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 Leonard Peter Backes

Leonard Peter Backes

Farming, Stearns County, Minnesota, USA
Death 12 Sep 1977 (aged 79)
Glenburn, Renville County, North Dakota, USA
Burial Glenburn, Renville County, North Dakota, USA
Plot Backes Family plot
Memorial ID 13266094 · View Source
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Leonard Peter Backes was born July 3, 1898 near Farming, Minnesota, the oldest of eight children born to John and Gertrude (Willenbring) Backes. At the age of four, he moved to North Dakota with his parents. His family homesteaded in Muskego Township, Renville County, on a farm two miles northeast of what is now Lake Darling Dam.

His boyhood was spent on his parents farm where he worked in the fields and acquired his lifelong interest in agriculture. He received his formal education in a one room schoolhouse, the Barney Google School, located near the family farm.

He married Irene Keller, a neighbor girl, on November 25, 1924 at St. Henry's Catholic Church, near their home. In the spring of 1925, Leonard and Irene moved to a farm in Ensign Township, Renville County, located four miles northwest of Glenburn, ND. On this farm, Leonard and Irene raised a family of six children, Richard, Estelle, Merle, Harold, Orlin and Roger. Two of these children died in the service of their country. Lt. Harold Backes, died in 1955 in a Naval jet crash and Lt. Commander Merle "Bud" Backes died in 1965 while ejecting from his stricken Naval jet.

During the more than twenty years he was actively engaged in farming in Ensign Township, he was interested in the use of modern methods to conserve farmland, the development and use of more efficient types of farm machinery. He was one of the first farmers in the area in 1928 to harvest his crops by use of a swather and combine.

In 1944 he became interested in the idea of freezing to preserve food and produce. During 1945 he built a locker plant in Glenburn and in 1946 started the operation of a grocery store in conjunction with the locker plant.

Once in business, he became active in civic affairs and turned his ideas toward helping Renville County and the town of Glenburn to prosper. He was elected County Commissioner of Renville County for four years. He was also elected to the Glenburn City Council and later elected mayor. In 1963 he retired from active management of the Backes Food Market and Locker Plant.

He was a member of St. Philomena's Catholic Church and was instrumental in the construction of the church building. He was a life member and Hall of Fame recipient of the Renville-Bottineau Agricultural Improvement Association. He was also a charter member of the Glenburn Lions Club and also held memberships in the Minot Eagles Club, the Minot Knights of Columbus and the Glenburn Senior Citizens.

He died the morning of September 12, 1977, in his front yard, checking on the weather.

He is survived by his wife; daughter, Estelle Hohman; sons Richard, Orlin and Roger; 16 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren; sister, Sister Helen Backes; brother, Alfonse.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two sons, Harold and Merle; one sister, Sister Rose Gertrude; four brothers, Arnold, Norbert, George and Joseph.

  • Maintained by: Brian Backes
  • Originally Created by: Herb Schwede
  • Added: 7 Feb 2006
  • Find A Grave Memorial 13266094
  • Brian Backes
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Leonard Peter Backes (3 Jul 1898–12 Sep 1977), Find A Grave Memorial no. 13266094, citing Saint Philomena Catholic Cemetery, Glenburn, Renville County, North Dakota, USA ; Maintained by Brian Backes (contributor 47148484) .