Below is unprocessed text taken from a scan of our PDF document. It's messy;we know. If you would like to help us clean up these transcripts, please email Devin Becker at email@example.com
SS: That spot, Bovard, down there in the canyon.
GUSTAV CARLSON: Oh, Bovard. Bovard was never a town, never even a store there.
SS: Was it a mill?
GC: Well, there was a mill later, but we had a telegraph station there;they had to have relays on the telegraphs, but the main thing,' they put a sidetracking in there- had been put in there- for trains to on an old years before, so the trains could meet there. It was in 1911- well, I tell you, it began in 19- , well, the winter of 1909 and '10, there was a fellow who had to sell off land there and he got rid of his place and stuff on the top of the hill there and there was some timber on 'em and some timber on the Bear Ridge side. Bovard's just below the end of Burnt Ridge, a little ways further down, quarter of a mile where the canyon flat tens out. They had a little telegraph station there, oh ever since- I think they installed the telegraph line, but that was about all. Maybe those sidetracks were there so.they could drive cattle down and load them^as far back as I can remember they weren't used for any thing. But they bought the rights to timber up the Bear Ridge side- Little Bear side and the Burnt Ridge side to log in there otfseveral places and they milled there until it-^ I figure it was about the win ter of, oh, about 1911 they began moving moving in there.
SS: You say, "they", who—?
GC: The Bovard Company, the Bovard Lumber Company. It was locally ownedby people around Troy, that had invested in the company.
SS: Independent or was it tied up with Troy Lumber?
GC: No, it wans't Troy Lumber Company, because I don't believe thewere it But oh think Nelson- Emil Nelson, I don't think he could be living now, but he was down there as director, I think he was part owner of the operations.
SS: And what was the access to Bovard from Burnt Ridge?
GC: The access pretty bad. old road down the end of Burnt Ridgeabout half way down the canyon that can be used. It .went down to where that hay field, ere on the hillside and around to where there was a gold house that was built by Coverland, I mentioned that to you before, the Hagen family lived there, when I first remember it. And then there had been also a very old road in which the rocks had just been rolled out of the way and dug in a little, down to the railroad tracks, so it evidently had been used once before to give access to that railroad. From there on it was just- you just had to drive along the railroad and sometimes in places if they had wagons going in there they had to straddle of the rails in order to find room, it wasn't wide enough, so they had to know when the trains were coming to get their stuff out. But that's the way they went on down and around to the very edge of the point and there they built a cookhouse. And they had a bunkhouse also, built across on a stream there. They the stream^ around and made a little dam across that so they could handle the logs and put in a very small saw there that handled it. And for two or three years they were turning out the timber there, and then it was through.
SS: You say it was out by 1911?
GC: Well, no, they started in 1911- I think the main saw work didn't *start until 1912. They had- I think there were a couple of cutters up there in the woods, I remember two of 'em, that were cutting down the trees and putting 'em in lengths, before that, in the early spring and winter and they were getting ready to go there and that was- really, about 1912 before they actually started.
SS: Did this kind of operation pay?
GC: I think it paid. They sold the timber, they got the logsoff. They used a donkey engine, you know. You know what they were?
GC: Wind up with a cable and pull timbers down. For part of it and thenthey used teams for part of it, pulling the logs in. And they had that installed there and a little dam and a cookhouse. They built a bunkhouse up On what was like a little island between the two streams, one coming from Troy direction and one coming from the CfouJn A canyon. Oh, it was a crowded place to work on, but they worked out and heaved those sandbars around til they had a place for the lumber to be piled, and then they ran a series of tracks right into where they could draft the cars in and load 'em right there. I don't know, they took out a lot of timber there. They worked there for a couple of years or so. Let's see- I think that was about 1914 they was through. Couple of year's operation. They didn't have expensive machinery, as far as that goes. Not like these that are expected to go for years, so they put in as simple stuff as they could, they knew about how long it'd take. Probably took a little longer than they thought it would take.
SS: Did this employ Burnt Ridge people at all or did they all come downfrom Troy?
GC: No, Burnt Ridge- I don't know if any Burnt Ridge- I don't think anyBurnt Ridge worked down there. They were operating mostly in the summer when they were busy on the farms.
SS: Well, when-
GC: They used to buy milk at our place. (Chuckles)
SS: How many guys would you guss would there have been down there?
GC: Oh, five or six around the mill, the engine and then the number ofsawyers varied, and teamsters logging it in. They didn't have the same amount all the time.
SS: Would it all be timber from very close to the mill?
GC: Very close, they followed up the ridges. They took some off of thekillt ice place that we bought, the Sanders place and off I guess, too. place happened to be the next one. And fr»m the places on Ridge side, that would have been partly Johnson's and I don't think they went as far north as opposite the Rudeen place, but they went as far as the Porter, but I don't believe they ever got the Porter canyon taken. That timber wasn't sold- somebody didn't sell that timber to them. So fr just aboutAup to what is now the north edge of Anderson's farm. And maybe they went a little further on the Bear Ridge side, I don't know about that, but I don't think so.
SS: We're only talking about a couple of miles.
GC: Oh, yes, we're only talking about a couple of miles of timber and itwasn't all good timber on that area, either. But there was quite a bit of heavy timber there. It hadn't been timbered out before. It wasn't second-growth. had been passed over. The only thing they'd taken out was, well, like going down there and cutting a tree for some purpose, poles or something and taking 'em away.
SS: But they mostly bought timber not land? They didn't hold too muchland as compared to the timber they bought?
GC: No, no, they didn't buy any land, they just bought the timber. Ithappened that we bought 200 acres there in the winter of 1909 and '10. They went through at the same time. They bought the timber for a certain price and we bought the land for a certain price. That's the way it was sold. Land and timber separately.
SS: Was it all canyon?
GC: It was all canyon, uh-huh. And it didn't quite include all ourtimber, either, because they bought it up to a certain line on a certain forty and there was a little clump of good timber on the west side of thafline that was not included. And I think if you go down there today, you'll probably see that the timber is higher on that claim than below it, thatA '. second growth.
SS: After you got the land did you, did you use it for pasture?
GC: Yes, it was just part of pasture-that particular part hung in asteep canyon between the end of place and the end of our place, and it wasn't must good for pasture. In fact is, the whole hillside there was- oh, cattle seldomr grazed there, it was too mach straight up and down, and it just kind of got brushed over with snowberry and-
SS: Was the land much good to have then, for you?
GC: Well, that just came as part of lying on the same forties, eightiesas some good land. At the top, running through the top, let's see — The top eighty of that- the top 120 had about oh, seventy-five acres, of good farming land of the 120. No, forty and- actually, we split one eighty diagonally lying on one side of a creek and you take one forty below that, there was only eighty acres and actually there about- most of that was plowable land, there was just that steep hill side acreage going down there where it was not good land. The rest of it got all broken up eventually. About seventy acres there.
SS: When you bought that land on top did it have timber on it at thetime, some of it?
GC: Some of it.
SS: And thi was logged by this company?
GC: This company, yes.
SS: Masw it a little easier for you.
GC: Yes, they took that off there; the big trees and left little treesand brush there. We got ten or eleven acres also, of canyon land and a canyon orchard, planted on the hillside, too on a more or less le veled out land on benches in the canyon along with it.
SS: You said canyon orchards? There was orchards down there already oryou planted?
GC: No, we didn't plant it. The fellow that hacd homesteaded it there,Coburg and he built that little house down on a flat. He had put an orchard up on some steeper ground above his house, around the house ther e he had and hay. But he planted the orchard up on the hillside there, and I think it's probably still there. I don't know if they've taken care of it or not during these years. We used to pick things down there. A few times we had such a heavy pear crop down there that we hauled boxes of pears to town for several days there; two loads a day to town after they were picked.
SS: These fellows- families that lived there in the canyon, did theyturn over more? Was that a rougher place - rough place for people to make a dollar?
GC: It wasn't a place where anybody could make a living, they all workedat something else. But they had a passion to own a piece of ground and live there.
SS: But what I was wondering did they stay?
GC: No, they- none of them stayed any length of time. You see, theywere isolated; hard to get to town; tough road out; Tough road down. And, they just quit, you know, moved away. Fa$t is, in my memory, and I think- if I can remember it, I hadn't started to school yet, I know that, that fellow Hagen that was a railroad worker he rented a place and just to keep his family and he worked for the railroad. He didn't buy in, but I guess he found it was too inconvenient a place to keep his family and get something to eat. He could raise some garden there, maybe that's what induced him to-
SS: Hagen worked for the railroad; would he just hike down to Bovar?
GC: Well, I think he- they was having little flatcars, you know, he wasprobably workin in that area part of the time between Troy and Kendrlck.
SS: Probably could get on at Bovard, more or less.
