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Harvest Tales - Mitchell County 03

Harvest stories submitted by Kansans for the online exhibit, Wheat People.
Submit your own at kshs.kansasmuseum@ks.gov.

Marianne Metcalf

Harvest Meals

We always had fried chicken a lot during harvest as the young chicks were ready to dress then. . . . Each day my mother would catch one, put a stick across its neck and pull its head off, dunk the chicken in boiling water and pluck off the feathers. She fried a fresh one each day. This with mashed potatoes, gravy, a vegetable and dessert was our meal. The men always came to the house for meals. Now most harvest meals are carried to whatever far flung field the combine happens to be in. A cell phone helps the cook find the correct field at the proper time.

In earlier years my father told of the harvesters going to the house of a new bride for their noon meal. She had placed enough plates on the table for the number of men but they were too close together. When the men sat down a number didn't have room to sit. The bride saw this and retreated to the kitchen never to be seen again that noon. Her mother rearranged and found table space for all. . . .

My father used to tell of having help from another country, I think Australia, one threshing season and they were sitting out in the yard after supper and the mosquitos were giving them a bad time. They didn't have mosquitos in their country. After sometime of misery it got dark and the lightning bugs came out. One visitor called, "Look, here they come with their lanterns."

Marianne Metcalf also submitted Helping With Harvest at Age 11.

"Harvest Tales" is part of the online exhibit, Wheat People:  Celebrating Kansas Harvest.