John Frerichs

I came to this country from Germany in the year 1868. Our entire family came over at the same time. We located near Freeport, Ill., where we remained a year. In 1869, that is 54 years ago, our family decided to come to Iowa and we left Forreston in a covered wagon and were on the way for two weeks, when we struck Grundy county, where we remained. With me were my father and mother and my brothers, Dick and Henry. We brought some cows with us which we had to drive all the way, and some of us boys were hoofing it all the time while we were moving. We first located on a farm a mile north of where the town of Wellsburg now stands. A year after that father bought what has always been known as our home farm in Colfax township. There was 160 acres in the farm, it was all prairie land, and we paid $9.00 an acre for it. I lived here with my folks until 1883, when I was married, and after that we lived on what was known as the Pickelman farm in Colfax township. In 1889 my family and myself moved to Holland and I went into the grain and live stock business. I bought the old mill property and fixed that up and used it as an elevator. I was in the grain and live stock business here continuously for a period of twenty-seven years. The first load of corn I bought I paid 22 cents a bushel for, and the farmers at that time were satisfied with that price. Oats at that time brought 18 cents a bushel. The lowest price I ever paid for corn was 10 cents a bushel and the lowest for which I ever bought oats was 11 cents. 72 cents a bushel was the highest price I ever paid for corn, and that was the last year that I was in the elevator business in Holland, which was 1916. I bought hogs during all of that time. The lowest price I ever paid for hogs was $3.20 a hundred and the highest was $10.10.

When we first came here we drove to Hardin City to get our firewood, and with the severe winters we had in the early days, hauling wood that distance was a man-killing job. We had to haul what grain and live stock we had to sell to Steamboat Rock. H. E. Knock lived here when we came to Grundy county and Mrs. John Saathoff, of Grundy Center, was also here at that time. Get Mr. Knock to write about the easy times he had in Grundy county fifty years ago.

--The Grundy Register (Grundy Center, Iowa), 24 January 1924, pg 1, 10