September 5, 2017 at 3:32 p.m.
The four Evers brothers - Wayne, Phil, Mark and Jerry - along with their families, invited the neighborhood to their dairy on Aug. 18 as they harvested five acres of barley the old fashioned way - using threshing machines and a steam engine. The Everses milk 1,200 cows on their farm in Wabasha County near Kellogg, Minn.
"I wanted my kids to be able to know how to do this," said Phil, who has been the one to organize the demonstrations.
It wasn't that long ago that the Evers brothers were still harvesting their small grain this way. Their dad and grandpa used threshing machine until 1989.
"It's what we grew up doing," Phil said.
"It's the way they liked to do it. We had a big family and enough people around to help," Wayne said.
Now the Evers family takes it on as a hobby, harvesting a few acres this way every few years.
"Some people boat; we thrash," Wayne said.
Two weeks before the demonstration, the Everses cut and bundled the shocks. They still own the binder, which ties the shocks together. Then, they had manually set up each shock.
"It helps the grain get up off the ground and keeps it from rotting," Wayne said. "You could keep it in the field for a month this way if you really wanted to."
On the day of harvest, the Everses had neighbors volunteer their team of horses and wagons to help haul the shocks to the threshing machine. Jacob Holst and his grandpa, Kenny, were running one of the teams. The Holsts milk 120 cows near Kellogg, Minn.
The Evers family still owns a threshing machine, but had two additional ones there on Aug. 18. To run the machines, the Everses usually use tractors, but this year they brought in a 1906 steam engine owned by Mark Lehnertz from Dover, Minn.
"I like this old stuff ..." said Lehnertz, who went to steam school. "It brings a lot of people together."
And the Everses like it, too. It brings their families together.
"Usually on these days we can't find enough pitchforks around here," Wayne said with a laugh. "The kids like to help out."[[In-content Ad]]
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