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1943: Schuldt couple continues life story of moving from Germany to Hardick

Bits by Betty
Lead Summary

The following article is part of the Diamond Club Member group that began in the January 7, 1943, issue of the Rock County Star Herald. Members of this group consist of persons of age 75 and older.
The following appeared in The Rock County Herald on July 22, 1943.
This article is continued from last week’s feature about Mr. and Mrs. William Schuldt of Hardwick.
One of the most popular events of the year for the young people was the annual dancing festival which was held in February. This consisted of two nights of dancing and one day of celebration. Dancing would begin at 6 p.m. the first day and continue until 3 a.m. the following day. The couples would go home to bed, get up early the next day and have a “grand old time” both forenoon and afternoon. At 6 o’clock in the evening, dancing would begin again and continue until 8 a.m. the following day. Then it was back to work for everyone.
The musicians seemingly played their instruments for the love of playing, because they earned but little for their services, Mr. Schuldt declared.
Mr. and Mrs. Schuldt pointed out several differences in the mode of living between Germany and the United States. When they lived there, most of the homes and barns were part of the same building. The people lived at the end, while the other end was set aside for the livestock and for hay and feed. Most of the farmers lived in villages and worked land adjoining the town. An 80-acre farm was a big farm, and most of the farmers operated smaller tracts.
Dairying provided much of the family income, and the German farmers did everything they knew how to do to get the best production from their cows. Many milked their cows three times daily when they were fresh, Mr. Schuldt stated, and to do this it was necessary to take a couple of pails and walk to the pasture and milk them there during the noon hour. The cows were in the yard both morning and evening, so they were milked there at the usual milking time.
Mr. and Mrs. Schuldt lived in Germany until 1906, when Carl Ahrendt, who had settled in Rock county, urged them to come here to live. The first 10 years, they farmed the Hoeck place northwest of Hardwick. Those years, Mrs. Schuldt operated the binder every year while her husband shocked the grain. They then moved southeast of Hardwick where they farmed the Piepgras half section for four years.
“By that time,” Mrs. Schuldt said, “we figured we’d worked hard enough and long enough to earn a rest so we moved to Hardwick and have lived here ever since.”
They still haven’t quit working, however, for they maintain a large garden in the summer time. Mrs. Schuldt pieces quilts and makes rag rugs for a hobby, and to date, she says, she has made about 50 quilts and over 100 rugs, most of which have been crocheted.
Mr. and Mrs. Schuldt have two children living. They are Paul Schuldt, who lives near Pipestone and Mrs. Elsie Schlapkohl of Winifred, S.D. One son, William, Jr., was killed in an auto accident in 1916. They have seven grand- children and one great-grandchild.
Mrs. Schuldt has no brothers or sisters, but Mr. Schuldt has two of each. His brothers, Carl and August, still live in Germany. One sister, Mrs. Freda Claussen, lives at Hardwick, and the other sister, Mrs. Anna Ahrendt, lives at Erie, N. Dak.
Mr. and Mrs. Schuldt are members of the Hardwick Lutheran Church.
         Donations to the Rock County Historical Society can be sent to the Rock County Historical Society, 312 E. Main Street, Luverne, MN 56156.
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