Way It Was: The North Dakota Frontier Experience: Germans from Russia
Review by Geraldine Walth Sommer, Mesa, Arizona
Tweton, D. Jerome and Everett C. Albers. The Way it Was: The North Dakota Frontier Experience: Germans from Russia Settlers. Fessenden, North Dakota: Grass Roots Press, 1999.
The Germans from Russia Settlers by Everett C. Albers and
D. Jerome Tweton is a collection of short stories by the pioneer
Germans from Russia who settled in North Dakota. Each one of the
individual stories gives insight to the hardiness of our ancestors.
When they arrived in the Dakota Territory, they had many obstacles,
such a language barriers to overcome. This is probably one reason
why they tended to settle where they had other friends or relatives
living. As they came onto the open prairies they had to find shelter
for the first winter. Many only had time to dig a pit and turn their
wagon upside down over the pit and use this as their shelter until
they could build a sod hut and barns for their animals. First they
had to clear the land of many large bolders and then break the ground
for planting. Many of them could not afford more then the crudest
of farm equipment but they all had a kinship for one another and
were willing to help one another to build their barns and houses
Each story carries the same theme of love of their land, home,
church and willingness to put in long hours to attain this.
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