in life very early on in our lives,
and were taught to work hard and never doubted it would pay off. We were
expected to help others and had many chores to do at home, such as collecting
eggs from the chicken coop and milking the cows. There was never time to go
looking for trouble as we were always busy and had to find our own
entertainment by making up games! Respecting and obeying our parents and elders
was instilled in us as family was very important. We never had to question
anything. As for education, it was much different now then it was back when I
was younger. All grades were combined and everyone played together no matter
the age or gender. If you didn’t apply yourself in school, you had to repeat
the grade instead of going on to the next. There were winners and achievers as
well as those who have failed. We always had the necessities we needed and
seldom got the extras people have today” (Stelmachowich, Joanne). Joanne gave
birth to a son in 1972 who would have been my uncle. His name was Chad and
lived for a full eight years until his unfortunate passing. “Chad Stelmachowich was born in Melville, Saskatchewan, the son of Joanne
and Brian. He had one sister. He died on November 7, 1980, in Tobin Lake,
Saskatchewan, and was buried in his hometown” (Ancestry, 2006). My mom, Keri,
was born on June 30, 1975 and by going through this traumatic experience she
learned that family was to come first. Joanne didn’t grow up with flushing
toilets or colour T.V. To me this is surprising because now today, technology
is very important to many people for many reasons such as, communication and
social media. Education widely uses technology which has been a huge
improvement since the 1900’s.

            A
lot has changed over the course of 100 years. Technology was invented and women
were finally treated as equals. I learned how my ancestors came to Canada and
why they came, as well as my nationality. I am Austrian, Russian, Ukrainian,
and German as my ancestors emigrated from these places. I got to take a look
inside the lives of my ancestors and made time for one-on-one conversation with
my grandma to learn what it was like back in her day. One interesting fact that
I didn’t know before was that before telephones were invented, “family’s
travelled by train to keep in touch with relatives in other towns and
provinces” (Social Textbook, page 45). Joanne used to travel by train to come
visit my family as she did not succumb to modern day transportation nor
technology. As of 2017, she has become a major Facebook fan and has grown to
love using technology. Canada and its developments have greatly impacted the
way my family has lived throughout the years.

1 “Wartime
Tragedies – Influenza, 1918-1919.” Canada and the First World War

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