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Inteview with Willian Geidt (WG) and Donna Mae (Giedt) Waite (DW)

Conducted by Allen L. Spiker (AS)
1 July 1981, Danzig, ND

Transcribed, Translated and Edited by Pastor Marvin L. Hartmann, May 2006


This interview begins with an invitation by Alan Spiker to the interviewees to converse in the Katchubish (Plattdeutsch) dialect. This exchange between the interviewees goes on for about 25 minutes. It is undecipherable because of loud recorder noise, extremely rapid and overlapping and interrupting conversation with much laughing and ambient noise. The transcribable portion of the tape begins when the interviewer asks the interviewees, particularly William Giedt, to demonstrate how to say certain words and phrases. Those answers are later shared by Donna Waite.

(Reader, please note: When Allan Spiker posed statements for Katschubish restatement, often they were in declarative sentences but I punctuated with question marks to underscore implied question, "How would you say.........?" Dialect words I spelled phonetically in an effort to demonstrate shadings in expression. Since I could not use umlauts I employed diphthongs, double letters, which then reflected as close as possible the variations in pronunciations. Often there are variations of spellings within the same series of exchanges where there may be a repeated use of the same or a similar word. These variations are intended because often the respondent varied the pronunciation of the same word. Further, I did not capitalize the Platt dialect nouns. I make no claim to consistency. MLH )


ALLAN SPIKER: Did you call all grain "corn?"

WILLIAM GIEDT: No, "Veitza vare kohren. Un can vere hoover, un yarscht, un koren, un millet, un haesch , un schpelz ook noch. Aber venn do fon koren verzaehlt denn dat maent weite" (No, wheat was koren. Then there was oats, barley, koren (wheat) millet, (haesch?) and also speltz. But if you speak of kohren, that means wheat.)

AS: What did you call "corn," then?

WG: "Korn."

AS: No, regular corn, like regular ears of corn.

DONNA WAITE: "Koren."

WG: "Koren."

DW: It was a different "o" sound. "Koren" and "kohren."

WG: "Kohren," see. Now the Russian German, they said for wheat, "frucht." I s'pose you know that. But Katchuppa they said, "Kohren." __________also said "veitzen." But when Katchubba said wheat, they said, "kohren."

AS: We'll just do a few of the word list, then. Number one is, "Where does he live?"

WG: "Wo wohnt er?"

AS: And, "Where did he live last year?"

WG: "Wo wohtet er lastet yore?"

AS: And, "How would it be if we went now?"

WG: "Vee vehret venn vee nu yinge?"

AS: "I was there yesterday?"

WG: "Ek vehr doa yestre."

AS: "You were there too?"

WG: "Du waerscht ook dort."

AS: "Let's go home?"

DW: "Let's zu hoos goineh."

AS: And, "He's mowing the lawn?"

WG: "Er schnittet grahss."

AS: "He walked between the houses?"

DW: "Hae yingt zwischne heeser."

AS: "I have a white horse?"

DW: "I hava visset paert."

AS: Is there any special name for "white horse?" Some would say "schimmel."

DW: Ya, that isn't a white horse. That's a dapple gray. A dapple gray is called a "schimmel."

AS: That's in your dialect here.

DW: Only we say "schemmel."

AS: "I went to town with that white horse?"

DW: "I fort in't schtaat mittne visse paet."

AS: What do you say to make horses go and stop?

WG: "Whoa and giddup." (All laugh.)

AS: No German, huh?

WG: No German.

DW: Those are English words.

WG: I imagine there are German words for that but I wouldn't know them.

AS: I don't either, to be honest with you. "This old sow has five little pigs?"

WG: "Dezza alls scheen, det ahlta scheen hat finf kleine."

DW: No, "Det ahlta saygh hat..........

WG: "Det ahlta saygh hat finf kleina schween."

AS: And "He always keeps five old sows?"

WG: "Hae have immer feef alta schween.....ahlta sayghe"

AS: "That boar is mean?"

