Initially the population of Saskatchewan began around the towns that had traditionally existed along the wagon tracks across the region.  With the arrival of the railroad across the province towns sprang up at regular intervals to service the trains with fuel and water. Slowly the rails pushed the development in those new regions too, just like the one that would become Kayville.

Birds of a Feather

A small population of Romanian immigrants were initially gathering in the region around Rouleau, Saskatchewan in the earliest of the 1900's.  As the number of immigrants rose after 1905 the land around Rouleau was already claimed and new settlers began taking homesteads further south.  Some sort of balance tipped, whether it was the large insurgence of Romanians to the south or the fact that a church was built but the Romanians around Rouleau quickly moved to the Kayville area.

At about the same time a pool of Romanians had been homesteading in North Dakota.  Again, like Rouleau, some sort of balance tipped and there was a movement from that area to the Kayville area.  Some of the stories say that letters from people around Kayville to people around Velva, North Dakota made life sound better there.  Other stories say that the land around Kayville was far better for cultivation than other areas.

Personally I think that many of the Romanian immigrants during this era were largely from the Suceava region of Romania.  I think they often knew each other and when they heard that there was an opportunity to live in an area populated with familiar people who spoke the same language and had the same values they felt they had to go there.

The town grew slowly.  Initially a variety of local settlers ran businesses out of their own farms but over a small number of years these stores and services began to move into town. 

From various accounts the town as already a bustling place before the railroad finally arrived to town.  After the coming of the railroad in 1924 things really exploded.  I believe that a slow decline in the towns fortunes began through the sixties and by the time of the seventies, despite some investments in the community, the town withered.  Perhaps as technology and transportation developed people could interact with population centers farther and farther away.  Certainly Kayville outlasted small communities that once surrounded it too.  Eventually Avonlea and Ogema proved to be the major towns in the region.   

Below is a timeline that I have pulled together to show the evolution of Kayville.


Early Days

  • 1905 On September 1, 1905 Saskatchewan becomes a province
  • 1905 Julius Martin and William "Billie" McKay arrive in the Kayville area to be ranchers.  They are possibly the first non-aboriginals to live in the Kayville area.1
  • 1906 in May of 1906 the new Province of Saskatchewan was part of the the Census of Population and Agriculture of the Northwest Provinces: Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, 1906  
  • 1906 First homesteads are filed in the area1
  • 1906 Saskatchewan created a group of special constables to enforce its liquor legislation. Called “whisky spotters,” they had offices in Regina, Weyburn, Saskatoon and Prince Albert. These constables would become more active in 1916 when Saskatchewan implemented prohibition.25
    The Leader, May 24, 1906, Page 1
  • 1906 After much debate over the merits of the cities of Regina, Prince Albert, Moose Jaw or Saskatoon being declared the capital of Saskatchewan, the legislature votes to choose Regina on May 23, 1906.34
  • 1906 on June 24, 1906 Canada begins a census specifically for Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Read more in the article 1906 Census: Regina.
  • 1907 First Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church Parish Church council formed22
  • 1908 Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church built north-east of Kayville and cemetery consecrated. The church "Saint Peter and Paul" was originally built for settlers in Max, North Dakota prior to 1906.  When most Romanian immigrants in that region migrated to the better land surrounding Kayville by about 1907 they brought all of the church contents, alters, clothes and divine items with them.  The items were placed in the new church building built on land donated by Cozma Kozack on NW-31-09-23-W2.3,5,22 
  • 1908 Work begins on the Saskatchewan Legislative Building in Regina begins.  Men from the surrounding area including Kayville join in the labour. 
  • 1909 On May 17, 1909 an earthquake was strongly felt in the Truax area approximately 33km north east of Kayville and must have been felt in Kayville too.  Truax area kitchens had dishes in cupboards rattling according to reports.  The earthquake was also reported on the front page of the Morning Leader newspaper in Regina the following day.  The quake caused the greatest damage in Santa Barbara, California.


