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Sunday October 26, 2014
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Life in New Swabia

 

continued

According to Esther Landwehr, "The main thing they appreciated was the freedom of the United States, being able to do what they wanted to do when they wanted to do it."

Ray Schairer, born in 1922, had a dairy farm along Jackson Road west of Ann Arbor. He didn't mind the routine chores, including milking the herd twice daily. With only twenty or thirty cows, he knew his animals well: "They all had different temperaments, and they became part of you. They were nice. I'd lean against the fence, and a cow would come up and lick my face."

Schairer loved being "on the tractor, out in nature, the birds singing, wind blowing through my hair, and nobody out there but me and the Lord. We'd have lots of conversations." Like his independent-minded ancestors, he appreciated "being your own boss. I wasn't beholden to anyone. If I made a mistake, nobody would complain."

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