They learned a common language, though the English was spoken with a dozen different accents. They celebrated together at weddings and mourned together at funerals. They traded skills they had for skills others had.

The young man was a trained carpenter. When neighbors got together to build a house or a barn he knew what materials were needed, how to build a foundation square and straight. Everyone contributed one way or another. Those who didn’t know how to make rafters at least knew how to drive a nail—and if not, they carried lumber and nails for those who did.

The young couple kept their growing family fed almost exclusively with produce they raised, fish caught in a nearby lake, and small game and birds taken with the little .22 rifle. They made bread from flour ground from wheat they had grown.

Twenty years later they had acquired considerably more land, built a large barn and a big modern house, and were making a good living from grain and livestock. Not to mention the wife had given birth to nine children and buried two of them.