Stories

Stories

Where does your story begin?

Everyone has a story to tell. The story of your childhood neighbor might start off very familiar and then become something completely unknown to you after years of separation. Your spouse’s story might have started off very different from your own, but now it is so intertwined with yours that you can’t remember when it was foreign to you. We were all born in the village, town, farm, or city we were for reasons that aren’t easy to articulate. Our lives have gone in the directions they have for reasons within and outside of our control. Whether we have been here for generations, a couple decades, or months, we all are part of the strong fabric of our community.  This page is dedicated to the people we know and have met here in the rural communities of Southeastern Minnesota and West Central Wisconsin and how our stories intersect and share common threads.

Bill

“My grandpa bought this piece of land around 1940 and when my dad and mom got married, they bought the farm from my grandpa. My grandpa’s parents came here from Austria in the late 1800s. Growing up, there were nine of us kids and we all chipped in on [...]

Helene

“When my parents were in their late 30s, my father’s parents died, and the family farm was put up for sale and there was no way for my dad to continue farming in Switzerland. There were ads in an agricultural magazine about farms for sale in Wisconsin and my [...]

Apolonio

"When I was 10, I started working in the fields with my dad harvesting coffee. I would do that with him every summer and when I finished the coffee harvest, I went back to school. When I was 14, I went to another part of my state to harvest [...]

Juan

"I spent my adolescent years working around cattle. My dad worked for a large oil company in Mexico and when he retired, he used all the money he made to buy 1500 hectares in the neighboring state of Veracruz. Back in that time, he paid what would be the equivalent [...]

Elma

"We came here from Switzerland in 1950 without ever seeing our farm, only pictures. There was an advertisement in the newspaper and we made a down payment. We knew we had to learn English so we studied and it was hard. We came over by boat and then took a train from New [...]

November 30th, 2017|Stories|

Adam

Adam loves living out in the country, he says it is peaceful here. He grew up in a small town in the mountains of the state of Veracruz in Mexico. When he grew up, he was accustomed to caring for pigs, rabbits, hens, and goats. "We would use a lot of the resources around us [...]

November 22nd, 2017|Stories|

Roberto

If you head out to the farm where Roberto works, it will be hard to find him in one specific spot. He could be working in the shop, fixing the roof of the barn after a hail storm, or filling in for a co-worker in the milking parlor. He said he [...]

Charlie

If you ever show up to the town of Waumandee recycling center during any of the four hours it is open every week, Charlie will be there to help you and he will most definitely have a smile and a story to share. Charlie was born on a farm in [...]

Neighbors

The beauty of living in an agricultural community like ours is that many people can tell you when their grandparents, great parents, or even great great grandparents came and settled here. The bonds feel strong because people can go back a few generations and find the connections to each other [...]