Mr. and Mrs. George Louis Gygi and family emigrated to Canada from thc city of Paris, Bear Lake County, Idaho April 8. 1902. On May 25, 1906. Mr. Gygi took out his citizenship papers and was declared a Canadian.
On arriving in Canada the Gygis settled in the Stirling area where Mr. Gygi was employed as a brick layer and was overseeing the making of the bricks. He assisted in the building of the Stirling schoolhouse. He often told his lamily of how he walked back and forth to work in Lethbridge.
In 1904, the family moved to Spring Coulee where Mr. Gygi accepted the job as Section Foreman for the Saint Mary's River Railroad which ran between Stirling and Cardston. This was a narrow gauge line and was absorbed by the A.R.and I. (Alberta Railraod and Irrigation Co.) about 1910 or 1911. On April 12, 1912 it taken over by the CPR. All this time that Mr. Gygi was working as foreman, Mrs. Gygi was fast becoming well known in her own right, for her splendid cooking. She cooked and served many delicious home-made meals, not only to the trainmen, but to others who travelled this route as well.
In 1917, the family moved to Magrath where Mr. Gygi took up farming just west of the town, living there until the fall of 1940, when he purchased five acres of land on what was then the outskirts of Lethbridge. He resided there until his sudden passing away January 1,1941. Mrs. Gygi later moved into the city where she made her home until her illness and passing April 11, 1952.
The name Gygi is a well known Swiss name and has a lineage dating back to 1547, originating in the village of Kappelen bei Aarberg, Bern Switzerland. Mr Gygi himself was born May, 29, 1871, in Kappelen. At the age of 18 years, he joined the Swiss Militia, and about three years later at the age of 21 emigrated to the U.S.A.
Mrs. Gygi (nee Olga Jordy), was born February 23, 1873, at Neuchatel Nerich, Switzerland and emigrated with her parents to the U.S.A. about 1889, where she and Mr. Gygi were married March 24, 1895.
To this union was born six children.
We may well be proud of the name Gygi as they were truly among the early pioneers of this district and suffered and endured the hardships to help make our country what it is today.
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