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Romeo Chaput

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Romeo Chaput

Katie C. Wells (View posts)
Posted: 3 Mar 2006 12:17AM GMT
Classification: Biography
ROMEO CHAPUT
Romeo H. Chaput was born in 1903 in Langdon and has farmed in this area most of his life. He was married to Birdie Campbell of Hannah in 1925. Their daughter Nola married Howard Linser, who for a time was depot agent at Langdon. They had five children. Birdie, Nola and grandson Kurt were killed in an automobile accident near Munich in 1967.

Romeo began his farming operation in the Easby area when he agreed to farm land owned by Mrs Bridges, who lent him $200 to purchase five milk cows. Later Romeo farmed for Fred McLean of Manilla Township. He later acquired land on the north edge of Langdon and some land on Towner County. In 1928, romeo purchased the third combine to be brought into North Dakota. It was made by the Holt Co which later sold out to John Deere. Romeo feels that he introduced power farming into the Langdon area.

He did some custom combining for his neighbors and was the cause of much controversy and speculation. Naturally, many of the folks felt that the combine was not here to stay. They found many faults with its performance, and, of course, many changes did take place in this machine before it was accepted by all farmers.Romeo became quite proficient with the combine's operation.

In 1928 he built a small house on the back of a truck and he and Birdie left for California. This was probably one of the first motor homes. He attended a service training school offered by Holt Machine Co and learned he was destined to be sent to Russia to train the Russians in the operation and maintenance of the Holt combine. He was advised not to accept this assignment by a serviceman friend who had been to Russia. The Chaputs left this area and moved to Long Beach, CA, where Romeo worked building docks for ships and smaller vessels.

Later the Chaputs retured to Langdon where Romeo continued his farming operations. During the years 1949 - 1951 he engaged in the Air Ambulance business. He also did crop spraying for several years. In 1947 a severe windstorm destroyed four of Mr Chaput's airplanes and his hangar. Several other planes belonging to other Langdon people and a Grand Forks man were damaged or destroyed. His planes were not insured, and his hangar was insured for only one-half its value. Not one to give up easily, he immediately ordered another airplane and continued his services. Romeo purchased a motorsleigh capable of hauling 18 passengers fra a Canadian firm. His services with this machine were in demand by the telephone company and also REA. Later he sold the motorseligh to the REA. Called the Bombardier, it was used extensively by electric crews for repair work. Romeo took many of his friends and acquaintances on hunting and fishing trips in Canada and the U.S. and his fondest memories center around some of the trips made to northern Canada to hunt caribou. Sometimes they hunted coyotes and timber wolves. He has the hide of a ;arge timber wolf in his collection. He was an avid hunter of elk, deer, geese and ducks and a fisherman.

Romeo and his second wife, Agnes Fugere of Fargo, have made trips to Spain and the Holy Land. They live in Langdon and are members of St. Alphonsus. --recorded 6/85

PHOTOGRAPH: Laura, Alcid, Julieth, Ed, Delia, Ralph, Venance, Bertha, Romeo, Odiana - year: 1937

fra the Langdon ND Centennial Edition 1888 - 1988 page 252

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