  • 1911 In June of 1911 the people of Saskatchewan were enumerated for the 1911 Canada Census. Read more in the article 1911 Census: Regina.
  • 1912 Regina Warehouse District in Ruins Following Tornado
    1912 On June 30, 1912 a tornado devastated the nearby capital, Regina.  The 'Regina Cyclone' killed 28 people and destroyed more than 400 buildings. Many area residents, including people from the Kayville region, participated in the cleanup and reconstruction.  Some enterprising homesteaders salvaged lumber and materials from the wreckage and repurposed it for buildings on their nascent farms. Read more about the event on Wikipedia.
  • 1912 Mining of clay for making bricks begins in Claybank, Saskatchewan approximately 50km north of Kayville, to the west of Avonlea.  The brick making factory was called Dominion Fire Brick and Pottery Company.  It became Saskatchewan's largest brick producer and operated for 77 years, closing in 1989.
  • 1912 William "Bill" McKay had the first area Post Office when he lived on NE-09-09-24-W2 with Julius Martin.  They hauled mail from Truax.  The powers at the Post Office were trying to choose a name for the outlet and sent William a list of ten names.  He chose the name on the list "Kayville" which might have been a nod to his surname 'McKay'.  On October 1, 1912 Canada Post officially created the Kayville Post Office naming William McKay as the Postmaster.  He would perform the duty until 1914.13,19

  • 1921 Dan and Anna Kozack in The Store on the Hill
    abt 1912 Dan T. Kozak opens 'The Store on the Hill' on Estafi Ritco's land.  The store would be moved into Kayville in 1924 and operate there until 1945.12 
  • 1914 William McKay resigns as Postmaster on October 5 after doing the job for two years.19
  • 1914 Excelsis School opens on the northeast corner of SE-12-9-24-W2 (Karl Jackle Sr. land) which is 1.5 miles east of Kayville.  There were fourteen students that first year. A.D. Donisan the area photographer took photographs.  The school would operate for twenty-three years with more students each year until it burnt down in 1937.1,11
  • aft 1914 Earliest grocery store operated in the town by Mr. Lapp. (There was a George Lapp who operated a grocery and dry goods store in Dahinda maybe from 1924 until 1929 when it burned down.  Maybe the store in Kayville was before or after this?) 1,18
  • aft 1914 Security Lumber Company, Jack Kemp as Agent, open for business in the earliest days.  Later Agents after Jack Kemp were Alex Y. Kinnaird (abt 1929-193616), Alec Ivanoff, Henry Enns, Paul Avram and Cecil Mostel.  The lumber yard closed in 1957.1
  • aft 1914 First town blacksmith shop is opened by Adam Baumgarten and Sons and operates for three or four years.  The blacksmith shop was initially built on the northwest corner of the main intersection but moved shortly afterward to it's permanent location on the south side of the main street on the east side of the building on the southeast corner of the main intersection.1 
  • 1915 W. W. Smith becomes the Postmaster on August 31, 1915.  He performs the job until early in the year of 1921.19
  • 1915 Saint Mary's Romanian Orthodox Church built six miles northwest of Kayville on land donated by John Ursu Sr. on NW-32-09-24-W22,6
  • 1916 In June 1916 Saskatchewan was enumerated in the 1916 Census of Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta.
  • 1916 Saskatchewan implemented a prohibition law. The Northwest Mounted Police (NWMP) refused to enforce the law. The government would find a solution in the following year.25
  • 1917 Saskatchewan government finds a solution to the Northwest Mounted Police (NWMP) refusing to enforce the prohibition law created the previous year (1916). The province formed the Saskatchewan Provincial Police (SPP) out of the "whiskey spotter" which had been created in 1906. The SPP enforced prohibition along with game and fire acts, school attendance, and public entertainment. They would function until prohibition was repealed in 1924 and then were officially abolished in 1928.25
  • 1918 Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church was rebuilt larger1,22
  • 1918 Spanish Influenza epidemic (waves #1 and #2) kills many babies, children and some adults in the area.  See also: Spanish Influenza (1918-1919)
  • abt 1918 Mr. Farley takes over the town blacksmith shop from Adam Baumgarten and Sons and operates it for about 12 years until 1930.1
  • 1919 Spanish Influenza epidemic (waves #2 and #3) continues from the previous year, killing more.  See also: Spanish Influenza (1918-1919)


