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Honeybees

 
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roger.pape
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Joined: 17 Mar 2009
Posts: 386
Location: Liverpool, NY

PostPosted: Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:20 pm    Post subject: Honeybees Reply with quote

It’s somewhat alarming to read reports of the mysterious decline in the honeybee population around the U. S. My grandfather Jacob Pape had a large number of bee hives on his farm. So I was quite accustomed to being around them, including a number of bee stings from being a little too curious. In late fall, I would watch as Grandpa and Dad would smoke the bee hives and extract the frames to harvest the honey. The bees provided an abundant supply of honey and wax, as well as pollination of the fruit trees. Orchard owners here in upstate New York bring in hives of bees every year to pollinate their apple orchards.

My father inherited the beekeeper skills from Grandpa Pape. He kept a supply of beekeeping equipment through the years. One of his “duties” as mayor was to round up bees that had swarmed under the eaves of people’s homes or other places. I remember going with him on one of these trips. A large colony of bees had swarmed into a big old tree on the property where the garment factory was later built. He climbed up in the tree and cut down the small branch to which the bees were attached. As the limb fell to the ground, the bees were scattered in an area below the tree. Then Dad showed me how the worker bees all migrated toward the queen bee. That was an easy way to locate the queen. He then put the queen in a bee hive and all of the worker bees dutifully marched into the opening of the hive. We were then able to pick up the hive and cart them away.
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roger.pape
Site Admin


Joined: 17 Mar 2009
Posts: 386
Location: Liverpool, NY

PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2010 9:20 pm    Post subject: Family tradition Reply with quote

After translating some old letters that my Grandfather Jacob Pape had received from Germany back in the 1890s, I discovered that his brother Claus was quite a beekeeper. He had a lot of bees, spent many hours tending them, and sold a considerable amount of honey and wax.

It must have been a family tradition.
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