Family Histories

The desert was settled by families that worked hard to claim the land from the natural elements. The biggest obstacle they had to overcome was the lack of water. The early pioneers planned and accomplished the amazing task of bringing water from the Colorado River, 60 miles across the desert, to the Imperial Valley. These pioneers used animals, their own brute strength, and determination to construct the All American Canal which now provides water for the inhabitants of the Valley.

Ernie Strahm going to work on his McCormick

These Pioneers came from all over the world to work the land and provide for their families. People came from Switzerland, Italy, India, Japan, Mexico, and all points in between to develop the what was then called the Colorado Desert.

Each one of these pioneering families has an amazing story to tell about settling in this harsh enviroment. Many of these families still reside in the valley where their children have continued their legacy. Many of the later settlers to the Imperial Valley also have interesting stories on how their families helped to develop this nation and to settle the West.

One such family has diaries written about the wagon train ride west with the Earpe family. Would you like to visit this site?

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Last update: October 12, 1997