Part of the fun of this blog are the surprises, recently an e-mail from Tom Hallingstad of Burlington, Wisconsin. How did he find us? Well, let’s hear it directly from him.
“I stumbled onto the Borreson Cousins blog while researching some of my family and noticed the baseball articles that mentioned the names of my uncle Adolf and dad Milton Hallingstad. Their farm was just around the bend and up the hill from the Borreson farm. I recall stories about the Borreson boys, baseball, and ski jumping. My dad [Milton], being one of the oldest of the gang, claimed to be the ring leader, organizing and transporting the baseball team to games and ski jumps.”
I went back to one of my baseball postings (“More Borreson Baseball”) and noticed that the Fitch Coulee was a real family affair: one box score listed three families – Borresons, Hallingstads, and Stendahls – each with three players in the lineup! Wow!
Tom relates that Bennie was mentioned quite often in the stories he heard, but of course not the only one. I discovered that one reason probably was that Tom’s father Milton and Bennie were the same age. At least that’s what I learned from a 1930 US Federal Census. On a page I had made copied, the Andrew Hallingstad family is listed immediately above the Emil Borreson family. The reason for this is that the census worker likely moved from neighbor to neighbor.
“About 15 or 20 years ago,” Tom writes, he “visited the coulees again and found a Borreson planting tobacco.” [He and I are thinking this was probably Odell.] ” He said he had bought my grandfather’s farm and we drove up to take a look. He went into a shed and then came back and handed him a stencil with his grandfather’s initials…. It brought a flood of memories.”
Tom mentions a couple other Fitch Coulee names – Stendahl and Iverson – and especially WW II stories in his family. But relevant to our family history, I noticed he said his dad [Milton Hallingstad], in addition to farming, had a milk route which gave him enough extra money to own a car, “providing transporation to baseball games and the ski jump at Westby.” There’s a fellow after the Borreson heart. Thanks, Tom, for taking time to write.