When the Lake Manitoba Railway and Canal Company line was extended in 1897 from Sifton, it stopped at a small settlement called Gruber, about a mile and a half south of the present village of Winnipegosis. This place took the name of its founder, Rabbi Gruber, who had emigrated from Europe, bringing settlers with him, and intending to start a colony and erect a synagogue.
In the settlement there was a large building that could house fifteen families, a cluster of little mud huts, a post office and a store.
The settlers who were the first to arrive here stayed at Gruber, and eventually crossed the river and claimed land to homestead. The terms with the government were that they settle on a homestead for three years, and clear thirty acres of land in one year. Ten dollars was the amount paid for the land.
Among the first arrivals was a group of Ukrainians who came in 1899, and chose land in the district now known as Cork Cliff. They were:
P. Procyshyn, A. Namaka, J. Korman, M. Namaka, J. Zwolak, O. Lytwyn, A. Gensiski and G. Sosnowski
The following information concerning Gruber was reported in the Dauphin Press:
“In 1901, the Gruber post-office changed hands, Rabbi Gruber being succeeded as postmaster by Harry Gertle. The business at this office was becoming less and less all the time. The Post Office department was about to close down the branch.
In 1904, the inhabitants of Gruber were moving in the direction of becoming incorporated.
In the same year, Rabbi Gruber was involved in disposing of lots in a land deal, and left the settlement.
A new district was formed that was between Mossey River and Winnipegosis districts. It was the old Gruber district, replaced and re-organized. W.H. Dallas was the moving spirit in this matter. The new district was to be called Coronation.”
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