Al Friesen started custom harvesting in 1946. As he was new into the business, he didn't yet have a sleeping trailer. The crew ate and slept in the back of the truck bed. In 1951, he purchased a trailer house to use as a kitchen and a bunk house for all the guys. He had a crew of nine men and two cooks. Each year between May 15 and 20 the crew started out for Seymour or Vernon, Texas to harvest wheat.
A few years later, the work began in Chattanooga, OK and followed a northerly path to Enid, OK; Meade, KS; Imperial, NE; Big Sandy, MT; Joplin, MT; finishing at Sunburst, MT in early October. Fall crops would be ready for harvest back home in Meade. Equipment has improved over the years. For example, when Al started out, combines had to dump directly onto the trucks which held 180 to 200 bushels. These trucks didn't have hoist to make for easy dumping. Today, our semi holds up to 1000 bushes and is equipped with hydraulics.
A pull-type Massey Ferguson combine with a 14-foot header was the harvesting implement. It cut fields sized from 60 to 160 acres. Crops harvested were wheat, milo, barley, flax, mustard, corn, rape (canola), oats, bird seed, durum and spring wheat.