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SAM SCHPAGER: And I thought perhaps one at a time, I was thinking ofstarting with Polly Bemis, and who she was awhatfs important to remember.
LOLA GAMBLE:CLYDE: Well, Polly Bemis was Idahos little China doll. Shewas born in the caves of Hong Kong and at fifteen she was sold into slavery to the great King Kong of San Francisco's Chinatown and the Barbary Coast. And after a short session there, it was Warrens diggings and the mining saloons of north Idaho. They settled fc at Warren's and Here King Kong ran a saloon with Pdlly as the cook and as the chief attraction and as a chief supplier of all the comforts of nne to the early day miners. And she was only four feet about five inches tall, weighed about eighty-five rounds. And one of her favorite gags was to grab up a great big cleaver and come out into the saloon and say Anyone here no likey ray chop suey?" And of course they all liked it very much.
Now also mining in this country and running a saloon was agentleman named Charlie Bemis, and he too was a gambler. So one night the great King Hong, the Chinese riddle, Chinese puzzle King Hong and Charlie sat down for a little friendly game of poker. Well, they gambled away at pretty high stakes. And Charlie had a little sack of gold nuggets that had picked up out on hii claim out on the Salmon Fiver. And alongtoward morning with all the chips down, it was the sack of gold nuggets against little Polly Bemis , te China doll herself. They played nd the great King Feng lost. But he still had one trump up is sleeve. Ke whipped out his gun, shot Charlie in the eye, grabbed the bag of gold nuggets and/ran out the door into oblivion. But that was the way the great Chinese fortune cookie crumbled. And the story tells it that while the bullet went into the eye, it went under the eyeball snd Polly took her crochet hook, dug out the bullet, packed the eyeball with herbs and nursed Charlie back to health. fnd then Charlie Bemis done right by that gal. He married her and gave her a'wedding certificate that she could hang up oveTJ-Vhertmutual bed stating the fact to all the world that they were married. An. this marriage certificate can still be seen up at the museum among the good sisters at St. Gertrudes Academy on the Camas Prairie. Polly lived out on the gold diggings with Charlie for many years. And there a creek there to this day that flows into the Salmon River, and it's called Polly Creek in her honor. She held open house there for all the river men. There was always food to eat nnd great kindness shown. After twenty-eight years of married life Charlie Bemisvied «"d was buried at Grangeville. Bolly made two trips to the outside world. She went to Grangeville to get her teeth fixed one time and she went to Boise at one time. And the rest of her life was spent there. They had fifteen acres on Polly Creek and this she gave to her neighbors, the Shep and people who had a great cattle spread there in the country. And it was understood that they were to take care of her till she died. And they did. They put% telephone line into her house so they could talk to her everyday and see how she was getting along. And she finally got sick and they took her out to Grangeville were she died. And the people from tha Shepimd ranch weren't there so they gave her a pauper burial in the Grangeville Cemetery. And the land passed into the Shep spread. And Moscow always feals that it has an interest in the great Shep ranch out there because in later years our own Bill went to Alaska and organized a group of millionaire mining people and they bought out all of the Shep land for about six million dollars. And it belonged to that corporation for many, many years, and of course it's doubled and tripled in value since then. it's one of the Mstoric places of Idaho. Polly also left another museum piece. It was ablue silk dress. The silk had come from Hong Kong and it was lined with flour sacks that had held flour made at the Grmpeville flour Mill. All down the front were little two and a half and five dollar gold pieces that formed tve buttons on dress. But the Polly Creek that's still flowing is in honor of our own Uttle Folly Bemis, the little China doll.
SAM: That's very interesting. What do you know about this King Fong fellow?Now, you say he was a great enigma?
LC: Yeah. Well, he was very, very wealthy. And he promoted many of theillegal goings on of the Barbsry Coast, and ha wanted to be quite anonymous ,y'know, so nothing much is known of him except that he did come to Warren's diggings during the gold days and brought Polly with him and ran this gambling place there and disappeared after he thought e had killed Charlie Bemis . No one ever heard of him since. So we call big,Chinese Puzzle and that sort of thing.
SAM: This Warren diggings at the time were really quite a large gold?
LC: Yes, it was quite active and a lot of gold, I think, was taken out of theWarren's diggings out in that country.
SAM: What about Charlie Bemis? Is there any reason to think that he had an eyeout for Polly before gambling? Was he stuck on?
LC: No, I think not. I think it was just part of the you know, part ofthe Chinese puzzle. And women weren't valued much in. She was just put up as any other chattel that belonged to King Hong Bemis and he lost and Charlie won it.
SAM: Was Charlie Chinese?
LC: No, he was a white man, uh huh.
SAM: What about Polly as far as her character goes or her spirit? What do thaysay about the kind of person she was?
LC: Well, they said she was very .ard-working and had a sense of humorand very kind. And she did all the things she did do just from force of necessity. She'd been brought up a little beggar on tha streets of Hong Kong. And when she was sold into slavery se just took it in her stride. That ws what the women were for. £nd I think that that's just about all there is to it. But all the men of that era testified to what fun she was fPwhat a good little cook she was and how loyal she was to Charlie Bemis I think that's about all we know about her you know. She's one of the folklore figures from the Salmon River.
SAM: Well, what about the idea of her self-sufficiency or looking out for herself?Was she considered to be very independent?
LC: Yes, she was. Yes. she lived there alone in the shack on Folly Creekall those years, you know. And she always managed to make out snd never wanted for anything. And there was always food for the wayfaring men that came along, that passed along that way. And se was quite famous as a Salmon River character.
SAM: She lived there for a long time after Charlie died then?
LC: Yes, I've forgotten just what year it was she died now, but it was manyyears anyway, urn hum.
SAM: Do you know, did she still keep some sort of a wayfaring house after hisdeath? I wonder how she managed to survive there without him.
LC: Wall, I think that the neighbors, the Sheps and foinkhammers from thebig eatie spread, down through the years they certainly befriended her and brought her food up the river for her and freighted things out and in for her all the time. It was they who took her to get her teeth fixed they to Grangeville. And I've always hoped someday would take the Polly body back from where it's buried at Grangeville, take it back and bury it alongside of Charlie out on Polly Creek. That would be a nice thing for the women's clubs to do.
SAM: I think so. nd I imagine that she learned to speak very good English and. ..
LC: Yes, I think so, I think so. Of course all this was really before my time.I just know what te old historians tell about it and the oldtime stories But she was definitely one of the early—I said she was one of the first women libbers of Idaho.
SAM: What makes her a women's libber?
LC: Well, because she came hard way. but se became self-supportingand lived alone nd kept her little garden and fed tv,e people who passed by. And I think sVe's someone in early Mstory that we need to think about.
SAM: How about Mary AArkwright Hutton ?