  • 1920 Eftim Ritco in partnership with Avram Kozack and Bill Kozack built a poolroom on the Ritco homestead beside Dan T. Kozak's 'The Store on the Hill' two miles northwest of Kayville.9
  • abt 1920 A group of Kayville citizens posed for a photo which I talk about in Kayville Citizens 1920
  • 1921 Dan T. Kozak becomes the Postmaster for Kayville Post Office on April 1, 1921 in The Store on the Hill.  He would perform this service until resigning November 10, 1926.1,12,19
  • 1921 Saskatchewan residents were enumerated for the Canada Census in June 1921
  • 1921 Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Church 2 miles west of Kayville built1,4
  • bef 1922 A.D. Donison operated a flour mill a half-mile outside of Kayville, on or near SW-13-09-24-W2 north of the tracks.1
  • 1922 Charlie Chaplin movie shown on the inside wall of A.D. Donisan's flour mill1
  • 1922 George Ursu Sr. ran a livery barn and dray business in the early days for the town.  George Ursu Sr. operated his dray business for about twenty-two years before a succession of entrepreneurs took over beginning around 1944 or 1945.1,17
  • 1922 Diphtheria epidemic claims some lives during the summer23
  • 1922 While radio was first introduced in Canada around 1922 its popularity only grew from this point.  Radios in Kayville would have been powered by batteries as electricity did not reach the town until 1953.1,7
  • 1923 Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Parish Cemetery created beside the church on land donated by Clim Ritsco4
  • 1923 Saskatchewan's first radio stations go on the air. CKCK Radio in Regina and CFQC in Saskatoon gave people their first opportunity to hear news and ideas from over the horizon and around the world faster than the newspapers they knew could.
  • 1923 Fire!! During a blizzard and in the middle of the night on February 14, a fire in nearby Truax destroyed most of the town's main street. Residents fought the blaze during the blizzard by shovelling snow into the flames. Damaged in the fire were the Municipal Office, Bank of Hamilton, J.L. Killorin General Store and Thomas Newman Livery Stable.28

1925 Waiting for the first train in Kayville
  • 1924 Canadian Pacific Railroad (CPR) completes Amulet-Cardross railroad line to Kayville in the autumn.  It would operate for seventy-four years until 1998.1,21
  • 1924 Dan T. Kozak closes 'The Store on the Hill' two miles NW of town and builds a new store in Kayville.  The store would operate for twenty-one years until selling it in 1945.1,12
  • 1924 Saskatchewan government repeals prohibition which was enacted eight year earlier in 1916.25
  • 1924 Eftim Ritco moves the poolroom he operated beside the Kozak 'Store on the Hill' into town where it is expanded and a bowling alley is added.  The building is moved in the winter and pulled to Kayville atop sleds by horses.  Sixteen years later in 1940 it would be renovated to become the Kayville Community Hall.1,9,12
  • 1924 Dan Ritsco builds a new store on the northeast corner of the main intersection on the south side of Eftim Ritco's poolroom1
  • 1924 Alex Bodnaresk builds a two storey business with a cafe on the ground floor and hotel rooms on the second floor.  This was Kayville's first Cafe.  Alex Bodnaresk later sold the Cafe to Charlie Quong and Bill Fong who then in turn sold eventually to Tom Chow.1  See also Kayville Hotel and Cafe 1924
  • 1924 First I.H.C. Dealership opened by Howard Argue1
  • 1924 Saskatchewan Co-operative Elevator Company begins construction of the first grain elevator1
  • abt 1924-1926 Hope Lutheran Church built in Kayville1
  • abt 1925 Star Company begins construction of Kayville's second grain elevator1
  • 1925 Pete Allen opened a hardware store1
  • 1925 Butcher shop operated by George Wagner on the southwest corner of the main intersection1
  • 1925 Chevrolet Dealership and Mechanic's garage opened by Joe Surdu on southeast corner of main intersection1
Feb 14, 1925 The Morning Leader Pg 41
  • aft 1925 George Popescu operated a store on the northwest corner of the main intersection until 19441,17
  • aft 1925 George Popescu took over the I.H.C. Dealership from Howard Argue1
  • aft 1925 George Popescu took over as Agent of the Imperial Oil agency 1
  • 1926 Saskatchewan Wheat Pool purchases what was Kayville's first grain elevator from the Saskatchewan Co-operative Elevator Company1
  • 1926 Saskatchewan residents were enumerated for the Census of Prairie Provinces in June 1926
  • 1926 John P. Popescu, Todor Guraluick and Elie Krasiun partnered to run a bowling alley and poolroom on the southwest corner of the main intersection.  The venture was closed by about 1930.1
  • 1926 Dan T. Kozak resigns as Postmaster for Kayville Post Office November 10, 1926 after five years.19 
  • abt 1927 Karl Jackle Sr. operated a Saskatchewan Liquor Board store and sold beer, ale and stout.  Karl operated the store until 1929 when it was taken over by someone else.  The Liquor Board store closed in 1931.1
  • bef 1928 Jake Schmidt operated a butcher shop.1 (There was a Jacob "Jake" Schmidt married to Wilhelmina in the Ogema area who did butchering but his story doesn't mention any time in Kayville (Pages 463-464))
  • 192819 (19271) Dan Ritsco becomes the Postmaster for the Kayville Post Office on April 1, 1928 and operated it from his store. Dan was Postmaster until 1953.1,19
  • 1928 Excelsis School which had opened in 1914 was now bursting at the seams with about eighty students.  The basement of the Kayville Hope Lutheran Church (newly built a couple of years earlier) is rented as a classroom to handle the overflow.11
  • 1928 Fire!! During the evening of January 30 an overheated stove started a fire that destroyed Jake Schmidt's butcher shop and threatened to burn down a warehouse next-door. Citizens formed a bucket-brigade and were able to stop the fire from spreading although the butcher shop was a complete loss and was torn down during the battle with the blaze.27
  • 1929 Saskatchewan experienced the first of a series of years of crop failures due to drought
  • 1929 Fire!! On March 3, 1929 The Morning Leader newspaper in Regina reported that someone tried to set fire to Eftim Ritco's poolroom (which had been moved into Kayville about five years earlier in 1924). Luckily for Eftim, the flax straw that had been piled in front of the door and set alight was wet. Equally lucky was that Zay Harenuik noticed the fire as he passed by around 4am, raised the alarm and people quickly put the fire out with little damage!26
  • bef 1930 Frank Manz operated a butcher shop1


