No, I’m not finished with this whole devastating Peter B. Koop b. 1870 story just yet.
This is how Peter S. Koop’s article in Preservings issue 11 concludes:
“It was in 1934 that Peter’s two brothers, Jakob and Johann, and two brothers-in-law, Abraham L. Plett and David L. Plett left Blumenhof, Manitoba for Saskatchewan in order to help him. David L. Plett was at the steering wheel of brother Abraham’s brand-new Model A Ford, when the car swerved and overturned killing Abraham, but that’s another story.”
I stared at the words, stunned. It just throws that out there, like, “Oh, and P.S. when family tried to come help Peter there was a horrible accident and a death, okay ‘bye.”
But then my eyes turned to my mom’s copy of The Koop Family Register 1801-1975. There are basically zero stories in this book, it’s literally just a register of names and birthdates.
EXCEPT for the one-page Introduction. Check this out:
“This book is also to remind us of the hardships our forefathers went through when they left a thriving community in South Russia and settled here in a cold wilderness. Their labours were many, their hardships severe but they never lost sight of the help that God provided. Their relationship to each other was much greater than ours, since they needed each other and helped each other. This is very evident in the following incident that took place in 1933. One of the Koop brothers who lived at Lanigan, Saskatchewan was rather down and needed help. The two Koop brothers and their two Plett brothers in-law planned to visit their brother Peter in Saskatchewan to help him out. On their way back they stopped at Klaas R. Barkmans, Foam Lake for the night. Early next morning, only seven miles from their start they encountered a sharp turn in the road with loose gravel, the result of which was that the car over-turned, killing Mr. Abraham Plett and severely injuring Mr. Jacob Koop. By chance a doctor from the next town, Tuffuel, came along. He took the injured man Mr. Koop and the dead Mr. Plett to Foam Lake. Word of the accident had reached their host for the night, Mr. Barkman, who came to get the other two men and their car. The next day it was decided that Mr. Jacob Koop with the dead brother in-law would leave for home by train, and the other two would go by car. The news of the accident was phoned home and three sons, Cornelius K. Plett, Peter B. Koop and Jacob B. Koop came to meet them.”
Whether this happened in 1933 or 1934, there’s no question this is the same incident. Somehow these two stories make more sense together.
And in true selfish fashion, I’m mainly concerned with how I’m connected to this story. Well, now I know that my great-great-grandfather was one of the Koop brothers who went to encourage his younger brother in Lanigan.