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Theodore Kruger  (1829-1899)

kruger family

Theodore Kruger was born in Hanover, Germany (then a British Colony) in 1829.  He arrived in British Columbia in 1858.

 

Kruger was sent to Osoyoos as chief trader of the Hudson Bay Trading Post in 1866.  He was transferred to Kamloops in 1871 and in 1873 he returned to Osoyoos and purchased the trading post.  Kruger established the trading post in which he continued fur trading with the Natives and supplying pack trains.  He operated a stopping place called “Soyoos House”, which later became the first hotel in Osoyoos.

 

Kruger married Christenza Saur in Victoria, B.C., in 1873.  Together they raised four children.  About 1883, Kruger purchased several peach seedlings and one prune seedling from Okanogan Smith, who lived in Oroville, Washington.  These seedlings grew successfully.  The first irrigation was also Kruger’s venture; he hired Chinese to pack water in gallon pails.  Later, a windmill was installed and the water elevated so that it ran down a ‘V’-shaped flume.  Later still, a storage tank was built.

 

In 1884 he was appointed first postmaster for Osoyoos, and in 1889, Collector of Customs.  Kruger closed his store in 1897 but continued as postmaster, customs collector and manager of his hotel until his death in 1899.  Mrs. Kruger passed away in 1939.  Both are buried in the Pioneer Plot at the Osoyoos Cemetery.

 

Kruger Mountain, which rises above the town on the west side of the valley is a monument to their memory.