GC: Yes, or anyplace where they ditched their flatcars, little handcarsyou know, they used to use. ump up and down and make *em run.
SS: Do you think these gltys were- these families were thought of as- byBurnt Ridgers as being kind of outside the community?
GC: Well, they were there early, some of those before some of the BurntRidgers came. But the ones that I remember, they were recent comers as compared to these people that had built houses in the canyon and homesteaded. I don't know- people were al ready surrendered and left.
SS: And they'd homesteaded some then?
GC: Some of 'em homesteaded. They had an ideaAall land was going to bevaluable someday. They didn't know how long it was going to be, but they were optomistic I guess. (Chuckles) I know, we always speculated what in the world they went down in those canyons for to build houses. That was the general consensus of opinion for 'em. Most people couldn't understand what came over them to do that. They learned too that they weren't in a very good place.
SS: Well, do you think that the reason might have been that they werenot farmers?
GC: No, they^weren't farmers. No, as far as I know, they didn tworkat farming. I don't know what Cusick and Monahan worked at regular ly, I think they did mostly teamster work. Take them away from their places and leave their families there. Hagen he workedhe worked, I don't think he stayed, I think he'd given up on his place and was ready to sell it. And Sanders bought it before he left. Sanders left about 1906. He bought that canyon land- our buy amounted to 200 acres that time, he only had originally 160 and we got 120 of that and another eighty acres and that amount there. s he got it very cheap, you know, just wanted to get rid of it and it made better pasture for his cattle.,, Actually there are no fences down there separating the two, just cows that pastured But he was probably- in order to keep somebody else from buying up that area and fencing it off and cutting him off from pasture, because nobody put up any fences. It would pay him to have done that.
I wonder if they expected that a road would go through down- toPotlatch from there. If they expected that- The only feasible route besides the one over American Ridge around the canyon, would be to run one right down the railroad tracks from Troy to Kendrick or else, if they wanted to come up over Burnt Ridge would be to take off down that draw, which is right at the end of what was our place, which is Trout's now. His and Anderson's. And that thing right down to the level of the grade there and come down to the bi^ botton there. They would have road- that way they'd have about- they'd save the distance between Bovard, where the Bovard mill stood and Troy, of new road, they could have used the Burnt Ridge road. And it isn't about three miles down from there that there is a old sidetacking called^Spur. And there they had warehouses built up- it was a grain receiving town and there was a road down from the Bear Ridge and I think one from the Ameri can Ridge, because there were some bench farms in there on American Ridge that are closer that way than anywhere else. And they used to come down over the Bear Ridge grade and unload their wheat there. And they had a good warehouse; I saw them, oh, the last time I sup pose, about 1930 or so and they were still standing just fine there. They'd been wellbuilt and looked like no deterioration at all^ those grain warehouses. houses, I suppose they'd be called.
SS: And from Clyde's Spur then how far would they be down-
GC: Be only about three miles more to Kendrick and there was a road thatran down that way.
SS: From Clyde's Spur to Kendrick?
GC: To Kendrick. A road had been laid out; I suppose it had deterioratedfrom lack of use, because^that taking on grain from there died out. They had a better road down over the end of Bear Ridge right into Kendrick, and they'd do that and American Ridge had a grade into Kendrick and all that. Some of those things- Akind of roads- they was all just dirt, horse manipulated were pretty bad sometimes. And that probably accounted for Clyde's Spur, little bit shorter haul.
SS: And probably one of the farmers would man the warehouse or something?
GC: Oh, they could get somebody there to man the warehouse. Actually,there happens to be a little house and long after they'd abandoned taking any of the wheat down there they'd had occupants. It just a little, oh, a hundred yards on a little slope and it flattened out to quite a little space before it went up again. And there'd been an orchard built there and there'd been some land broken out to have a little hay field. Berries planted, and things like that.
SS: This was right above Clyde's Spur?
GC: Just above Clyde' Spur. I know that very late there were people 11-e ving there. And I suppose they either went up by way of Bear Ridge or else went down to Kendrick from there. Somebody occupied that house for sometime. I think even in the grain hauling days, maybe it was at that house or maybe somewhere else, somebody used to have a little coffee and sandwich standAthere. The grain haulers wanted a cup of coffee before they went back up.
Clyde's Spur, there was one? That's something.
But Bovard was only really a siding before the mill went in.It was just a siding, as far as I know, it was, it had a telegraph station and they used to have a telegraph office operator down there. I don't understand all that much about the telegraphs in that time but they must have relay things.
He was stationed there? And lived there?
No, he didn't live there, he walked down from Troy.
There was a little office there for him or something?
No, no real office at all, just a place for to sit in there. Spentsome hours there. I don't know what it was,Aguess maybe he had to give reports if the trains were coming through on time.
SS: This is when you were a boy?
When I was a boy. I know by the time they started that mill he wasgone, they didn't use it anymore. I don't know if the little building is still there or not. It was more or less built like ^ phone booths that you see on the streets. (Chuckles)
Did you ever hear any stories about the people that lived in thecanyon?
No particular stories. No, I didn't. I think Cusicks stayed aroundthere a while. I knew people that may have known them. And Bruce's dad he was about twelve years olejer than I was, if he were alive to day he could tell you about that. Butr^they were there after we came to the farm before I was ever able to rememberr because I know he got acquainted with them; the Cusicks. And his son-in-law Monahan built another house up a little further. He built a better house than any of the rest of them. And he did the same thing; built a little or chard around his house on a flattened bench and evidently he raised garden there. The soil had gone back to brush springing up and all that when I saw it, but you could see that it had probably been plowed out at one time.
SS: You know tha thing- talking about these canyon people makes me thinkabout it- the geographical setup of the country out there with the ridges and the steep canyons, that had a lot of effect on the way people lived, didn't it? I mean, that was quite a barrier, those canyons, wasn't it?
GC: Yes, they were. Actually they cut them into communities. Peopleon one side of the canyon formed a community like American Ridge and on the other side like Burnt Ridge, the other side like Little Bear Ridge. Those people all knew each other much better than they did the people on the other ridges. And the schoolhouses, of course, had to be made with some thought as to how many - how the kids could get there. So they had a couple of schoolhouses on Little Bearthan longer ridge Big Bear, I think they had even more on American Ridge. Burnt Ridge being the shorter one, had only one. And the kids at the upper end of that place probably often went to Troy.
SS: What was it like getting across a canyons—
GC: We used to go across there horseback riding, but^we gradually ceasedwith that, too. There were trails, that already sort of used. One led from our place down west .the canyon where they had a gates in the railroad fence and a gate on the other side and then we crossed the creek down there, there was a crossing and then there was one that led on the slant all the way around, a fairly easy slant came up that draw where the old Harmon place was. Oh, once in a while probably some people met each other when they used to go down to fish, because there used to be much more water in those streams and they could catch fish through the summer. The Compton family, that littd was an old family on there, Ajust about opposite us and just below them the Harmon family, and the Cummings family stayed across the other way, south. — usually meet in Troy and sometimes1! My brothers got acquainted first over there and the reason is that on the other side of Ameri can Ridge is Driscoll Ridge and the upper part where it ceases and after that further down on American Ridge is Fix Ridge, and I had two uncles that had farms over there, my father's brothers, and that was the shortcut to get over there, there was no road and had to go a long ways fround by road and up through Troy and down as far aswell, as Miller's trestle down here and then take this road south to get there. The wagon road. So we used that trail down there and came up on American Ridge and went down the other side by Bethel Church and followed a trail down that canyon, on the side that after you-came opposite the farms that my two uncles had. They had farms that just about extended Fix Ridge to the bottom and there were trails up there too that were being used for crossings. There seemed to be quite a few trails for crossing. I don't remember a good trail for crossing from Burnt Ridge to Bear Ridge, but they're it by by going dowji the end of the r^dge and finding a way up that hill side there. Because I know they rode over that way to Hu^'s agood deal. Huffs was the last family on the Little Bear Ridge, like we were the last family- our's was the last land on Burnt Ridge, use able land.
SS: How long would it take you horseback to cross from one to the other?
GC: Oh, took several hours. Yes, you'd go down, you had no placewhere you could run a horse, see. Too steep down one and too steep up the other. Trails weren't that wide, either or that smooth, that you'd probably walk all the way. But you see, down the hillside there's be hours down, oh, it'd be closer-to half a mile than a quarter and same up the other side.
SS: Than across the bottom?
GC: Well, across the bottom was very little. The railroad track thereis- occupies one side and the creek next to it. So, you're talking about traveling a little over a mile and taking three hours?
About a mile- oh, no, it wouldn't take that long. You'd get acrossthe top to American Ridge in an hour and a half. But they had 4 lon ger canyon to cross to get over to- oh, they could start sometimes during the day and get there before night.
SS: When your mother went midwifing, would she walk or ride?
