It's a sad sight to see how the corn has burned up in Newton County. Russell and I  just returned from a trip to North Dakota and drove U.S. 71 and Interstate 29 all the way there. Everywhere else the corn was beautiful. It was bright green and absolutely lush a little further north and all through Missouri, Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota and Minnesota. It broke my heart to see the difference.


It's a sad sight to see how the corn has burned up in Newton County. Russell and I  just returned from a trip to North Dakota and drove U.S. 71 and Interstate 29 all the way there. Everywhere else the corn was beautiful. It was bright green and absolutely lush a little further north and all through Missouri, Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota and Minnesota. It broke my heart to see the difference.

Otherwise we had a great trip. We saw some interesting things, did some fun things and enjoyed the relatives very much.
My brother-in-law took us out to a farmstead that belongs to a friend. The guy has a beautiful farm and some big magnificent outbuildings. But, mixed in amongst the big new building, are some old farm buildings. The man is going to tear them down, so we got to look inside. It was a trip into the past. Some great artifacts are left.

But the real reason we went was to see one of the buildings that he has offered to my brother-in-law. It was the supply house for Fort Abercrombie, which is located about a mile away. The old fort is now a state historic site. But this building was moved at some time and used on the farm. It has been altered some as well.

The owner offered it to the state, but they didn't want it because it would have to be moved and has been altered. So, he will probably just tear it down. The siding is rough, hand-sawn oak and there are bars over the windows.

While we were there, we drove over to see Fort Abercrombie. It is a neat old fort and the state of North Dakota keeps it up very nicely. There are two old blockhouses and a stockade that were rebuilt by the WPA in 1939-40. Also, at that time, the original military guardhouse was returned to the property. The fort was besieged by Dakota (Sioux) warriors during the Dakota Conflict in 1862. It was manned by volunteers during that time, to protect area settlers who sought shelter there. The regular soldiers were away fighting in the Civil War.

The fort has quite a history. It served during the fur trade, protected military wagon trains, guarded the steamboats on the Red River of the North and served as a base for the gold rush in the Dakotas.

We also took a boat ride on the Red River on Sunday afternoon. And we went to Pipestone, Minn., on the way home to buy some pipestone and to have a quick gathering with some relatives in Southwest Minnesota.

We had a very nice visit, but are glad to be home in spite of the heat and drought.

Kay Hively writes a weekly column for the Daily News.