LC: Well, she was a character. That's a gripping, exciting story too.She was born in the coal fields in Ohio. And she was the unregistered daughter of an itinerant preacher to put it politely. The Arkwright name had come down through her mother's family and they seemed to be people of some consequence from England. At a very early age the father was glad to get rid of her so he sent her to take care of his father who was bl£nd and a verv, very old man. So ten years old we see Mary Arkwright Hutton leading the blind grandfather out into the public narks to listen to tha soapbox orators orate about lack of work and conditions in coal mines and the hard life of the laborers. So when Mav Arkwright Hutton was still a young girl she encouraged about forty miners from the Ohio country to come in boxcars the great Couer d'Alene country of Idaho where gold hd been found. History says that se didn't ride in the boxcar with the forty men. She had to ride in the coach but if she'd been given her choice she'd have ridden right along with the miners as thay came west. When she arrived she liked to tell later that she rode in on "the Hurricane deck of a cayuse. Ar.d she got as far as Lake Coeur d'Alene. From there she went up into the mining country at Wardner and at Kellogg Here she opened a boarding house and she was a great cook. She was proof of her good cooking. She weighed nearly three hundred nounds, was akgantic mountain of a woman in her own right. And a fine cook. The meals were served with great abundance. And thay said itoat she lacked in good looks she made up in her pood cooking. And that the men thought there was no more beautiful sight in tha world than wven two-hundred and eighty-five pound May Arkwright Hutton entered the dining room carrying an enormous platter witv a big pot roast surrounded by vegetables was the finest thing they could think of. She ran this boarding house and made quite a little money of ver own by careful management and hard work.
And then about 1900 she married Al Putton who was an engineer onthe railroad that carried the men between Cataldo and Kellogg. And he was a very fine vwn too. who'd been orphaned very young and had come up the very hard way. And he certainly appreciated and. enjoyed May Arkwright Hutton and fine hospitality and her fine cooking. So he married her, It was a wedding to remember. They got out invitations to it—everybody was invited. May cooked her own weeing dinner and it was all things that the mining community liked. And they made it a double wedding. Their bridesmaid and best man decided they'd get married flat the same time snd save wedding of the expenses. They ahare the cost' minister and the best man thought they ought to share the wadding presents that May and Al had already collected. But Al Button drew the line at that; he thought tvat was going a little t6o far. So they kept own wedding presents. But it was a gala affair and they shot off the fireworks all night tmd there war- much dancing in the streets to celebrate this very hapny occasion.
Now Al Hutton made a substantial salary as an engineer on therailroad and they saved everything they made, nd there was a group of them that met at the boarding house and each of them was saving a little money and they were buying up mining stocks. A lot of them didn't amount to anything and petered out,and they lost. Hut each year they kept saving and adding to it and investing in some othrer stock. And then finally one lovely, lovely day two men were walking through the hillside and they noticed a different looking seam along the line nd they kicked it up and say, they had discovered a galena mine too. Pnd they didn't know what to call it but lying along the edge of the seam there was an empty powder box and em it it said "Hercules." So he said,"We'll call this the Hercules Mine." And the great Hercules Mine came in. And it was a mine that belonged to the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker. Everybody that could spare a few dimes had invested 4n it. And there was dacning in the streets that night. And it was even better than they had dreamed. Tve two men who'd discovered it went back out nd surveyed and staked it out. And when it was assayed it was decided that it really was a find. And down through the years it has proved that way. And it's still very much a going concern. Vere in Moscow we had a special stake in the Hercules Mine because Jerry Dar of Moscow who married one of our own Mix girls was one of the organizers and promoters of the mine. And of course Day has been a good friend of the University of Idaho. Many, many of the wonderful books we have in the library are all presents from Henry Day. And Moscow too stood by to profit.
SAM: Did May Arkwright Hutton invest in this mine?
JC: Ch yes. She'd invested and so Wad the husband. And the end of the firstyear their share vas over two million dollars. So May retired from the coofcing business and they built a lovely home in Kellogg. And May started in dressing up and fixing up. ind at first the ladies sort of looked down their noses at her, you know. But she went on to bigger,better things. Sve became interested in women's lib. She'd always been a women's libber in her owrlrigM in her independence nd her ability to do things. So she set out to bring liberation to Idaho's women. And of course in 1895 all the women in Idaho were allowed to vote. We were the second state in tve union to see that women were given equal suffrage. So when sve had that conquered she thought she'd go . into Washington and do a little women's libbing over there because women had been given the right to vote ift l883,Tatbout 1890 it'd bean taken away from them Arkwright Hutton, they built downtown the great Hutton Building. And it was the first penthouse they ever had because the tor floor was all made into a hUge ornate apartment for Al and May Hntton.
And they called her "May Arkwright she wore the pantsHutton" because she believed in wearing men's attire, net the gracefuldainty slacks suits that you see them wearing todaybut the plain eld blue serge suits and three cigars in the breast pocket and one cigar in her mouth. She was famous at the women's lib meetings and en the street corners of Spokane,fcut she felt a little lacking in te proper culture so sve took up studying Shakespeare. Sve wrote poetry and we have a few samples of that left. But she would hold reception, and she was a great one to patronize all the charities. And the greater te patronage, why the nore acceptance she gained. She church ladies were all delighted to see her come to those silver teas , you know, because wven the rest of them put in a little silver dime or twentyfive cents she just dropped in a five dollar gold piece. She was.welcome at all tvat sort of thing.
SAM: Did she ave much of an effect in Spokane on women's rights?
LC: Well, yes, I think she really She got out and she wasn't afraid tospend money. And she worked and sve entertained all the leading political figures of tve time. She had Teddy Roosevelt there for dinner, and very friendly with him until ve made his famous remark about a woman's name should only appear in the newspapers twice—when she gets married and when she dies. So that finished Teddy Roosevelt with May Arkwright Hutton. But she was very friendly with Clarence Darrow when e came to try the Steunenberg Murderers, the Haywood, Mover and Pettibone cases. She was a great admirer of his and also a great admirer of Senator Borah who had done the prosecuting in that vey famous case. She was a friend to all United Mines Workers and contributed money to their fight for better working conditions. She was definitely a woman in her own rigv. She had very poor taste in dressing of such an enormous figure. She would get out big plush dresses wild flowers all splattered overv great dimensions to match er own the Spokane women of that time looked down teir noses greatly. One of them sald.flat know, I think I knew someone that used to board in -our boarding house." And May said, Your father was the only one of them that ever went away and didn't pay his board billt,: And once wven she appeared in a beautiful hew silk dre:js another of the society ladies, "Oh, it that -our first silk dress?" "Oh no," se paid,"your husband bought ma one twenty-five years ago" So se had a way of putting the ladies in teir rlaoes, you know.
And someof tve poetry was out of this world. One sve wrote for an Elks Convention. and was something aboutT-this was out at Wallace—she said,"Here in tvis northern lend the elks come down to drink besiderill, the elks come down to drink their fill. The woods are gone and so is tve rill, but the elks still come to drink their fill." And this was greatly arprocited. She attan ded many of the political rallies and was ready to put up money for them. And one of the people wrote a poem for er. It was something about:"Cur Hay, hooray. Our gal: might not be so good-looking, but she's going to win this h.-re fight." Words to that effect. i nd she was very, very prominent in all of the things that had to do with women's rights and equal suffrage and so on. But time ran out on her 1916, at the begfmning of the world went from women's rights to peace. to trying to keep peace, find se did a lot of work in various peace organizations. But time was running out on her and she sickened and died. But not before Al Hutton had built her a very beautiful home up on the south side of Spokane. nd it too was designed by this Cutter who designed the Davemoort Hotel and man- of Spokanes very homes. And she continued to entertain there in a most lavish stvle to the consternation of a few other people that lived out on the south hill. I think she died about 1916 and Al Hutton then fulfilled a dream that they'd had together. And as a memorial to her he estabrshed out on thebanks of the little Snokane River a gorgeous place for orphans. And ..e called it the Hutton Settlement. And there are four betiful houses out there and each one has room for twenty children and houseparents. And there's an orchard, there's farmland, there's garden, there's cows for them to milk, horses for them to ride. There as even a swimming pool and a tennis court. And all these things were most elaborate when ve built them back about the time of the first VorlJ Jar. Pnd the interesting thing is that after all these years there's still a very concern. If just a beauty spot out there—beautiful buildings, beautiful everything, find as a little extra touch, the Northern pacific Pailroad brought in the eld engine bell off the engine that Al Hutton had piloted. Ind it angs bere in the yard Hutton Settlement to call children wo live there at the settlement in to the different meals. And it's something wortv: seeing. rd out n the beautiful Fairmont Cemetery are two beautiful pink marble monuments that stand to Kr. and Mrs. Al Hutton, lovers of little children.
