Mrs. Fred Dittman has worked in high gear all of her life and now that she has time to take it easy, finds it hard to slow down. Mr. Dittman died in 1943 and after struggling for two years trying to operate the farm without enough help, she moved into a small house in Highmore, South Dakota, with her daughter Ruth and son Donald.
“If I could have gotten the help, I would have stayed on the farm. I like the farm much better than loafing in town, but my children insisted upon it,” Mrs. Dittman says. To keep busy, she grows such a large garden now that neighbors suggest she needs a tractor.
Mrs. Dittman was born as Augusta Campf January 22, 1886, in Poland. She completed the equivalent of an eighth grade education under German rule. As a child she was bound out to work for a large estate.
When a young woman, she went to Pennsylvania with her parents where her father worked in a factory. She married Fred Dittman, a factory worker during those years. They then moved to a farm near Melvin, Illinois, and after three years purchased a farm near Alpena, South Dakota, in 1912. They purchased their home farm three miles east of Highmore, South Dakota, in 1919.
In 1927 they built one of the finest farm homes in Hyde County, with electricity, running water, refrigerators and all modern equipment.
Mrs. Dittman is the mother of twelve children. She is a charter member of the Thimble Home Extension club which was organized more than twenty-five years ago. It is one of the oldest, largest and most active clubs in South Dakota. She is also a member of the garden club. She has been a member of the Lutheran Church and the Ladies’ Aid since 1919.
She feels that her Extension work has aided her greatly to “learn to live the American way.” She is grateful for the privilege of being an American citizen. After her childhood in Poland and Germany she feels that living in America is one of her greatest blessings.
Her ambition has always been to make her home an ideal to her family and her friends.