University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The State of Wisconsin Collection

Page View

Haag, Rita / If you look back, it's not that far: memories of Mary Stella Sutter Haag recorded at age 103

Part III: Life as Mrs. Albert Haag,   pp. 36-64 PDF (9.2 MB)

Page 41

when the little pigs came, around March, then Dad (Albert) had to
go sometime, when it was cold, and put them in a little basket
and bring them up in the house and set them by the stove. Some
of the pigs would kill the babies so we'd take them away."
Farmers today work hundreds of acres, but Albert and Mary
had their hands full with their small farm. "In the spring, Dad
had just one plow, and then he used to plow all day long with two
horses and that didn't show too much. Eight acres of corn up on
the hill, and it took a long time to get those eight acres plowed
with the horses, disked then dragged.
"I used to drag then, with horses. Oh ya, I helped in the
field. I helped with the mowing. I mowed some grass, but that
was kind of dangerous with the (sickle). I tried it. It wasn't
so bad when we had the one team, but the other team was really
fast. We used to say 'Whoa!' and sometimes they'd stay and
sometimes they didn't. One team was really gentle.
"Because there was no machinery, we had to pitch up the hay.
And in the fall when there was corn I used to run the corn
binder, then Dad shocked it up." When the corn was ripe they had
to "sit down and husk the corn in the fall until our hands were
almost froze."
Gardens were a must and every farm had a big one. Mary
remembers they got some of their seed, "in the stores...the
lettuce seed we always used to save, and the carrots we used to
save too. We'd save a carrot in the fall and the next spring
we'd plant it and then it grows up with high bushes, and the
second year we'd get seed. For potatoes, we'd just cut the
potatoes up, we usually left three eyes for the potatoes. They
said some leave more, but you don't get as many potatoes.
Sometimes when we'd dig potatoes out in the fall, we'd see the
old potatoes laying in there.
"One year I remember we had such nice heads of cabbage and
some kids come at night with slingshots and shot holes in the
cabbage, when we lived on the farm. Ya it was lotta waste.
Mary said they grew lettuce, beets, carrots, potatoes,
rutabaga, broccoli and cauliflower. "Ya, I never had much luck
with cauliflower. Loretta used to give me some heads. She always
had nice cauliflower, but mine used to go to seed. Loretta said

Go up to Top of Page