WG: "Dae korichen iss viescht."

AS: Is there any special for cut pig?

WG: Ah, no.

DW: Do they mean a castrated pig?

WG: Castrated boar?.........

DW: "Ein ausgeschnittne koriche."

AS: "The little pig is still sucking?"

DW: "Die klaene schween, die sughe noch."

AS: And "One little pig is sick?"

DW: "Aehn klaenet schwaenschen iss krahnk."

AS: "He always has a lot of pigs?"

WG: "Hava fiel schween."

AS: "He sold one pig?

WG: "Hae verkofft aen schween."

AS: How would you call the pigs at eating time?

DW: They were always just there, you know. Oh I hated those pigs.

AS: Would you say, "Sooey?"

WG and DW: No, no, no.

DW: "Voots, voots, voots, we called........." They'd come running. I hated those pigs, I was sure they were going to trample me to death!

AS: And the, "We have both white and black sheep?"

WG: "We hava vitt un scharta schoop."

AS: And, "One white sheep died?"

WG: "Aen vitet schoop feraekkt."

AS: "We have no goats?"

WG: "Ve hava kaena ...............

DW: Goats?.......... "Korsde."

WG: "Korsde. Vee hava kaena korsde."

AS: Did you ever have goats?

DW: No.

AS: "That's a pretty little lamb?"

WG: "Dotsa shanes lahmm."

AS: "She had two little lambs?"

WG: "Sae hatt zwae lahmms."

AS: "He's a mean old buck?"

WG: "Dots iss da veeschta ........schof buck."

AS: "What do you want with two bucks?"

WG: "Vat virtsch du mit zwei schof baek?"

AS: "We give our chickens corn?"

WG: "Vee give unser haener koren."

AS: And "You give your chickens oats?"

WG: "Du yepts ihren heener hoaver."

AS: And "They give their chickens barley?"

WG: "Un yern yea ihra heener yarscht."

AS: Number two, "The hens lay better in the spring than in the fall?

WG: "Dae haener leiyet bester im fregya vie im harscht."

AS: "The chickens are cackling."

WG: "Dae haener kadachse."

AS: And "We saw a rat among the little chicks?"

WG: "Vee saghen a raat mit die kinkle."

AS: "One little chick is sick?"

WG: "Aen chick itt yit krahnk."

AS: "The cluck has left the nest?"

WG: "Da ahlta klook laitet da nest et ging foot."

AS: "The rooster is crowing?"

WG: "Da hahn kreit."

AS: "This year we have five roosters?"

WG: "Det yore have feev hohns."

AS: How do you call the chickens at feeding time. Is there anything you'd say like you would for the pigs?

WG: No, just chick, chick......

AS: "We have no geese?"

WG: "Vee hava keena gens."

AS: "I bought a goose?"

WG: "I kofft n'ganz."

AS: "The old gander is mean?"

WG: "D'olt gahnter iss baes."

AS: "We have some young geese?"

WG: "Vee hava younge gans."

AS: "The ducks are butchered?"

WG: "Die ehnte sinn g'schlacht."

AS: "We kept one drake?"

WG: "Die haele aenem woort."

AS: And "This duck has one white feather?"

WG: "Dez ent hatt aenem vite vitte faedr enem schwantz."

AS: "It is also a very long feather?"

WG: "Datsa long faathere."

AS: Vegetables and fruits. "The beans are good this year?

DW: "De bohna zinn goath dis year."

AS: "That's a large bean?"

DW: "Dets enya groothe bohn."

AS: "I like peas."

DW: "Ek gleich arshte."

AS: Was there any special term for the pod? The peapod?

DW: "Die schaal."

WG: "The schell. Arschte schell."

AS: "I wish we had horse radish?"

DW: Horse radish? (Puzzling)

AS: Did you use it?

DW: Yes, Grandma always made...we had.........meerretick! Now what was the question?

AS: "I wish we had horse radish?"

DW: "Ek vench vee had da meerredick."

