In a Pickle: A Family Farm Story

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Terrace Books, Sep 1, 2007 - Fiction - 256 pages
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The year is 1955. Andy Meyer, a young farmer, manages the pickle factory in Link Lake, a rural town where the farms are small, the conversation is meandering, and the feeling is distinctly Midwestern. Workers sort, weigh, and dump cucumbers into huge vats where the pickles cure, providing a livelihood to local farmers. But the H. H. Harlow Pickle Company has appeared in town, using heavy-handed tactics to force family farmers to either farm the Harlow way or lose their biggest customer—and, possibly, their land. Andy, himself the owner of a half-acre pickle patch, works part-time for the Harlow Company, a conflict that places him between the family farm and the big corporation. As he sees how Harlow begins to change the rural community and the lives of its people, Andy must make personal, ethical, and life-changing decisions. Best Books for General Audiences, selected by the American Association of School Librarians, and Outstanding Book, selected by the Public Library Association
 

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Contents

Pickle Patch
3
Birthday Party
13
Pickle Factory
22
First Cukes
32
Grist Mill
37
Pickle Factory Crew
42
Isaac and Jake
48
Migrant Pickers
54
Love among the Pickle Vats
141
Missing Workers
147
Breaking News
157
Auction
163
Jake Stewart
171
Closing Down
178
What Next?
185
The Family Farm
190

Unloading
64
Long Days
69
Pickle Days
75
Cucumbers Keep Coming
90
School Closing
97
Salt Bin
105
George Roberts
113
Ames County Fair
119
Disaster
130
Decision Time
199
Another Mystery
205
Remembering Jake
212
Funeral
217
H H Harlow
224
Mystery Solved
228
Barn Dance
235
Authors Note
246
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Jerry Apps, born and raised on a Wisconsin farm, is professor emeritus at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and the author of more than fifteen books, many of them on rural history and country life. His nonfiction books include Every Farm Tells a Story, Country Wisdom, When Chores Were Done, Humor from the Country, Country Ways and Country Days, One-Room Country Schools, Cheese, Breweries of Wisconsin,and Ringlingville USA. He is also the author of the historical novel The Travels of Increase Joseph. He received the 2007 Major Achievement Award from the Council for Wisconsin Writers.