This branch of the Austrian Hesch family is descended from Johann Hesch and his wife Marya (Schlinz) Hesch, who came to America from Oberschlagles, Bohemia with three sons: Paul, Mathias, and Anton. +++Johann & Marya settled in Buffalo County, Wisconsin but moved to Pierz, Mn in about 1885. .+++Mathias settled in Waumandee, Wisconsin and moved to Pierz in 1911. +++Anton never married but farmed with his dad in Agram Township, where he died in 1911.+++And Paul, my great grandfather, settled five miles away, in Buckman, Minnesota. He died there in 1900.

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Sunday, December 8, 2013

The story of a horseless farm, and "A Son of the Soil"

If you scroll down one post, you'll see the story of Henry Gau, Fordson dealer in Pierz.  In those years (1914 to 1918) Henry was becoming a leading citizen and evidently, someone known to the Ford company as a go-getter.

Larry's been pursuing this part of Henry's story for ages--ever since he found this listing on the National Archives website:


Evidently, making films of actual farmers using Ford tractors was a useful tactic, as there are whole lists of similar films there.  Henry Gau's farm was one, but it was HERE, just NE of Pierz, in Granite, Minnesota...

 A Son of the Soil was filmed in the summer of 1920, and Larry finally found it in November, 2015.
I wonder if that's Henry on the tractor. Maybe by 1920 the filming was no longer a "field day" atmosphere? In the clips we've seen of other Ford movies made around the country, they would stage tug-o-wars between a tractor and 50 local men, or plow next to a huge team of horses, etc. It was pretty entertaining ☺ and quite convincing.
Larry found these newspaper clippings in issues of the Pierz Journal from Spring, 1921.  How could people resist, especially when Fausts were showing two other popular films, from Hollywood?

Seeds of Vengeance and a Charlie Chaplin film?
We'll need popcorn....

Cool, another chance to see it two years later.
(Full page ad in the Pierz Journal).
THANKS for your persistence, Larry!! ☺

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