Taking a look back as we move forward
A new year is upon us! As we look forward to 2023 it is also a good time to look back on the contributions made by many who helped us get where we are now.
Each summer, during the Blueberry Festival, the Sioux Lookout Genealogy and History Club helps us to remember the people who helped establish the communities of Sioux Lookout, Hudson and Alcona.
The 2022 Self-Guided Historical Cemetery Walk, presented by the Sioux Lookout Genealogy and History Club and the Sioux Lookout Blueberry Festival, reflected on Ukrainian families coming to Canada to find shelter and a new safe life.
The Sioux Lookout Genealogy Club shared, “We remember that Sioux Lookout was a final haven for many such families over the past 110 years. We are taking this opportunity to share some of their stories with you. We would like to acknowledge the sources for these stories – Tracks Beside the Water, Volumes 1,2,&3, and some of the families who have shared their stories with us.
“A lot of the early folks settling here immigrated from war torn European countries. They worked hard to overcome extreme conditions in our raw Canadian Shield climate. They had to learn a new language and try and understand their peers who spoke with the unfamiliar tongue of many different countries. They were all in it together and helped each other out. Their basic needs were pretty similar. It was a time of humanity in action, empathy for their neighbour’s struggles – a time of sharing of meagre resources and a commitment to building their new community together. May we continue to learn lessons from them and be helpful as new people from afar join us in our town of Sioux Lookout!”
Dmytro (Dan) Klym
Dan Klym came to Sioux Lookout about 1925. He had a subcontract to brick build the Provincial Police Building at the corner of King Street and Fourth Avenue. This building is presently undergoing a renovation to house a new courthouse (completed). When you go by again look at the brick work. Mr. Klym was a craftsman in the art of bricklaying and masonry from the Ukraine.
It was not very long before Dan had more work than he could handle. He became in great demand to build stone fireplaces and has left his mark on many a fireplace.
When Dan Klym came to Canada, he left behind in the Ukraine his wife Paraska, son Stephen, and two twin girls, Annie and Mary. His intention was to bring his family to Canada as soon as financially possible. World War II interrupted those plans! It was not until after the war that the Klym family was re-united in Sioux Lookout. Their home was on Prince Street.
Within the next two years a son Walter was born.
Both Mr. and Mrs. Klym were involved with the local Ukrainian Greek Orthodox Church. Mrs. Klym left behind her a heritage of cross-stitch embroidery in the Church. Some of it is in the museum today.
The children, after attending Central Public School, moved away to Winnipeg, Thompson, Manitoba and Toronto.
Mr. Klym’s health was failing and he died in 1973. Mrs. Klym moved to Winnipeg to be near her daughters. She died in 1977.