NOTES FROM READERS:
"My mother, an only child, was
raised on a poor farm. Later known as the Richland County
Farm, it was in Wahpeton, North Dakota. She moved there when she was 5,
in 1921. Her mother died there in 1936, and her father, some time later,
retired to an old folks home in Devils Lake, ND, and passed away in
1953.. John Mathiesen and Lena Olson, her parents, were both Norwegian
immigrants who met in Wahpeton. Corine failed first grade, as she
only spoke Norwegian. She later skipped 3rd, 5th, and seventh grades,
and graduated as Miss Wahpeton High School, and was class Valedictorian.
My father, Paul Peterka, captain of the state championship football team, used
to pick her up in a Buick Touring Car, with heated bricks on the floor for
warmth. They married in 1936, shortly after her mother's death.
She and Paul later had 5 children. My mother, Corine, wrote a
short Christmas story about life on the 'county farm' a few years before
her death in 1999, which was given to friends as a holiday greeting."
by her youngest son, Marc Alan Peterka, 2002, Ft. Lauderdale FL
"My Great Grandfather's second
marriage was to Catherine Zech Bader. Catherine was first married to Henry
Bader. Catherine was one of the people interviewed as a part of the WPA
Project in the 1930's. In the interview it states that in 1895 her
husband Mr. Henry Bader was appointed Superintendent of the Richland
County Poor Farm and his wife was appointed Matron. The Farm was located 1
mile south of Wahpeton. The interview even lists some of the first needy
people. I found the interview at
the Chester Fritz Library-Special Collections in Grand Forks, North Dakota."
"My great-grandparents, Henry and Catherine Bader were the
superintendent and matron of the poor farm in Wahpeton, Richland County,
North Dakota around the turn of the century. Henry died accidentally May 1,
1901. According to the newspaper report he was the superintendent for six
years." Sandy Sidler firstname.lastname@example.org
The Poorhouse list can be found in the 1900 census;
North Dakota, Cass county, Fargo township, Cass County Hospital and
Poor House; ED 22; sheet No 3, supervisor district 199.