GC: Well, they generally tried to see that she'd get A ride, sometimesthings came up too- I don't know thes^early ones that they had there by sometimes the lack of horses- had so few horses on the farms. But there was another family that came at a later time and built" a canyon house. Moody; Pete Moody. And he homesteaded 160 acres that had just very little farm land on top, about an acre or two, but he That was on the American Ridge side, the timber was. And he sold his timber to the mill, he and a feller next to him^had canyon land with timber on it. And that was a mill, too, that mill was located up frombetween Bovard and Troy, oh, it would be a good mile and a half of the distance from Bovard up, off in the direction of Troy. That was called Hall's mill. Hall ran it. He was just an^dividual contractor. Set up a small mill and worked there for a couple of years and Pete Moody was there, he worked right the mill, he was a woodsman. He'd cut the trees and had them all ready for them to drag down off his farm and so he got quite a bit for his timber. And then he worked for them logging off the other places. One of his daughters, I think lives in town yet.
SS: Was it one of his children that died in the early years that he washere?
GC: Oh, there were two children tho^t died down there and one that wasgrown up died from a- oh, I don't know- violent bleeding caused by I don't know just what. He had*about seven children and I think about four of them's living. One of 'em ran that little- you know where that little- what they call fjoe^apples now? TneY made it: all into, entirely into a restaurant now, but it used to be, I don't know a variety store with a coffee counter. And she and her husbandor she ran it after that, I never saw her husband there. She ran that for some time there just lately, I think she's probably still around town.
SS: Well, talking about dying children; what about tuberculosis? Whatabout tuberculosis, was it a problem?
GC: Some of 'em had tuberculosis, yes. ftr. W«tf)his place was just northof ours, Ed Ramsdale owns it now, his wife died of TB. She had TB and her brother I think had it, too, that was Kellberg, was her broThis is the last of the Gilder interviews ther, but he. suryiyec until he w.as near eighty, I guess. Anyway, sort of overcame it. But in that fmmily now, that second daughter, two elder daughters had come to TB Hilma and Minnie.
SS: Which family is that
GC: Kellberg family. Ernie Anderson's wife was the third daughter inthat family, and Hilma and Minnie, their pictures are on that when they were in school; TB. And the Pearson family, two of those boys got TB. Willie Pearson and Walter Pearson, the two oldest boys. They lived where Rudolph Smith lives now, there was 160 there.
SS: Were those sicknesses around the same time or were they spread over-
GC: They seemed to have contracted them somewhere near the same time.But Mrs. I think had been infected with it when she came out, she was sickly then, though she seemed to maintain pretty good health for a number of years. I think she had it when she arrived from Oklahoma. That's where they came from.
SS: Did people think that's how it got started on the Ridge?
GC: Well, no, I don't know whether it got started- There were other people in other places around town, other ridges had TB, too. Just seemed to be something that people got in those days and didn't know how to take care of it. And the kind of treatment they had didn't seem to help.
SS: What did they do?
GC: Well, most of tem did but very little. Some few got out and- andwhen they found Hilma had TB they sent her to a sanitarium in Colorado. ...she was for some time. And I donrt know, somehow or other itshe didn't improve, they kind of kept her at a level for a while. She died about l30. And she got it active again- she'd had it somewhat maybe in her she got it active - she was teaching school out there someplace and her brother was going to take and farm an area oyer on Texas Ridge that Kellberg had bought. He bought some land over there, he kept it, I don't know maybe the family still owns it. But they had bad weather and she was working hard helping him with, everything and inconvenient household there. They had to carry water from the well- that had never been installed in that place he had, old primitive structure that he had on that land and she got awful colds and probably didn't stop working to take care of tem and she got worse and worse and she was just sick and her active case of TB came soon afterwards.
SS: Came back.
GC: No, it came on afterwards.
SS: She got it before?
GC: Not that they ever knew, just seemed to- maybe laid in her system,i dormant. You can test an ordinary healthy person and you can find they have TB in 'em, but it doesn't—
SS: How long did she live after that?
GC: Oh, I think she lived only about- I think she lived three or fouryears. They had her in a sanitarium in Colorado, but she evidently had taken it awfully bad before she ever took treatment.
SS: If you had TB and you were going to be treated at home what couldthey do for you? They had you sleep in a separate place?
GC: Yes, they to isolate everybody. There was the Sturdevant familyrented that land for about two years when I was about nine and ten years old that we later bought, rented it from the man owning it then. And they had a daughter that died of TB there. She was mar ried and had four children but her husband- they didn*t really have a place where he could keep her and he took her out and put her in a tent there and she lived, oh, she only lived part of a year after that. She was pretty bad. And, well, I don't know what his work was but 1 belieye he was a railroader, too. I don*t know it at that time but he was dying of cancer at the. time as his wife was dying of TB, but he kept on working as long as he was able to. He had four small children, I guess he thought he had to.
SS: Whatever happened to the children?
GC: Well, the children lived on with their grandparents until about thetime they left Burnt Ridge and then it was too much for the old folks, Sturdevants, they were not young at all, their grandparents weren't and the sisters and brothers of the daughter who died of TB divided the children up among them and adopted them into the families, raised 'em at least. I don't where they were divided exactly, except I know that Grace, the second girl, was raised by Frank Lyon of Texas Ridge, he was married to one of the sisters, Ida.
SS: Who's sister was she, now?
GC: She was a sister of the girl that died. The woman that died of TB.She had, oh, four sisters, I think and three brothers and a number of these kept up the four children and I don^t know whether any of *em took two or not.
SS: He kept the children while he was alive and working?
GC: Well, actually, he 'em with the grandparents there a while thencame back and visited and helped support *em by paying. And he died less than a year- One of the other Sturdevants told me that years later, I didn't know it at the time. You sort of wondered about him that he didn't find a place for his kids, but that was alright, he was ,dying then and was making the best of what he could; worked as long as possible and then died in some hospital.
SS: People like Sturdevants- do you think that they were really, I meanfor her to be living in a tent when she was sick
GC: It was summer.
SS: Oh, the summer.
GC: late spring I guess.
SS: Do you think just perhaps too poor to try to do anything else?
GC: Well, they didn't have money, hadn*t had money at all, and a doctordid what he could for her and prescribed treatment. But I don't know- they didn't do so much, either, those days,
SS: I wonder what kind of treatment?
GC: I don't know that, I haven't any idea what they did. Except theywanted them in fresh air and - they wanted clean air for them and away from other people,infection and keep things clean. And pro bably the same kind of sanitary precautionsTcney take now, only they weren't equipped then- equipped like a hospital to do that, so it probably fell short,
SS: Do you think there was much concern about it spreading?
GC: Oh, yes, they were very much concerned. There was a good deal ofconcern, I know my dad was worried about it. We played with those Kellberg children and he- well, he said stay outdoors, don't go in the house as much as you can. Stay out in the fresh air if you play with those kids. The Pearson boys, too, I don't know it was, oh, get ting cold and I think each one of 'em had had a case of pneumonia before they got TB.
SS: Was sending them to a sanitarium considered the best thing you coulddo?
GC: Well, yes, they did. Now, I don't know whether Will ha^ ever been toa sanitarium or not and maybe his case was a lot like Hilma. He found he wasn*t getting any better and so he left and he lived in a separate room in his own home there . He was a fellow who took pre cautions himself to see that he kept away from infecting people. Walt, he got it later, he was his younger brother, why, about two and a half years 61? so, I gjjess. He went down to California. I think he went to one . of those sanitariums in Arizona first, I'm not sure that that was true, but he came back to Pasadena and lived there. Actually, he had done well in farming before he got this, he died just about '33. And he bought himself a good place there and his sister that was next to him in age, was unmarried, one of his sisters, and she came down there and stayed with him. And he gave her the house, paid in full for her, when he died and she had that house for years afterwards. She lived to be a very old lady eighty-six or seven.
SS: I wonder how tuberculosis did spread, how people thought that it did.Would you have to catch it from somebody else?
GC: That was the general feeling, I don't know. I don't know all thereis to know about TB
SS: But you know, when you compare it with today when it's not hardly aproblem at all-
GC: And it's been cut down tremendously now,
SS: I heard that there was a man who was—people were
GC: I think just too many carriers of some kind. They were strong enoughto throw it off and not get sick, but it was there and it would out, maybe infect somebody else, without knowing it.
SS: I've heard of a man - that a man was killed in a logging accident onthe Ridge. Do you remember that?
GC: Oh, yes! That, I think- one of the boys died before they reached maturity, the other one lived about eighty-six years old or something like that. Right down here at Troy, it wasn't too many years ago that I was up here and talked to him.
SS: Did you hear any story about a horse falling in a well?
GC: A horse falling in a well?
SS: Yeah, on the Ridge.
