Lisa

Lisa Fuglestad Loge is ninety years old in the Centennial year, and has lived in Griggs County all her life.  She remembers clearly what it was like to grow up so long ago.

The Fourth of July was a big event.  They always got a new dress for the picnic at a spot near the Cooperstown Bible Camp.  (It was across the river on a place called "Grise holmen" - meaning "pig pasture").

Lisa's older sister, Inga, recalls driving about eight miles from home to the picnic with oxen, about 1891.  Her dad tied American flags to the ears of the oxen.  She was so proud.  This picnic was the only time during the year they had lee cream and lemonade - price 5.  This was made by the Herigstad and Lunde boys, Omund and Conrad Herigstad and Betuel and Martin Lunde.

Lisa remembers the huge swings in the big trees at the picnic.  The girls had to be careful of their new dresses.  There was no program as she recalls, but they played lots of games.

Some years later the picnic was moved across the river to what is now the Bible Camp.  Later sometimes on the Fourth of July they drove by surrey to Lake Jessie.  That was a long ride.

Christmas called for another dress.  Last year's dress was used for everyday for school.  They did a lot of housecleaning and some baking.  "Food was not that important in those days.  Father brought in an ordinary tree branch for a Christmas tree and we decorated it with homemade trimmings made from colored paper and tissue paper.  (No popcorn was available yet) All the festivities took place in the homes as there was no church building until 1903.€  Then they had afternoon programs so everyone could get home before dark.  Horse blankets were used to cover the church windows to make it dark enough.  By then they could purchase evergreens in town.  Real candles were the customary trimmings.  Lisa said there was never a fire.

Someone was always ready to play games.  Even the father joined in at Christmas.  "Put the chairs in front of the stove so no one gets burned.  We're going to play blind man's buff.€  Another game played in the living room had no name.  Everyone sat in a large circle.  One was chosen "It" and stood in the middle.  A homemade ball was tossed from one to the other and the one that was "It" tried to intercept the ball.

School was fun.  They had many games including: last couple out, pump pump pull away, ante-I-over, prisoners base, drop the handkerchief, fox and geese, arbor down.

Younger children trapped gophers for a penny a tail.  Bird nests were marked with sticks when the youngsters went to get the milk cows so they could return and check up on the "family".

Every farmer had a few sheep for their own wool.  Every summer the Fuglestad sheep would be driven to the Torkel Vigesaa farm and he hired a herder to ride sheep for the summer.  Andrew Hagle was herder for many years.

Ice wells were the forerunners of modern day refrigerators.  A large deep hole was dug, about eight feet deep and five feet across.  The cover was in two sets - one large and one small.  Both were removed in the winter and then a few palls of water were poured in each day after the weather was below freezing.  By spring there would be a layer of ice ready to store cream, milk and all perishables.

One day when Abigael Fuglestad, Lisa's mother was alone, she saw a man coming down the road leading a cow and calf.  She went to bargain with him to purchase the calf.  She could not speak English and the man could not understand Norwegian but she managed to get her point across, and made him understand that he had to wait while she ran to the neighbors a half a mile away and borrow the $5 to purchase the calf.  All business was transacted by the time Abigael's husband returned home to see two calves instead of one in the barn.  Torkel used to proudly tell that that calf was the beginning of their good herd of cows.

Source: Cooperstown, North Dakota 1882-1982 Centennial page 139

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