SAM: One thing that I wondered about with her and the story that you tellis that if sve was such a friend of the laboring man I'm surprised the that she could get along with rich so well because you don't think of them as having the same interests at all. I would think that want to the wealthy people wouldn't have much to do with her kind of politics.
LC: Veil, I think there were a lot of people interested in women's right tovote, of course sve didn't live to see ;t become an aenment to the United States Constitution in 1920, that all women would have the right to vote. And 1 think there were a lot cf wealthy people at that time who wanted to see this passed. And she hd a big following. She was a character, but she had a heart to match her physical size. And I think that she made a great contribution to the welfare of the world in promoting the women's right to vote and women's right to share in the decision making of the world. And I certainly always thought Al Hutton must have been a very fine, wonderful man because he stood right by her through all her work. And all tve glory and the dreams, he shared withjher.
SAM: Did she play a role in the Idaho women's suffrage movement or was that alittle before she. . .?
LC: No, se did. She lead it for Idaho. She and Susan B. Anthony was one ofthe people that se entertained a lot. All the things that had to do wxh women, and Carrie Chapman All tve early day people that dealt with women's rights and prohibition and tvat sort of thing knew May Arkwright Hutton. And she to seemed to share the common dream that they all had of doing this for women.
(End of Side A)
LC: Yes, the year of the bull pens, when all our boys from the universitywere sent up there to guard the laborers. They rounded up a thousand the of them and had them in what they called bull pen She printed leaflets and cot out for them and she would go out to tve stockades and bring in dozens and dozens of pies that she'd baked for tvem. And she was continually visiting to cheer them and bring them news from the outside world and to protest loudly and longly the treatment of the miners. And of course wuen they comSndeered the train, you know, and ran e!T down off the hills, they had it loaded with dynamite. And they ran it down through the mine and exploded and blew the whole thing up. And May Arfcright Hutton and her husband were foremest in organizing it and getting it going. They were very definitely friends of the laboring people. it had been ground into from infancy because se had been born and abandoned back in the coal mines of Ohio.
SAM: Did she go back to Kellogg to live or did she go into Spokane?
LC: No, after she went into Spokane she became one of tha leading figuresin Spokane. She was one of the real characters of Spokane, find she go home once. And se was very good to these half-brothers and sisters of hers. And sve shared her wealth with them and all tvose things were certainly to her credit, very much so.
SAM: Okay, now I want to ask you about Molly Bedamn
LC: Oh yes, she's another lady from the mines. And Molly Bedamn is one ofMurray the great characters of the Mining country. Tradition at least has it that she was a very young, innocent, loving and lovely wife and her husband got terribly in debt and got into a lot of trouble in other ways, and she wanted to get m out of prison and1 help pay off his debts. So there was only way open to women at that time and that was hrough prostitution. That's the only way women knew to make money at that time. So she too entered te field of prostitution and she came to And the story is that the owner of the saloon—her name was Molly Burdun. And he took her into the saloon to introduce her to all the miners gathered there and we wanted to say that this was Molly Burdun the Madame of just to identify her so the men would know who she was. So he did. He said he wanted to present to them Molly Burdun, the Madame of But the miners thought that he was saying Molly Bedamn .. So Molly Bedamn she became and she ran the little houses of prostitution that lined the rows And someone asked her once,"Now here do you live?" And oe said,"Well, mine in the first one." She was the madame. Put the of her generosity, of her great kindness to people in trouble, te miners that se fed, and the miners that she saked, and the poor and the people who were down in luck. One of the famous stories is about how a woman was giving birth to a child cut along the Fourth of July Canyon in the snow »nd cold. And Molly Bedamn came upon them and took off her luxurious fur coat and wrapped the mother and baby in her coat, put them on horse ;nd she walked beside and brought them into And there are many other stories to that effect. She didn't live to be a very old woman. She was still young whan she died. But up in the little ved infested cemetery at a little wooden headstone and on the slab it says "Molly Bedamn." and the interesting thingI was there about a year ago—and among all weeds and the and trash squirels in that cemetery, the only that's been cleaned off is Molly Bedamned. And it was all cleared off of weeds and here were a few little plastic flowers laid on it and in an empty beer bottle there were three or four little wildflowers that had been stuck In water on her grave. So I thought after a hundred years there were still people Molly bedamned.
SAM: What is it about Molly Bedamned that makes her so well known up there? Whyhas she stayed in people's imaginations?
LC: Well, I think probably it was the many, many acts of kindnesss Kindness issomething that goes on living, you know,and that never dies. You've touched people's lives and of course tve stories may get beter with the telling you know too, down through the years. But there are many, many fabulous how and the stories about she took in the sick old disinherited and the dispossessed and grubstaked the started them over again with the money that she accumulated in devious vays. and I think tvose things people remember.
SAM: Is there any knowledge or lore passed on about her she treated the womenwho worked for her?
LC: Well, I think they vere of the same sisterhood, you know. And there was afeeling of comraderie, a feeling of sisterhood maybe among them. Anyway, Molly Bedamned has become just a legendary lady of lovelie and kindness and all sweet, Find things that she did. And it is proved by the little bunch of wildflowers in an empty beer bottle.
SAM: Now there's one other person that I was going to ask you about and thatwas Jane Silcott.
LC: Oh yes, little Jane Silcott. She antedates all of these three women. Shewas the daughter of Old Timothy. And Old Timothy was Henry Harmon Spalding's first Christian convert. And Timothy of course Washington, which also known as is also Red Wolf's camping ground. And it came to be called Alpowa because the Christians weren't allowed to work on Sunday and Alpowa meant "place of Sabbath rest. And I'm interested to know that they saved fhe Old Timothy Bridge down there that goes across the Alpowa Creek. And so once they put in this dam, you know, and flooded Silcott. And they have a lile park there in memory of Old a friendof the white man. Of course the Nez Perce's themselves, they considered Old Timothy te greatest Uncle Tom Tom of tvem all because on so many occasions he did the white man. It was he that Mrs. "Harmon Spalding sent to Valla Walla at the the time of the Whitman Massacre to see how the little daughter, youg Eliza, had fared. And he went down to try to buy her freedom from the captors.
SAM: Was he successful?
LC: No,ve didn't, no. He didn't get her but later on sve was rescued.