GC: Well, we had a horse fall into an old cistern once and we managed toget him out.(Chuckles) I didn't know there was any story about that.
SS: I think there was one but it wasn't your horse, I mean, it was anotherWhat happened that time? How did your horse fall in?
GC: Oh, it was a boarded across well, but he was curious and got up thereand pounded away with his hoofs ton the boards and they broke, it was a little platform you know, boarded across. Curious sort of horse, (later) Paul Rudeen married his wife, you djdn*t know Paul.
GC: You know Marvin?
SS: I don*t really know him.
GC: Well, his grandfather on his mother's side, He died inawell digging accident. I don't know how. I don't think it was dril ling; they were digging, hand digging a well. I donrt know any de tails of that, but- I'm not even sure it happened after we came to the Ridge, '99, or it was before I knew anything about- old enough to know anything about people around, because I always remembered her as a widow.
SS: Do you know how he died in the accident?
GC: I don't know just what happened.
SS: Was therepuch water witching done on the Ridge.
GC: I never heard of witching down there, maybe somebody did, but I heardof witching in different places here.
SS: Around this country, you mean?
GC: Oh, yes.
SS: I thought people did it most places. I'm surprised they didn't do itit here.
GC: I never heard of any water witches down there. Most people neverput any stock in it, as far as I know. never heard of somebody witching down there, maybe they did find some of those wells by witching. I couldn't say. (Chuckles) I am sure that nobody on that ridge claimed to be a water witch. They had to have some outsider-
SS: To come in. Where do you think it was concentrated, you know, beliefin water witching? who
GC: I don't know. I've heard of- my sister-in-law just died, Jill's grandyfamong mother, she knew that it was being done on American Ridge, those peo ple over there. Now I guess there are quite a few people that witch around here for water now. I know there was water witching done for Mike Rudeen's big well out there. They found it where the witches claimed- witches said it was.
SS: Did you have a good water supply on your place?
GC: We had one good water supply. One very good spring that never randry. And very early on when I was about five years old we installed a little dam under that sufficient to have water in it to operate a hydraulic ram and laid pipe up the hillside, it was down on the canyon side, up the hillside and put it in a reservoir up there and we got water in the house.
SS: Wasn't that unusual to have a hydraulic dam?
GC: Well, we wasn't the first ones. Dad had seen them operate somewhereelse before we put that one in and it appeared to be working alright on big spring down on one of the other ridges. But that was the only one I think that was ever installed, because most of those springs on the sides were not big springs. I never saw any spring on thee ridge along the hillside that compares to that spring in size. There were other springs that ran smaller streams that they used and building a little protection around rem and making a trough for the cattle they were useable. There were several little springs on our place that worked- one was fairly steady, it probably still is- just a small stream like oh, just like a trickle of coffee out of a, say that little percolator out there that we have, was steady. If I'd a witched for water I'd a witched up in that hillside above it.
SS: Did you have enough water for your needs?
CG: We had enough water for our needs the house and yard and all thecattle and everything like that.
SS: Off the hydraulic ram?
GC: Well, yes, we could store it up in the tank, you see, and keep itrunning enough to keep the tank about full. It would gain on us. If we had it running steady it always gained, kept sending the water higher and higher to an overflow pipe we had. Sometimes we just left the overflow pipe go.Whem lived on that farm for a time, they hooked a hose to the end of it and used it to irrigate a little garden there to keep it going good.
SS: Did you hear about the ice caves?i
GC: They was just about opposite Clyde's Spur, which I referred to alot.
SS: Where opposite? Which direction.
GC: On the American Ridge side, just about opposite Clyde's Spur. I wasnever in them. Sanders knew about them when we came here and my fa ther accompanied him down here once and I think my brother, Carl, went with them and they looked in those ice caves. I believe unprotected the rains would wash down mud, you know and sort of cover the entrance to them. So I don't know if they'd be exposed- I expect they're pro- bably still there.
SS: Were they impressed by them?
GC: Yes, they thought they were- I heard of them first and I never didget down there to see them. I don't know, you had to have somebody guide me to the spot they were covered over, but there were a lot of people that did not know about them, p
SS: Did you ever have that French for a teacher?
GC: Yes, here's his picture. Carlton French, he taught about four yearsI think on the Ridge.
SS: Was he the fellow that you were mentioning to me that was good? Thattalked to the kids about current affairs?
GC: Yes. He's the one. I think he really taught more than most teachersdid, that stuck entirely to the books. regard to classes, he grou ped them a lot, too. He'd have those that sometimes in two or three grades sprung out on reading and certain things, and he could find they could read in one class and had to arithmetic in another, it was alright. He used to consolidate grades one to eight, like they'd have there, so he didn't have to have a class for every grade, a class in every subject for every grade. And it seemed to work just about as well. In fact, I think it got some of 'em ahead faster . that way. They weren't kept in a single grade when they i perform a little bit better- perform in the grade above and learn.
SS: Do you think that he cared about the students more?
GC: I think he did. He was interested in teaching alright. Heteaching. that he
SS: I heard a story about him- used to walk out to school reading abook.
GC: Yes, he did. I saw him doing it lots of times. He'd found a way towalk from Troy, cut off fence- he'd come down the railroad track, opposite, justN opposite the schoolhouse where he took a trail up and followed the fence down there. And I would see him sometimes, he would be reading a book as he walked along. One thing about him, he was a fast walker. He was a small man, short and slender, but he made that trip in a hurry when he started out walking. He just ate up the ground at a steady speed and a fast speed. He was quite active. He'd sometimes play ball with the kids at recess and at games he was quick and active.
SS: You know, a couple of other people from the area have told me thathe was an excellent teacher, that he was really outstanding and he stood out in their minds.
GC: Yeah, he stood out in their minds. Jill's grandmother went to schoolto him over on-
SS: She mentioned that to me.
GC: Yes, and she thought he was pretty good, too. And we liked him onBurnt Ridge, we recognized him as much better than anything we'd had around there up to his time.
SS: Whatever happened to him, do you know?
GC: Well, you know, he was very much interested in this Nazarene Churchdown here, he and his wife, and he went down to South Idaho and V+*^Y Started the Northwest Nazarene. And that was- it started from a sort of a school and built up into a college.
GC: — the high school and their elemeStary school-
SS: So, it started in first grade through.
GC: Yes, right on through and I don't think it began four years- realcollege work for a while.
SS: He taught down there?
GC: And he taught down there in that for quite a few years. And eventually he went to California. Now, one of the boys told me, that met him down there and he knew more about him- well, actually it was be cause of their relationship. His sister married a brother of the Ruvord family- yes, an uncle of the Ruvord children- there's several Ruvord children here. On, two, three. And their uncle married his sister. And that was during the time that he was teaching out there. Both of them were living elsewhere and the family didn't know anything happened. about it until it For that reason, they were more or less in touch with their uncle and he was in touch with his sister. And. said he went into real estate down there after while, a real estate man.
SS: I know Willa thought he was an awful lot better than his brotherBurton, who was so famous.
GC: Burton was the congressman and his brother Frank taught school. Maybeshe meant Frank. Frank was younger than Carlton.
SS: Burton was Carlton's brother?SB: Yes, he was, he was a little bit older, not too much than he was. Burton made congress at a rather youthful age and he had a long career there. A still older brother became a doctor, and he finished as Dean of the Medical School in the University of North Dakota.
SS: Do you think at this period of time that women teachers haq\hit therural schools as much as they did later?
GC: No. There were still quite a few men, oh, I think probably the majoritywere still men- or women- at that time, only there were more menmen afterwards just disappeared. He was one of the last ones I think.
SS: And this was 1910 that he was teaching?
GC: Oh, he had gone- I think he left there about 1913. And I think hewas one of the last of the men teachers in the schools around Latah County here, the country schools around Latah County that was, I think the others had dropped out,
SS: Why do you think the men stopped teaching in the rural schools?
GC: Oh, it was wages were low* they could make more at most anything.Make more logging than they could teaching; or working in a mill. They would have a tough time on supporting a family on that. French worked always during the summers, I know that. He worked- sometimes at the*sawmill in Troy. They used to have a planing mill there and a sawmill both, working together there. He worked in the planing mill was down there and he worked as a carpenter. carpentry somebody building houses. He worked for somebody in building houses. So he was constantly at work.
SS: How strict was he as a teacher?
GC: Well, not really strict. The kids didn't get away with- he didn'tcare too much if somebody spoke to somebody else during the- only if they made a habit of just playing, then he would generally remind them of that, but he never had really any difficulties. Kids liked him enough that they fell in with it and they were not an obstreperous group out there at all. They were pretty mild as compared to some of the kids, even in their own time.
SS: Do you think that was because their parents—
GC: Their parents, yes, they found a kid not getting along in school,theyfdbe more afraid of their parents than they would of the teacher, what they might do about it.
