Archive for August, 2010

Lovilia High School Class of 1960 has 50th Reunion

Monday, August 9th, 2010

On Sunday, August 1st, a beautiful summer day the classmates of 1960 met for a noon meal at Kin Folks’ Eatin’ Place in Attica.  Then they spent a comfortable rest of the afternoon at Jim Tierney’s acreage called “The Par-T Ranch” out north of Weller.  There they renewed old friendships and relived old memories.  Everyone who had ever been part of the class was invited if they had contact information to reach them.  Twenty-two attended the meal and seventeen went to the ranch.  The class hopes to have a future reunion and include a group picture.

Those attending were:

Steve Onder- flew back from Scottsdale, Arizona

Junior Monk and his wife, Linda- flew in from Fayetteville, Georgia

Jackie Spencer Vanderhorst- from Knoxville, Iowa

Kathleen Ryan Heffron and husband, Dave- Melrose, Iowa

Colleen Keeton Gist and husband, Gary- drove back from Broomfield, Colorado

Joan Wallace Dieken- Knoxville, Iowa

Marilyn McMurray Ritter and husband Charles- Oskaloosa, Iowa

Larry Pinegar and wife, Wilma- Bussey, Iowa

Jim and Shirley Beary- Lovilia, Iowa

Catherine Gelles- Knoxville, Iowa

Jim Tierney and wife Beverly- Carroll, Iowa

Tom Dunkin, and wife Phyllis- Lovilia, Iowa

Bob and Margaret Flahive  Crumley- Allison, Iowa

(news by Bob and Margaret Crumley)

Local Resident to Receive Century Farm Certificate at State Fair

On August 17th, Margaret (Meg) Kasper will receive a Century Farm certificate at the Iowa State Fair.  The Century Farms Program honors individuals whose farm has been owned continuously by members of the same family for 100 years or more.  Meg’s maternal grandparents, the late James F. and Delia (McDonald) Coyne, purchased the farm located in Cedar Township west of Lovilia in 1909.  After their passing, their daughter Marie and her husband George Kasper, formerly of Weller, took up farming as newlyweds.  Meg represents the third generation of farm ownership.

Farming methods have changed dramatically in the 101 years that the Coyne-Kasper family has owned the farm, spanning from the years prior to World War I to the present day.  In the early 1900s through approximately the 1940s, a team of horses provided the power to run simple farm implements that included wagons, a single blade plow, hay rakes, and early versions of corn planters.  Many tasks, nonetheless, were done by hand with the aid of hand tools such as a hay scythe for cutting hay and a hay fork for gathering and moving hay.  Before the use of combines, corn husking by hand was the sole method for harvesting corn, in which a farmer husked corn by walking along the rows of corn, picking the ears of corn by hand from the stalk, and tossing the ears in a horse-drawn wagon that was driven alongside the corn husker.  Corn husking contests into the 1940s were popular agricultural events, and Meg’s late father, George, won numerous contests, participating in his later years in corn husking events sponsored by Living History Farms located in Urbandale.  The utilization of tractors in the 1930s and 1940s marked the transition to widespread mechanization.  The availability of electricity in many rural areas did not occur until after World War II, and further accelerated the transformation of farming from a labor-intensive endeavor to a highly-modernized industry.

During the era of her grandparents and parents, diversified farming and self-sufficiency was the norm.  Unlike current farming practices, farmers in the first half of the 20th century typically raised livestock and provided their own food.  Nearly every farmer milked a few cows, raised a few pigs, and had chickens to provide eggs.  In decades past, the crops raised on the Coyne-Kasper farm included corn, soybeans, oats, alfalfa for hay,  and pasture ground for grazing cattle.  Currently the only crop raised on the farm is alfalfa which is baled for winter feed for cattle.

(news by Meg Kasper)