SAM: You did tell me that she had agreed to take te Fierce party across
LC: Oh ves, that's right, yes, yes, little Jane. Well, little Jane was OldTimothy's daughter. And Timothy's wife was a sister to Old Chief Joseph of the beloved Wallowas. fnd to Timothy and Tomearwas born little Jane. And little Jane was a very bright, fine looking little girl. And at about seventeen E. D. Pierce came ino this country looking for gold. And he got as far as the Ped Wolf Campground. Fe tvought that old Timothy would have some of the Indians ferry him across at Wawalwai to core up Steptoe Canyon to his counry. When he got there Timothy said,"Well, you don't dae go on up through the Nez Perce country up through Lapwai £ Lewiston because there's great unrest and tve Nez Perce's don't . so many white people coming through their country." So he wanted to know how otherwise he could go. "Well," he said,"if you ferried across here from Silcottacross the river you could go on up the grade." he didn't know the way. Well, little Jane, who was about seventeen said well se knew the way and se would go with them and show them the way. So tve E. D. Pierce party stayed overnight there and he next morning the Indians ferried them across the Snake Fiver. He went on up turouc?h Steptoe Canyon and he came through Steptoe Canyon between Colton about in Uniontown on down until he sruck the Tenatpanep now about four miles, about half wav between where Moscow and Pullman are. And they got to the they followed that on upto were Troy now standson down to Kendrick. And from Kendrick they went on out over the plateau country, on up to Orofino where gold was discovered. And Jane Silcott was very very astute and a very lovely little person. And a few years later when the army put up the fort at Lapwal with the party care young John Sil cott. Now Jovn Silcott was an engineer. He was a Harvard graduate; he was a very smart, intelligent man. And he fell n love with the little Jane Silcott and hey were married. And for a time tVey lived at Silcott and ran the Silcott Ferry across the river, find later on they went up to Lewistcn itself. And right at tve font of the bluff, and right at the foot of Fifth Street, where the Fifth street railroad bridge was built. Tvey ran what was called the Silcott Ferry. It wasn't down at "Silcott but it was run bv Jane and John Silcott and was there where Fifth Street crosses the Clearwater River.
And they ran it there many, many years,and all the timers—the Clydes and the Snows and the Martin Andersons— aiil he people rom this vicinity that used to have business going to Lewiston, many of them crossed there at the Silcott Ferry. And they said when John Silcott hiwrtf became a very bad drinker and when he'd be too drunk to go,Jane would get out th. ferry bet and work It acres the river for coffee ready. The old yellow house the bullt river, that only been gone maybe twenty years. It was there for many years; made coffee for the visiting people While they waited for the ferry boat to back or to go over, and lots of folks remember her with great gratitude and that sort of thing, she didn't to be a real old woman. They had an open fireplace in those and it caught fire and she was burned so badly that he died was only. I think, about fifty-thre. or something like th.t when she died. But little Jane will he remembered long as the daughter of old Timothy E. D. Fierce party, and as the wife of John Slleott Wo ran the ferry there across the Clearwater River. And at coming of the first settlers into this community.
When she died, John Silcott, the husband erected a very lovely whitemarble shaft on the hillside. They buried her right there a land just above where the ferry house stood. And'of us here in this community remember seeing the white monument there. I've been thereby times. And a few years ago when we moved the bones of Old Timothy and all his family from Silcott down the river wh.„ it was going to b flooded to the Park at Lewiston,we talked then about moving Jane-a bones from the bluff there along the Clearwater Fiver, moving it over and burying it with the familieaSnd John Silcott too because he was buHed there too. burying the» with old family. to find the bones, Marcus Ware people in this, found nothing but broken splinters off the coffin. And the grave had been robbed ond te bones and everything were gone, just the broken splinters of Ahe redwood coffin were left, find that's one of the sad travesties of the world is how people will go and rob Indian graves for the little trinkets end things that were buried with them.
SAM: Did Jare Silcott c-ntinue to be close to her people or did she. . .?
LC: Oh, yes. No, it was a very friendly relation and they were all very muchaccepted down there because Jane andir family had been friends with the find they were very compatible and I think Jon Silcott thought a lot of his little wife. Everybody said that ve did. He was just simply a drinking was one of his failings. And he would bet her when he got drunk but that was one of te ways of the world of that time, you know.
SAM: Grace Wicks told me the story about John Silcott—that when Ms. sistercame out to visit him he took her around hut did bring er home to meet Jane story?
LC: Yes, I heard that and I think that that's probably true. be probablyknew that the sister wouldn't be able to accept and you know, in the right light. And that was probably the way it was. I wouldn't be a bit surprised with what that's the way it wassail right. SAMs Would you consider Jane Silcott one of the outstanding early women, huh?
LC: Yes, think sve was one of the early women libbers. I think all four ofthese were. She wasn't a bit afraid to go with this bunch of mining men on this into the Orofino country. I think she must have been a women's libber.
SAM: Do you know about eart-in-hand marriages?
LC: No, I really dont know. T've heard of them, I've heard of them.
SAM: But you don't krow yourself of instances where that's the way thatpeople got married?
LC: No, I really don't. I've heard such things and heard of thesehart-in-hand advertising agencies, you know where you put an ad in the paper that you'd like a—well, I guess it's still going on today as far as that goes—but I think that this marriage business is very important that T believe they curht to do a little bit better when they go out to find mates. They ought to look the situation over a little more carefully,
SAM: Speaking about women wvo were women's libbers, what about all the womenwho vomesteaded out in tve Clearwater country, took up homesteads, the kind that Carol Brink writes about in Strangers
LC: Yes, I think all those were quite women's libbers. Yes, i knew many of tvem,and I think they were. They all believed in women's rights. In those days we heard a little more discussion of women's rights too, probably because tey didn't have them. Nowadays we feel that we've had them so long we take them for granted, vou know. We just take our rigvts for granted. We can't realise ther ever was a day that we were belonged to our husbands and we obeyed our husbands and so on, you know. We'd become so to being co-partners and helping make the decisions and I think that's the way it goes.
SAM: Do vou remember when vou were voung, young wmen talking about women'srights?
LC: Yes, i do. My mother was a great women's libber. She never missed a timegoing to town. She want twice a year. She went to see Santa Claus and bring something home, and she went to vote. And those were two very Important Mngs. And the women's right to vote was very imnortnnt with her. And she never missed a chance to go to vote. She thought that that was the aalvatlon of th. country was women could vote and help make the deeiaions.
SAM: What were the attitude, of you and your friends when yofere young?Did you feel that women had an important role to fill was being denied tem?
LC: Oh yea. I remember definitely. I be a lawyer. If I'd hadenough money I'd a been a lawyer. I was always on the teams. But I was going to be first woman lawyer to graduate University of Idaho. It lust took more money than I had didn't Have enough money to do. But I would have liked to have been a lawyer. And I would alwavs maintained that,know what was going onndre eoual nart-ers with their husbands. Tthink that's right.
SAM: young women organized at all when you were young, or was it justan individual and attitude that people Do you know what I mean?
LC: think largely it was kind of just an individual attitudethat reorle ad. My mother was an educated woman too, and that elped influence us that we should grow up and learn and be educated and make a contribution to the world and not just do it through our husbands. So many of the early day women, their husbands said and they just did. And they never thought it through, you know, themselves. But many of them had no eduction and didn't have background for it. But as far back as I can remember I believed in women's voting and women holding office and women being on equal husbands and able to enter into the problem solving.
SAM: Do you tvink that as a rule, Lola, that women did-not have equal responsibilityin marriage relationships, that the men really did make the decisions and women.
LC: Yes, I think so. As I look back on it that was tve way I remember it. Theybelieved inlet the women be silent all, you know. And I that that was the way it was. They were sort of considered inferior and tey were to 0hev the'r husbands and be subservient and make blffl king of the castle. find Ive always said that you know these big decisions that are made like we should do about should he president of the United States and what Russia and China I leave all that up to my husband but the little like how we're to srend monev and how we're goinr to raise the kids, tose are the things I decide.
Well, in the early davs do you think that the pioneering women had more orless equality? Were they really subservient or did they hve a more important role to play?
