Messenger- Dec.-2022 THE MAZEPPA JOURNAL, Editor and Publisher: Barbara and Reider Tommeraas Friday- July 1, 1955 “continued”
Farmers Union Formed In Mazeppa Years Ago by Richard Reuter
For some years, farm prices had been falling and some farmers were thinking about a way to re-establish higher farm prices and they realized the need for a good farm organization. After some discussion, they decided the Farmers Union had done a very good job representing the farmers in both St. Paul and Washington, so it was decided to organize in this community on the evening of June 4th, 1954. An organization meeting was held in the community room of the new municipal building with Clint Hess, assistant secretary of the Minnesota Farmers Union presiding at the meeting. That evening, a local was set up and named Mazeppa. Officers elected were Richard Reuter, president, Louis Befort vice-president and Frank Heppelmann secretary-treasurer. There were 20 members in 1954 and now the membership has grown to 85 in the Mazeppa area.
Bright Family Raises Bees for 100 Years May 15, 1819, Acquila H. Bright was born in New York state. His father, a Dutch sailor, brought him some skeps of bees from Holland and gave them to him when came west as a young man. Little did he know he was starting his family in a century-long bee industry. On his westward journey he stopped at Green Bay, Wis., and there married Catherine E. Poole. About 1860 he loaded his wife and family in an ox cart, with the bees in the rear, and moved to the farm where John Roland lived. There he started a water power saw mill and bee supply factory on Trout Brook. Two of his children, William, and Albert F, born Nov. 3, 1857, carried on his business. As nature supplied basswood for honey and material it served a dual purpose in that virgin valley. The business grew and prospered. A station was built on the narrow gauge railroad, near the factory and mill, and was called “Bright’s Station”. In the spring of 1907 the factory was destroyed by fire and never rebuilt. Albert continued with the bees and William moved to Canada. Albert’s sons, Vernon, Verle, Allen, Wilbur and Gordon, continued with the work, although not on such a large scale. In 1939 Allen Bright reorganized “The Bright Apiary,” using modern methods and equipment. In 1950 his daughter, Margery, became interested in bees and has a large apiary at her home. Thus four generations of progress in the apiary field has gone on under the Bright name. Little did Acquila H. Bright, as a young man with his skeps and cracker boxes of bees, on an ox cart realize he was starting a 100 year industry. History of County and Mazeppa Farm Bureau by Daisy Pfeiffer In Wabasha county charter memberships had been sold in Mazeppa township as early as 1917. Fred Busse, Jr., and Will Judd were two of the charter members. For a few years the group remained dormant in the county, but it was revived in the depression years of 1932-33. Cyril Grieve was elected first county president and he was present at the first township organization and election of officers in 1934. C.D. Nelson, county agent, also was present at the meeting held in the old village hall in Mazeppa. George O’Brien was elected president; J.S. wild, vice-president; William Jerry, secretary-treasurer, and Mrs. Gordon Bright home and community chairman. During the first years, Mr. Wild had a big part in getting the new group underway. From the first president, many farmers have held that position. Winfred Larson is the current unit president. Cyril Grieve was the county president for 16 years, and was followed by John ring and Lester Christison who is now in his third year. The Farm Bureau is a Christian organization----not a fraternity, not secret, and non-partisan. It has taken a stand in opposition to communism. Its policy is developed by members in the units, county and state. It is financed by membership dues, which have increased from $2.50 to $10. The Farm Bureau also was instrumental in promoting REA. Along The Side- CENTENNIAL CHIT-CHAT June 17, V.C. Sand and Mrs. Ernest Hoefs appeared on KROC-TV, on the “From Carol’s Desk” program to very capably publicize the centennial.