Becketwood Cooperative
An Active, Independent 55+ Community of Owners in Minneapolis

Summer of 1957: A Memoir

By John Teisberg, Becketwood Member


In the spring of our junior year at Concordia College, Paul Dussere and I talked about going to Seattle the following summer and getting a summer job with Boeing. We had both almost completed our mathematics major requirements and thought we would be in great demand. I still, to this day, have a hard time believing that I told my folks that I wouldn’t be working on the farm that summer. I was the youngest of eight children and the only one available to work with my dad on the small farm.

The farm consisted of a quarter section and half a quarter section (240 acres), which would have been a sizable farm in 1957 but when you take out the woods, lakes, and the Great Northern railway and highway 52 that cut through the farm, we were left with about 100 acres of tillable land. This meant we needed to be a dairy farm, milking 16 cows and raising corn, oats, alfalfa, and another cash crop like barley, flax, rye, or wheat. The workload had decreased somewhat, though, over the years, since we had purchased a used combine and had our hay baled. I guess I thought that my dad could get a hired hand for a day or two, as needed.

Tri-State Auto Auction in Fargo had advertised a need for cars to be driven to various locations—they needed a car to be delivered to Yakima, Washington and Paul and I concluded that would be close enough to Seattle that we could hitchhike the rest of the way….

Read on for the rest of the Summer of ‘57 (PDF)

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