SS: What kind of obedience was expected by the parents?
GC: Oh, they expected pretty total obedience, most of 'em, I think.Probably didt't always get it. (Chuckles)
SS: Now, I'm really curious about that because that's the sort of thingthat you really can't put a finger on it anymore, I mean, nowdays the way kids are raised, it's a little different than it was then.
GC: It's permissive.
SS: How much would a parent
GC: Oh, they generally didn't interfere with their fun and play and allthat sort of thing, games and all that. But they wanted the kids to behave themselves. They wouldn't stand for a kid being insulting to people or anything like that, to talk up. I mean, you found a kid bejng sassy to some neighbor of theirs for no good reason, he'd probably get a darn good lickin' . (Chuckles)
SS: What about to the parent? Did you call your father, 'sir'?
GC: No.AWe did what he told us to and that was about all.
SS: Did you need to be told very much what you needed to do?
GC: Quite a bit. (Chuckles)
SS: You waited for the order to come?
GC: Oh, well, as regard to work and things like that, we knew what hadto be done. Pretty hard to know exactly what went on in your neigh bors' private homes. But as a rule, they were pretty respectable acting when you were out among others, only some were a little harder than others. There were among the young men a few fights that took place from time to time.
SS: Was your mother, for instance in your family, was your mother easywith the kids?
GC: Oh, yeah, she was easy. She was greatly concerned with the welfareof the kids, it was her first thoughts. I told you about those mills at Bovard and the one further x Troy, but there must have been an awful lot of small mills here and there around the country, I don't know where they all are. Years one later I talked to of the old-timers on American Ridge, and he told me where mills had been working there. And he knew.one of the Burnt Ridge old settlers over there, because he was there a young man and he'd worked at that mill before he homesteaded on That was Clarence Johnson's father. So there was milling over there and they settled mills here and there.
SS: What about that O.K. Olson mill? That ran for quite a while.Oh, that ran for a long time, I don*t know when it even stopped. I don't know when it ceased
SS: I heard that some of the Burnt Ridgers worked there in the winter.
GC: Some of 'em undoubtedly did, yes. Yes, that's close by, downthere in the wintertime. Quite a few of tem sometimes got employment some like that.
SS: You know, I wanted to ask you a little more about laying out of schooland the effects of that. And I was thinking about that; do you think that if you looked at the kids on the ridges, that you knew about, do you think that most of the boys or just some of the boys would lay out for periods of time?
GC: A large part of them did, when they reached a certain age.
SS: Say twelve-
GC: Twelve, thirteen, fourteen. Twelve- as early as twelye, some stayedtill later.
SS: Well, when you're talking about laying up- what kind of a time period
GC: would the kid be laying out for?Well, in the fall to get help^when the fall crops were being planted, the fall work done. And in the spring when the spring planting, the spring farming. Those were the periods that they were out, sometimes at both ends.
SS: And how long might that be in the fall?
GC: Oh, you might miss a month and a half of school in the fall and amonth and a half in the spring, or somewhere around there. Some of tem stay out more.
SS: Would the teacher have any say-so about something like that?
GC: I think they were, but I think they mostly ignored it, because theyknew what the situation was, and it would be kind of a fuss probably if they did. It wasn't until about 1912 that they laid down stricter state law, undoubtedly for this same reason that they found too much of it- too many people were out. And then I think that they just ceased with the that they put on it. They laid penalties on it as to what would happen.
SS: This wouldn't affect the girls? Just the boys?
GC: There were girls, too, that were much affected. There, forinstance like our neighbor north of us His wife died whenoh, what was his- I imagine the oldest girl was only about fourteen. And for quite a long time before that her mother was so sick so much of the time j she stayed home a great deal of the time. And at that time I don't know she didn't go to school for a while until fAlMP got better situation and he sent all his girls away to school. And I think Minnie eventually, I don't know whether she finished the university, but she drew a teaching certificate, this same girl that had to lay out and taught until she was married. And one of the younger girls, well, one of the younger girls went to school quite a while and married young and another one became a teacher also and was one until she retired- reached retirement age. She held a very ming. But, there was the other family, this girl that I said died of tuberculosis, Hilma Kellberg, she was out of school a great deal, because her mother was having one baby after another those years and she was the oldest girl and one brother was older and ten child ren younger, and you can imagine. She stayed home to help her mother and stayed out when the children were born and if they were overloaded with work around there she stayed home. She finished- she didn't finish grade school until she was sevetteen as a result. And in the light good job there, State Supervisor of Home Economics training in Wyo intelligence there was no excuse for it except not having had enough schooling. But she went on; she went through high school in three years then and took a couple of years at the normal school at Lewiston, it was a teachers' college then, two years, and was teaching for a number of years. And that was what happened to her, that one summer she was helping her brother out on this farm that she got terribly laid up wi just overwork and exposure and never stopped when she had bad colds and got TB going.
SS: Well, it looks like there was a- maybe you could say it was a conflict between desire for education and the demands of work-
GC: Demands of^work. A lot of it was, in the cases of many of those people it was. Now some of them did not care for school and had no am bition to go on to high school and things like that, but they didn't know anything about it. If those kids had been young at the present time, why, I think they would all coming to school for high school and done as well as anybody else and quite a few of 'em would have continued.
SS: Do y°u think that there were cases, many cases, where a family wouldsend a kid to school a hardship to what the youngster could be doing home I'm wondering, would a kid go to school— if it was a case of hardship, would school always lose out? Or would the work lose out sometimes, too?
GC: A little of both, but I believe the hardship won out quite a bit.Well, the attitude toward education- they didn*t really believe that education was for a person of ordinary talents. We had a great res pect for educationjand it took an awfully smart person to get an education. among some of the older people. They didn't really inducted conceive a farmers' kids as being- intellectual variety. There were plenty of kids then that were plenty smart, they'd have done alright in any competition. Most any competition that the college
SS: Well, take like your family; you were telling me that your two oldestbrothers bore the brunt of clearing the land.
SS: Then when it came to the third brother, Joe, he got to go away toschool. But what happened? Was it because the land was all cleared up?
GC: It was sort of cleared up and things were going better, we were getting crops and getting more money.
SS: So it -as a matter of the economics?
GC: Economics, yes, economics, yes. And Homer Peterson, the teacherdown there, went down to our farm one day and told my dad if he could stand it he ought to give Joe an education.^ I think that influenced Dad, too. He was glad to hear that he had a boy that the teacher thought that much of.
SS: Do you think that's what did it?
GC: Well, it influenced him, yes.was it the prep part? bid
SS: When Joe went to Lewiston, work when he was downthere?
GC: Well, he did part of the time, yes. He had jobs at different things.
SS: Then did he keep going after he finished the prep part?
GC: Yes, he kept on going and he taught in, oh- before he got his degreehe taught about a couple of years in a country school and then he went on- oh, he taught a year at Winchester, in the grade schools there and went to Bonners Ferry. He became principal of the grade school there and went to Douglas from there, Douglas, Arizona from there as the principal of the grade school. And it wasn't until af ter the war that he went back and- He went to several summer schools in California, once at Columbia University in New York. But it wasn't until after he came back from World War I that he took a year at the University of Washington and got a degree out of it. He got a double degree bachelor of arts and bachelor of education.
SS: How much older was he than you?
GC: About nine years.
SS: What about your two older brothers? How much education did they get?
GC: They d/dn't take any formal education. They had a habit of thinkingthey were too old for education. Walter, a couple of winters went up and attended a business college in Spokane and he used it for a little while, but not right away, but he went up to- They did farming. Paul farmed down here most of his life and Walter went up to Calgary. And after working around there for a while he looked at some land there and actually filed a claim, but he said it was too cold a coun try to live in. He came down to Montana, which isn't too much warmer, and thetothe settled, oh, he was about thirty by that time. And then he bought a relinquishment from a fellow wanted to get out and then he just held onto that land and he bought more land. Well, he kept on farming it himself for quite a few years and he found it pretty hard and tough to handle the machinery. He said that bothered him, the constant rattle of machinery and tractors and that, he come out with a headache every night. And so the last ten years, I guess, of his life- well, more than that- I think it was about fif teen years or sixteen years- when he was around sixty he rented it out. Well, he used to stay up there around the end of the summers in Montana, but all the friends held made lived there and he'd go down mostly to Long Beach in the winter; lived down there.
SS: Did either he or gaul- did they get through the eighth grade or what?
GC: They were probably through the eighth grade as working is concerned.But that was a funny thing, too. Nobody seemed to know when they were through the eighth grade or how they got out of the eighth grade. I think some of those teachers never informed the kids that there was such a thing as state examinations, as there were in those days. At least nobody - they never trained a class to do that. French was the first one to do that.
SS: To prepare kids for exams?
