"Our Friends on the Acres"
Mrs. Fred Guese (Minnie)
For 35 years Mrs. Fred Guese has been identified with farming activities in Allamakee county. During the entire 35 years she has lived north of Postville about seven miles on her property of 296 acres in Ludlow and Post townships. She also owns the 120 acre farm which adjoins the home place to the west. This property is capably operated by Ed. Goeke.
As Minnie Stille she was born in Quincy, Ill., a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Stille. In the fall of 1905, several years after the death of her father, she accompanied her mother to the Postville vicinity, where her uncles and aunts were located. On December 6, 1905, she was married to Fred Guese and the newlyweds moved to the bridegroom's farm north of Postville.
"I'll never forget my first view of the farm as we approached it. My, how the place has changed since then," Mrs. Guese explained. "with the exception of the house, I think every farm building has been torn down or replaced." In the fall of 1921 lightning struck a large barn and it burned to the ground. In addition to the barn, Mr. and Mrs. Guese lost a large quantity of hay, several veal calves and several sets of harness. But they immediately launched a building campaign, erecting a barn 22X40 feet to replace the one lost by fire. One barn wasn't large enough to accomodate their livestock so the following year found them busily engaged in erecting another one. this barn measured 22X42 feet, just two feet longer than the barn put up the year before. Many other improvements followed. Other necessary farm buildings were erected and the house itself was given attention. The Guese farm is located in two townships. A total of 196 acres lie in Post township and 100 acres are in Ludlow township.
On September 6, 1927, Mr. Guese passed away, but Mrs. Guese stayed on the farm, taking charge of the management of the property, a task she has performed well. She has two daughters, Lydia, 33, Minnie, 29 and one son, Arthur, 24, all of whom live at home and play an important part in the operation of the arm. "I used to help with the milking, but they made me step aside and do that work themselves now," Mrs. Guese said. Arthur Guese and Erwin Goeke, the hired hand, do the farm work. "They will be busy tomorrow if it doesn't rain," she stated, "because we are going to thresh." "That means a lot of work for you, doesn't it?" the Herald reporter asked. "No, not very much," she replied, "we won't have more than 12 men to cook for. You know we only have 35 acres of oats for them to thresh."
Mrs. Guese was deeply concerned over the frequent rains which delayed threshing on almost all farms in northeastern Iowa during the latter part of July. "Our oats are damaged a little, but it it doesn't rain tomorrow, I think we will be all right." she said. Corn on the Guese farm looks excellent. "We had an exceptionally fine crop last year and it looks like we will have another good crop this year," she remarked. Mrs. Guese has 40 acres of corn this year, three acres of soy beans and 50 acres of pasture on her farm. In some years Mrs. Guese has as high as 60 acres of pasture land on the place. Livestock on the farm includes 50 cows and calves, 60 spring pigs, 4 sows, 35 sheep and lambs, 6 work horses, a few colts, 18 ducks, 300 Buff Rock chicks and 150 White Rock hens.
When the Herald representative called on Mrs. Guese he found her feeding corn to her ducks. Part of the interview was carried on amid the "quacks." "There isn't much you can say about this place," she laughed. But at that she proved to be a good subject and supplied many interesting facts about her property.
Her farm is beautifully located on one of the highest points in that locality. To reach her property is is necessary to drive through a woods for about a quarter of a mile. All of the buildings on the place are kept in good repair and the large lawn is given constant attention. Mrs. Guese and her daughters have devoted considerable time to their flower garden and potted plants which add to the beauty of the appearance of the farm. Two years ago the road leading to the farm house was graveled. Mrs. Guese also has made other improvements on the property, keeping up with the times. An old corn crib was replaced by a new one two years ago. Numerous other changes have been completed as the years rolled by and today the property is one of the most valuable in Allamakee county.
~Postville Herald, August 14, 1940
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