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Stratford centennial
(1891-1991)

Businesses of today,   pp. 222-242


Page 231

farmers living about Stratford must go to Marshfield, Mara-
thon City and Colby, the nearest feed mill stations, to have
their seeds ground. Many of our farmers have an aversion to
go to these distant places and long fora station in Stratford that
will satisfy their wants. The Hastings Industrial Comp's.
business is to erect and install feed mills on a basis of
cooperation, forming a company and selling stocks for the
establishment of a feed mill. Their object in getting the
farmers in as parties to their company is similar to the
creamery companies now operating throughout the state. The
farmers as part owners of the feed mill would naturally turn
over their seed to their mill and this action would assure the
Farmers Co-op had its beginnings.
The first organizational meeting of
Stratford Farmers Co-op Produce Com-
pany was held August 12, 1926. The
original Stratford Co-op Produce Com-
pany building was purchased from Her-
man Langer in October of 1926. Jake
Dix was hired as manager until Novem-
ber 1926, when Joe Heim was hired as
manager. Warehouse employees were
Philip Custer and Alex Wagner. Frank
Pagel was the firstpresident of the Board
of Directors.
In 1936, a small warehouse addition
and office space was added. Alice Asch-
enbrenner was hired as bookkeeper. She
was employed about a year. Ruth
Bandle succeeded her as bookkeeper.
The John Deere building was purchased
in 1939. At one time, this building was
a bowling alley. The Tin Barn was
purchased from Oconomowoc Canning
Co. in 1943. This building was used for
storage space. At one time, Ed Davies
kept horses there.
In 1946, the Mahoney Building was
purchased. This building was torn down     The Mill.
in 1957. A semi-trailer was bought in
1946. This was used to haul corn which     In 1955, H.
in those days had to be unloaded by hand  succeeded him
in barrels, and wheeled into the ware-     July 31, 19
house. John Lickteig was the semi-     be the new man:
driver,                                named manager
In 1947, the Service Station and       1957 - A ne
Bulk Gas Business was purchased from   truck and tank
Marco Co-op at Marathon City. Walter   later, a bulk fec
Dhein was hired as Bulk Gas truck      Chicago Northv
driver. At this time the Board of Direc-  feed mill) was r
tors consisted of: H.R. Keller-President,  Station was pur
Theo. W. Wagner-Vice President, Phil   Brothers.
Hein Sr., Al Jones and Lawrence Leick-
directors.
operators that their plant would have the cooperation of the
farmers stock holders and these farmers too would induce
their neighbors and friends to bring their seed to this their mill.
Cooperation today is the watchword of modern business
and none need cooperation more than the farmers. Without it
industry would fail and if farmers would look at their business
from this modem standpoint and act accordingly, their suc-
cess would be greater and more beneficial."
The previous article is the first mention of a co-operative
for a feed mill. It is not known if a feed mill materialized at
that time but we do know that six years later the Stratford
tratford Co-op building.
R. Keller retired from the Board of Directors and Theo W. Wagner
as President.
56, Joe Heim retired as manager and Wm. Kothbauer was hired to
ager. He managed until December 31, 1957. Don Pernsteiner was
ron April 1, 1957.
*w mill and office was constructed on the present site and a new fuel
were purchased. Some old buildings were removed. A few years
A truck was added and the request for purchasing land from the
vestern Railroad was made. By 1962, the north warehouse (former
eplaced because the structure had split apart. The present Service
chased from Roger Schuette and the old station was sold to Brandt


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