Friday, January 27, 2012


I would like to recommend a series of historical novels written about the area I introduced you to in Echos Across the Prairie.  Candace Simar discovered her  great-grandfather drove a stagecoach along the Abecrombie Trail and includes stories about the Sioux Uprising of 1862 in her third book, Pomme de Terre.  Since my relatives settled in Pomme de Terre Village and I have conducted tours to the school as well as to the Fort Pomme de Terre site, I have done extensive genealogical research as well as studied newspapers and personal accounts in order to offer a perspective of life in the 1870s and 80s as it pertained to the early settlers.  My family was not of Norwegian descent as the characters in the books are, but I believe that all those who ventured to Grant County during those years, shared a common experience and worked together to create new lives in Mn.  Imagine the cacephony of languages as neighbor helped neighbor and teachers tried to teach eager children from a variety of ethnic backgrounds.  The Grant County Museum has copies of : Birdie, Abecrombie Trail, Pomme de Terre.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Unique Country Homestead Treasures

Tin bathtub, old ironing board and other items found at
Olde Farmhouse in Ashby, Mn

Wonderful oval shaped treenware bowl, old shoulder jugs (one
has a corncob with eyes!  Exit 55 Antiques  in Fergus Falls

Fun little end table:  handmade, with a hand painted
checker board.  Yesterdays in Alexandria, Mn

This is an awesome cast iron shoe----may have been used as a
door stop or as a symbol for a shoe store.  Yesterdays in Alex.
Country, primitive, homestead antiques make every home just a bit more special.  I like to refer to these items as a little past perfect.( Since I formerly taught English, this fits, doesn't it?)  Anyway, now I'll have to really be careful with spelling and correct grammar but give me a break.  Many items can also be placed in the category of folk art since really unique items were often made by someone who had a very creative mind and capable hands.  Sort of like a gardner having a green thumb.  Thought I would share a few items with you that would give some character to a shelf or table or mantle.  Expect to see more examples as I run across them.     (PSS----thanks for checking in on my last blog,  Echos Across the Prairie may see that reappear in a future entry.)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Echos Across the Prairie

This little brick school represents generations of pioneers who founded a small village at a crossroads where thousands of travelers passed through on their way west.  My great grandfather and his family came here  in 1873 after arriving in America in the 1850s.  Where were they for 20 yrs?  That's a whole other story.  This small school was erected ca 1875-1878 and provided a community gathering spot, a church sanctuary as well as a place to educate hundreds of children who grew up in this area.  My grandfather and father attended classes here and my mother taught here in the 1930s.  Just south of this building was the site chosen for a flour mill by my great grand, and it operated until destroyed by a fire in 1887.  Thru the years ox carts, stage coaches,  military units, covered wagons, people pushing wheelbarrows with worldly goods and horseback riders as well as people on foot, all paused for a day or a life time to pursue their dreams.  I am proud to say that my family continues to be the caretakers of the property which surrounds this school.  Today, it is used as a township hall and the surrounding fields provide shelter and food for hundreds of deer in addition to turkeys, pheasants, eagles, ducks and even a coyote who was seen patrolling the snow dusted fields on a cloudy winter day.  Think of the stories and whispers of generations of individuals who have passed this way.
Through the years repairs have been made to the building to protect
it from the elements and to keep it useable for special meetings.

The cemetery was incorporated in 1883 and provides the final
resting place for several great grandparents and other relatives.

 In 2011 we found hundreds of deer making themselves at home
in the area.  My father started the tradition of planting corn to
provide a food lot many years ago.

Monday, January 23, 2012

sugar and spice ==

Long dress on the left would be perfect for a baptism.  In center
a replica of a Little House On the Prairie outfit bought in Joplin, Mo.
The funky pink pantaloons with chics is perfect for the child who
has way too many ordinary clothes in her closet!

A petticoat on left, beautiful sweet party dress with hand sewn design
in the middle and a 1920s dress on the right.
According to the old verse, what are little girls made of?  Sugar and spice and everythng nice, of course.  Well, I can't testify to that since we raised three boys and have 4 grandsons in addition to 2 male granddogs.  But we do have 2 really wonderful daughters in law, so that gives me a little perspective!  At any rate I enjoy collecting and selling vintage clothing, including many girlie type items.  I have included several for your enjoyment, also.  Haven't decided which store they will go to yet, but if interested leave a comment and I will get back to you.