Winnowing - German-Russian Social, Cultural & Heritage History
This man is “winnowing” the grain. This was a process of threshing in a very simple way. First you need to take a flail and beat the stocks of grain. A flail is a stick with leather straps and sharp stones tied to the ends of the straps. By beating the grain it separated the stocks from the grain. Then the farmer used a fork to throw the grain and stocks into the air and allow the wind to take away the chaff, while the heavier kernels of grain fell to the ground, thus the grain was separated from the chaff. This style of threshing is really quite primitive and very slow. This was usually done in Russia prior to any machinery used. This method of harvesting was also used in early pioneer farming in Canada. The method is still used today in some areas of the world, but not necessarily among one-time settlements of G-R's in Canada or the United States. (courtesy:photo-Mennonite Heritage Museum)
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Threshing Grain in Russia

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