All About That Janzen (Cairn)

I think it’s just the worst when bloggers go away for awhile, and then resurface for a bit to say, “Oh, hey — I’ve been gone for a bit, but I’m working on a Grand Scheme to create MORE time to post!” Mostly I hate this because it inevitably concludes with them evaporating forever at this point. Which is precisely why I cringe as I write this: I know I’ve become a tad absent and sporadic, but ultimately it’s because I’m working on a Grand Scheme to create MORE time to post!

I promise I’m for real on this. Just trust me.

Here’s the proof:

That’s me, on Wednesday after work, grinning like a fool upon having found another cairn in a field. Andrew of course took the photo. Even though we’re in the midst of an unnaturally busy time for us, we are so, SO thrilled that it’s history-hunting season again. (Because finding cairns and cemeteries is not very effective during snowier seasons.) So, when my brother texted me a photo of this cairn and told us where it was, we followed his instructions and located it.

I mean, I have to be honest — I did know about its existence. After all, I’ve studied the Historical Atlas of the East Reserve pretty religiously, and this cairn is mentioned in it, even though it’s located outside the East Reserve (today known as: Rural Municipality of Hanover). At the back of the Atlas, there are several spots mentioned that are outside the East Reserve. This was one such spot… and I had not gotten to it yet. But my brother’s text inspired me to just go ahead and find it NOW. And so, we did!

So what does this cairn say? Here:

The above says:

“In memory of Johann (Siemens) Janzen b. October 27, 1840 d. May 15, 1905 Margareta (Penner) Janzen b. June 13, 1844 d. October 1, 1889. Johann and Margareta immigrated to Manitoba from Borosenko Colony in Russia in 1874 and settled in the village of Rosenort on the Scratching River Reserve. In 1877 they moved to the village of Blumenhof on the East Reserve, and in 1884 established their own farm on a newly purchased homestead on se 36-7-6e. In 1892 Johann helped each of his children, Cornelius, Margareta, Johann and Elizabeth purchase a quarter of section 29-7-7e. The settlement that was begun there by these four children and their families became known as De Krijm. Margareta is buried at the homestead on section 36, two miles west of here. Johann is buried at this site on the farm of Peter and Margareta (Janzen) Thiessen. Erected by the Janzen descendants October 2003.”

I think “De Krijm” means “outside”… but I could be wrong.

It was ridiculously refreshing to get out and about and locate another historical spot, and I’m very excited for what this year will hold, in terms of exploring Manitoba Mennonite history!