Thursday, June 26, 2008

The Family Farm near Rosalia, Kansas

William Henry Burger and his wife Mary Ann Duffner Burger farmed outside of Rosalia, Kansas, eventually with their son Frank J. Burger (my mother's father). They got the idea of selling and moving to California, so they had the sale that this sale bill is from. My mom recalls that they got to California, didn't like it much, and came back home, but the stuff was already sold. (Probably Frank J. bought a bunch of it, as he kept farming.)

Some of the sale prices are written on the back. Scythes sold for 20 cents each, a cultivator for $14.00, a cow for $48 and a bay mare for $17.

I also had an interesting time looking through Grandpa Burger's ledgers from 1944 to 1958 - all the expenses of running a small farm and a busy family. He was meticulous in recording every last expense - three-cent stamps, ice cream in town for the family, a telephone call to El Dorado. Mom and I retraced through the ledger entries a time when she had several rotten teeth removed, then soon thereafter came down with rheumatic fever, and the hospital and doctor expenses associated with her treatment. Then there were vet bills, chick feed, shoe repairs, blade sharpening, haircuts, kerosene, and tickets to the school operetta. Fascinating stuff.

On May 6, 1948, Frank paid $10.86 for delivery of a refrigerator - their first, a gift from Grandma's sister Connie, shipped from out East somewhere.

Tucked in the ledger was the pedigree of a registered Hereford bull calved in 1948, and a list of the names of some of his cows - Irma, Daisy, Lady, Skippy, Judy, Daisy Bell, Ruby and Pearl - all but one of whom were born there on the farm. (Irma was purchased at about age 3.)

1 comment:

Catherine said...

How interesting! I enjoy reading about the menial, everyday details in grandparents and great grandparents lives. They were not that different than us. Very nice read.