Recollections of Our Pioneer Past
R-5576 to R-5600
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Summaries of interviews; final report
Interviews created under the Opportunities for Youth programme and donated to the Saskatchewan Archives Board. The interviews were only one part of a study conducted by university and high school students in the summer of 1973. Recollections of Our Pioneer Past involved nine researchers collecting data from original Saskatchewan homesteaders and their descendants. A total of 4500 questionnaires were mailed to people across the province, 1500 of which were returned. On the basis of these results interviews were recorded with a selected few. Oral history interviewing was employed to supplement information obtained from the questionnaires and to enable people to reply to more open-ended questions than the questionnaire would permit. A specific question set was determined which focused on several different areas. Project interviewers wanted to determine how advertising influenced people's decision to come to Canada and whether it made them adequately aware of conditions that existed in Saskatchewan. They asked what people expected Saskatchewan to be like and if they were disillusioned by what they found here. What was the homesteader's socio-economic background and was this an influencing factor in his decision to come? Why did the homesteader choose the particular homestead on which he settled? Were the services provided by the railway and line companies adequate and did the homesteader receive fair treatment from them? How was the homesteader involved in community affairs? Informants were also asked about the impact which the depression of the 1930s had on their lives, and about views on several current issues. Because the interviewers did not deviate from these specific questions, the interviews are limited in some respects. Questions were not tailored for each informant to allow him or her to respond as freely and vividly as may have been possible about their pioneering experiences. Despite this, several of the interviews are rich in anecdotes and details about pioneer days. For more information about the project, see the final report with the interview summaries.
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