1930 Majeran's flour mill
  • abt 1930 A house, flour mill and bakery was built on the east side of town by Mike Majeran (southwest corner of SW 13-09-24-W2).  They had a contract with the federal government to supply flour during World War II.  The house, bakery and mill were destroyed in a fire in 1957.1
  • 1930 Newspaper stories voicing concern about the damage being caused to crops due to cutworms begin to appear. Cutworms do most of their damage in the spring.  It had been a dry spring and the belief was that more rain would be the futile wish of farmers. Little did they suspect at the time that the traditional farming practice of deep tillage was making both the affects if the drought and the infestation of cutworms worse.  By the autumn crop yields would be down between 20% and 30%.35
  • 1930 Fred Schmidt Sr. moved to Kayville from Dahinda where he had been operating a blacksmith shop (and before that in Ogema) and purchased the blacksmith shop from Mr. Farley.  Fred ran the shop for thirteen years until 1943.1,18
  • 1930 Fred Schmidt Sr. who was the town blacksmith also ran a butcher shop which he operated for thirteen years until he left town around 1943.1
  • 1930 Saskatchewan experienced a second year in a row of crop failure due to drought
  • 1930 A flour mill was built and operated for a few years by John Frank and his brothers who had moved from the Lipton area1
  • 1931 Saskatchewan Liquor Board store which opened about four years earlier in 1927, closes1
  • 1932 Saskatchewan experienced a third consecutive year of crop failures due to drought
  • 1933 The 'Great Depression' was in full swing.  30% Unemployment. One in five Canadians require government relief.  The people of Kayville are no exception will many leaving to find work in eastern Canada.  Many who stayed needed to apply for a share of government shipments of food and clothing.
Crops Devastated by Grasshoppers 1933
  • 1933 After three years of punishing drought and crop failures rain returned and crops finally grew with the moisture they needed.  The crops were instead ravaged by a massive hatching of grasshoppers who must have been waiting for the rain to return along with the farmers.
  • 1934 Summer heat was dry and scorching.  Exposed soil dried and winds began to blow it into the swirling dust storms that came to visually represent the hardships of being a farmer during the decade. It was clear that farming practices were going to need to adapt.
  • 1935 Despite the crushing challenges of the 'Dirty Thirties' the people of the area banded together to form dance troupes who performed traditional Romanian dancing and music.  This was likely a way for immigrant parents to keep Romanian cultural traditions alive for their children, many of which were born in Canada.  Read more in Arcaşul Romanian Dance Troupe (1935) and Arcaşul Romanian Dance Troupe II (1935).
  • 1935 Civil unrest caused by the poor economy causes unemployed men in the west to organize and plan a demonstration in Ottawa.  They climbed aboard trains, riding atop and within rail cars travelling east across the western provinces.  At first, governments dismissed the protest but the numbers of the participants continued to grow with every mile.  On June 14, 1935 the contingent reached Regina.  Estimates said that that there were about 300 men on the trek by this time.  The governments tried to negotiate with the protesters but it all fell apart during the Dominion Day celebrations on July 1.  A riot broke out when police arrived in the Market Square and began arresting protesters. Read more about the "Regina Riot" on Wikipedia.  There were maybe 2000 Dominion Day celebrants in the area when the riot kicked-off and tear gas choked the air.   Romanians were definitely at the riot, not only because they may have been attending the Dominion Day festivities, but the square where the riot began was less than 200m NW of St. Nicholas Romanian Orthodox Church and a lot of families lived near their church.  Luckily the riot seemed to boil westward into the city centre. Read the July 2, 1935 issues of The Leader Post.
  • 1936 A poolroom is operated by Mike Juravle for two years1
  • 1936 The punishing heat soared again in the summer and the dust storms of the past two years continued to strip the land
  • 1936 Romanian Orthodox Bishop Policarp Morusca visits the Orthodox Churches in the Kayville region to sanctify them and to work to mend relationships between the parishes and with the Romanian Orthodox Church.  Read more about his visit to Saint Mary's Romanian Orthodox Church in the article 1936 Saint Mary's Church Group.
  • 1937 On the morning of March 17 Excelsis School burns down.  The John Silverson building in Kayville (across the street east of the present hotel) was initially used as a classroom before space in Eftim Ritco's poolroom and bowling alley was used.11
  • 1937 Another year of heat, dust and failed crops
  • 1937 Kayville Co-op Association is created and initially sold petroleum products and coal.  The Association was run from a small house on the southwest corner of the main intersection which served as the office, store and living quarters for the manager and his family.  The first manager was Sigmund Brandt.1
  • 19398, 19371 Dan Popescul buys a poolroom in the building on the southeast corner of the main intersection which was previously used by Joe Surdu beginning around 1925 for his Chevrolet Dealership and Mechanic's garage.1,8
  • 1938 Mike Juravle closes the poolroom which he operated for the last two years since 19361
  • 1938 Rain levels required for proper crop success returned and new farming practices came together to reward farmers with the best crops in eight years.
  • 1939 Rudy "Big Rudy" Ursu opened a mechanic shop which he operated for 38 years until his death in 1977.  Rudy also operated a Massey-Harris equipment dealership.1,10


