100 years in the same fields

Lisa Ingebrand

The Donald and Kathi Janovsky farm in rural Montgomery has been recognized as a Rice County 2018 Century Farm. 


“I’m sure my Grandpa John, who purchased the first acreage here, would be pretty proud, he probably never anticipated this when he bought the place 100 years ago,” stated Donald, who represents the third generation to farm the land. 


Donald’s grandfather, John Janovsky, purchased the first 80 acres of the farm from Thomas Carroll in the fall of 1918 for $138.75 per acre. 


“He (John) and his wife, Christina, and my dad, Stanley, who was still pretty young, moved here from Elysian with a team of horses and a wagon,” Donald stated, looking out over the vast green fields surrounding his home. “This house wasn’t built at the time. They lived in the old house with the Carrolls for awhile. Then, the Carrolls moved.”  


The Janovskys worked the fertile fields and raised dairy cows, hogs, and chickens, and in 1921, the family erected a large barn. The following year, they built a house with one bathroom and a wood-burning furnace. 


Young Stanley attended Country School District 68 where he completed all eight grades.


A few years later, Stanley met Regina Chlan of New Prague at a wedding. 


“Both of them stood up for the wedding, and that’s how they met,” Donald shared with a laugh. “Then, they married in January 1938.” 


The newlyweds soon took over the operations of the Janovsky family farm and the older generation moved into town. 


Stanley and Regina were blessed with two children, Delores (Balfe) and Donald. 


See more in the print edition.


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