century celebration for the Gilles farm

My Dad’s parents bought their farm in Cadott Wisconsin back in 1916, and it’s stayed in the family since. The generations of Joe’s in the Gilles family have kept it going all these years. My cousin Joe and wife Jane originally planned a century farm celebration for August 2017 but was postponed to this year while Joe’s sister overcame serious complications during her cancer treatments. We’re thrilled we have even more to celebrate with her miraculous recovery this year.

We usually get to see the local cousins that live near the farm when we visit and sometimes we manage to see a few of the other out of state family if they came up while combining vacation with holidays like we do to extend time. But this farm celebration has brought family in from all parts of the state and across the country. I have not seen several cousins since I was a kid in the 1960’s! It’s been great to catch up with those I have not already connected on Facebook yet and I’m looking forward to staying in contact now that we’ve connected there. Meeting up with everyone has just made me more certain I want to travel either full time or for extended periods once I retire. For now of course we are limited to 2 week vacations.

Originally the couple buying our home were hoping to close while we were here in Wisconsin but luckily we found out their loan company has slowed it way down giving us more time for inspections and negotiating repairs from afar. The closing will wait until sometime after we get home following Labor Day. Our realtor is one of the neighbors in our cul de sac and she is letting the repair people in, what a relief! The inspection revealed some unexpected house plumbing and pool equipment repairs and the basement air conditioner needed to be recharged to resolve a temperature differential. It always cooled the basement so quickly that we only had the units on the main floor and upstairs serviced (yes, 3 AC units).

But back to the farm celebration… We had so much fun despite the house sale interrupting festivities and family visits from time to time. The pictures below will probably be boring if you didn’t grow up coming to the farm so I’m apologizing to those of you outside the family up front! We have several other side trips planned so this post is only about the farm celebration and some old farm photos I collected before the trip to share at the party.

Aerial view of the Joseph & Bernice Gilles Farm, the next photo is looking at the farmhouse from the pond off the left edge of this photo.
Looking east toward the house, barn and machine sheds.
My Grandparents Bernice & Joe celebrating their 40th Anniversary
The school house where Bernice taught school at the time she met Joe. The schoolhouse is just a few hundred yards from the farm they bought and now being used by a neighbor to store hay.
Machine Shed constructed on the farm in August 1953
Later photo midway through construction
One of many early celebrations on the Gilles Farm…
At the Century Celebration
Shucking corn for the big feast
Nothing brings family together better than preparing a meal…
Some of the same crowd from a couple years back before they had their own kids…
Motley crew
Dave, Dad, Mike (a current member of the Elks), Mom & I (a few years before Jeff came along)
Me, Alice, Mike & Michelle a few years later at the Century Celebration. Wish Dad, Mom, Dave and Jeff could have been with us to enjoy it.
Cousins performing in the band as well as others dancing…
My dad’s brother Howard on the first brand new tractor for the farm…
The same tractor is still in use on the farm!
Dad on one of the infamous rock piles the Gilles Siblings dreaded adding to each spring before planting could begin. A few years ago the county bought them to re-pave the highway.
Alice created this collage/shadow box for everyone to sign, hopefully this will last and share at a later celebration!



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