  • 1940 Dan Popescul expands his poolroom business on the southeast corner of the main intersection to also include a store and a mechanic garage as well.8 
  • 1940 The Kayville Community Hall Co-op Association was formed with Nick Cojocari as president, Christ Brandt as vice-president, Karl Jackle Sr. as secretary, Conn Morse as treasurer.  The directors of the association were Pete Juravle, Clemente Popescue and George Ursu Sr..  The association bought Eftim Ritco's poolroom and bowling alley (which Eftim had moved into town in 1924) and renovated it to allow for seating and dancing.1
  • 1940 Dan Popescul begins operating a trucking and grain hauling company in addition to his poolroom, store and mechanic garage. 
  • 1941 Dan Popescul adds to his poolroom, store, mechanic's garage, trucking and grain hauling company on the southeast corner of the main intersection by acquiring a Ford Dealership and a John Deere Dealership.8
  • 1942 Standalone bell tower built at Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church.  (It will be renovated 73 years later in 2015)22
  • 1943 George Cojocari purchases the blacksmith shop from Fred Schmidt Sr. who had been running it since 1930.1
  • abt 1943 Sam Ritsco purchased the butcher shop from Fred Schmidt Sr. when he left town.1
  • abt 1943 Pete Buburuz and Eli Satir bought the Cafe (originally built by Alex Bodnaresk in 1924) from Tom Chow and ran it for about two years.1
  • 1944 George Ursu Sr. purchased George Popescul's store on the northwest corner of the main intersection, converts it into a hotel and called it "The Ursu Hotel".  He operated the hotel until 1947.17
  • 1945 Dan T. Kozak sells his store (formerly known as 'The Store on the Hill') after operating it for more than twenty years to Alex Ivanoff.12
  • 1945 Pete Juravle purchases the Cafe (originally built by Alex Bodnaresk in 1924) from Pete Buburuz and Eli Satir who had run it for about two years. Pete Juravle ran the Cafe himself for about two years.1
  • 1945 George Ursu Sr. closed the dray business he operated since the town began twenty-two years before.  Following this a large group of others filled the space with the passing years: Sam G. Petrescue, John Dobra, Steve Donison, John Pana, Elie Juravle, Ted Koch, Dan Lupanko and Mike Juravle1,17
  • 1945 George and Mary Cojocari open a store on the northeast corner of the main intersection, in what was the store originally built by Dan Ritsco in 19241
  • 1945 Kayville Co-op Association begins construction on a new larger store to replace the small house on the same site on the southwest corner of the main intersection which they had been previously using1
  • abt 1946 George Ursu Jr. opened a mechanic's garage with an Imperial Oil gas station across the street from where the Credit Union stands today.  He operated the enterprise until he sold in 1960.1
  • 1946 George Cojocari, already the town Blacksmith and store keeper also opened a mechanic shop in the basement of the new Co-op store1
February 1947 A.D. Donison on snow drift following blizzard
  • 1946 Telephone service came to Kayville when Christ Brandt and Karl R. Jackle travelled to Regina to petition for the service.  The result was that a telephone exchange was built and telephone lines were run throughout the region and town.  John D. Kozack became the first telephone operator to work in the small exchange manually directing and connecting calls.  The exchange remained in operation for twenty-two years when a larger exchange was built in Ormiston in 1968 which also served Kayville.
  • 1947 Saskatchewan had been enduring a frigid cold spell for a month with temperatures lingering around -43C when on February 1 a blizzard which would last for two days buried the province. All highways were blocked by drifting snow and railways were unable to run. It took a week before important supplies like coal for heating and food could move.29,30,31,32,33
  • 1947 Pete Morse Jr. buys the Cafe (originally built by Alex Bodnaresk in 1924) from Pete Juravle who had run it for the last two years. Pete Morse Jr. then ran the Cafe himself for the next two years.1
  • 1947 Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church was moved from the northwest of town into Kayville5,22
    1947 St. Peter and Paul Church Moving Into Town
  • 1948 Dan Popescul sells his businesses and moves to Regina.8
  • 19488 or 19471 Sigmund Brandt and Con Morse begin a partnership and open a store, garage, Cockshutt Implements Dealership and a car dealership in the building on the southeast corner of the main intersection that was previously operated by Dan Popescu for a John Deere Dealership, store and poolroom since 19371
  • 1948 Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church consecrates a new cemetery beside the church's new location.  Old cemetery at the former location remains in-use.3,5
  • bef 1949 Sam Ritsco operated the butcher shop he bought from Fred Schmidt Sr. around 1943 for a short number of years before he in-turn sold it to John Cojocari1
  • 1949 Pete Morse Jr. rents the Cafe (originally built by Alex Bodnaresk in 1924) to George Petrescu who operated it until the summer of 1950.1 
  • 1949 John Cojocari closes his butcher shop (originally opened by Fred Schmidt Sr. nineteen years earlier) after a small number of years.1 
  • 1949 Kayville Co-op Association begins selling groceries from the store built in 1945 on the southwest corner of the main intersection.  George and Mary Cojocari who are operating a store on the northeast corner of the main intersection negotiate with the Co-op to provide Mary with a job in exchange for closing their store. Mary Cojocari (nee Banda) worked for the Co-op for the next thirty years until retiring.1


