CHARLES HEBER DUDLEY SR.
Charles Heber Dudley was born in 1848 in Council Bluffs, Iowa. He was married on April 10th, 1880, to Dorothy (Dora) Ann Wallace born in 1863, in Salt Lake City, Utah. While living in Willard, Utah Charles was called by the Mormon church to come help build the irrigation canal in Southern Alberta in 1899. Charles and two of his nephews arrived in Magrath around April 20th, 1899. They worked on the canal until February of 1900 when his contract was finished, and the two nephews returned to Utah. During his time working on the canal, he also built a two-room dugout along the Pothole Creek just west of the future location of the Galt canal. In February of 1900 after being gone for 10 months Charles returned to Willard, Utah and sold his farm and all holdings except for his share in their orchard in preparation for their move. The Dudley’s arrived in Lethbridge by train around the 12th of April in 1900, put their wagons together and rode out to the Pothole Creek. Until his house was completed, Dora put cloth sheets up on the walls and woven rugs on the dugout floor with straw underneath. Charles passed away in Magrath in, 1923, Dora passed away in Utah in, 1937.
Charles and Dora had 11 children, Charles Heber Jr., Dorothy Etta (Jensen), Mary Ann (passed away as an infant), George Benjamin, Hannah Ida (Chipman), Harriet (Emmett), Thomas Oliver, Pearl Lavon (Archibald), Wallace, Emily (Squires), and Thelma (Johnson).
OCCUPATION AND SKILLS
Charles worked on the irrigation canal, and was paid part in money and part in land. Charles then went on to become a farmer he was also the first town secretary. He was also the ward clerk in the first Magrath Ward and the first Sunday School was often held in their home. Dora was an excellent midwife and according to her daughter Thelma a marvelous dressmaker.
Before Charles returned to Willard for his family, it seems that the community Christmas party was held in his dugout. His home was on an island in Pothole Creek. The creek was breaking up and they crossed warily on planks laid from cake to cake of ice. The community played games and ate plum pudding and mince pies.