LC: Wall, they eertainly had an important role because most of them did theraising of the children ad the milking of the cows, and the raising of the gardens and seeing tvere was food on the table and all tvat sort of thing, 'wile te husbands did of course the outside work like the sowing and the harvesting. Most of them ad plenty vard time waking a living. But keeping food on ve table and the kids wasved and scrubbed and cleaned and seeing that hey got some form of education, some form of training, I think the women pretty much did that.
SAM: Well, I'm just wondering, would that mean that they, was that an equalrelationship if they hadt did they have equal responsibility in thast way or were they still strictly second class?
LC: Well, yes I know wvat you're driving at I think it was just up to thehusbands. Some educated husbands that their wives were on equal basis with tvem. But many of them in our community were from tve old country. And the farther back the line—the closer tvey were to tve old country more they felt that the woman's place was in the home, and to run and wait on them and to see that their food was ready on time and that sort of thing. They were part of the chattel, part of their lord and aster's, what they owned. And tve women were to keep the thing running for them, you knew. And the home was for them and they were to stay right in there. And it always seemed to me that the ones who were closer to the immigrant stock telt more that way than the people wvo had grown up in America and been educated here. They felt a little differently about it.
SAM: Do you think that the women in general went along with this and acceptedtheir being, really not having thought of it any differently?
LC: Well, seme of thera were smart enough no to let anybody ever know thatthey had any other other thought, you know, about what every woman knows. Men who have climbed to the high places of te world like to think that they dd it all by themselves. And we who are teir wives smile and let tem think so. That's what every woman knows. And a lot of tvem were smart enough, you know—I've heard many of the women from tve old country say,"Oh, I wouldn't know anything about that. You'll have to ask my vusband. He knows all about that,"you knew. 'It gave the men a great build-up. "I wouldn't know. I couldn't answer it. Just ask my husband. He'll tell you. ft knows how it should be doneM I think they were enough to play the game, you know. They were just kinda going along with it, uh huh.
SAM : After the women's rights struggle was Idaho there really weren't many advancessoon after that, were there? Wasn't that sort of the end of the women's movement for the tme being.
LC: Well, a lot of them got very concerned with the prohibition. The peoplewho had women's right. lot of them took up prohibition and became very much in favor of prohibition until finally they got it through, you know, under the Wilson presidency. But it lead to such bootlegger and so on that after that it was thrown out. a for a long tin, we did have prohibition and I think that came after women's rights.
SAM: Wall, why mra women so attuned to that idea? Why did they think thatproMbiti n was tve answer to the world's ills?
LC: Well. I think that many of tvera had seen.all that they had saved for,the men would rid, off to town and pet drunk and srend what they'd been saving for and what they'd been trying to get ahead with. The women hod so lime control over money of any kind and if the men wantedto go what and drink it all upit was just done, that was it. I think tha't they felt if the men just couldn't ret it so easily that that would make a better life and a better family life. So I think that that was what prompted the great drive for prohibition.
SAM: Was drinking much more of a problem then than it is now?
LC: Yes, I think so. The-e were open saloons everywhere and they were thegathering places of the men. Tvat was their club; it was tveir pasttimes it was everything. The could go and it was sort of a fellowship. They could get together t nd talk. Talk men's talk and not have to have tve women around, you know. And I think it was really much more of a problem tvan it is now where social drinking is accepted where the woman and has a cocktail, and the men sit and have a cocktail together or go to an eating vcuse and v?.ve a cocktail with their meal. The drink"ng the ren did in those days was done largely on their own. And the women stayed home aneftook care of the kids while tve men went off and got en a big spree and come vome and be:t up on the children, beat up on their wives and that sort of thing. And I thinK it took a lot of work on the part of reorle like May Arkwright Hutton, for examrle, to call attention to the things that were going on. onade drinking
SAM: Do you think that the isolation of a pioneer and rural lifer mere of aproblem?
LC: Yes, I do, I think that the isolation, there was nothing else to do, andthe hard work. And the men felt that they just, had this coming. And tey could go off to town and leave the kids and the wife at home. And for a little wMle they could forget their cares and their worries and their sorrows and in the fellowship of oter men. And I think that was one place the men could go and there wouldn't be women and children following tvem top you know. And there were problems in more tvan one way, uh huh.
(End of Side B)
SAM: Was the WCTD and all that just a failure?
LC: Well, i don't think it has ceen just I think it's all a matterof education, if they can learn to stop, you know. If they take a little drink to warnvem up or a little drink to ceer tem up. I always say single drink. I can always say irresponsible things without anything, you know. I am stimulated by talking to other people and enjoy it so much. But some people are so inhibited they can :or talk nor feel at ease, and tose people have a definite of something to take the edge off as they say, and u uh.
SAM: It's been said to me that Prohibition lead to more drinking because wenliquor ecame forbidden fruit it reached many people-women and upper class people socially wh0 never thought of drinking before. Do you think that that's true?
LC: Well. I suprose so. But I don't think there was as much drinking underProhibition as there had been in the days earlier than that. As Roosevelt got into trouble for saying: "The people learn to hold their liquor well," you know. Ano was trouble with WCTU. But if they could take a drink and know whan to quit, you know. It's the drinking beyond allSsponsibility, where you don't care what haprens. And I think that during the Prohibition it wasn't quite so easy to get. Men didn't just pc off to town and stay there two cr tree days at a t'me and get drunk because there was no place for them to stay. Tere were no saloons. If they wanted to ret drunk ar,d lie out in the road, why that'd be about all. I think there was less drinking during Prohibition than there was before Prohibition came in. But it was far from answer. The whole thing was a matter of education really. And if some people wanted to waste their lives that way you can't make it fit everybody. But it's a matte, largely of education.
SAM: I wanted to ask you a little about the women homesteaders that youknew and what teir homesteading was like. Can you tell me.
LC: Oh, yes. Well, the ladies that went up around Collins, those were allquite society ladies from Moscow. There was Mrs. who was the there was Ione Adair, who was Dr. Adair's daughter, there was the McConnell girls wo were the governor's daughters, find they went ur around Collins, Idaho, and Joe Collins was one of the early day forest rangers that took people cut and settled them. He would find a good place for then to settle. Andaany folks went up there. They endured much of the hardships of the early days although as Carol Ryrie Brink has so well it in her Strangers in the and her auntie, Elsie Watkins was one of the women who went up and homesteaded. They had lots of hardships and bringing in their own food and packing back Bovill Hotel. That fancy, warm, comfortable place. And went and alot of some of homesteading by long range, from on there. And was some sort of a deawhen they got these white pine homesteads proved up on they could be sold to the big' Potlatch Forest Lumber Company. It wasn't called that ten but whatever it was. These timber claims that they took up. nearly all of them didn't really do anything with themThey were just sold to the big lumber company that went in aarvested the White pine.
SAM: How much of the time were the women occupied with being on the homestead?
LC: Oh, really think they just went in in te summertime. I don'tthink they did much stayingthere all winter. The government allowed them to do some coning out. I think it was quite neglibible thetount of time or work they put in on the timber claims. Carol summed it up very nicely in her strangers in the Forest. I think that's just about the way it was. Carrie Bush was a very intimate, dear friend of mine Rnd she often laughed about her husband was the first Dnited States forester in the state of Idaho. And he was a nan of great integrity and decency. He came in of course a long 3ut time after these women had been up there homesteading.." I really think that there wasn't too much hardships under-gone. I think they went in and stayed during the nice weather infthe summer months and nicked some huckleberries, enjoyed the lovely mountain air and scenery. And I think ven it got very bad weather they probably came out to the Bovill Hotel or back down to Moscow.
