Finding Burwalde!

Back in September, I had posted about how Andrew and I endeavoured to find Burwalde (East Reserve). We drove up and down the road, peering out the windows, scanning for headstones. We found none. Which was frustrating, because we knew they existed — the Historical Atlas of the East Reserve even had a picture of one!

WELL. Check THIS out:

This sign makes it VERY clear that we’re in the right place. Yay!

YES. This past weekend, we returned, with much greater success. And I would love to know who to thank. What a beautiful amount of care has gone into this heritage cemetery! Even a very clear sign! Trust me, this site did NOT look like this back in September. (It had been very grown over and looked like private property.)

FINALLY! This is the headstone I’ve been wanting to locate ever since I saw a photo of it in the Historical Atlas of the East Reserve!

Thanks to the internet, Andrew came across someone posting a pic of this revived cemetery. We had caught up to the MHV Tractor Trek at Unger Meats, which is not very far from Burwalde. As we  drove along the gravel roads, munching on the delicious beef jerky we had purchased at the Unger Meat Store, Andrew mentioned that we should attempt to find Burwalde again. We were unprepared and didn’t even have the Atlas along. BUT I did have my memory and instinct, which led us directly here. (I know. I’m amazed, too.)

So, we explored the cemetery. Sure enough, there were the telltale badger holes that Glen Klassen has written about in his article, Cemeteries and Country Cafés. (I love this article, by the way!)

Badger holes in the foreground, handsome husband in the background.

Have I told you why we’d been attempting to find Burwalde all this time? Andrew’s grandma remembers living there when she was young! I remember the first time she told us she “grew up in Burwalde”. We all asked her, “What’s Burwalde?” And she explained the location of the old village, though kind of in vague terms and we didn’t really digest the information very well, so we had attempted to find it without the Atlas, too.

This village was established a little later than others, and people kept buying up the land as fast as it was vacated, first with the exodus to the better land in the West Reserve, and then again when folks left for Paraguay in the 1920’s, which is when Grandma Bergman’s family arrived from Russia and settled here on the newly available land.

It’s a lovely spot, nestled in the woods. The great thing about the more southern areas of the East Reserve is the poor land — it was never tilled under. I guess there hadn’t been much of a point. It has resulted in a much more lovely landscape, in my opinion — just leaving the land alone.

And so, you are able to visit Burwalde here in the East Reserve, with success! If you do, you might even get a little visitor.

Here’s a related post!

We Were Unable To Find Burwalde’s Cemetery