AS: "I don't like cabbage?"

DW: "Ek gleich kana komst."

AS: Were there any different types of cabbages? Red or green?

WG: No.

DW: Cabbage was cabbage.

AS: "Give me a head of cabbage?"

DW: "Gepp meena kopp kompft."

AS: And, what do you call the sour, fermented cabbage?

DW: "Soor kroot."

AS. OK. "This is strong garlic?"

DW: "Dets schtarke ......knobloch."

AS: "We have cucumbers in our garden?"

DW: "Veeda goorchya im goarde."

AS: What do you call a pickle, then?

DW: "Soor gurik."

AS: "Buy a bunch of onion?"

DW: "Koof amolnya fittleh."

AS: How do you say "onion?"

DW: "Fittleh."

AS: "We have beets in the garden?"

DW: "Vee have a bat-e eh im goordeh."

AS: "That's a big carrot."

DW: "Dats an groote yalmaer."

AS: "The carrots are good this year?"

DW: "Die yalmaer dessen goat this year."

AS: "He planted a row of potatos?"

DW: "Hae plant ne raech kartoffle."

AS: "The potatos should be hilled?"

DW: "Da kartoffle solla ver bahregh zenna."

AS: "Give me a good big potato?"

DW: "Geff me moan a grozza k'toffel."

AS: "There aren't many big potatos this year?"

DW: "Zinn nich fiel grotha kartoffla."

AS: "We milk before breakfast?"

DW: "Vee maalke eh befrishk iterty."

AS: "What did you eat this morning?"

DW: "Vat aetste heeta morghe?"

AS: That is the past.

DW: That first one..... I don't think I quite did that.....right.

AS: "We milk before breakfast?"

WG: Ya, that was right.

DW: I'll repeat it once.

AS: "We milk before breakfast?"

DW: "We maahlke ehe frischtik."

AS: "What did you eat this morning?" That is in the past.

DW: "Vat ateste deesa morgha?"

AS: How would you say, "What are we going to eat now?"

DW: "Vat vill ve yeateh?"

AS: "What do you two usually eat for breakfast?

DW: "Vat ate ye zwei fer frischtikk yevaenichlich?"

AS: "We had company at the mid-day meal?"

WG: "Vee hatta besuch heet met toach."

AS: And "Come over for the evening meal?"

DW: "Come fer supper." "Come fer obenkost."

AS: Is there any word for if you had a light lunch between means?

Voice: "Geschnanekk?"

DW: Oh, geschnekk! That's snack.

AS: "We'll eat the leftovers this evening?"

WG: "Vee yestet dass wass eeberich bleich ...obend."

AS: "I helped myself to meat?"

DW: "Ek nahm me fleisch."

AS: "This is good meat?"

DW: "That's good rindfleisch."

AS: "I like pork too?"

DW: "Ik gleiche schweentfleisch."

AS: "But I don't like mutton or veal?"

DW: "But I gleich kaen schoffs fleisch oder kalbfleisch."

WG: "Kaalberlfaesch."

DW: "Kaalberflaesch."

AS: "He stood on the hill?"

DW: "Er stoont oppa heelya."

AS: "The hills around here are low?"

DW: "Die heeglya sinn laech."

AS: That means low. How would you say high?

DW: "Heeglya sinn hoch."

AS: And "He saw a light from the top of the hill?"

DW: "He sach a lich fon dah pookle."

AS: And "He sees me down here?"

DW: "Hae zeet me hier unde."

AS: "The road goes up hill?"

WB: "Da vach yeht da heegela naeh."

AS: "The road goes down hill?"

WB: "Da vach yeht da heegla runter."

AS: "Don't fall down?"

WB: "Fahl nich haen."

AS: "But he fell down anyway?"

WB: "Aber he fall doch...

DW: "...haen."

AS: "There are no mountains in North Dakota."

DW: "Do sin kaene groote heegla un bahrgeh in North Dakota."

AS: Which would you say for mountain?

