A threshing stone is a roller-like tool used for the threshing of wheat. Similar to the use of threshing boards, the stone was pulled by horses over a circular pile of harvested wheat on a hardened dirt surface (threshing floor), and the rolling stone knocked the grain from the head of wheat. The straw was removed from the pile and the remaining grain and chaff was collected. By a process called winnowing, the grain was tossed into the air to allow the chaff and dirt to be blown away, leaving only the grain.
The roller is an agricultural tool used for flattening land or breaking up large clumps of soil, especially after ploughing or disc harrowing. Typically, rollers are pulled by tractors or, prior to mechanisation, a team of animals such as horses or oxen. As well as for agricultural purposes, rollers are used on cricket pitches and residential lawn areas.
Threshing is the process of loosening the edible part of grain from the chaff to which it is attached. It is the step in grain preparation after reaping. Threshing does not remove the bran from the grain.
Wheat is a grass widely cultivated for its seed, a cereal grain which is a worldwide staple food. The many species of wheat together make up the genus Triticum; the most widely grown is common wheat.
Evidence of the use of threshing stones in various forms date from the Roman era, but eventually it became the method of threshing grain by the Molotschna Mennonite farmers in the Ukraine from about 1840 to 1900. The threshing stone became the preferred method used to knock the grain from the head because it was less labor-intensive than the use of the traditional threshing flail.
In historiography, ancient Rome is Roman civilization from the founding of the Italian city of Rome in the 8th century BC to the collapse of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD, encompassing the Roman Kingdom, Roman Republic and Roman Empire until the fall of the western empire. The civilization began as an Italic settlement in the Italian Peninsula, conventionally founded in 753 BC, that grew into the city of Rome and which subsequently gave its name to the empire over which it ruled and to the widespread civilisation the empire developed. The Roman Empire expanded to become one of the largest empires in the ancient world, though still ruled from the city, with an estimated 50 to 90 million inhabitants ) and covering 5.0 million square kilometres at its height in AD 117.
Molotschna Colony or Molochna Colony was a Russian Mennonite settlement in what is now Zaporizhia Oblast in Ukraine. Today the central village is called Molochansk and it has a population of under 10,000. The settlement is named after the Molochna River which forms its western boundary. Today the land falls mostly within the Tokmatskyi and Chernihivskyi Raions. The nearest large city is Melitopol to the southwest of Molochansk.
Ukraine, sometimes called the Ukraine, is a country in Eastern Europe. Excluding Crimea, Ukraine has a population of about 42 million, making it the 32nd most populous country in the world. Its capital and largest city is Kiev. Ukrainian is the official language and its alphabet is Cyrillic. The dominant religion in the country is Eastern Orthodoxy. Ukraine is currently in a territorial dispute with Russia over the Crimean Peninsula, which Russia annexed in 2014. Including Crimea, Ukraine has an area of 603,628 km2 (233,062 sq mi), making it the largest country entirely within Europe and the 46th largest country in the world.
In the 1870s, approximately one-third of all Russian Mennonites immigrated to the Great Plains of North America. The immigrants in central Kansas brought the threshing stone technology with them, and contracted stone masons in the Florence, Kansas area to construct stones made of limestone.
The Russian Mennonites are a group of Mennonites who are descendants of Dutch Anabaptists who settled for about 250 years in West Prussia and established colonies in the Russian Empire beginning in 1789. Since the late 19th century, many of them have come to countries throughout the Western Hemisphere. The rest were forcibly relocated, so that very few of their descendants now live at the location of the original colonies. Russian Mennonites are traditionally multilingual with Plautdietsch as their first language and lingua franca. In 2014 there are several hundred thousand Russian Mennonites: about 200,000 in Germany, 100,000 in Mexico, 70,000 in Bolivia, 40,000 in Paraguay, 10,000 in Belize and tens of thousands in Canada and the US and a few thousand in Argentina, Uruguay, Belize, and Brazil.
The Great Plains is a broad expanse of flat land, much of it covered in prairie, steppe, and grassland, located in America and Canada. It lies west of the Mississippi River tallgrass prairie in the United States and east of the Rocky Mountains in the U.S. and Canada. It embraces:
Kansas is a U.S. state in the Midwestern United States. Its capital is Topeka and its largest city is Wichita, with its most populated county being Johnson County. Kansas is bordered by Nebraska on the north; Missouri on the east; Oklahoma on the south; and Colorado on the west. Kansas is named after the Kansas River, which in turn was named after the Kansa Native Americans who lived along its banks. The tribe's name is often said to mean "people of the (south) wind" although this was probably not the term's original meaning. For thousands of years, what is now Kansas was home to numerous and diverse Native American tribes. Tribes in the eastern part of the state generally lived in villages along the river valleys. Tribes in the western part of the state were semi-nomadic and hunted large herds of bison.
The use of threshing stones quickly faded as they were superseded by mechanized forms of threshing, especially by threshing machines, and eventually all farmers quit using them by around 1900 to 1905.
A threshing machine or a thresher is a piece of farm equipment that threshes grain, that is, it removes the seeds from the stalks and husks. It does so by beating the plant to make the seeds fall out.
The threshing stone is a cylindrical stone with teeth carved into it. Stones made in Kansas were approximately 29 to 30 inches long, 23 to 24 inches in diameter, with 7 notches (and rarely 8) resembling gear teeth, made of limestone, and 600 to 800 pounds in weight.Some smaller stones may weigh less than 400 pounds.