  • 1950 or 1947 George Majeran moved to Kayville from Sudbury and purchased "The Ursu Hotel" on the northwest corner of the main intersection from George Ursu Sr.. How could he know it would burn down six months later?  The Majeran family would operate the hotel for 27 years (1950-1977).17,24 
  • 1950 A phone directory printed February 1950 lists seven phone numbers for Kayville: George Cojocari General Store, Kayville Co-op Association, Kayville Flour Mill, Kayville Hotel, Kayville Motors & Machine, Rudolph Ursu General Store and Victory Store20
  • 1950 Dan Popescue Jr. buys the Cafe (originally built by Alex Bodnaresk in 1924) during the summer from Pete Morse Jr..  Little did he know that his new Cafe enterprise would burn down that autumn.1  
  • 1950 Kayville as with other famous cities of the world like London, England and Chicago, USA was devastated and reshaped by fire.  On September 13, 1950 the largest fire the town had ever seen destroyed all of the buildings on the block on the northwest corner of the main intersection. The fire began in the cafe next to George Majeran's Hotel.1  
  • 1951 Kayville is given the status of "Organized Hamlet" by the Saskatchewan Government which means that they need to elect a small board and can keep a portion of municipal taxes.14,15
  • 1951 George Majeran builds a hotel, bar and cafe out of brick on the northwest corner of the main intersection following a fire the previous year and calls it "The Georgian Hotel".1,24
  • 1951 Dan Popescue Jr. rebuilt the Cafe he bought in 1950 and was lost in a fire that same year.  The new Cafe was built on the same spot as the original, had it's grand opening during the summer of 1951 and was named 'Model Cafe'.  Dan operated the Cafe for one more year.1
  • 1952 Pete Fluter (or maybe Dan Litowski8) bought the 'Model Cafe' from Dan Popescue Jr. and operated it for a small number of years.  A cafe operated on the site for another eighteen years under a succession of many owners before finally closing in 1970.1
  • 1953 Dan Ritsco resigns as Postmaster for Kayville Post Office on May 11, 1953 after 25 years of service.19
  • 1953 Mary Ritsco is appointed Postmaster for Kayville on July 8, 1953.  She will be Postmaster for almost twenty years, resigning in 1972.19
  • 1953 Electricity arrived to the town and the first street lights were installed.1