HC: Yes. Oh, three kids when Steelsmith was there learned about when theexaminations^coming and they went somewhere and they went across to American Ridge. They rode horseback across the canyon on those trails I told you about and took the examinations over there.
SS: Was Paul one of them?
GC: No, that was Carl.
SS: Carl, that's right because Willa Carlson told me that Carl had goneover to American Ridge.
GC: Yes and two other boys there. And one thing about it, there wassome classes he had never given any classes in to what corresponded to the eighth grade, and that was in government. When he learned that they were wanting to take that examination, he advised them to read the Constitution of the United States that was in back of the history books. (Chuckles)
SS: Sounds like good preparation.
GC: But Carl said it was one of the easiest tests. He said it was likeall the law he'd heard about and things like that that went on. So I guess.that was just as good a way to prepare as any.
SS: What did Carl get? He was older than you?
GC: Yes, about six years. Oh, Carl went to Normal, too and startedteaching and after he'd taught about four years before he went into navy in the First World War. I think he was starting his fifth year, yes, I know he was, because he wasn't in shape to take a physical exam ination for a while. He'd been playing ball over in Montana, base ball over in Montana and stuffed a leg in sliding a base over there, and he was hobbling around when it was time for school, and well, af ter it seemed to be healed up why he entered the navy about November of that year. And then when he came back he also finished college. And he taught most of his life after that. First he was up here and then he went down to a few places around for a few years and then he settled in California; Santa Maria for twenty-odd years until he re tired
SS: Did Joe continue teaching after he got his degree?
GC: Oh, yes, he continued until he was- oh, he spent in all- let's seehe spent, I guess about from 1920 to 1948, I think it was in the schools of Douglas, Arizona. He started there as a principle to the grade school and he was superintendent for the last twenty-one years I think.
SS: Paul, also farmed, didn't he? That's what he did?
GC: Farmed, yes. Yes, he farmed the home place there after he got married for quite a while and then he bought land over in Kooskia, over there, up the Clearwater up in that area This was on Harris Ridge as it was called. Yeah,he spent about eleven years over there, some thing like that. Then he came back over here and farmed the home place for a while and then he bought a place out near Robinson lake. He was on that until he sold it and after that he lived in town here. He worked for the Rural Electrification for quite a long time; stayed on that. He worked on th^t when he was farming, too.
SS: What about your sisters?
GC: Oh, this sister became a teacher, too, but, Ellen, my older sister,never did. She took a business course later on. She also was sort of an ungraded finish from school out there.
SS: Was she the older one?
GC: Yes, she was about ten years older than Edith.She married, oh, I don't know- she worked at various things like that. In her youth she kept house for people for a while and then she worked as a bookkeeper for a lumber out in Seattle, eventually she died. She was about twenty-five when she married and he lived there and farmed for a while then he spent most of his life as construct ion worker. Building construction. They lived in Lewiston for quite a long time and then moved down to, oh, San Jose, California. That was about 1944, they went down there. And they lived there the rest of their lives.
SS: It sounds like the older kids in the family, I mean the oldest onesdid without much education.
GC: Yes, yes, they did. Yes, all of us eventually became college graduates- the four youngest. Ldith waited the longest. She taught for quite a few years.
SS: This Edith?
GC: Yes, Edith.
SS: Are you the youngest in the family?Yes. Oh, I think, let's see, she started teaching, well, let's see, I guess it was - it was 1915 when she finished high school and 1925 well, 1926, when she graduated from the University of California. She'd gone there, but eleven years, most of that eleven, most of that eleven was spent- part of it was spent in school at about three different periods, and the rest of it in teaching. Well, one thing I was wondering from what you were saying before; did you think it was more likely that girls would go on to high school than boys in the early days? Well, I believe so. There was a tendency that way; but not such an awful tendency around Troy. There were a lot of girls that didn't go on to school. There were a lot of girls that didn't go to high school, too? Yes, there were. Among the farm girls, especially. No, I'm not so sure of that either: I remember from my high school days there wereseems to me that- One, two of 'em- one of 'em was a year ahead of me, rented a room together in a place there and did their own cooking, in a little up stairs part of the house. They were from outside. Outside Troy? Outside the area- outside of the Troy area. Both of em lived up here between- on the Moscow road somewhere- off. And both of those went on to school afterwards, college and so on and they con tinued to get there. And it was an awfully scant amount of kids. Well, there were quite a bunch out of those that went to that school that finished the high school, but went on further. If they went that far they seemed to go on, a lot of them. So, there were a number of kids in Troy that-
As much as the majority of the graduating class from high school?Well, now, my graduating class- I think, I think they all did. I think there were only seven in my graduating class down here. There started a good deal more but they dropped out along the way. Moved away, some of 'era, I don1t know but what some of those may have gone on to school, that moved away and some just didn't. One or two died rather young. One died in his second year- he died one summer after the year's school was out. But I think eveyrone of those went to school somewhat.
SS: Well, what was the thinking of people like yourself? Why go tocollege?
GC: Oh, I think about that time you understood it more or less, why youwere going by that time. There was less every year about this- you saw others going away. several others that are going away from Burnt Ridge to go to school, for instance, before i did. See Joe was probably the first one I think that ever did, but he was nine years older than I was. In the meantime, I don't know, several of the Pearson children went away to school. Well, professionally, one of the girls became a nurse and one of the boys became a dentist. And one never went to school and he just stuck right here and went to work at a bank and progressed right along when he once got there. He was the cashier in a branch of the Bank of America in Los Angeles in the Los Angeles area at least when he retired.
SS: But to go to college were people going there because they expecteda career out of going? Was that the main reason?
GC: I think that was true. We all expected a career. And mostly - peopleI knew at the University were there for, they expected a career out of it when I went to school, because an awful lot of students school there were partly paying their own way by working. Some during the school year and some would lay out a couple of years. And then come back.. I think the boys^are almost universally pointing for a career of some kind and some of the girls may not have been; never explained themselves to me. I think more of them just were going to college along with their friends because their parents wanted em to.
SS: Do you think that they were looking to making money in a short termbefore they were married and that sort of thing?
GC: Well, maybe some of them did. Actually there were some of those thatwere there- one of those was my sister- -primary certificate for tear ching first, went out and taught, return); There were women there in school had three, and four and five years teaching behind them coming back to finish out.
SS: Why did you decide you didn't want to be a farmer?
SS: Why did you decide you didn't want to follow in your father's footsteps and be a farmer?
GC: Well, the thing is, to get farms required money. You don't divide upthose kind of farms in between children because you'd just create a hardship on them. Places that are meant for one family Paul were better farmers than I'd ever be. It's always interesting to study and'C school I decided to go that way. Especially after Joe and Carl went into school they kept harping at us younger ones to get an education.
SS: What about the prospects to stay in the area? Was that important tomost of the young people? Did they want to stay here? Where they grew up?
GC: Well, I guess there was a certain amount of that, yes, they'd like tostay in the same area. A lot of 'em did. Maybe some of just because they had certain things to keep 'em here and others didn't. Lot of 'em moved out. It usually depend on the size of the family. Five boys in our family ancL five boys in the Kellberg family and five boys in the Hupt'Tft family. Four in the Pearson family; four in Frank Swanson's family. All- well, the grade range would be about fifteen years of all those people- age range. They couldn't all stay on the farm, so some of 'em knew they'd have to do something else and they got out and left, all of those moved out. Herman Ruberg remained on the Ruberg place out there, but he was the oldest boy and his mother was widowed by that time and he married rather late in life. All the Pearson boys went. Willie and Walt went down and stayed when they lost health, eventually died. Adolph farmed for a while. he said he didn't like it, it was too uncertain a life; might have a good crop, might have a bad he wanted something more steady he said. And Joe never tried it. I don't think he would have cared for it either, he'd decided by that time that the farm didn't have any attractions for him.
SS: Did one of the boys take the farm?
GC: None of 'em did, they eventually sold it out to the father of RudolphSmith, who lives there now.
SS: So there was a farm that nobody wanted.
GC: None of the kids wanted it, no. Well, Mrs. Pearson moved to Portlandwhere one of her daughters was married and Edla was down there train ing to be a nurse, one of the girls, and she took the three younger - she had a couple of the younger hhildren with her. The youngest daughter, I guess then, too, was about grown up. Well, she grew up down there and married. And then by that time Joe had gone and started working in the bank. And Adolph comple ting dentistry. And it went on. There was the- no they just cleared out. And it was one of the best farms on the Ridge. I don't know, if I had a selection of a farm on the Ridge, I'm not so sure but that I'd take that one. Except for one thing: they had had problems on water,
SS: Well, for yourself- could you have stayed and taught in this county,in this area if you'd wanted to?
