After finding today’s story, I have to ask, “Have there been such a thing as Palisch Potatoes?” The life story of Richard John Palisch, who was born on March 3, 1891, makes me ask that question. Richard was the son of Theodore Ernst and Josephine (Bruhl) Palisch. I wrote a post especially about Josephine which was titled, Josephine’s Frohna Fellows. Richard was baptized at Concordia Lutheran Church in Frohna. We only have two church records for Richard in our German Family Tree, his baptism record and his confirmation record. I know I could get images of those documents, but we’re having a rather snowy day here in Altenburg, and I just cannot get myself out of my recliner to try to get up to the museum today.
We do find two Perry County census records for Richard. Since his father died in 1896, the 1900 census shows him living in a household headed up by his mother, Josephine, who was a widow.
The 1910 census shows Richard listed as a step-son in the Hilpert family.
It can be concluded that after this 1910 census was taken, Richard must have moved to the Sylvan Grove, Kansas area. He was not there long, because the next record I could find for Richard was his World War I draft registration which was filled out in 1917. When he filled out that form, he was no longer living in Kansas, but Idaho.
So how do we know that Richard spent some time in Sylvan Grove, Kansas? The answer can be found in two documents I located for Richard’s oldest son, Emerson Palisch. First, here is some information that can be found on Emerson’s World War II draft card.
As you can see, Emerson was born in Sylvan Grove on October 16, 1915. You can also conclude from this the fact that Richard probably was married while he was in Kansas. His wife, by the way, was Grace Mae Johnson (or Johnston), but I could not locate a marriage record for this couple. Another document that confirms that Richard spent time in Kansas is in Emerson’s marriage license.
This document states that Emerson was born in Lincoln, Kansas. Sylvan Grove is located in Lincoln County, Kansas.
The World War I draft registration places Richard, Grace, and Emerson in Twin Falls County in Idaho where Richard was a farmer. The 1920 census places him near the city of Buhl, Idaho.
Richard was described as a farmer in that census. We also discover on this entry that Grace had a father of Swedish descent.
This has nothing to do with the Palisch family, but something caught my eye in the Buhl, Idaho 1920 census. A person right above the Palisch household had the occupation shown in the image below.
Not only was someone a driver of a school wagon, but it was an 18 year old girl. Anyone have an idea about what a school wagon might have looked like?
I will skip to the 1940 census where we still find Richard in the same location and still working a farm.
We see here that there were two more girls born into this family in Idaho. In the census forms I looked at from this location in Idaho, there were a lot of farmers living near the Palisch household, but I also found some reference to people involved with potatoes. We know how famous Idaho is for growing potatoes. Although I did not find any specific evidence of Richard growing potatoes, it does make me wonder if that was the case.
The last census says that the Palisch family lived 2 1/2 miles south of Buhl. The map below shows what that area looks like now from a satellite. There is evidence of quite a bit of irrigation that goes on there now.
I also found a little evidence that Richard made contributions to some agricultural research that went on in Idaho.
Richard died in 1970; Grace died in 1986. They are buried together in the Sunset Memorial Park in Twin Falls, Idaho.
I cannot resist putting together an alliteration for this story. Could this be a story of Perry’s Palisch Potato Producers? There certainly is that possibility.