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surplus was either ground in their own grist mills or shipped the 30-50 miles to Emerson by horse and wagon. By 1881 with wheat prices as high as $1.00 a bushel, farmers were selling large quantities of grain with 200-300 loads of grain shipped to Emerson on some days." This shift to commercial grain farming was facilitated not only by increasing acreages and good crop years, but also by the introduction of new technology which the Mennonites quickly utilized. Threshing ma­ chines were being used by Mennonites as early as 1878, by 1879 reapers and mowers were common and by 1882 many Mennonite farmers were buying seeders and self binders. 43

This increase in agricultural production took place inspite of numerous setbacks. Hail damaged the crops of eight villages in 1882 cutting yields by one third and frost and rust also plagued farmers that year." Early frosts during the first years of the 1880's caused many farmers to switch from Russian wheat to English wheat, Red Fife, which matured earlier and for which higher prices were being paid.

Table 4
Number of Bushels Harvested from 1881 Crop at Rosenort
Acres
Culti- Po- 'fur-
Villagers vated Wheat Rye Barley Oats Flax tatoes nips Beans
Heinrich Braun 54 415 100 234 25 100 20 1j2
Cornelius Thiessen 39 312 140 220 25 15 30
John Ens 39 270 92 224 100 70
Abraham Friesen 30 222 100 176 25 20
Jacob Dyck
Jacob Giesbrecht 50 390 80 200 30 120 10 1
Abraham Peters 60 537 12 115 295 70 60 15 1j2
Jacob Neufeld 19 150 100 70 10 20 5 1j2
Isaac Friesen 36 150 70 200 30 8
John Neufeld 14 100 10 8
Abram Thiessen 15 217 100 30 30 5 1j2
Peter Friesen 65 628 148 348 50 100 50 1
Peter Krahn 50 500 80 200 50 60
Aron Peters 65 445 20 100 230 175 50 20
Heinrich Martens 65 350 100 285 175 40
Abraham Friesen 30 225 15 80 100 60 25 5 1j2
Wilhelm Thiessen 50 400 120 200 50 30
Jacob Wall 42 253 86 10
Peter Ham 60 475 100 110 100 60 20 1j2
Cornelius Thiessen 33 280 IS 122 200 140 40 2
Despite these setbacks production increased, especially after 1882
when the railway crossed the reserve. By 1883 an elevator had been
erected in the growing market town of Gretna on the southern boundary
41