SAM: Do you think that most of the people did know when hey wentthat the were poing to sell their land?
LC: Peking up the fast buck, you know, find since time began we've always had reopleinterested in turning over a little money in a hurry. And I think so. I don't think they ever intended to go up there andiog it off themselves or live there or make hemes of it. It just wasn't condusive to that.
SAM: I was just wondering if the people felt that these women were daringto fo up there en their own or whether this was just an easily accepted fact of life to the local community.
LC: Well, I really don't know just how the comnunity felt about, it. I wastoo young to really sense what was poinp on then. Carol is about ten years older than T am and she has a better understanding of it. Ind I think sve writes very well of it, or thats probably the way it wad because I've known all these women later in life all tell about their hardships andso on but they also admit that they didn't do much staying up there when the weath r got bad and tve drifts got bad. with the Bovills. They went dow and they stayed at Bovill a lot and tvey came back to Moscow. They were allowed so many months oj- the claim aryvow. So they took advantage of that and put in tbepest months up there which was the on.y way they could ave done itI think.
SAM: When you tailed about Ida Tarbell which we did talk about you mentioned tome another ti.e you had curled hen, that was that, was that a style?
LC: Well, I bobbed my hair. That was the first women's lib you see. Ve justcut of our hair and we had it all Marceled up, vou kow, in little tight curls and then we thought were really defying the gods and that was showing our liberation, urn vum. It was good we do. that when we were young because when we get old we don't have the time orthe money to do it. So it was good we did it sometime in our lives—we curl.d our vair and bobbed it andthat sort of thing.
SAM: Was trust busting a very important idea to the people?
LC: Oh yes, it was. ATt was a young girl in school I was mucv interested inTeddy Roosevelt and the trust busting, find I was a great admirer of Ida M. Tarbell and the trust busting andkaking on the Standard Oil you know, and so on. And T was a great admirer of Ida M. Tarbellafor all the tvg she'd done, nd sve was trust buster 1 among the women.
SAM: I want to ask you about becoming a teacher. And from what vou said to mebefore I had the feeling that your interest In teaching hegan when you were in school and enjoyed helping the younger ones.
SAM: But then fromhere was it hard to become a teacher?
LC: Will, it wasn't too hard, you know. As a young child I hated to see thelittle .... children sitting in the rural school doing rowing, spitting on the desks and tracking mud on the floor andhat sort of thing. And when I got to be one of the bigger girls the teacher would say go over and help them. And rather up the kids out in the cloakroom and teach'em their spelling. And I taught some little folks to read. And it was most rewarding to see them cfcfch on and learn and I enjoyed doin? it and I thought it was one way of quickly getting and getting some money. And when I was aoung firl in hiph school, it was during the war, and one of the girls in'my class, and she hadn't been went in the top ten percent at allbut She went to normal school/ six weeks and got a job teaching for ninety dollars a month,right out of high 8cnool find thought, well if that girl can do it can do it because I had been the top ten percent.
So that fall I went to Leviston Normal, went one year there. And I gotmy first job. And I thought well, I'll save my money and I'll go back to school. And I'll teach and I'll save money so I can get through college. And I went to teach in aWral scbool.went down to Weiser, Idaho and taught at he crystal School. Had great big classes, boys that had- just come home from the older than I was. But we got along fine Many of those folks are still my lifelong friends. I came back and vent to summer school at the University of Idaho and I just loved it and I knew I had to finish college. Taught the next year, taught the Grey Eagle School at Genesee,had all eight grades and three high scvool youngsters. Nearly forty kids altogether went through that schoolroom. And it wasn't easy. You built your own fire; you tried to keep the place halfway clean. You taught like mad all day and taught many of them after school, en I came and taught the Snow School. I put in four Go to summer school every summer and teach. And that's where I met Earl Clyde. And during this teaching time I became greatly enamoured of going cutting arural supervisor. I thought how much wasted time there was in the rural schools; how poorlv trained the teachers were; how little they knew; vhflt um added enricVment they brought to the program. And at the end of four years I went hack to college arid I took twenty-four hours. I did correspondence courses. I gradepapers in three departments1: English, History department for Dr. C. J. which I continued to do till old Dr.B left us, and I graded for the School of Education, Dr. And I had a full-time job that lasted about twenty-four hours a day. But I got through. I find I graduated suma cum laude in those days and that was the highest honors you could make. And I'd had just one year of college, one year of normal and four or five summer schools. So that wasn'td?inS bad was it? Then I had a choice. I was offered the job of history teacher at Whitman College because I'd been a great Karcissa Prentiss Whitman admirer and I'd graded,,papers all that year. So Dr. T. C. Eliot who was on the board and a wonderful old historian asked me to come down. I considered long and hard. Then I got an offer to come to Albion Normal in south Idaho and do critic teaching. And that was the foundation of my dream-that I'd go out and be a rural supervisor. Idaho had tve at that time. So I went to Albion Normal as a critic teacher. And I enjoyed my work—fine bunch of kids, fine bunch of teachers.
SAM: What did the critic teacher do?
LC: We supervised the young teachers learning how to teach, a just imagine.I had forty teachers each semester to supervise. I had way more teachers had children. I had maybe thirty children. Put we rotated them around so and gave them lessons. And I did some good things there because I had had training at the University of Idaho. One thing I did I did the state course of study in remedial reading. They never heard of remedial reading before but I had studied and written for the education department on remedial reading, how to help children with reading problems. And that was the first remedial course of studv ever had. And the state superiendent was elverv fine woman andinterested in it.
I did another good thing for her. She was getting her Master'sthesis from the University of Idaho in grammatical errors and over the years she compiled about ten thousand grammatical errors that the school wanted children of Idaho made. And she them classified into what rule of grammar these grammatical errors were breaking. So with te velP of about forty students I combined them under eighgrammatical rules like: Aplural noun takes a plural verb. Apronoun must agree with its noun in person, number, gender and . Those great rules of grammar in all ten thousand mistakes that were being made could be classified under eight. So I had the forty students sit down, and each one with a PaPer and each one with the eight rules read them, off and they would and a lover of history askad me in my spare time, you know, after cooking for all these hired men, taking care of four kids would I Like to grade parens for him. Well, because the history I said I would. So all his exams came out here and many, many nights they were all spread out on the table while went through them and graded. And you're bound to learn a lot of history from grading papers. And I enjoyed every minute of it. And that's how I learned about our local history toe, was from grading the papers. I also did cop p all the D.A.R. test apers. They carry on aclg contest everv spring writing historical essaysAthe whole university. So I'd bring them out and spread 'em all out on the floor and the best and the next best and then the next best andgo through them and go thr011pv them till we had selected the top ones. And that was an infecting experience too. Well, that's how whenever I talk lathing about history I feel that after al those -ears of grading I should know a little. So that's it, Sam. I may not know it all but I have picked up a little history.
SAM: A little bit hcre and there.
LC: Alittle bit here and th,re and most of its pretty authentic cause ifit wasn't right I had to go look it uP and find out what the answer was. So I still have a little of that.
SAM: You have a lot of it.
LC: Anyway, i loved it sam. It was fun. And who are we to say where we makethe biprest contribution? None of us know, you know.
SAM: What were your dreams about what could be done in the rural schools?
