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Henry Hertel

Henry Hertel
Henry Hertel

Eminent Farmer

County: Sully

Henry Hertel was born Nov. 26, 1884 on a dairy farm near Sheboygan, Wisconsin. His father died when he was four years old. When he was twenty-one he operated the home farm for his mother.  Four years later, he married Eleanor Ries.

On March 12, 1913, they came to Sully County and located on the unimproved half-section which is part of their present 1,370 acre farm. 

Throughout the years, Henry has kept a balanced farm—with enough livestock to feed the crops he raises.

When first coming to South Dakota, until 1944, he milked up to twenty-five cows in a concentrated farming unit.  As his acreage increased he emphasized breeding and feeding for beef.

The Hertel orchestra, with Hertel on the guitar and as a tenor vocalist, was a project that helped the family bridge the depression years.

The Hertels had nine children, seven girls and two boys.

For several years he has been growing certified seed for the Seeds Stock Foundation at State College and grows variety and fertilizer test plots in cooperation with State College.

In line with his crop improvement work, he helped organize the county weed district in 1946. He has several fields on which he does contour farming.

He is a charter member and has been county president of the Farm Bureau for many years; and during the last 20 years he has served as president of the local Blaine-Central community Farm Bureau.

A member of the Catholic Church at Blunt, he has been a trustee for many years.

He was a charter member of the Sully County fair association and still is an active member.  For several years he was a 4-H club leader. He was county committeeman for the AAA at the beginning of the program and has been a community committeeman since the program began. He is a director of the Central Loan Association of the Federal Land Bank, and was a member of the extension board.

He also has been on the local school board and was chairman of the board when the township centralized school was established in 1922 and instigated the building of a new central school house.