Folks, I normally get this out before noon. It’s now going on 9:00 PM, so I’m later than normal. I had a busy day with the plumbing, painters and electricians with our new addition. Everything needed my attention all at once. I’ve been the one, with a helper, that has pretty much done the plumbing and bathroom fixture installations. Except for the bedroom closets, the inside will be finished in several day. The closets should be finished and painted by mid week next week. Gary

Wes Schneider memories – The Long Drought of the 1930’s

Posted by Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.
Gary,Mark S., and friends,

When I had the dogs out after school today,we walked over to Wes and Ovidia’s armed with Mark’s information from the blog on “the Kotchevars and the Schimetz families” .

Once my boys received treats from Wes, they settled down to contently listen and Wes provided them his special soothing pats . Those two dogs are so happy you’d think it’s been weeks instead of days of missing “their Wes”!

After I read to Wes he commented, “Yes, Louis and I were the same age and good friends.” He then said, “In the dry thirties no one lived on that piece of land which most recently was the “Louis Schimetz” hobby farm.
Wes also told me, “The land was always kind of swampy” then recalled during the long drought of the thirties his father needed hay. And the swampy ground did have hay.

So, Wes a mere lad, was put on the dump rake. He said, That bumpy^bumpy^ ground made it difficult for me to stand on the rake, because I was to short to sit on the seat. I had to hang on or fall off. The poor horses got bad sores from the harness rubbing their hides raw as the rake jogged up and down this way and that.”

His father was happy to have whatever hay there was for the cattle. Also, during the winter’s of the thirties, in the fall, his dad purchased a big barrel of molasses to put on straw for feed. Wes said, “He continued to ride rake on that bumpy land for a more few summers, until one dayŠ.the rains finally came.

Later. Vickie
Vickie Metcalfe & ND Eulogies
From Erling Landsverk (44): Portage, WI
Hi Gary and Everyone:
As I was perusing your last blog, I came across a disertation by Vickie metcalfe. She is not only a gifted story teller she is an astute scholar of human behavior. Her description of the dunseith folks and their varied ancestories is so very much on the mark. In addition to that I must add that the balance of the population acted and lived the same way. A kind of good Neighbor policy that was voluntary and practiced by everyone.
On my last visit I had the good fortune of meeting many of the younger generation of our old neighbors and friends. They are exact clones in their social behavior. They all seem to exude a friendly and cheerful attitude. They are considerate, hard working and are not judgemental. They are all a refreshing change from other states I have visited. I guess I have said it before but there is really something unique about the people of North Dakota One has only to experience it and it becomes very evident. I enjoyed very much vickie’s recipe for egg nog. She has such a clever way of telling things, that one feels almost like we are right next to her in her home Thank you Vickie for a great recipe. I would like to add that I met vickie for the first time while on our visit for the one room school reunion. I met her in the Bakery. She made a lot of things work better for my sister Borg and I, and her genuine friendliness was really appreciated. Vickie has a gift for writing about events that keeps a person reading it I have an idea there could be a collection of short stories that will hit the market with a big splash.
Erling Landsverk
Unknown Boy pictured with John Awalt
Reply from Vickie Metcalfe (70): Bottineau, ND.

Gary,Lloyd, Dick etal…


Now I’m on board sleuthing.

We’ve agree the photo is of John Awalt, the horse is quite gentle, and it is a summer photo.


I do remember, sometimes neighbors loaning horses out to give “city kids’ who came visiting a taste of country.


Myself, I thought that horse sure looks my brothers old mare from childhood, Dolly.

Or, the Uncle Jim Metcalfe’s pony, Scottie.


I recall, John Awalt was around our farm for a time in the early 70’s doing finish carpentry. He and Gertrude also frequently visited with my Uncle Bill and Aunt Mary. They were all together at the 50th wedding anniversary of Uncle Bill and Aunt Mary in ’73, as they were the wedding attendants at the Sept. 1923 wedding.


Does any one remember seeing a shed like that with the boards running vertical?


Does the photo have the year printed?


Hmmm. Perhaps folks should take a closer look at the horse, then just maybe identification of the little boy will happen?


With luck we can!, Vickie



Unknown boy with John Awalt





Dunseith News


Posted by Neola Kofoid Garbe: Minot & Bottineau, ND








Bernadette’s niece snapped this picture of us as we were leaving going out for dinner in celebration of our 32nd Anniversary





Gary & Bernadette Stokes