LC: Well, I hated the way they read. The children weren't learning to read.They wer word readers, fad I was far in advance of my time when I help me decide which rule of grammar these grammatical errors were violating. And we got them all down to eight rules of grammar. And that was a big contribution.
And Mabel Lyman Allen MeConnell got har master's on that.And that was good that she did. And it was god for those forty teachers that they had that experience and it was very good for me to have had tve background and the training so I could elp her get her master's thesis in it. And that was a fine experience. 3ut down there I became disillusioned with the teaching because here were old women still teaching—seventy, seventy-two years old. And they were at the end of the trail. And they were looking forward to going out to old people's homes and spending the last days of their lives and I thought there wasn't much for them to look forward to, you know, after all these years of teaching. So I decided when I was down there I better come home and marry Earl Clyde before he changed his mind. And I was so lonesomejfway back out of civilization. And while I liked my job and I had good kidS I decided I'd come home and marry Earl. And that's what I did. And I taught one year after that at the Smith School close to whe-e we lived at that time. find then I just started a school for one and after that for one and twoand two and three and four of my own kids. But I served on the school board here. I served fifteen years altogether on the local school board," when we consolidated served on Moscow School And of these bhings Tdreamed of doing in ether schools I did for our own schools. So it wasn't am of it wasted, you know. And (he other thing f did' which Ive enjoyed and I'm still enjoying. Dr. who's avery dear friend of mine and a gentleman thought they should read to find out, read in answer to a question. That it was no Pleasure to sit and Listen to them read. They weren't going to be dramatic readers and entertain hUge audiences. And here we had them getting up and reading just was bored to tears with it. You could hardly stand to listen to them. And I thought well, let's teach them to read to find out, read to answer questions, read to follow directions, read for anything but don't read to entertain other people peoause you aren't entertaining era. nead silently, quickly and later on everybody agrees that that was right, you know. And down at School I had a little girl that could read six hundred words a minute and that was just fantastic for ose days. And shefessed the highest the state. And sle was entirely taught by reading by sentences, reading that way. And it was most revolutionary for back in 1926 and
SAM: Did you come to this by yourself or were there other people. . .?
LC: Oh, there were lots of other people, yeah. There was William Gray whowrote the curriculum on reading in 1926 right while I was a student in college. And we studied all his yearbook on it. The whole yearbofck from N. E. A., National Association, yeah. It's all devoted to reading,- what's wrong with reading. And he certainly influenced me and then I saw it in my own teaching that we just had had the wrong concept of having And they'd get up and limp through And I had always gone through the lesson and taught the new words before started and it was just most revolutionary for those days. And when I was a critic teacher I taught the same way.Id teach 'em to read to find out, read to follow instructions, read for anything. Read for your own enjoyment, but don't read for my enjoyment. Read for your own.
SAM: How could you implement that with the kids? How could you get themto actually do that?
LC: Oh, well. There are many, many gamesyfor example: There are many, many. . .Cards, card reaffling, sight reading, hold up a card with a whole sentence on it just for a minute. What d'd that tell vou to do? Maybe it's run to the door. See they don't read out they go do it. Put your finger on the table. Fut your book en the desk. Go to the stove. Go shut tve door. Go open the door. Mead to follow instructions. All they had to do.Just know what the card said and do it. And they don't have to pick out every single word and say the word. Just do what it told -you . If there's a long list of colors. Now one color tells you, find tve one word that tells you. See, don't read the whole thing. Just find one word. And that's lets better. That's the way we all read every day. We've learned It through necessity. But back in 1925 and '26 it was revolutionary. But just the samethe course of study that I wrote for remedial reading in Idaho was the first one ever published. And it s.s™ good. After these years . I found one in the university library not too long ago, the old state course of study. And by golly it's still good psychology. It's good fundamental reading teaching. And I've always had adeer interest in the reading.
SAM: Did you fnd it a difficult decision to make between a career in teachingand marriage and raising a family?
LC: it wasn't difficult after I went down to the Normal School andsaw the . The women who had grown old in the teaching profession. Many of them were embittered. They were sorry that they hadn't had children 5-7 of their own and raised a family and savored life in many different aspects. And I felt that Twas right in leaving while I the opportunity and was still young enough and Ttve never £gretted it.
SAM: and I would think tvat having an Independent career would be moreof a women's lib ideal than getting married.
LC: Thats right. And really when I got married I hadn'trealized that I'd have four babies in four years. I had thought really that I could come home and farm and help with my husband's work and teach. And I could have except that the Depression came on in 1929 and my first baby was born. And married women were all kicked out of their jobs. Nobody could teach if were married. Moscow lost about ten very fne teachers because they were married. And that's the only thin? they had against the. Said,"There's two people hcldiKro jobs there. Thamarried women ad to ret out." So T would ave lost ray job if I had of and me. And by that time the children were growing ur and needed me and I rut my time into te; cving them and velping them with their school' ork. And by thejrthey were big enough to Fo to school and get outon their own by that time we were farmlnjl a lot of land and there was a world war on. And once again I had more than I could do to raise the children and cook for men. And we farmed over about 1200 acres, scattered out. Take luncv to one field and lunch to another and so on. And never did think again that I would go back to teaching because as as the money went the little I would have made teaching wouldn't have offset the waste and the loose ends at hose. And I put my life into the four children and they've all been a credit to all of us.
SAM: What tjas this thinking on kicking out the women who were married? Theyfelt tvat they didn't need the mone?
LC: Tvat's right. They felt that there were two people on the payroll.So no married woman could get a job. Oh, I saw some of the best teachers inposcow all kicked out, urn hum, urn hum.
SAM: Do you think that the women were about that?
LC: Well, they acompeted it as part of the necessity because Moscow stood in thebreadline. It was just"ferrible. he banks closed. Everything shut. There was no money. People that you never dreamed of were getting welfare food. Our minister at our church worked with tve Red Cross and so did I. And there was a family north of town who had been quite well-to-do and a baby was born. They didn't have atehet or ablanket to wrap the baby in. We got some newspapers and wrapped the baby up in newspapers till some neighbors came in and brought some towels we could tear up. And it was really just pathetic. Milk, eggs—I solr1 eggs eight cents a dozen. I had five winter. had no place to go and I had a cellar full of food. We had beef that we could kill and pigs that we could kill. And the five of themfetayed here with us and just boarded because they had no rlace to go and we couldn't turn then out.
SAM: Where did tvey come from? Were they the hired men?
LC: They were really the hired men. In those days, really the hired men you justhad em in the summer and after harvest they went to the woods or they went someplace else to work. That was the way you hired your men on a faym. You hired them just for seasonal work. But goodness with winter coming on and these young boys no place to go. We couldn't do it. And I said,"Well, we have a cellar full of food, we have pigs we can butcher, find these men helped us get it. They can stay and eat with us." "they did. And one of them stayed with us twenty years afterward and worked for us all those years and he's like our own boy. But that was how bad times were. So I didn't feel that it was discrimination for those married women to give up their jobs. I thought it was just only fair to share. If tve man had a job and was wcrking.then let the woman quit her job and let some other womanfio didn't have a job have it, whose husband didn't have a job have it. And I thin'' it was all rigvt.
SAM: When did it hit? Was it 1929 hat it hit?
