Koop, Peter B. (1870-1956)
| Peter B. Koop.
Peter B. Koop: farmer and investor; born 7 January 1870 in Russia to Johann N. and Katharina (Barkman) Koop of Muntau, Molotschna Colony. Peter was the youngest of 10 children in the family. He married Margaretha Schellenberg (1873-1900) in 1893; after she died, he married Auguste Hemiger (born 1896). Peter had five children from his first marriage; they were raised in foster homes when Peter and Auguste’s marriage ended. Peter died in 1956 in Saskatchewan.
Together with his parents and siblings, Peter immigrated to Canada in 1874, arriving in Winnipeg, Manitoba, on 31 July. The family helped build the village of Blumenort and lived there for some years before joining with six other farmers to establish Neuanlage (now Twincreek). Peter did well for himself in his younger years; he and Margaretha used one of his father’s quarter sections to build a successful farm. Peter also started a firewood-sawing company, as well as a steam engine and threshing business. Margaretha died in 1900, and Peter married Auguste Hemiger on 3 January 1905 in Winnipeg.
Troubles began in earnest after Peter B. Koop’s second marriage. Auguste persuaded Peter to appoint a man named Heier, whom she had known before her marriage, as manager of first his sawmill and then his steam engine threshing company. For Peter, this was the beginning of financial ruin, as Mr. Heier kept all of the profits of the businesses and their sale for himself. At Auguste’s insistence, Peter sold the farm in Neuanlage and moved to a farm in Lanigan, Saskatchewan. Soon he was bankrupt.
When Peter’s money was gone, Auguste deserted him for Mr. Heier, leaving her husband alone with the children. Unable to care for his large family, Peter sent his sons and daughters to live with relatives in Blumenhof and Neuanlage, Manitoba. Finally, some of Peter’s relatives went to Saskatchewan to work on the farm. Peter and his nephew, Abram K. Plett, eventually began a sod-breaking business using a steam engine for power. They were able to sell the steam engine before moving to Herbert, Saskatchewan in about 1906. Peter developed cancer and died in 1956.
Life was not easy for Peter B. Koop as one loss succeeded another, but even the most devastating defeats failed to stop him from trying again. His life was an example of patience under severe trials.
GRANDMA (The Genealogical Registry and Database of Mennonite Ancestry) Database, 5.03 ed. Fresno, CA: California Mennonite Historical Society, 2007: #6632.
Plett, Delbert F. “Peter B. Koop (1870-1956).” Preservings No. 11 (December 1997): 47.
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MLA style: Huebert, Susan. "Koop, Peter B. (1870-1956)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 2007. Web. 24 May 2013. http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/koop_peter_b._1870_1956.
APA style: Huebert, Susan. (2007). Koop, Peter B. (1870-1956). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 24 May 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/koop_peter_b._1870_1956.