A gear or cogwheel is a rotating machine part having cut teeth or, in the case of a cogwheel, inserted teeth, which mesh with another toothed part to transmit torque. Geared devices can change the speed, torque, and direction of a power source. Gears almost always produce a change in torque, creating a mechanical advantage, through their gear ratio, and thus may be considered a simple machine. The teeth on the two meshing gears all have the same shape. Two or more meshing gears, working in a sequence, are called a gear train or a transmission. A gear can mesh with a linear toothed part, called a rack, producing translation instead of rotation.
Limestone is a carbonate sedimentary rock that is often composed of the skeletal fragments of marine organisms such as coral, foraminifera, and molluscs. Its major materials are the minerals calcite and aragonite, which are different crystal forms of calcium carbonate (CaCO3). A closely related rock is dolomite, which contains a high percentage of the mineral dolomite, CaMg(CO3)2. In old USGS publications, dolomite was referred to as magnesian limestone, a term now reserved for magnesium-deficient dolomites or magnesium-rich limestones.
In 2011, over 90 threshing stones have been located. Numerous stones in Kansas are located at private residences as family historic artifacts.The following is a list of locations where threshing stones may be viewed by the public.
The Thresher is the official mascot of Bethel College in North Newton, Kansas and named after the threshing stone.
McPherson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 29,180. The largest city and county seat is McPherson. The county is named for Civil War General James B. McPherson.
Marion County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 12,660. The county seat is Marion. The county was named in honor of Francis Marion, a Brigadier General of the American Revolutionary War, known as the "Swamp Fox".
Harvey County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kansas. As of the 2010 census, the county population was 34,684. Its county seat and most populous city is Newton.
Halstead is a city in Harvey County, Kansas, United States. Halstead was named in honor of Murat Halstead, a respected Civil War correspondent and newspaper editor. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 2,085.
North Newton is a city in Harvey County, Kansas, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 1,759. The city of Newton is located immediately south, existing as a separate political entity. North Newton is home of Bethel College.
Goessel is a city in Marion County, Kansas, United States. It was named after Captain Kurt von Goessel (1852–1895) who went down with his ship, the Elbe, in the English Channel after it was rammed. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 539.
Hillsboro is a city in Marion County, Kansas, United States. Hillsboro was named after John Gillespie Hill, who homesteaded in the area in 1871. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 2,993. Hillsboro is home of Tabor College, which had 766 students enrolled in Fall 2014.
Inman is a city in McPherson County, Kansas, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 1,377.
Buhler is a city in Reno County, Kansas, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 1,327.
Chaff is the dry, scaly protective casings of the seeds of cereal grain, or similar fine, dry, scaly plant material such as scaly parts of flowers, or finely chopped straw. Chaff is indigestible by humans, but livestock can eat it and in agriculture it is used as livestock fodder, or is a waste material ploughed into the soil or burned.
Martyrs Mirror or The Bloody Theater, first published in Holland in 1660 in Dutch by Thieleman J. van Braght, documents the stories and testimonies of Christian martyrs, especially Anabaptists. The full title of the book is The Bloody Theater or Martyrs Mirror of the Defenseless Christians who baptized only upon confession of faith, and who suffered and died for the testimony of Jesus, their Saviour, from the time of Christ to the year A.D. 1660. The use of the word defenseless in this case refers to the Anabaptist belief in non-resistance. The book includes accounts of the martyrdom of the apostles and the stories of martyrs from previous centuries with beliefs similar to the Anabaptists.
Bethel College is a four-year private Christian liberal arts college in North Newton, Kansas, United States. It is affiliated with the Mennonite Church USA.
The Alexanderwohl Mennonite Church of Goessel, Kansas, is a congregation affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. The congregation has a continuous history dating from 16th-century Europe.
The Schowalter Foundation is a Kansas-based Mennonite philanthropic foundation formed in 1954 from the estate of Jacob A. Schowalter of Newton, Kansas.
Jacob Abraham Schowalter was a Kansas farmer, business owner and Mennonite philanthropist whose estate formed the basis of the Schowalter Foundation.
The Warkentin House is a house in Newton, Kansas, United States. The home of Bernhard Warkentin and Wilhelmina Eisenmayer Warkentin, it was built between 1886 and 1887. It is listed on the Kansas Register of Historic Places and National Register of Historic Places as a splendid example of the Victorian period in American architecture and furnishings. The Victorian house offers a glimpse into the way the Warkentins lived, with 80 percent of the original furnishings remaining.
Gnadenau was a communal village of German-speaking Mennonite immigrants from Russia in Marion County, Kansas, United States. It is currently a ghost town that was located approximately 2 miles (3.2 km) southeast of Hillsboro. No buildings remain at this former community site. The Gnadenau Cemetery still exists.
Jacob Gerhard Ewert, also known as J. G. Evert, was a Mennonite socialist and pacifist from Hillsboro, Kansas. From 1909 he was editor of the German-language newspaper Hillsboro Journal, later renamed Vorwärts. Ewert wrote books and pamphlets on socialism, on temperance, and on warfare. The historian Duane Sotltzfus described Ewert as a "tireless advocate for conscientious objectors, writing articles and counseling many draftees" when writing for Vorwärts. The Newton, Kansas, newspaper Der Herold, edited by H. P. Krehbiel, challenged his published support of socialist agendas.
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