LC: Well, maybe not til . '30. I think it was right it its worst in '32 (erewhen Roosevelt went in. '31 and '32 were the worst on the farmers cause we just went down, down, diown. We sold wheat for twenty-two cents a bushel. And those were bad years. We didn't have enough money one winter to nay the hired wen even. And they stayed until we could. That's one winter that we boarded them all through, paid them a little along as we could..They had food and a warm clace and they would sit and play cards and they would have a little snoosa from town or a little cigarettes or something and that was the sum. But all of them were very good and they helped me with the dishes and we made it. It was bad times. As we started out we had bought a four hundred acre ranch over here—got it —eighty dollars an acre. It would bring eight hundred dollars today. And we lost that in the Depression. We couldn't ray the interest on it; we could pay the taxes on it. There just wasn't enough wheat to go round. They were the bad rays, all right.
(End of Side C)
LC: . . .a man named Schultz. And he was the father of Dr. Edwin tchultzwho was head of the Bacteriology Department at Leland Stanford University. And he is the man who invented tvis way of gold plating the noses of the children so they wouldn't get polio. And they did it frr a long time, for many years. And this old, refined, lovely old gentleman that lived with us was the father of Dr. Edwin Schultz. And I was surprised because here I ricked up a Time magazine. Here was a big article that long about Dr. Edwin Schultz. nd then Dr. Edwin here that spring and visited and kind of looked the situation over, you know, about his dad. And when he saw that T was so good to hi- and treated him so well. All he really did was go out in the yard and watch the kids that they didn't get out under the horses feet and that sort of thing. And he said,"Well.Lola, I'll just leave Papa here happy here and satisfied and I couldn't do ny better you're doing." And he gave him about fifty dollars for a little spending money and he said,"Well, we'll just let you stay here." he did. He stayed here untiihe got so eld he had to go into some kind of a home and then Edwin care and got |?im.
SAM: Well, when you kept the men through the winter and fed them then whenthe spring came what would happen then?
LC: well, they went in the fields then. We had teams—horses, horseseverywhere. And they took e teams and went in the field and plowed and got he;r meal. And some of those boys, all they were getting was addollar a day. And we had a job getting dollar a day or !em. Can vou feature that? But the one thing they did have, they had loads of good food. You know grea big rlatters of stew, carrots, cabbage, parsnips, onions, potatoes heaped up around it And tve table would be nulled out til it reached clear across. Homemade bread, lots of hot biscuits, big apple cobblers—we had lots of apples. And cut up a big pan of apples like tuat and cream en it. And we had cows we milked. All of'em had milk at the table three times a day if they wanted it. So we made it through those years.
SAM: How many people did you have staying with you at once at a time?
LC: Well, five. Two winters five of these men.
SAM: Plus. . .
LC: Plus my own kids which was two and her three and then fourthat way. And tven in tve summer and in the harvest! oh we had dozens. Like in this piece about when Alexander 56 came I had about seventeen men. We had horse combines, you see, and about four or five men on every combine. And boythat just took'em, And part of the time we were putin'up vay as we harvested hay men. And hay men, that was the worst
SAM: How long would you hive for during the summer there? Would that be a verylongperiod of time?
LC: oh yeah, we harvested for over two months. Ve'd start abcu the firstof July July and August. And one year we were way ur into September with it. There were three months of it. All those did have some good help. I had h real good woman work for me, a Mrs. Clark. She was down and out. We ricked tvem up walking on tve highway, destitute.
SAM: Did you know them?
LC: No, no we picked un anybod in those days. It was fine. Picked emup and she wanted a job. She had to have a job. And he didn't want to he wanted to go someplace else. So he said he'd leave his wife with us. So she came here and stayed y.nd she worked or eigvt dollars a raont1 . helping me the year Jrlene was a baby. And oh she was the best help. I haven't heard from her for years but she was a wonderful woman. Couldn't have got tue kids raised without her. And 1 just bless all those women that stayed by me and helped me. Sam: How many acres were you farming?
LC: For a while we had over two thousand. Through those bad years when youcouldn't make expenses, see. We had about two thousand acres and there'd be noth'ng left, just nothing. And we didn't have fertilizer in those days. Gee,if we got forty bushels we just thought we were in heaven. We just thought we vad the most wonderful crop We didn't fertilize.
SAM: But there was no market for your wheat?
LC: Oh, no, twenty-two cents a bushel, you know. Mo, there was no market.So no wonder we all thought that Franklin Roosevelt was the most wonderful person that ever lived. It was the first light at the end of the tunnel, was Franklin Roosevelt. I remember him saying "We have nothing to fear but fear itself." I sat here ;nd heard it on. Oh dear. No wonde? he was God to us.
SAM: You came out of a real Republican family. Was that a hard Was that hardfor you to accept?
LC: no, I became a Roosevelt Republican right then and there havebeen ever since. Oh, I tell you he was wonderful. It was first caring for thecommon man that we'd seen. And with the coming of electricity it just revolutionized life on the farm. No water, no electric iron, no heat, no nothin, no lights. And here came, we could read again. The children, they couldn't tell the difference between the country cvildren and the town children in the town schools anymore, fhey were the dirty ones, the bedraggled ones, tve ones with dirty hair and dirty necks, those wen the country kids. And now here they were— as clean and sparkling as anybody. Little dresses washed and ironed until they shone, you know. And no more of that ironing on those old wood stoves,and couldn't get the irons hot. And, oh dear.
SAM: When did th t come in?
LC: About '3, about '3. And it just revolutionized life. We had runningwater in the house. Toilets in the house, fo more going out to Mrs, Jones through four feet of snow andraggin the babies with you. No one wvo hasn't gone through, it can know what it meant. Why, no wonder we thought Franklin Roosevelt was God. It's just no wonder. And we had begped Washington Water Power to give us some, The line, Washington Water Power went right through our land. We gave them an easement to go through Jhe land. And we said,"We don't want any money for an easement. Give us some electricity off of it." Well, if we'd put in charge our own transformer tvey would us five hundred dollars. Well, nobody had five hundred dollars.
SAM: Five hundred for what? Just to hook you up?
LC: Yeah, to hook us up. We'd have to build a line part1; ays and put in atransformer to bring the high-powered electricity down to our unit. Why, we didn't have it. So when REA came with that electricity it just made a new life for everybody. It was just wonderful. You could go out to the hsrn at night without that lantern. Go out and turn on a switch and there were your cows and your horses and you could take care of em. No one will know what a difference it made. Oh dear. I think that instead of before B.C. and after it should be before electrclty and electricity. I really do. It was wonderful, It made a new world for us.
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Segment Synopsis: May Arkwright Hutton. She learns of labor rights in the Ohio Valley. She keeps a boarding house in the Coeur d'Alenes, known for her wonderful cooking. Her wedding. She gets rich on Hercules Mine stock. She goes to Spokane to enter high society and fight for women's right to vote. She puts the ladies in their places. Her poem about the Elks. Her husband establishes the Hutton Settlement, a home for orphans, in her memory. She led the Idaho suffrage movement, (cont.)
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Segment Synopsis: Becoming a teacher. Her interest began by helping younger children while a schoolgirl. Going to school and teaching. Desire to become rural supervisor; work as a critic teacher. She writes first Idaho course in remedial reading. She reduces thousands of common errors to basic rules of grammar for another teacher's doctorate. Decides to marry after seeing spinster teachers. Serves on local school board, grades papers for Dr. Brosman and learns about history. She wanted children to read for comprehension, a revolutionary development.
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Segment Synopsis: Depression days. Married women teachers were fired in Moscow during the depression. Poverty of local people in the depression - wrapping a newborn baby in newspapers. Keeping the hired hands through the winter - one year they hadn't the money to pay them. Family couldn't pay interest or taxes on a recent piece of land they'd bought.
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