Your Farmer Ancestors: Threshing in South Dakota

By Maureen A. Taylor

There are a lot of comments on my posting on the threshing photos I saw last month at Jamboree. I learned a lot about the threshing process. Thank you!

Sharon Pike sent in another picture of threshing wheat. It’s of her family in South Dakota.

Pike farming SDedit.jpg

Being from the East Coast, I’m not used to seeing such a vast expanse of land. It’s so beautiful. The large haystack at the horizon draws your eye from the workers in the foreground to where the sky meets the field.

On the back of Sharon’s photo is a note that states that Will Pike is in back of the “header.” She’s not sure which part of the machinery is the header. Can someone help out and comment below?

Will’s full name was James William Pike (1887-1931), son of James S. Pike and his wife Hattie Weed. Will traveled around with a crew that harvested wheat. He lived in Brookings, SD, and later settled in Wisconsin.

Happy Fourth of July this week! I’ve created a couple of short films on my Vimeo channel to honor the occasion: One is a colorized engraving depicting a veteran in uniform and the other showcases flags in photographs. I hope you enjoy them!

Solve your family photo mysteries with these books by Maureen A. Taylor:

  • Fashionable Folks: Bonnets and Hats 1840-1900
  • Preserving Your Family Photographs
  • Fashionable Folks: Hairstyles 1840-1900
  • Finding the Civil War in Your Family Album