Barnum - In 1894 A.W. and Lou Ella Hiveley made their way to Webster County to settle on an 80-acre farm they acquired for $28.13 an acre.
Originally from Pendleton, W.V., the couple had moved to Leroy, Ill., before eventually making their way to Iowa where they reared eight boys on their farm.
Gene and Pauline Ruebel are the third generation of Pauline's family to own the Century Farm. They are both proud to each have Century Farms on both sides of their family and to have their son, Tim Ruebel, the fourth generation to be farming them.
-Messenger photo by Kriss Nelson
Gene and Pauline Ruebel take a moment to look over some archived family history in their kitchen near Barnum in Webster County.
"It's very special to me, to remember all the stories and things growing up. I think about those times a lot," said Pauline Ruebel.
The youngest of A.W. Hiveley's eight sons was Paul Hiveley, who was Pauline's father. After A.W. died, Paul Hiveley stayed on the farm to help his mother in order to save their family farm.
When Paul Hiveley married his wife Eva, they lived with his mother for several years and eventually purchased the farm in 1950 when Lou Ella died. Pauline Ruebel was 10 at the time.
Hively Century Farm
Gene and Pauline Ruebel inherited the land in 2009.
The acreage, which is no longer in Pauline's family, was built up throughout the years. She said one of the most unusual buildings on the farm was the Evanston Methodist Church that was moved onto the farm as a barn after the church closed in 1933.
Pauline Ruebel recalls chickens were housed in the upper floor of the former church, while Duroc hogs were housed on the lower level. Livestock sales were frequently held in the building, she said.
Ruebel said her parents milked cows and remembers, as a youngster, being placed in a box if she was to go to the barn with her folks to keep her safe from the cattle.
Ruebel said her grandmother always had a large garden.
"Grandma was a gardener. We all helped her with it, but it was mostly Grandma's work. She had a big strawberry and rhubarb patch," Ruebel said.
While Lou Ella Hiveley was an excellent gardener, Ruebel said, Eva Hiveley was skilled when it comes to the chickens.
"She was superior at cleaning chickens and was the best at making pan-fried chicken," Ruebel said.
After her parents bought the farm in 1950, they remodeled the home by adding a basement and made it more modern with indoor plumbing and other features and eventually added a garage and a shop.
The house, in which many children in the Hiveley family were reared, eventually burned down.
The family farm featured an old cave. Ruebel has many memories of salamanders that used to call it home.
Ruebel had three sisters and a brother. Three of her siblings were born there.
"I can remember being quarantined to the house when my sister came down with scarlet fever," Ruebel said.
All of the children had their chores to do around the farm.
"It was just a lot of hard work," said Ruebel.
Ruebel said some of her most fond memories growing up was attending country school, just a mile and a quarter from the farm.
It was a large social part of her life, she said. She keeps in touch with classmates and families that attended the school.
Gene and Pauline Ruebel said they hope both Century Farms continue to stay in the family, but that will be up to their sons Tim and Gary and their daughter Karen Lawler.
The Ruebels received their Century Farm award on a rainy day at the Iowa State Fair on Aug. 17, 2010.
Contact Kriss Nelson at email@example.com.