2018-05-16 / Opinion

In Your Words

“Congress shall make no law... abridging the freedom of speech or of the press.”

Volga Germans article commended

Dear Editor:

I would like to thank Tim Weeder for the excellent article on the Volga Germans in Sanilac County. My grandpa and grandma, German-Russians from the Volga area, came to USA in March of 1913 and arrived through Portland. ME. They first went to the Chicago area to work beets but then went to Fresno. CA where they could work much of the year and there were Volga German relatives there. They then moved to Saginaw and then to the Sandusky area. My dad, George Schmidt, as a youngster worked in the fields as migrant labor and hoed, blocked and thinned sugar beets and then at harvest topped the beets with a "beet knife".

When I was a kid in the 40s we grew sugar beets on our farm and at that time we had Mexican labor who lived in a house we provided who did the manual labor in the beet fields. My dad treated the Mexican laborers very well and took them things out of our big garden and took them milk from our dairy cows.

We pulled the beets with a one row horse drawn beet lifter that we pulled with an A Farmall. I drove the tractor and my dad handled the lifter. The laborers then picked up the beets, knocked them together to knock off the dirt and then topped them and left them in little piles. We then loaded the beets in a wagon with sides about 18" high using a "beet fork" to handle the beets and then took them to a beet station in Snover. We also then loaded the beet tops on a low trailer and fed them to the cattle.

I also have German-Russian relatives in Lincoln, NE and they tell me that their ancestors also went to Montana and Colorado to work beets. I belong to the American Historical Society of Germans from Russia located in Lincoln and are a good source of genealogy research.

I'm sure the Sanilac County beet farmers are happy that beets are not handled like they were in the 40s.

Dick Schmidt
Punta Gorda, FL

Purple Potty fundraiser

Dear Editor:

The Purple Potty has returned! The lawn ornament is making its way once again around Sandusky. The commode is affecting property values in hopes of raising funds for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event to be held Saturday June 2.

Once on your lawn it may be removed for a $20 check to the American Cancer Society. By increasing your donation to $50 you may purchase Potty Protection Insurance that will guarantee that it will not return.

Sandusky Baptist “Crusaders Against Cancer” is the Relay for Life team promoting this fundraiser. You can save your property values by buying insurance ahead of time. Send those $50 checks made out to the American Cancer Society to Sandusky Baptist Church, 34 Gaige St., Sandusky. Come join the Relay June 2 at the football field at Sandusky Community Schools from 10 a.m.-10 p.m.

Brian Cuddie, Pastor
Sandusky Baptist Church

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