  • 1950's Kayville Co-op
    1954 Dan Daniel bought the first television in town1
  • bef 1957 John Buburuz operated a bowling alley, poolroom and barbershop in one large building for a number of years.1
  • 1957 The building previously used by John Buburuz to operate a bowling alley, poolroom and barbershop was modified and extended to become the towns curling rink (not the same building as the more current rink) with two sheets of ice.  It was used for the 1958-59 curling season.  A more modern rink would be built in 1971 by the old train station.1
  • 1957 The house, flour mill and bakery built on the east side of town by Mike Majeran (southwest corner of SW 13-09-24-W2) around 1930 burnt down.
  • 1957 Security Lumber Company which was a town fixture since the beginning closes after about 40 years of operation.1
  • 1958 The organization which ran the community centre, formed in 1940, changed its' name from the Kayville Community Hall Co-op Association Limited to Kayville Co-operative Community Centre.1
  • 1958 Kayville's four-room school is built in town11


  • 1960 Joe Ursu opened an Imperial Oil bulk station which operated for ten years1
  • 1960 Elie Juravle took over the mechanic's garage with an Imperial Oil gas station first opened by George Ursu Jr. around 1946.  Elie ran the business for two more years.1
  • aft 1960 Lorenz "Larry" Ritco opens a store in the building on the southeast corner of the main intersection1
  • 1962 Elie Juravle sold his mechanic's garage with an Imperial Oil gas station which he operated for the previous two years to John Scrimbit.  John ran the business for another eight years, eventually opening only on a part-time basis before closing in 1970.1
  • 1965 The Hope Lutheran Church holds its last service since being built around 1924-1926need citation


  • 1970 The cafe in Kayville finally closes after it's first incarnation opened forty-six years earlier in 1924.1
  • 1970 John Scrimbit closes his mechanic's garage with an Imperial Oil gas station (first opened around 1946 by George Ursu Jr.)1
  • 1970 Joe Ursu closed his Imperial Oil bulk station which opened in 1960 and had operated for ten years.1
  • 1970 Quarrying of Bentonite clay begins in Truax, Saskatchewan, approximately 33km north east of Kayville
  • 1971 Kayville's more modern two-sheet curling rink is built by the old railway station.  It is used for the 1971-72 curling season.  This curling rink replaced the previous one built in 1957.1
  • 1972 Kayville's original second grain elevator (built in about 1925) is closed by the current owners United Grain Growers1
  • 1972 Mary Ritsco resigned as Kayville Post Office Postmaster on August 1, 1972 after nineteen years of service.19
  • 1972 Lorenz "Larry" Ritco assumes operation of the Kayville Post Office inside his store on the southeast corner of the main intersection August 1, 1972 from Dan and Mary Ritsco who had been operating it since 1927 within their own store.1,19 
  • 1973 Saskatchewan Wheat Pool builds a new 50K bushel capacity grain elevator in Kayville.  Kayville's third grain elevator.1
  • 1977 The mechanic's shop run by Rudy Ursu closes upon his death after 38 years of operation1
  • 1977 The family of George Majeran sells "The Georgian Hotel" after 27 years (1950-1977) which they had continued to operate following his death in 1965.24
  • 1979 Last leg of highway to Kayville was paved1


