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Frank P. Mies' Recollection

Written ca. 1953

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Page 3

by mother. The young trees required constant watering.

It may be said that farming was a trying task to father. He had never farmed, and mother, relying upon her experience as a farm girl, helped him to succeed in many difficult tasks. After several years on the farm, father became dissatisfied, and in the fall of 1873 he migrated back to Mendota. In this adventure, they were accompanied by two additional children, namely, John C., born January 31, 1872, and Frank P., born April 26, 1873.

In Mendota, they lived in town. Father made an extended trip to Germany. During this period, the Mies family lived upon their previously accumulated earnings. On October 15, 1875, another child was born. He was named George G.

In 1876 the family again moved back to the farm. The ten years following the relocation on the farm were difficult years. The land was not drained. There were many sloughs which held water a considerable part of the year. Many early settlers suffered from ague, brought on by decaying vegetation in the sloughs. Father was stricken with ague. Also farm machinery of that day was crude. Added to this difficulty was the problem of hired help. Outside of a man by the name of Mike Brennick, who was both competent and willing, all of the other men were greenhorns. I can distinctly recall one of these men who failed to show up on Monday at harvest time, and when he returned on Tuesday he was reprimanded by father. His reply was that where he was it rained "pitchforks" and how could he know that it hadn't rained at our place. In explanation, it may be stated that he was visiting a family who had two grown daughters, and that the family lived three miles away. There were many other shortcomings on the part of other hired men of equal significance.

During this period father was more or less discouraged and he was always talking about going back to the Union Pacific. It might be said that for a long period of time, possibly fifteen years, the farm was on the market, but no farms were exchanging hands. On one particular occasion, it seemed as if there might be a buyer. A family by the name of Adams had recently come from Germany. They were looking for a farm. They used spade and shovel in prospecting our farm together with many others, and they finally bought a farm about seven miles to the west of our homestead. This was a great disappointment to father, but in reality it was a great blessing in disguise. What future could father have provided for his family in a city?

During this period of misadventures the writer can distinctly recall the meager equipment of the home. The only single book in the home, apart from school books, was Mark Twain's "Roughing It In The Wild West." There was practically no furniture. At the table, a bench and some boxes supplied the seating arrangement. But what did the children care. next page

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