From manuring to threshing :

at the Fontorbe's in Poudis (Tarn, France), and at the Thuriès in Dupuy (parrish of Couffinal near Revel, Haute Garonne, France).

   In Dupuy, in the 1950ies, Elie Thuriès and Henriette Gantier are loading cow-manure for fertilising the soils. The 'moscal' (muskal) protected the oxes from the flies attack.
 Next step: ploughing. Here illustrated by some neighbours of our Fontorbe-Marty family in La Bourdasse (Poudis). Two pairs of oxes were necessary to draw the Brabant plough.  
   This picture can illustrate the sowing. It was taken in Dupuy around 1942, and sent to Albert-Baptiste Fontorbe (Noélie's brother), who was prisoner of war in the Stalag VIIA. From the right to the left : Noélie Fontorbe and his husband Elie Thuriès, Pelissier (a neighbour), and Yvonne Thuriès.
 The harvest in Poudis, about 1945. The cereals were cut although not totally mature, in order to prevent the grain from falling during the different steps to the threshing. The reaper-binder was drawn by two pairs of oxes and a mare. On the machine, my great grand-father Elie Thuriès, his mother-in-law Jeanne-Angeline Rouquet-Fontorbe is holding a 'agulhada' (a goad), to the right and very bowed with age, Martine Marie Marty-Rouquet (88 or 89 years old; the mother of Jeanne-Angeline Rouquet-Fontorbe), and with the hat, Elie Thuriès' daughter, Yvonne Thuriès.  
   The same week in Poudis, the stack' making. An ingenious arrangement of the sheaves prevented the rain to penetrate into the stack. The safety rules were not well considered; indeed, the two men were smoking...
 In Dupuy, the morning of August the 10th 1963, ready to start the threshing. The straw is now fully mature, the grain will easily separate from it. By comparing the height of the century-old elm or the ladder's, one can figure the dimensions of the stacks!  
   The sheaves were distributed to the top of the threshing machine. There, the sheaves were unbinded, and put in the machine.
  At the exit of the threshing machine, a huge press.  
   In a hurry! All the operations required a numerous labour. At this step, the work is half-done, the last stack being started. At the exit of the ventilator, the shock of chaff is increasing.
 At this step, the last stack was 2/3 finished. At the bottom of the machine, the grain' sacking. In front of the towing, two doble decalitres for the usual measures.  
   Profile summerizing the different operations: the stack, the threshing machine, the press. In the background, the shock of chaff is huge.

All pictures Copyright © 2001-2010 Laurent JM Thuriès.