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Going On's at Yoman Farm

Posted 6/12/2017 2:22pm by Stefanie Jaeger.
I am in the middle of converting some pasture to tilled land that has not been opened up in a long, long time. It is a bit of an archeological discovery process with most of the junk being of late 20th century man such as soda cans and metal fence posts. But one artifact was a leather belly strap from a horse harness, how long the half-life of one of these might be that has been buried in the soil is unknown to me. The similarity to a human belly strap and a horse belly strap is also difficult to distinguish so maybe I am romanticizing this discovery. I chose to think it might be a horse artifact circa 1900, along with the pile of stone on the back of the farm and a few rusting horse drawn implements. My farm sits on one side of the "barrens" a jack-pine forest on the Bayfield peninsula with a  thin under story on sandy soil. The area was cut over and then farmed by unlucky immigrants who suffered on soil that was too dry to grow much. Still the county built farmers a railroad to get their produce to Duluth and a "farm to market" road still runs through these barrens, though no farms are still on the land. The railroad was an improvement to the stagecoach which could only run in winter on account of the deep sand that tops the barrens and mired the travelers. My soil turned up with some clay and silt and sits atop a deeper clay layer, so I feel more fortunate than those earlier settlers.

John Adams
Yoman Farm 

Photos: Horses escaping the rain in the shed. Horses in the blooming apple orchard. The spud planting machine.