DW: I suppose you would say "bahrgh."

AS: OK.

WG: Heeglah is a knoll.

DW: You know, I just noticed now that there is a "bahrgh" and "heegle" and ...we must..

WG: The bahrgh, ish venn er gross ish ....that was...........

DW: A big hill.

WG: And "heegle, heegltyeh........."

AS: What would you call..........? You've been in the Badlands, the plateaus out
there...what would you call them?

WG: Well, I don't know. I suppose you would call them "heegltueh."

Voice: No, no.. its different because its flat on top.

WG: Oh, just a minute.........

DW: Well, I have no idea.

AS: At least they're not near here anyway. "The river is pretty high right now?"

WG: "The wudther iss sehr hoch nu."

AS: What do you say.....?

WG: "Det wudther...

DW: That's water, that's not river.

AS: Is there a word for "river?”

WG: No. Not that I know of.

DW: "Raeva."

AS: "Fluss?"

WG: No, we wouldn't say "fluss."

AS: "The water comes up to the bridge?"

WG: "Wudther kampt der opp bitt an der braek."

AS: And then what are the names of any creeks or rivers ....are there any creeks or rivers right around here? Any special names for them?

DW: Beaver Creek.

WG: Ya.

AS: Is there any special word for a creek?

WG: "Krikk."

DW: "Krikk."

AS: OK. And how would you say, "That's a large lake?"

DW: "Dots ena groothena lake."

AS: "There are lots of fish in those lakes?"

WG: "Doh senn feel fish in dae lake."

AS: "I want to sell my car?"

WG: "Ik vill meena car verkoffa."

AS: "Well, he wants to buy a car?"

WG: "Ae vill ane car koopa."

AS: Is there anything when you say , "Well, let's go" or something like that?

DW: "Well, let's go..."

AS: "I want to borrow some money?"

WG: "Aek vant yelt borghye."

AS: And "He borrowed some money from the bank?"

WG: "Hae borght yelt fon der bonk."

AS: "He bought everything on credit?"

WG: "Hae kofft alles opp (sevopeet?).

AS: OK. And "I won't give him credit any more?"

WG: "Aek eh, give ihn kaen nutsch meno keet." (Unclear.)

AS: "You'd better see the lawyer about it?"

WG: "Det beata zilch nu afrakat."

AS: What do you call a lawyer?

WG: "Afrakat."

DW: "Afrakat."

AS: "This letter came today?"

DW: "Dae braafe kam heete."

AS: "Why didn't these letter come quicker?"

WG: "Verum kahmen die braeve nich schnaeller?"

AS: "He tore up the letter?"

WG: "Hae fernaehcte die braeche."

AS: And "I read it in the newspaper?"

WG: "Ek laestst in die zeitung."

AS: When use words like "zeitung," is that what your family used...or...? Have any of you read anything in German or.....taken German in school?

WG: This is a Zeitung, right here.

AS: I was just wondering. A lot of Germans don't know the word for that out here. I was wondering ....

DW: "Zietung" you mean? That's what we always said.

AS: Oh you did? And then I have a few words on sickness.... different illnesses "He had pneumonia?"

WG: "Hae hat lung entsendung."

AS: "He died of consumption?" Did you say anything like "schemsucht?"

DW: "Schvensucht?"

WG: No. No.

DW: That's pneumonia.

Voice: No, No.

WG: "Schvensucht" that sounds right.

AS: How would you say, "He is dead?"

WG: "Ae ish doht."

AS: Are there any other words you use for "dead?"

DW: "Kapoot."

WG: "Kapoot." "Schtorr."

DW: And for animals, "veraakt."

WG: I guess that covered that pretty well there.

AS: "The coffin is in the church?"

WG: "Det vacht iss in der kirich."

AS: "The funeral was yesterday?"

WG: "Da leicht vere yestre."

AS: "He was buried in the cemetery?"

WG: "Dae gropt in dae kirch hof."

AS: "I'm a little bit tired?"

WG: "Ik ben a grossa, klein bit ymaid."

AS: "I'm very tired?"

WG: "Ike ben zayher maed."

AS: "I'm all tired out?"

WG: "Ike baen ganz oot geschpaelt."

AS: "I've got to yawn?"

WG: "Ike wot hoh yawne."

AS: "Do you want to go to bed?"

WG: "Daetscht du baad gwonna?"

AS: "He lay down?"

WG: "Hae liegt sich haen.?

AS: "He is sleeping now?"

WG: "Hae schlapt."

AS: "He has been sleeping all day?"

WG: "Hae schlappt da ganza dack."

AS: "He snored?"

WG: "Hae schnoark."

AS: "I had a bad dream?"

WG: "Aek hatt aene schraakliche yedroam."

AS: Any words just for a bad dream?

DW: "Schlimmer droam."

AS: "I wish to get up?"

WG: "Aek vent vill haet amol opp schtoanna."

AS: "Fritz, look out for the car?"

WG: "Fritz, pahss opp fer da karr."

AS: "Children, now you may go home?"

WG: "Kinder, nu kinn yer noh huss gonna."

AS: "Gimme that book?"

WG: "Gehe meha amol det boak."

AS: "Give me mine too?"

WG: "Give me ook."

AS: Where are all the books?"

WG: "Vo zint ahl die baeker?

AS: "He has a real little book?"

WG: "Hae hasta saer klaenet book.
AS: "He brought this book along form school?"

WG: "Hae brocht det boak mit fon scho."

AS: "And he always brings it along?"

WG: "Hae bringt et immer met."

AS: "Children, look out for the cars?"

WG: "Kinder, pahst opp for da karre."

AS: "Both of you were there?"

WG: "Ye vare alle badh doha."

AS: "He came early?"

WG: "Hae come frae."

AS: "I wish he would go?"

WG: Aek wencht hae would go, period." (All laugh heartily.)

AS: "Yes, I wish they would go?"

WG: "Yes, aek wenched that they would goade."

DW: "Ya, aek wenched that they would goade."

AS: "It's raining?"

WG: "It raeghend."

AS: "It rained all evening?"

WG: "Et raeghend da ganza obend."

AS: "The rain came from the east?"

WG: "Det raeghened fon da ohst."

AS: "Its lightening?"

WG: "Et blaetzt."
AS: And what about thunder?

WG: "Es donnert."

AS: "He's proud of it?"

WG: "Er iss froh."

AS: "We had bad weather last week?"

WG: "Vee hattet schlimmes vaether last veek."

AS: "He got angry about the bad weather?"

WG: "Hae aergert nu kriege mit schlaachte vaether."

AS: "It's snowing."

WG: "Es schnaet."

AS: "The snow is deep?"

WG: "Des schnee is daep."

AS: "It's hailing?"

WG: "Et hoaglt."

AS: "It is a long time since it hailed?"

WG: "Es schon a lange teet zeit dets hoaglt."

AS: "(Unclear.)"

WG: "Vee heide hoch."

AS: "The hailstones were big?"

WG: "Die haogl schtekka vehra gross."

AS: Are there different names for different sizes of hails?

DW: "Hoagle schturm," you maybe should have....

AS: "We had a hailstorm?"
WG: "Ah hoagel schtorm."

AS: What is it called when it rains and freezes at the same time?"

WG: "(Block) eest."

AS: So that's why you got sleet storm....And...what do you call when the frost forms sometimes, on the branches....any special name for that?

WG: "Froscht."

AS: OK. Or anything like ( _____________) , do you have a name for that?

WG: Huh uh.

AS: Its when it very humid and you get that frost settling down on everything, wires etc.

WG: "Dot iss duft frost."

AS: Go through the months of the year.

DW: "Yanuar, Faebruha, Maartz, April, My, Yuni, Juli, August, September I guess is just September, October, November un Dezember."

AS: Just count to twenty.

