You live and you learn. Eric Fehr was born in Winkler, Manitoba, established by Russian Mennonites.
DC Sports Bog, Mar. 26, 2009:
For those of you who already knew that, well, did you know that there are several great Mennonite restaurants in Winkler, owing to its founding by a mass migration of Russian Mennonites? That despite that, Fehr has never spoken a word of Russian in Winkler?
The name Fehr definitely sounds like Russian Mennonite. Click here to see how many Russian Mennonites have the last name Fehr.
Wikipedia on Russian Mennonites:
The state of Kansas owes its reputation as a wheat-producing state in large measure to its early Mennonite settlers. Winter wheat was introduced to Kansas in 1873. The following year the Mennonites, who had experience with dry land farming in Russia, quickly took advantage of its characteristics resulting in rapid expansion of the milling industry in the State. It was planted in the fall and harvested in the following summer, and was therefore ideally suited to hot, dry Kansas summers. Today Kansas is a top producer of wheat in America. Swiss Volhynian Mennonites settled in the Moundridge, Kansas and Pretty Prairie, Kansas areas. The Swiss Mennonite Cultural and Historical Association tells their story. Mennonites of Dutch-Prussian descent (who speak a language known as Plautdietsch, which can be loosely translated as "Low German") settled much of South Central Kansas.
After 1870 many Russian Mennonites, fearing state influence on their education systems, emigrated to the Plains States of the US and the Western Provinces of Canada. They brought with them many of their institutions and practices, including separate denominations heretofore unseen in North America, like the Mennonite Brethren.
The largest group of Russian Mennonites came out of Russia after the bloody strife following the various Russian revolutions and the aftermath of World War I. These people, having lost everything they had known, found their way to settlements in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, British Columbia and Ontario and in many regions of the United States. Some joined with previous Mennonite groups, while others formed their own.
From North America, many groups, fearing state persecution and searching for a way to "live quietly on the land," have left to form groups in Belize, Mexico and Menno Colony of Paraguay beginning in the 1920s. Fernheim Colony was formed in the 1930s by Mennonites from the Soviet Union seeking a better life in Paraguay. Old Colony Mennonites went from Mexico and Belize in the early 1970s and to Argentina in 1986. A smaller number of Russian Mennonites emigrated as refugees along with the retreating German army after the failed German campaign of World War II. There are 41 Mennonite colonies in Bolivia.
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