Monday 1 February 2016

Senkiw Church, north and east of Hanna, Alberta

Through some internet exploration I found this place and I finally made it here on January 30, 2016. There is nothing left of the town. The church was restored in 1976. From what I could find it is no longer used. It was named Senkiw by the original settlers in memory of their village in what is now western Ukraine. Apparently whatever town that had existed disappeared during the depression when everyone moved away.

This is a very small church and is one of those hidden rural gems. The church is locked and boared up. I would have loved to get a look inside. This is an amazing little spot. I could not decide what photos I wanted to post so I posted them all. I will be back in the summer.


  1. I've been reading your blog for a little while now, and one thing puzzles me:
    What happened to all the towns? The ghost towns I'm familiar with are mostly old mining towns that disappeared when the ore was played out and the miners left, but these appear to have been farming communities in farming country. So why, and where did the farmers go?
    Just asking, but I find it intriguing.

    1. I do not know much about this particular place or how many people lived in the area. It really is in kind of a remote spot and seven kilometres off of a secondary highway. I would like to find out more.

    2. Can I jump in here, BW? I think I may have an explanation.
      Most city kids don't realize it - but the family farm is pretty much a dead duck in Alberta and it's going the same way everywhere else.
      The big corporations have moved in and they swallow dozens of family farms at a gulp. They have big money and can afford the big combines and tractors that cost more than your house. These corporations can and often do own their own haul trucks that can take the crops in to the big seed cleaning and processing plants - which have replaced all the old grain elevators. These corporations are so big and so powerful, they can literally walk into the bank and tell THEM how much money they will borrow and at what interest rate. The little guys with their old one-lung tractors just can't compete. When they sell, often the new owners will salvage and sell what they can of the buildings and homes... and then raze the rest. When I was a kid in the 70's there were still a lot of sod roofed cabins and old outbuildings around and they were so common, we didn't think anything of them. Back then most farmers would happily push those old buildings over and burn them - and thought life was grand as they moved into posh new fangled mobile homes! Now even those are starting to disappear. Alberta is changing, and our esteemed host is one of a few that is actively collecting and collating what's left of our old days and pioneers.

      BW's blog is a double edged blade for me. I love the pics of the hidden treasures and places the province has to offer...but often feel the pain of loss when I remember the ones of my childhood that have since been lost to obscurity and time.

    3. There is that to consider as well. Ideally I like to think that is not one of the causes but you cannot ignore reality.

  2. Maybe you'll get lucky this summer and meet the groundskeeper - looks like someone is taking care of the church and graveyard.