Category Archives: Farm History

Locating the Dugout

Although our homesteading family arrived in the area in 1870, they didn’t settle on the farm along Kanaranzi Creek until 1871. Their first home, like many other early settlers, was in a dugout. We know some things about this dwelling … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, Farm History | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Native Americans Along the Creek

Last week’s post described some “treasures” that our grandkids have discovered in the pasture down along Kanaranzi Creek. Some of the artifacts and bones that they found near circular vegetation patches seemed to warrant input from professional archaeologists. That input … Continue reading

Posted in Earth Science, Farm History | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Artifacts, Bones, and Cache Pits

For six generations, the children in our family have looked for adventure down in the pasture along Kanaranzi Creek. And, they’ve found it: fishing and hunting, building rafts and shacks, picking up unique rocks and shells, and picking wild plums … Continue reading

Posted in Earth Science, Farm History | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Trails to Rails

Overland trails became the routes of railroads that provided critical links between farms and markets. In the 1920s and 1930s, Grandpa George (the son of the homesteaders) shipped cattle to Chicago from a siding called Midland located in Iowa about … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, Farm History | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Civil War Trails

The trails that our family followed in 1870 weren’t confined to just stream valleys. Their overland route from Waseca to the Kanaranzi Creek was probably laid out 10-15 years earlier, before the Civil War. This map was compiled (Trygg, 1964) … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, Farm History | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Homesteading on the Kanaranzi

In the spring of 1870, John B. Shurr and his nephew, stood on a hill about one mile south of the State Line and looked out to the east over the valley of the Kanaranzi Creek. The Rock River valley … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, Farm History | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

What’s in a Name?

“Runs as the crazy man walks.” That’s what Grandma Daisy Walker Shurr said the word “Kanaranzi” meant. This is what the Creek looked like back in the early Seventies below the hill where our house is located. A friend of … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, Farm History | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

Making Winter Wood

Now we’ve had the first frost and the first snow of the season. The leaves are turning yellow and the snow that stuck to tree trunks has melted. It was in times like this current reprieve from impending winter, that … Continue reading

Posted in Family History, Farm History | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Picking Wild Plums

Several weeks ago, I waded across the Creek and picked twelve pounds of wild plums. That’s not so easy to do this week because the channel is back to running full after the latest “rain bomb”. Most of the major … Continue reading

Posted in Farm History, Life Science | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ice Age Animals

Last week we left the Farm on a quick, nostalgic trip to the Black Hills. We did all the “touristy” things that we haven’t done for decades, including the Mammoth Site at Hot Springs. My bright wife suggested that we … Continue reading

Posted in Earth Science, Farm History, Life Science | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment