Herbert Eugene Kelley was born in St. Paul, Nebraska, on December 16, 1879. He moved to Alberta about 1902. I believe he had a machine agency in Raymond at the time he and mother were married. My brother Frank Herbert was born in Raymond on Oct. 2, 1905.
Mother was born in Westville, Nova Scotia on June 8, 1881. William Stafford, her father was sent west in 1881 to prospect for coal and moved his family to Lethbridge in 1883. The letter appointing him Superintendent of the Galt Mines is in the Museum at Lethbridge.
The obituary in the Lethbridge Herald states that mother moved to Spring Coulee in 1905, so that must be when the Spring Coulee Trading Company was born. They sold groceries, confections, hardware, dry goods, lumber, machinery, gas and oil and the long distance switch board was located in the store.
Jean and Bert Kelley were involved in most everything that went on in the community. Dad was on the school board, the Cardston Hospital Board and the l.O.O.F. and Masonic Lodges. He umpired baseball games, and played tennis.
Mother played the organ in church and Sunday School, played the piano for the dances and for all the concerts and had a stream of children marching in and out of the house preparing for them. Before leaving Spring Coulee she arranged for a music teacher to spend one day a week at our house and lined up pupils to fill her time. The school teacher sent the youngsters from class for their lesson and the rest of the week for practice sessions.
Mother submitted many items of interest to the Lethbridge Herald that concerned the community and I know she sent information on the early days of Lethbridge for the city's 60th year.
Mother died here in Calgary in 1941 where we had lived since leaving Spring Coulee in 1927. Dad remarried in 1942 and moved to Haney B .C. in 1944 or 45. Dad passed away in November 1972. He had almost reached his 93rd birthday and had never lost his interest in people, travel or bridge games.
My brother Frank left Spring Coulee to attend the Electrical School of Engineering in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and from there joined the family here in Calgary. He worked for Bruce Robinson Electric until joining the army artillery. He had two sons. Frank was working in Jasper Park at the time of his death in 1952.
I had a sister, Grace Margaret, born in Lethbridge, February 22, 1908 and died October 3 1909.
I remember a tale from my childhood that has always amused me. A friend was on a train through the Crow's Nest Pass en route to visit us in Spring Coulee. The conductor was asking the usual questions of tourists. "Where are you from and where are you headed?" My friend replied she was going to a wee tiny place he'd probably never heard or called Spring Coulee to which he replied. "Of course I know of it. It you want groceries for your family, you call Kelley. If you want machinery, you call Kelley. If you want lumber for a house or gas for your car, you call Kelley. If your wife is going to have a baby you still call Kelley, for you'll need him for something."
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