Lozeron, Pierre

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Lozeron, Pierre

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Pierre Lozeron made his first journey into the Peace Country in July 1912, walking in over the Edson Trail with his friend Charlie Heller. Pierre was born in 1887, in Auverern, Canton of Neuchatel, Switzerland, where the family were wine producers and merchants. When the family of six children lost both parents, Pierre and Jean decided to seek their fortunes in America. A sister, Sophie also emigrated to the United States. The brothers left Switzerland in 1910, when Pierre was 23 and Jean 20. By that time, Pierre had completed a stint as a sharp-shooter in the Swiss Army and Jean had taken some Agricultural College courses. They were well-prepared for a pioneer lifestyle in the Peace Country. After spending two years farming in Nebraska State, Pierre went on to the Peace Country. He chose, NW 10-73-7- W6, north west of Bear Lake for a homestead. Here, there was a natural flowing well in a little forest providing him with a fresh supply of water and wood for fence posts. The biggest attraction however, was that it was all open land on the slope up from Bear Lake, a warm slope like those for raising grapes in Switzerland. He also claimed the adjoining quarter section, SW 16-73-7-W6 for his brother Jean. Travelling over the long trail with their supplies, the Lozeron brothers arrived to stay in December, 1912. They lived, that winter, in the box of their sleigh, with snow banked around it and a tarp for a tent on top of it. The next year they built a log cabin with a sod roof and a cross on front of it like a Swiss flag. In 1918, Dora Koberg made her first trip to the Peace Country. Dora was born in Berlin, Iowa and had attended a Presbyterian teachers' college in Minnesota. She came to the Peace Country with the Thomas family from St. Paul's Minnesota. In 1926, Pierre and Dora were married. The couple raised three children on the land that Pierre had first filed on: Paul, born in 1927, became a medical doctor in Neuchatel, Switzerland; Homer, born in 1934, eventually immigrated to the United States; and Andre, born in 1939, who worked as an agriculturalist and eventually took over the family farm. In 1939, the present family farm home was built by William Balisky. The children attended Canuck School and later high school in Grande Prairie. Both Pierre and Dora were active with the United Farmers Association, Pierre as president of the Canuck United Farmers Association Local, and Dora as a member of United Farm Women. During the development of the DEW Line and Radar stations after World War II, Dora was a civilian plane spotter (call letters EKBL 0218), for the Royal Canadian Air Force. Although Pierre only returned to Switzerland once, and Dora infrequently visited her family in the States, they carried on a voluminous correspondence with family, especially the Lozeron extended family. Dora passed away in 1978. Paul passed away in 1980, spending his final years in the Red Willow Lodge in Valleyview, then in Heritage Lodge in Grande Prairie.


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South Peace Regional Archives

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