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The State of Wisconsin Collection

Oral History with Herlache, Harold (1976)

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Tape 1, side 1

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0:04 Introduction

Introduction

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0:47 Born on farm in 1905.

Born on farm in 1905. Left in 1961; quit farming 1959.

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1:25 Father built the...

Father built the brick house in 1904. Helped by hired hand, Joe Martin, a deaf-mute and neighbor who built for those "he knew and trusted." Martin also built chest of drawers for Harold's mother.

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3:15 Original log house.

Original log house. Shingle roof and sides (down to certain depth). Feels added shingles to make bedrooms warmer. Describes location of rooms. Living room was made into a woodshed by making double doors; rest served as granary. Slope on north side built into storage for two vehicles. Remembers tearing the structure down as a "kid."

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6:11 Log building for...

Log building for shingle-making. Hauled them to the Bay. Weren't making them anymore in Mr. Herlache's time.

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7:30 Description of stable...

Description of stable and grain barn.

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8:04 Only 4 acres under...

Only 4 acres under cultivation when his father bought the 120 acres. The '40s are in different sections; differences in tax assessment.

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9:01 Most timber off the...

Most timber off the land in his memory. Logs for buildings from cedars on the land, hauled by sleigh in winter.

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10:04 Beer-making.

Beer-making. Describes process and vats made it in. His job as a boy to keep fire going and add water. Took full day to make 8-9 half barrels.

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12:34 Coffee for company...

Coffee for company only. Beer for most meals; nourishing. Children drank it, too.

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13:47 Farm on borderline...

Farm on borderline of different nationalities; German, Bohemian, Scandinavian. Only two families in his school were Belgian. Belgians "spread out" over time.

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14:21 Early school days.

Early school days. Learning English.

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15:17 Herlache family...

Herlache family; there are several branches in the area. At one time, there were so many Herlaches in the area 2-3 miles south of the farm, along the Bay, that it was called "Herlacheville."

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16:29 His grandfather...

His grandfather, Clement Herlache, a "big hunter." Hunted all around area, mostly rabbits and squirrels.

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19:48 Barns in Belgium...

Barns in Belgium built close to house. Here, they had more land so spread the buildings out.

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20:45 No chapel on their...

No chapel on their land. 1/2 mile to Destree's chapel, which they went to often. (See photo of this chapel in the collection).

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21:19 Catholic Church; St.

Catholic Church; St. Joseph's. Was a mission church, so mass held on Mondays and interfered with farm schedule. The Herlaches joined another church because of this; eventually the congregation dwindled. Church was mostly Belgians (there was a "neighborhood of them to the north"). Tells of reading he's done on Father Vilatte.

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24:36 Spiritualists.

Spiritualists. His grandparents on father's side joined Spiritualist Church. His father refused to go to their church, causing conflict in the family. He married Catholic. Harold was only in that church as a pall-bearer for "neighborhood."

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25:57 He and his wife stayed...

He and his wife stayed with parents on farm after his marriage; from November to April of 1935. Afterwards his parents moved to Brussels.

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27:54 Smokehouse for fish and meat.

Smokehouse for fish and meat.

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28:11 Did little fishing...

Did little fishing; mostly helped fishermen out. Saw more money in farming; commercial fishing a gamble. Fished 1 1/2 yrs. with brother, whom he sold out to (refer to Edwin Herlache tapes).

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29:02 His sister's relationship...

His sister's relationship to parents. They bought cheese-making equipment for her husband's trade. Due to her poor health, her father bought a general store for them, which was easier to handle.

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30:19 Brother moved onto...

Brother moved onto farm across road his father bought for him.

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