The Youth of Yesterday

Ervin Holz

by

Roy Frame

 

6th Grade 1995, Lancaster School, Lancaster,MN

 

Ervin Holz was born at Fort Ripley, MN, lived on a farmat Ft. Ripley, then moved to Little Falls, Royalton, Cannon Falls, PineIsland, Mezzepa, Pine River, and Lancaster, MN. He said life was hard becauseall the work was done by hand or horse.

He used to play baseball but he got in fights so he quit. Another thing that his brothers and he did was they rode bicycle a lot,and then they used a one seated buggy minus the seat and the horse. Theyfixed ropes on it to steer with, then rode it down the hills around theirPine Island home. They had a swimming hole where they played in the summerand in winter they skated there. When the snow came, they used a sheetof tin to slide down the hills with. One time somebody shut the gate atthe bottom of the hill and when they came down the hill they had to rolloff of the sled or get torn up in the fence. If they felt really naughty,they set the toilet on fire. Then they got spanked.

When they lived in Cannon Falls, MN, the city policemanused to pay their way into the Saturday night movies to get them off thestreet. Back then the admission was $0.10.

The weather then was different than it is now. It wasin the thirties so they had a lot of wind and dust storms. It was realdry and hot. The worst storm my grandpa could remember was in 1942. Atornado came through when he was getting cows from the pasture. It stormedso hard you couldn't see because the wind and dust blew hard and then itrained and hailed very hard afterward. He had lots of black and blue marksfrom hail.

When I asked Grandpa if he always wanted to be a farmer,he said, yes, it's in the blood. I asked him when he saw or used his firsttractor. He said it was in 1936 and that it had been a 10-20 McCormickDeering on steel wheels and that he had used it for all the plowing andthe spring field work. It was his Dads. When Grandpa got his own farm,he used horses to farm with at first.

One time Grandpa's team ran away because he had no blinders. They had burned up when the barn had caught on fire. They ran until theygot caught on a fence post with the neck yoke. When they stopped, therewas a horse on each side of the fence. Nobody knew how they they had gottenthat way. All that had happened to Grandpa was his legs had gotten allskinned up.

Then in 1947, he bought his own tractor. It was a F-14Farmall and he always bought Farmalls after that.

Interview - April 25, 1995, Ervin HolzSIZE=+1>Interview - April 25, 1995, Ervin Holz