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Sjouke Hoogland, Adrian (Minnesota)

Sjouke Johannes Hoogland, St. Annaparochie

Engelse vertaling
Naamloos document

Frisian emigrants 48.
S. Hoogland to S.J. Hoogland and family.

Sunday Sept[ember] 9, [19]23.
Dear Uncle and Aunt,

Last Monday, when I turned over the pages of the birthday book, I saw that your birthday uncle falls on Sept[ember] 7.
Hearty congratulations and also aunt.
Unfortunately this letter comes about 14 days too late, but better late than never.
During the week I don't have time because here they say [in English:] 'Time is money' [ in Dutch:] ( Tijd is geld).
I believe that aunt also had her birthday the other day, so also hearty congratulations for you, but let me tell you about here.
Last few days it is quite cold, with [a] North wind, so the thermometer went down to 40 and 43 ° F., while earlier this week the thermometer marked 90 ° F., a big difference.
A farmer, 1½ mile West from here, got a horse dead in front of the plow in this heat, because it became overheated.
We had more of this kind of differences in nature this Summer.
Which is not very pleasant in Summer clothes.
The crops look well, compared to many other area's in America.
In Iowa and Wisconsin it is not as good as here, because it was too dry there.
The oats here are partly threshed or is waiting in blocks outside for the threshing machine, here it goes faster than in the old country.
Here we hurried, with a neighbor, 140 Acres (pondemaats) through the machine in2 days and 2 hours.
Well the oats are not as heavy as it is in Friesland and much shorter.
Those 140 Acres consist of 2 pieces, so very large pieces of land.
That man was working on his own, the whole Summer, on those 320 Acres; while we have here 160 Acres together.
We just raise 2 fruits [kinds of plants] oats and corn, while others have some flax or barley.
The flax is also mowed with the mowing machine and it also goes through the threshing machine.
The straw of the oats, flax, etc. is made into big heaps as chaff.[Used as bedding for the animals. When dirty, it is spread on the fields as manure.]
There is also clover here, but other kinds.
White and red you can find here, but almost nothing, because it is freezing up.
There is also a kind of grass here to make hay, but it is annual. [The hay 'made' is all biennial or perennial.]
The cows here don't give much [milk].
On the farm the milk is skimmed and it goes to the factory.
The meadows here are not that good.
The lower parts of the land here is hay land.
It is heavy land here with a thick fruitful layer.
East [crossed out]. West of Adrian the land is more sandy.
Jan has about 50 Acres corn, 30 Acres oats, 10 Acres flax, 3 Acres feed-corn, 2 Acres potatoes and the rest is grass and hay land.
He has 70 milk cows and 1 calve-cow ['It is dried up'], 6 heifers and 10 calves and about 36 pigs. 
The pigs walk in a part of the corn land then they can search for their own food.
There is no water [ditches] here to stop the live-stock, everything is closed [fenced] with barbed wire.
We live here on a mud-road.
The villages are connected with graveled roads and where the road is bad, with concrete.
The roads are kept up with plows with 4 horses or a tractor  in front of it.
When one comes here in a village for the first time, it looks queer.
The big shops are situated at the main street and the shopkeepers don't live in such a shop but live somewhere else in a common house.
One can buy there almost everything but it is more expensive and it doesn't have the good quality.
Prices of the agricultural products are rising slowly during the last 2 years.
So it becomes a bit better here but the rents also rised from 5 to 8 Dollars an Acre to pay in advance.
The American laborer works not regularly, 1 day he works and 2 days he is knocking about in town.
Nearby there live some, but they don't do much and so there are many of them.
In the neighborhood live a number of Hollanders, but most of them come from [the province, not the town] Groningen and they are useless, it is a kind apart.
But now it is bed time, it is already half past 10 and tomorrow  will be an early day.
Hearty congratulated also from Jan and Sjoukje.
Greetings from your nephew Sjouke.
P.S. Don't mind the writing because the ink is very bad.

[Sjoukje is a woman's name
Sjouke a man's name]

[This letter should be numbered 47 and letter 47 should be 48 as we look at the dates.
It cannot be changed because the original letters are numbered as these are.]