GC: Oh, I don't know. I just took one of the first ones I had an opportunity to take, and thdfr/in the state of Washington. Found it avail able. No, I didn't really want to-
SS: To stay here.
GC: To stay here. I wanted to try some other place. I'd moved aroundquite a bit in the early days and I wasn't too satisfied with teaching at all. I left teaching when I was about thirty-five.
SS: Why weren't you satisfied with it?
GC: Oh, various things. The pay was never too good up to the time I leftit. Then, it's a tiring, wearisome job, I found it. Trying to teach people and interest them in their work. I can see why ulcers if one of the common complaints of teachifig. (Chuckles)
SS: Think it's because the kids that you're teaching aren't interestedin the work?
GC: Lack of interest. Oh, there's sort of an undercurrent of a littlenoise, things I taught mathematics a good deal. One thing it was definite, you knew what the kids were getting and what they weren't getting, but it was somewhat different when it came to actually teaching the stu dent that had no mathematical sense at all. He was completely frus- trated. There was two ways of looking at that.. You kinda had to shove aside a little dirt and muck to get i( into where it was, that is, every winter, I suppose, there's a certain amount of soil swept down that hillside, sort of covered it over.
SS: But it's ice all year around, right?
SS: I wonder what it was like, what it looks like on the inside?
GC: Crystals, little crystals, he said, hanging in ice. There'd beenapparently a lot of water frozen at one time.
SS: Stayed that cold.
GC: It stayed that cold inside. Just what caused it I don't know. I sortof wondered about , why an ice mine, why doesn't it melt?
SS: But you know, we were talking about leaving the area and I'm reallyinterested in that, because you see most all the old-timers I've tal ked to are the people that stayed, never left.
GC: Yes, those are the ones you'd find here.
SS: The ones I'd find, right. But that's only part of the story, ofcourse. About yourself, you didn't really have any particular desire to stay. Why do you think that was?
GC: I don't know, I don't know,t starting in on something in your own homeamongyour own home people, I think would be the hardest job of all, even though you've known 'em all your life. I went to another town I was accepted as a teacher, if I tried teaching at Troy, they'd say, "He's Bud Carlson." (Chuckles) I don't think any- some people have gone back to their own hometowns and liked it; established themselves. Apparently that's what Roger SwanSfitf.done- /the superintendent'S But for most people I think it's better to be away from your own home town, among your own people. You can make it among strangers a lot easier. They might come of a family which had never been fond of another family and those things sometimes last through generations. They're not old-time Kentucky feuds, but they- those things persist.
SS: That would make it unpleasant for- in your work, or just ?
GC: It could. Make you an unhappy person.
SS: What about friendships through? Can you develop more friendshipsthat are as deep as the ones that you left behind?
GC: I think so, if you stay around long enough.
GC: Do you think you might have gone into farming if you could have?
GC: Oh, I don't know whether I would've or not. Maybe I could've if I'dput my mind to it, that is, but I didn't really have the desire to. You see the trying parts as well as the good parts when you grow up on a farm. Sometimes a lot of work you put in for nothing and start over again, you see. The poor crop yields, the poor price years and so on.
SS: You agree with the Pearson boy that said that it's too risky?
GC: Yes. He had something there. He said he said he didn't think he'dcare to farm, he tried it one year. He'd been in high school studied agriculture course there and he got real interested in how it ought to be done and when he faced the practical problems getting in his crops and harvested and his delays and did the workAthrough the weather and all that, why, he began to be concerned that the prac tical everyday life of a farmer didn't appeal to him.
SS: What about most of the younger generation from Burnt Ridge? Didmost of them leave the area?
GC: Yes, I would say so. There were four-five of the six Rubergs childrenleft; Well, Herman eventually left too, but he left when he was quite along in years and he and his wife sold out and he went to Pullman and he worked a little while longer - he worked for the state college for a while until he retired, but, oh, the others all went out to work. Clarence became a barber, Victor became an automobile mechanic. The two youngest, Hugo and Richard went to college. Hugo went to work for a gas and electric company in California and spent many, many years there until he retired. Richard worked for that same company for a while then he extended into otner things. He ran a taxicab service for a few years and then he went back for a refresher course in education and finished as a teacher. The girl, she worked out in Spokane for quite a while as a housekeeper for a family and then she married up there and married again after her first hus band died, I guess it was.
SS: Do you think girls left the area as much as boys did?
GC: Well, a lot of them left, yes. Some married men that lived here anda few lived on here but a lot of them left. Some had property that they inherited or something like that or stayed for other reasons I guess. Some stayed with their folks a long time when they were old, as they were getting older, then,there were quite a few of the families that moved out. Kellberg's daughters, all except Helen, who married Ernie Anderson and bought out the other heirs when they went to settle up there, is really the only one that stayed here. Well, Elva married a man who became a- Elvera married a man who became a missionary and one of them married a man- she lived in Moscow, and still does. And she went on to school both before and after she married and got work at the University there, I she was a lab assistant, something, I'm not sure what she was. One of the boys tried farming- two of 'em tried farming the home farm out there. One of 'era went into renting- rentier land elsewhere and one quit to become a mechanic. And, oh, one of them married a girl and continued to live right there on the farm. She held land. And one boy went back East- he wanted to become a minister but he found the grind for the education a little tough and he left there. I don't know what he did. He worked as a truck driver part of the time and he had a shop at one time. One of his brothers told me. A repair shop; tool repair shop. They scattered out. Another one tried farming, too for a while.
SS: One of the Kellbergs?
GC: Yes. .He left and he went to work in Spokane.
SS: It sounds like maybe getting a college education was somewhat unusualfor the younger generation on Burnt Ridge?
GC: Well, yes, it was, I guess. For the ones, toy age and below my age, itincreased. For my age and older it was rather rare.
SS: So it was a trend towards getting a college education.
GC: -a college education, a trend. The two youngest Ruberg boys wereyounger than I, the rest were older. The two younger went to college. None of the oldest Kellberg children went, but, well, Hilma started it, actually, and she started it late after she became nearly a young woman and, well, have to drop down- well, Teddy went for a while, but he left it, after in high school, he did go for a while and he dropped out and tried first farming and then he got a job in Spok ane which suited him there becaur e he stayed there from World War II onwards, about that time. There was Elva- she's another one that- she and Hilma are the ones in that family that really persisted in school. And Alner sent his children there- well, the older girl was older, but she was one that would- was handicapped by the feeling that she had to stay home after her mother died with all the younger children around, so she probably started before I did. But the younger ones went on to school a good deal and Gladys, who didn't marry, made a profession of it. And, well, there were certain families there. One of Paul Rudeen's boys went on to college, the other didn't It was more a question of choice, I think. And the children of those fellows who stayed here and married, they all seemed to * on to school a lot of 'em. And some of Ed Swanson's girls went on to school, too.
GC: College, yes. I don't know how many were college graduates. Well,Rowena went into nursing, that's different. But I think one of 'em married too young to finish college or even really gotten there. But there were others, I guess.
SS: Would you try to put on your statistician's hat and think about itIn a very rough way, how would you size up the- The trend has always been upward all the time of people going up through high school, which they all practically try to do now, and going on to college.
SS: Of your generation, would you guess one out of four would go tocollege, maybe?
GC: I doubt it. No, I don't think so.
SS: Or maybe one of six?
GC: Yes, I don't know the percentage of the population in schoolcertain age groups was pretty low about the time I started to college, I suppose maybe you 4 find statistics, but it was low.
SS: I'm thinking in terms of the area. In terms of Burnt Ridge.
GC: Oh, yeah, Burnt Ridge.
SS: And even the Troy area.
GC: Well, I don't know, they just differed too much from the generalTrend. And I suppose they sent a certain number to school, too. I don't know- in the If cases I went to in high school, several of those people went on to school.
SS: What about them leaving the area? What about that? Do you thinkthere was a large percentage of the younger generation left this county?
GC: I think there must be quite a few, yes. There are some that havebeen here a long time, but that depends upon the feeling back forty, fifty years. There's a lot of 'em that never- people that have come in since that time.
SS: But your age group- the younger kids on the farms on Burnt Ridgeprobably a pretty solid majority of them left and didn't stay?
GC: Yes. I'd say so, the majority left. The Smith family stayed. Twoof 'em are still around and one was here a large part of his life, moved too. One . down into Oregon, I think, he was just farming though down there. And the girls both married- Give me a guess, and I know this is just guessing again; would you guess maybe four out of five would leave of the early generation?
GC: Oh, I don't know that. Maybe three out of four. One generationdovetails into another, it would be a little hard to- (Chuckles)
SS: Do you think of the trend toward staying or leaving changed throughtime? Or do you think it's always been a high out-migration?
