SEGMENT: FARM WORK, FARMING DURING WWII, & APPLIANCES
Luke Bridger>NIU Collection>NIU Collection, Segment 5
- FARM WORK
- Always worked on farm; never had non-farm job or part-time job. Wife was teacher at a country school for 8 years before marriage.
- COLLEGE EDUCATION
- Wife went to school at Normal. Mentions only 3 buildings at that time & her having classes in the "Castle".
- CHILDREN'S WORK
- All helped feed cattle, feed pigs, milk cows. When children were out of school they worked in fields just like me.
- FARM BUSINESS
- Had 2 married men helping for several years; during harvest time hired an extra man to help load, haul & unload corn.
- FARMING DURING WWII
- Had to register but never went to war. Farmed enough to qualify for 2.5 men. Working alone on farm so military service was deferred. Rubber tires had to be turned over to government. Had to get along without sugar. Meat shortage did not effect them as livestock producer. Food stamps used to get some sugar. Hard sometimes but "we got by".
- First TV in late 1940's - "a 10 incher" when kids were small; not too long after TV invented.
- FAMILY ACTIVITIES
- Not too many vacations in beginning; vacations in 1960's & 1970's; Mammoth Cave, Yellowstone National Park; Canada. All kids had a chance to go travelling with family.
- SOCIAL ACTIVITIES
- Dances or a "show" once in a while. Did not go out too often. Most time at home taking care of kids. Days were long. Milking started at 5
- Raised a lot of chickens. With wife he killed & dressed them & delivered them to restaurants downtown & others who wanted them.
- Grain marketed through the livestock, i.e., grain fed to livestock. Did not sell much grain.
- In early days livestock shipped to Chicago. Armour & Swift went out of business in Chicago. Swift had plant in Rochelle Sold direct to Swift packing plant in Rochelle. Hauled cattle & hogs to Rochelle.
- Wife's car was 1938 Chevy sedan which she kept after marriage. Next car was a Packard, "it was a lemon." After Packard it was mostly Fords (Galaxy, Trucks, Mustangs for kids). Later started buying Oldsmobiles. Had 3 Oldsmobiles & drives Oldsmobile today.
- Did not get automatic washing machine until 12 yrs ago. Maytag washer with ringer before. First washing machine was a Maytag square tub with gasoline motor.
- No electricity when moved onto farm in 1942. Used gas lamps. Electricity came in 1943. Before coming to present farm had electricity in early 1940's. Commonwealth-Edison Power.