  • 1980 The group who formed the Kayville Co-operative Community Centre decided in the summer of 1980 to construct a new hall.  During the fall of 1980 a new 50'x100'x20' steel building was completed.  A gym in Assiniboia was purchased and dismantled and the materials hauled to Kayville to complete the interior.1
  • 1984 Kayville builds an indoor swimming pool14
  • 1989 Kayville Public School Closed.   Originally opened in 1958Need citation


  • 1998 On March 11 Canadian Pacific (CP) discontinues the Amulet-Crane Valley railway line that ran through Kayville and operated for seventy-four years (1924).21


  • 2003 Kayville Co-op store is closedNeed citation
  • 2006 Population of Kayville on the 2006 Census is five.14
  • 2015 Bell tower at original Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Cemetery originally built in 1942 is rebuilt by volunteers22

1- "Kayville", Pages 30-33, Karl R. Jackle, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

2-"St. Mary's Romanian Orthodox Parish Cemetery, Kayville", Page 92,  "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

3-"St. Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Parish Cemetery, Kayville", Page 92, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

4-"Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Parish Cemetery, Kayville", Page 91, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

5-"St. Peter and Paul Church", Page 90, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

6-"St. Mary's Romanian Orthodox Church of Kayville, Pages 89-90, Mary Sagin, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

7-"History of broadcasting in Canada", Wikipedia,, Viewed Apr 24, 2017

8-"Dan and Rose Popescul", Page 326, George Popescul, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

9-"Eftim Ritco", Page 326, Myrtle (Ritco) Davison, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

10-"Rudy and Florence Ursu", Page 333, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society 

11-"Excelsis S.D. Excelsis School No. 2994", Pages 308-309, Karl R. Jackle, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society 

12-"Dan Kozak", Pages 320-321, John Kozak, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

13-"William McKay", Page 322, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

14-"Kayville, Saskatchewan", Wikipedia,,_Saskatchewan, Viewed April 25, 2017

15-"Establishing an Organized Hamlets", Government of Saskatchewan,, Viewed April 25, 2017

16-"Alex Trofin Family", Pages 331-332, Conn Trofin, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

17-"George Ursu", Pages 332-333, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

18-"Dahinda Village", Pages 22-25, Geoff Bywater, "Prairie Grass to Golden Grain:  RM 70 Ogema & Surrounding Areas" (1982), ISBN 0-919-533-10-8, Ogema and District Historical Society

19-Library and Archives Canada, Post Offices and Postmasters, Source: PSFDS03-(10149), Item Number: 4680, "Kayville"

20-1A Telephone Directory Assiniboia Estavan Gravelbourg Oxbox Weyburn, February 1950, Page 47, "Kayville - Peter Rotar Agent - Exchange Subscribers"

21-Government of Canada, Canadian Transportation Agency, Notices of Rail Lines Discontinuance,, Viewed May 6, 2017

22-"Related History" of Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church posted in Bell Tower at original cemetery

23-Story of Nicolai Gazuk and Angelina Zauca posted in Bell Tower at Saint Peter and Paul Romanian Orthodox Church original cemetery

24-Majeran Family History Website, viewed Dec 10, 2018

25-The Encyclopedia of Saskatchewan, Law and Justice,, viewed August 9, 2020

26-Fire Set to Pool Hall Door at Kayville, The Morning Leader, Regina, Saskatchewan, Page 7

27-Building Torn Down Prevents Spread of Fire, The Leader, Regina, Saskatchewan, Page 3

28-Flames at Truax Cause Heavy Loss, The Saskatoon Phoenix, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Page 3

29-The Leader-Post, Feb 1 1947, Page 1, "Temperature Skids to Record Low",

30-The Leader-Post, Feb 3 1947, Page 1, "Towns Left Marooned, Stock Toll Threatens",

31-The Leader-Post, Feb 4 1947, Page 1, "Regina Shovels Out From Under",

32-The Leader-Post, Feb 5 1947, Page 3, "Winds hinder Regina in Digging Out Job",
33-The Leader-Post, Feb 6 1947, Page 1, "Coal Shortage Closes City Schools",
34-The Leader, May 24 1906, Page 1, "Saskatchewan's Capital to Remain at Regina",
35-The Leader, March 31, Page 2, "Predicts Heavy Losses By Crop Pests For 1930",