DW: "Aen, zwae, drei, fire, fee, sahx, sieva, awcht, naneh, zehn, elva, zvelva, dreizen, firtzen, fufzen, zehtzen, zeeptzen, achtzen, ninezen un zwanzich.

AS: And then twenty one?

DW: "Ein un zwanzich?"

AS: Fifty five?

DW: "Fenfunfufzich."

AS: Seventy seven?

DW: "Zeeben un zeepzich."

AS: How do you say, "Hundred?"

DW: "Hundert."

AS: "Thousand?"

DW: "Dausent."

AS: And "He took five?"

DW: "Hae nam feef."

AS: "End of quarter, take five?"

WG: "Nimm die moat feef."

AS: "He's got enough?"

WG: "Hae haet genuch."

AS: "He gave me four?"

WG: "Hae yacht mae faer."

AS: "Give her four?"

WG: "Gei ihra mol faer."

AS: "Give her four, not five?"

WG: "Yiv hr faer, nicht feef."

AS: "That's half of all I've got."

WG: "Daht iss goot hahlf vat ick have."

AS: "It's only a third?"

WG: "Most aen draettle."

AS: "I gave you three fifths of my candy?"

WG: "I'ke yachem ah drae......feeft fon meenem kandy."

DW: (Laughing) I don't know if that's right.

WG: I don't either. That's as close as I can get. You come up with some of the darndest things.

AS: "He's always first?"

WG: "Haes immer aerscht."

AS: "Once in a while he's second?"

WG: "Als ...ist zwaete."

AS: "I was the third in line?"

WG: "Aed vaer de draete inna raehe."

AS: "My neighbor was fourth?"

WG: "Mee nachber were faer."

AS: "A stranger was the seventh in line?"

WG: "Ah fremder mahn vae der zeebende in de raehe."

AS: "All sorts of people were there?"

WG: "Der alladehand leed doer."

AS: Some personal background. So your names are first of all......

WG: William Giedt.

DW: Donna Mae Waite.

AS: And then your maiden name. Your brother and sister.... And the date of birth.

WG: Mine is September 14, 1918.

DW: And mine is December 26, 1924.

AS: You were both born ....

WG: Mackintosh County, right here.

AS: On this farm then?

WG: Ya.

AS: Outside of Danzig. And you now live in....or near Danzig.
DW: I live in Davenport, North Dakota.

AS: When did you leave here, did you say?

DW: One, nineteen, fifty. ....or forty nine, just before Christmas, I guess.

AS: And your nearest town is Ashley? If you lived in other places besides here.

WG: No.

AS: You've always been on the farm? OK. And you ...

DW: We lived in Fargo. I've lived in Fargo until 1975. From 1950 until 1975. And from 1975 until the present we lived in Davenport, ND.

AS: And your occupation ...

WG: Farming.

DW: I'm a domestic engineer.

AS: That's the way to say it now days or you get in trouble. And your educational background?

WG: Eighth grade.

DW: And I went through high school and I had some business college.

AS: In...

DW: In Fargo.

AS: What kind of contact do you usually have within the community? Community activity? Church or other?

WG: You mean me? Church and others too. Well not just now, it's just church because I don't have any other things that I'm doing.

DW: Well, when we lived in Fargo, we were quite active with the different organizations. I did a lot of volunteer work. I did PTA work and work in the schools but now that we are kinda removed church is about our only contact now too.

AS: Basically, are there any other kind of Ketchuba that you're in contact with?

WG: What do you mean?

AS: You're actually the last ones around here where you speak your language.

WG: That's right.

AS: Do you meet, like your wife's family and that and do they still speak Schwaebisch or

WG: Oh yes.

AS: Do you speak that. Can you speak that? (to DW)

DW: I....not very good. I can make people understand what I mean but ..it's ..to carry it on fluent, huh ah.

AS: But how is your Schwaebisch?

WG: What do you mean?

AS: Go you speak it....

WG: Fluently, yes I do.

