Kochevar and Schimetz families

Reply from Mark Schimetz (70): Rolette, ND
To Gary and friends, an excerpt I recalled for Vicky Metcalf’s and Wesley’s Story.
Thank You Vicky for the retelling of Wes Schneider story.
As You know the Kochevars were very close friends of the Schimetz, (Simec) family. I suspect it was Jake Kochevar that Wesley was talking about. Jake was the father of Lillie Kochevar, Lilly lived just a half mile west of Joe Schimetz’s farm,(Which was won in a card game). Joe was the oldest and first of the 3 Schimetz men that came to the USA, while great strife was occurring in Austria and surrounding countries. Joe came over as a stowaway and was caught and put into a chain gang in Florida. Joe later escaped with dogs and men on his tail in the swamps of Florida, and arrived later in North Dakota. Joes farm was later inherited by John and Franseca (Sasak)Schimetz farm. Then Later by Louis Schimetz Hobby Farmed the same ground with exotic Birds and other animals. My Grandfather John and Franseca first farm lived on was where Ingolf Medlang later lived. My Dad Louis was often at the Christianson farm where Ray and his siblings lived, not far away.
Recipe from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and Mark,

Thank you Mark for stories and photos of the Kotchevar’s and Schimetz’. I recall, your dad, Louis was also an oral story teller. We are of the generation so lucky to have had no t,v. then t.v.’s!


Your comments about Wes and his stories of life in the foothills West of Dunseith, Dunseith and Dunseith School will delight him. He likes sharing his stories, and hearing back from folks.

I’ll print out and share your insights with Wes. I know he will enjoy hearing your Schimetz history. Perhaps your reply will spurn him on anew.

Oral history stories are fascinating, especially when relationships and feelings are uncovered. I’ve enjoyed Wes telling stories which talk about early Dunseith folks; including his German father, the Kotchevars,the Austrian Schimetz’, my own Grandma Rose, the Egberts, folks like KC of Lebanese descent and others interacting with each other.

I ‘ve come to believe; These folks,our role models, put aside many differences including, nationality,religion, language and color. NO,they did not lose that identity they were proud of where they came from.


They were just keenly aware of the need for mutual respect for human dignity which pulled them all together to build a community.

Flash forward to 2010 to a little Dunseith blog community fashioned by Gary S. and Dunseith alumni does it not? Many folks from all corners of the “blog” community who continue sharing common identity.

Regards. Vickie
Home made Egg Nog
Recipe from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND

Gary and friends.

My friends, Wes and his son in law were processing deer sausage last week.

I have to tell you all, sausage recipes are not to be found in this gal’s recipe box.

Here it is the holiday season and I, like Scrooge am dreaming of Christmas’ Past. My Christmas past like yours, contains a lot of holiday memories and comfort foods.

Is there any one else out there who has a Christmas or New Years story to share? I will start with the first recipe I learned from scratch.

Egg Nog

I am my father’s daughter. My parents taught me how to savor “good food” and the love of sharing a meal with special people.

Although, I really disliked having to wait for my dad the times he was late with the chores, our mother was a stickler for our family eating together. Most often at the worn oak cottage table that came along, when they purchased “Acorn Hill” farm. We ate every meal together. Breakfast, dinner and supper. Dad at the head, mom at the foot, my sister and I separated by wood and Š..dad’s long reach!

Yep, For the longest time I was …second child. And the bane of an older sister’s existence. I could walk. She needed to be carried. She had been stricken with rheumatic fever. I, as healthy as the Campbell soup kid.

The earliest memory cooking was making egg nog from scratch with my older sister. Mom decided, she needed the wholesome nutrition. So, every night, we’d place the big taupe-clay colored pottery bowl on a kitchen chair. Then, I’d claim another chair to stand on to dig for the hand beater. While mom found the necessary ingredients. Fresh eggs from the chicken coop next to the separating room housed in the warm barn. Whole milk from our cows morning milking, along with store bought white sugar and McCormick vanilla.

With my insistence, we’d each get one egg to crack. I enjoyed perusing the eggs and making choice selections. My sister thin, frail and pale. Me. Short, stout and a little kid as wide as she was tall who could barely reach up over the bowl. Yet, I as stubborn as my MacLean genes would allow, spun that handle standing on my tippy toes leaning onto the chair which held the bowl.

All the while, my older sister fretted to our mother, “the eggs are not mixed properly, Yuck, they’re slimy and ick an egg shell! Because she was taller and older, she got to pour the two cups of whole milk, usually it was pure cream which had come to the top. Then measure the sugar, and add the vanilla. Ah. The aroma of pure vanilla! I guess my accommodation to this deal was the spinning of the handle to the mixture. When I got tired, I put the hand mixer into the dishpan and gave that a few turns……. That made nice bubbles..

While,she poured the concoction into the green, pink, orange or yellow metal glasses. Oh, no! Oft time’s I’d tangle the dish rag in the hand mixer while I was giving it one last spin in the dish pan. Mom would come to my rescue. And yes, of course, we had our favorite glasses according to my sister. Hers was pink! And I never said a word if I happened to find an egg shell or a piece of slimy egg white. I’d say, Yep it’s fine it’s just the way I like it.

We’d slurp the slimy concoction through paper straws. We’d find lots of undiluted sugar at the bottom. Of course this fat little sister’s loud slurps and sometimes unladylike belches frequently irked the big sister. ( Well that was the idea isn’t it? Little siblings are put on earth to bug older ones!)


We were responsible to do the dishes. My older sister always got to wash because I inevitably didn’t do it properly. Actually, ok the truth? I’d wipe because I loved the flavour of the end of a wet dish towel.

Well given time and years, my sister and I both grew tall and out grew eggnog making on kitchen chairs. Traditions changed.

Egg nog was made again by our mother. So smooth and pure with aromatic vanilla…..

Hum. Our mother’s dear neighbor friend was Wayne S’s mom who introduced a little New Years cheer to the eggnog. Now, we girls of Lottie, all cherish a recipe in our cookbooks entitled Audreys’ Egg Nog.

Be of good cheer! Only 20 days! I believe in Santa, like I believe in Nessie and most of all in fond memories! Vickie
Unknown Boy on the horse pictured with John Awalt
Reply from Dick Johnson (68): Dunseith, ND
Gary and Friends,

This afternoon we had a museum meeting after which I stopped by Marlene Striker’s with a print out of the picture of John Awalt, Sr. and the small kid on the pony. It took only a glance and she said, “That’s not Dustin.” Mothers know. So Lloyd, it’s back to you I guess. I don’t know of anyone that age named Carl from around this area either. Sorry, my guess was wrong. Thanks Gary!


John Awalt with unkown boy on horse