November 29, 2018 | By: | Peterson Community

Celebrating Our 100th Crop!

You’ve heard us say for years that we will sell no seed we wouldn’t be happy to plant on our own farm. That is because when we got our start in the seed business, our first customers were our friends and neighbors. We like our neighbors, and we want to keep our friends, so we set our bar high at what we’d be happy to plant.

This year marks a major milestone for our farm — our 100th harvest! In honor of such a big occasion, we thought we’d share a little history about the farm we love so much.

Here are some of the highlights of our farm’s legacy:

1910: Carl’s grandfather, (Carl) Oscar Peterson walked, yes…WALKED the roughly 280 miles from Hudson, WI to the Fargo area and found work on a threshing crew. He later set up a blacksmith shop in Prosper. He built a house for his bride there, a house with running water!

Oscar Peterson and crew in the blacksmith shop in Prosper, ND

1919: Oscar and his wife Josephine purchased the quarter section (160 A) of land that became their home quarter and which remains our home base. The price of that land was over $100/A. The story goes that the house on the property had been used for grain storage the year previously.

So basically, Oscar moved his bride from a brand-new house in Prosper to a house just 1/8 of a mile away on the farm, that had been used for grain storage. Now that’s love. And although Oscar passed away in 1958, Carl remembers his grandmother telling that story to him in the early 1970s, and he recalled that she still seemed a little miffed about it.

1947: Carl’s father, Ralph, met a lovely new teacher in Prosper and married her.  (Competition for that lovely new teacher was tough in those days!)

Carl’s parents Ralph and Gwen circa 1947

1948 Ralph and his brother Orville purchased the home quarter from Oscar & Josephine, and Oscar and Josie retired to a life of hunting and fishing.  Somehow, we think that might have been more Oscar’s dream than Josie’s!

Oscar and daughter-in-law, Gwen (with a bear and a deer) in front of the original farm house on the Peterson farm.

In 1954, Ralph purchased Orville’s interest in the “home quarter.” He and Gwen, continued to live and farm this land for the next 30 years, having two children, Carl and Connie.

1954-1981: Ralph built a cattle feedlot. During these years crops included wheat, barley, flax, and in the ’70s, sunflowers and later soybeans.

The Peterson family farm where Peterson Farms Seed is headquartered today.

1981: Carl and Julie meet while students at Iowa State. Julie moves from Iowa and they marry and move to the farm.

Carl & Julie Peterson in 1981

2004: Carl & Julie purchased the farmstead, where they had built the infrastructure for Peterson Farms Seed. When asked if he has lived on the farm his whole life, Carl answers “Not Yet!”

TODAY: Harvested the 100th crop on the land that all started with a really long walk!

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