AS: And your wife speaks Schwaebish. And we speak English too.( All laugh.) What do you know about your family, where they came from in Russia.

WG: I couldn't tell you.

DW: The only thing I heard, remember hearing, is that they lived in Holland close to the German Russian border. Up in the Russian border.

AS: In the north then.

WG: But my granddad immigrated from the Devil's land area.

AS: So they were north first, then.

WG: They came in from Canada down this way.

AS: Do you know about when that was?

WG: Oh, man, you know, I'll tell you..

DW: My dad was born in Devil's Lake.

WG: They brought him in here on a covered wagon and that could be 92-93 years ago.

AS: So he was about...

DW: I'm sure he was an infant when they came.

WG: Well, he was, he was ......six months old. Grandpa brought him down here. Dad was the oldest he brought him down here in a covered wagon and they lived west of here in the community they called Danzig, there was a little town there in that area. And then he went back up to New Rockford and up to Sheyenne and picked buffalo bones. Now you know that's a long time ago when they had buffalo bones. For a wagon load of buffalo bones, I heard him tell me this many times, he sez. "Man, you don't know how good we got it. " He sez, "I picked for a whole load, a wagon box full of buffalo bones I got a dollar." Off of that he had to live and he sent that back so the wife and child could survive.

AS: He sent it down here..

WG: Uh huh. I don't know how long he was gone picking buffalo bones.

AS: Do you know why he came here...to the relatives here?

WG: Well the Katchubisha relatives were all here. The friends were here the Koths were here, the Michaelson's where here. This was all relations here.

AS: Do you know if they had come through Canada? Or did they come through the States?

WG: Some of those came through the States. I don't know why they settled up there. The land certainly was better. But they said the Germans had to get to where the rocks were so that they keep out of trouble.

AS: But mother was Katschuba too?

WG: Oh ya. She was a Stading. The Stadings originally came out of Germany, direct out of Germany.

AS: Oh, I see. And then they came directly here then?

WG: No.

DW: They settled in Mound, Mound City.

WG: They came across here and settled in Mound City, South Dakota. That's where my mother went to school.

DW: But all those records have been destroyed. The Court House was burned down and the records have all been destroyed..

AS: But your father's people they came from Russia?

WG: No. Originally they came out of Germany. The reason that they went over into Russia was to get out of the German military, these men, because I don't know how many years they had to serve, I was told. And his brother, John, Alec's brother, John, he came over later and came in through Canada. This old fellow told me that they were after him and he got to the river it was really high. And there was no turning back, and there was another fella with him and this other fellow had a saddle on his horse and he didn't. He says then when he got into the river he just slipped back and grabbed the horse by the tail. And he says, that horse swam across that river but the guy with the saddle never made it. He said that saddle held that horse back for one thing, and that river was high and he says, my companion knew nothing.

AS: Do you know what happened to...or did you mother ever tell you where her family was from Germany?

DW: Well, no, I thought that they were the ones that lived in Holland.

WG: Well, ya, but you see.....

DW: And close to the border.

WG: Ya, they ...at that time they must have been moving around every once in a while, wherever they found it was better.

AS: Do know if your mother was Baptist too? Or was she maybe Mennonite?

DW: No, they were Baptist too.

GW: Oh no, they were Baptist over there.

AS: some of the Mennonites came originally from Holland, that's what I was wondering?
Did you ever notice the difference between your mother's (and father’s) dialects?

GW. Huh uh.

AS: Pretty much the same then?

DW: And my mother used to tell me how the Indians came quite close to Grandpa barred the door one night. Down here, when they settled in Mackintosch County now.

WG: Well, you know, you're talkin just about a hundred years ago. See. Because my mother is going to be 94 in November you can figure out. Dad came, Dad was what, a year younger than Ma. That was some 92-93 years ago since he was picking buffalo bones.

AS: So he was some years older than your mother than?

WG: Huh ah.

DW: Younger, one year younger. My dad was one year younger than my mother.

WG: Uh huh.

(End of interview.)

 

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