Joseph Soenen Sr. was born September 1, 1888 in West Roosebeke, Belgium. He immigrated to Michigan in 1911. There he married Irene De Tavernier in 1912. Irene was born on December 29, 1891 in Michigan. They worked a market vegetable farm. The family moved to Southern Ontario in 1922, then came west to Southern Alberta in 1936, and returned to Ontario in 1937. In 1939 they settled again in Southern Alberta coming to the Coalhurst district in 1945. They farmed the J. I. McDermott farm as market gardeners for a number of years. In 1951 the family moved into Coalhurst. There were twelve children born to the Soenen family.
Gramma Soenen has 38 grandchildren, 61 great-grandchildren and nine great, great-grandchildren. Gramma is 92 years old and lives at the "Blue Sky Lodge" in Lethbridge, Joseph Soenen Sr. passed away April 2, 1954.
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