Wessels Living History Farm - York Nebraska Farming in the 1920s
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Chores and Work

Making Food

Threshing Season

Social and Community Activities



Summer was a time of family fun and hard work on the farm in the 1920s. Sunrise came early, and everyone got up early to do chores. Plowing the fields and planting crops took place in May and June. In July, crews of men and horses traveled from farm to farm with a big machine that threshed wheat and oats, crops that were planted in the fall. Neighbors gathered to help with threshing and with cooking huge meals for the hungry field workers. In July and August, farm families canned and preserved vegetables from the garden. Rural people also fished and hunted rabbits and other animals to add variety to their diets. The 4th of July meant fireworks in town. Churches hosted summer ice cream socials. Families went to town more often in the summer to sell eggs and cream. While they were in town, they visited with friends or watched movies that were sometimes projected onto a white wall outside.

Harvey Pickrel Photo"We got up by daylight every morning. First… you had to go down and get the horses in to feed them and get them ready to go to the field. Then… we would go… get the cows in and we'd milk four or five cows…We'd bring that milk in and we'd separate it, get the cream out of it…Tthen we would go in and have breakfast, and it was time to go down and harness the horses; get ready to go to the field. Took quite a while for the horses to get in and get their grain and hay eaten so they put in pretty long days." -- Harvey Pickrel Quicktime Logo (Quicktime required)

No Sunday Baseball in York

  Photo of a baseball game.  
Walter Schmitt Photo"You know there's a time they couldn't play Sunday baseball in York. It was voted on in 1921… and it was defeated 1,300 to 800. And Sunday shows[movies] were voted out 1,400 to 600. Sunday shows didn't come into until 1929… When we high school kids wanted to go to a show somewhere we either went to Osceola or to Columbus or to David City. They had Sunday shows. In 1929, York finally had … shows on Sunday… Now baseball didn't come into York legally until…1934. It was finally voted in. Up till that time York baseball teams that wanted to play on Sunday, they usually went to Fairmont and played." -- Walter Schmitt Quicktime Logo (Quicktime required)

Written by Claudia Reinhardt.

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