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 tact, as there are 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 local farmers besides Henry Gau were featured. (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 next clippings in issues of the Pierz Journal from Spring, 1921.  How could they resist?  
Something Larry suggested was that possibly the Weyerhaeuser Museum could get a copy of the Gau film (it's not online) from the National Archives and show it again here in Morrison County, maybe at the next annual meeting?  Then, it could be available at the museum, in perpetuity.
In fact, wouldn't it be fun to see A Son of the Soil along with the other two films shown at the Faust that weekend?  In April, it'll be 93 years since the first showing--we think it would be amazing, and could possibly be a fantastic fundraiser, too.

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

Wow, another chance to see that tug-o-war two years later.
(Full page ad in the Pierz Journal).

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