Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Warren is running Chuck's
big, mean, green machine part of the time.
More about that in another post.
Gary and Chuck both have semi trucks and trailers that we use to haul the grain to the elevator. We no longer dry our corn. The corn dryer needs replaced, we have the co-op grind our feed rations, and our storage set up had become obsolete. When all these things happened we made the decision to take our corn to the elevator or as we say take our corn to town. Our crops are harvested much quicker than they were when we first started farming. Warren and I usually did all the harvest work ourselves. It now takes four guys to keep harvest going at a smooth pace.

The first year we farmed my Dad harvested our corn crop with his combine. I think we bought our first (used) combine the next year.

That first year, Warren bought three old used wagons. He was in a "we have spent enough money getting started in farming mode" and went inexpensive when it came to wagons. I was never very pleased with those wagons. One had to get inside to push the corn out as they did not tilt up very far, they held very little compared to the newer wagons and they were well used by the time they became ours. When the kids were around they would sometimes help by getting in the wagon to keep the corn rolling down. Malissa is helping her Dad in this 1979 photo. Newer, bigger wagons would tip up higher to keep the corn rolling out. There is an art to lifting the wagon up while unloading corn slowly. If the wagon is off center it can tip over. One wants to keep the corn flowing out at a steady pace by increasing the tilt of the wagon over time. We would unload the wagons into the dryer bin. Drying the corn took a day or two depending on the moisture and then we would unload the bin and put it into another bin or silo that had been converted to dry storage.

We had a small corn crib with some overhead storage. Here Warren is unloading one of the two new Heider wagons we got after farming two years. We still used the old wagons but our Heider wagons were the work horses. We ended up with two more nicer wagons a few years later. In the summer I would revarnish the floors of the wagons every year and every couple of years I would do the outside. Those wagons made my life so much easier. They had telescoping tongues, were much bigger in size, and held a lot more corn.

over the years. I never helped with this but
I remember when one and
two row pickers were used in corn harvest.

Before that picking corn was done by hand.

That had to have been very hard work!!!

Corn huskers wore cotton flannel gloves to protect their hands. These gloves had two thumbs. When the working side of the glove became worn - most likely by noon - the gloves were turned over and wore on the other side. When we started farming we bought this type of glove. The double thumbs were a way to make a pair of gloves last much longer. For us right handed folks the right hand always wore out way before the left. Some times we would have a big stash of lefties and we would turn them inside out or wear them on the wrong hand just to find a decent pair to wear. Now that our livestock is housed indoors we do not buy nearly as many gloves. New gloves in the fall always were a treat. By spring finding a decent pair could be a huge challenge.

1 comment:

Millie said...

Rebecca thank you for that interesting tutorial - I know about wheat harvest, but now I know a lot more about corn which is quite different again. And those 2 thumbed gloves are a fab idea - MOTH goes through dozens of gloves on his building sites - he's started to buy them by the boxes of 100's! Hope your Adelaide family are managing to survive to this horrendous Spring heatwave we in the midst of!
Millie ^_^