Three generations gather each August to can dill pickles and have fun on the prairie

Location: Berlin, LaMoure County, North Dakota, 4 August 2012

Ancestral German villages: Kassel and Neudorf, Glueckstal District and Kloestitz, Bessarabia

Photographs by Carol Just, St. Louis Park, Minnesota


For roughly 15 years the children of Julius and Helen (Dockter) Just have gathered the first weekend of August to can dill pickles. Helen's recipe has been fine-tuned over the years and some years as many as 325 jars of dill pickles have been canned on the first saturday of August. On August 4, 2012 we all gathered at the farm that Julius and Helen purchased in 1944. They retired in 1969 and for the next 30 years their son, Myron, and daughter-in-law, Ruth, were at the helm of the Berlin Just Farm. Since then, their grandson, Christof, and wife, Kelli, have been stewards of the Berlin Just Farm.

This is a multi generation endeavor. Children begin by scrubbing cukes.
Scrubbing cukes.
Scrubbing is an important job.
Peeling and cutting garlic.
Can't make dill pickles without vinegar, salt and pickling spice.
Baby kittens get attention while Karly carefully measures out pickling spice.
Cole and Isaac advanced to stuffing jars!
Stuffing the jars is an art form for some.
Assembly line.
More assembly line.
Everyone has a job.
Everyone is busy.
Pickling can go on for hours.
Canning kettles sit on gas grills keeps kitchen cool.
Finished product!
Original Farm House on Just Farm at Berlin, ND.
Just Farmyard, Berlin, ND.
Just Farmyard, Berlin, ND.

Permission to use any images from the GRHC website may be requested by contacting Michael M. Miller