GC: I think there's been an out-migration, regularly. Probably not soare nowdays much since- well, the famii A smaller than they were then. There were families at Burnt Ridge- eight, , twelve, six, nine five, six, five, - four would be about the smallest I can remember except for one or two instances. Three in one. But most of them was those high numbers- what we call high numbers now.
SS: I've got another thorny question along those lines. Thinking aboutthe impact of the car. Do you think that the car made it easier for people to stay in the area, because they could go farther to work or would they more likely leave the area because they could get away easier?
GC: Oh, I don't know, that it had that much effect. The car- the reasonI think it was a little easier on 'em, they liked life a little better. They can get places quicker. I don't know, I think it tended , to make life more liveable for the farmers, they could get out a little once in a while easier. And I think that helped to keep people.
GC: Some were more experimental than others.
SS: The amount of economic pressure is what counted?
GC: I think it was in most cases. Some were more inclined to take achance somewhere else. Well, that's just the way human beings are. het And some if they thought they had a fairly good thing they'd stick to it.
SS: Do you think the main motivation was thinking how you could makedothe best for yourself toward making a living?
GC: More or less that. Of course, the family ties played a part, too,that is, some of them would like to remain where others members of the^ family lived, and that xvas not as great though as the ones that came in in the first place, because lots of those people on Burnt Ridge were related to each other. Maybe one man in the family'd come first and they'd tell others about it and soon they'd collect. May be a cousin that would collect and so on. And I think it was very much the same the other places because there was always a few of the old-timers date from two or three families of them. Two and three families that were related all over. Sometimes it was just people from the same vicinity, the midwestern or eastern state that came together. They were not related but they knew each other be fore they came.
SS: When you went to the university were most of the young people thatyou knew there, were most of them from rural parts of Idaho? People that were-
GC: Oh, I don't know, I think probably it was about even ratio, thepopulation that come from towns, small towns and big towns and that. I think- they seemed to have come from the country and also from the towns. There were quite a few, oh, well, Boise is the biggest town, you know and more thickly settled around it than some other towns. It had a good representation. Moscow was probably in pro portion to its size had more than any because they had the university on their doorstep and it kind of influenced the number that went, too, I think, they saw college life up there and it was right there, women
SS: Thinking about that were going to school; you said that youthere probably was a tendency for more of them to go on.
GC: Well, a lot of them went on, yes, but not, all, too. I tell youthe women were in the minority all the tim«, that I was there. I don't knov;, there were quite a few more men registered regularly than girls. I think that is even now since that time over the whole country.
SS: There were a couple of things about your thoughts of your father'sviews that I wanted to ask you more about; One of them was, talking about the Socialist Party and socialist thinking. I was thinkingwhat do you think that the Socialists thought about farmers - and they still their land? *Mr CKi^ed
GC: See, the Socialist doctorine of the Socialist Party, around 1900 to1912, there on, it seems to have fallen into abeyance now, was the state useage of land as a public thing. Shoufil have public ownership because it was the food crop of the country and also the source of mineral and forest products and such.
SS: That would include the farmers, too?
GC: Yes, it would include the farmers, the socialistic .I don't know how it started.
SS: Would that mean the farmers would be working for the state?
GC: Yeah, yeah. Be employed by the state. It would mean that if theycarried that into effect. I don't know how my dad would actually At have liked that. i loved his farm. (Chuckles)
SS: That's what I was thinking, as a farmer, you know.
GC: I think he was more in than with these theories, which he wasinterested in is the logical to handle this stuff. That anything for public ownership- that anything that was publicly used ought to be owned by the public in common, as administers for it. Such things as clothes and houses and automobiles and things like that . was a man's own concern. I don't think the Socialist party ever got down to itemizing what could be considered private and what could be considered public. But that was the general thought.
SS: But farmers lack interest in general in the Socialist partymight have something to do with the fact that they would be afraid - they weren't too interested in giving up their rights on land.
GC: No, they wouldn't, particularly- farmers were not socialists mostly.You found socialism mostly in the cities among the working, labor cjretfp. The farmers, he got his home built and started doing something with it, he wanted to hold on. They'd wthe last ones to vote for anything like that. What was the socialist idea at that time of the workers as beigg in the worst position? Well, they felt that they were, and actually, you know, the position of the- of workers on various things was not very good. Women were awfully poor paid; garment factory and things like that; for the em ployed women. They had a distinctly lower scale for them and it seems like just a bare living wage if they economized. Oh, that reminds me of a book that was cursed by some when it came out and I think even banned in some places. It was written by David Graham Phillips.^ Written in the form of a novel, Susan Lennox. Did you ever read that?
SS: No, hadn't heard of that.
GC: Well, he died about 1911 and I think the book waslished at the time of his death and published afterward, maybe ' 1912. And, well, he deals with the situation of the laboring classes in a certain way. His was based largely on the prostitution systems found in Cincinnati and New York City. He doesn*t name Cincinnati, gut was the place where he studied conditions and what forced girls in there. He was a great believer it was economic pressure that was the main cause. Well, it's quite a book. It wasn't written in the style of some of the books now that like to use every ex pression used in oral conversation in the book, but very restrai ned, very clear-cut, gets the ideas across without using anything like that. No pornography at all.
SS: Did you feel when you were growing up (noise)
GC: I don't know, that's the way I heard it from most of the peoplethat talked about it, when I was growing up. They talked about those things, older people-
SS: That conditions were bad?
GC: Conditions were bad. There was strikes going on at that time andsometimes the repressment of strikes resulted in a lot of deaths, you know. Pitched battles. The useless strikebreakers, as they were called, or scabs. That was common. It was the later administrations of Theodore Roosevelt, it seems to me that I heard most about that kind of thing. I believe things became calmed around Woodrow Wilson and there were quite a few distinct laws,laws passed early in Wilson's presidency that probably helped. And there was a certain reformation of the banking industry that helped and a few other things.
SS: think there was some labor legislation- protection, at that time.
GC: Yes, there was.
SS: Did college people when you were growing up, was this kind of thingon young people's minds?
GC: Oh, they talked about that stuff. Yes,oh in the mining towns inNorth Idaho, they were always informed on everything- all the laws and things like that, and conditions under which they worked. Some of 'era had worked at the mines already before they came to col lege, they worked sometimes during summers.
SS: Were they strong for labor?
GC: Strong for labor. I don't knoi ; if they all stayed that way. I lookat it that they were on the losing side in the economic war. There was- I'm sure though in wages paid for labor on farms and towns around here a distinct upper trend- of course, there's always an upper trend that's just slightly inflationary about every ten years it was jacked up a dollar or something like that, with the kind of wages they paid. Of course, at the same time, your prices of goods rose along with it. But I think on the whole, everybody was a little bit better off than they were say five years or ten years or even five years-^-before. I think things went a little bit better except that we had these hard times every so often, These depressions come along due to what knows- nobody wll ever agree on that. JUST why.
SS: What about like the girls- your sisters working - doing fruit pickingaround here? Were they paid well for that?
GC: Well, they generally paid by the box or the bucket or whateverit was that they were paid by. Some made pretty good wages, handy and nimble on their feet and with their fingers and things like that and some of them found it didn't pay too well. Oh, they did that. I remember some of the orchards that existed, but they were probably ones that- there must have been a lot of them that I never got over. I never got over to those at that age, I was just- that was really before I got started going to school, most of it, and I never got over to American Ridge or Little Bear Ridge, they were still for eign countries to me.
SS: That's where they did their picking?
GC: That's where more of it was done than elsewhere. And they were larger ridges, you see, there were more of them. There were some on Burnt Ridge, alright, but nottmflre than the local people could handle because it's a comparatively small ridge; about five miles long and not so awfully wide. But, American Ridge starts at Troy and ends at Juliaetta, sloped out into Juliaetta at the end of it. And Little Bear ends at Kendrick.
SS: When did these orchards go ? When were they finished for commercialusage?
GC: Oh, I don't know just when, they went out one by one. We don't seetoo many of 'em anymore, I don't think. There may be a few left. I wonder if the Nelsons on Bear Ridge had any orchards left, now Little Bear Ridge?
SS: Nothing commercial any more.
GC: Well, he had the famous cherry orchards, his father was"Cherry hielson". Oh, I think it just went gradually, it was begin ning to go when I was a small boy. I know some of the ones came out- Sanders, our neighbor, had ripped out some of his before and left a little piece there, orchards, that were sort of in the way of far a piece of acreage .one group, so he tore out the rest. And left a few down in the orchard by the house. Those orchards were kept there a while, and then they began to grow old, oh, I don't know, they weren't bearing too well. We just kept 'em around for quite a few years, for as many apples that we would box up for the winter and use^ the summer. It was never a real commercial asset.
SS: You know, when we were talking about your father supporting the NoraChurch; I was wondering what was it about the i\ora Church that he liked when he didn't like the Troy one? That church is a different denomination, it was called the Mission Friends. Oh, that was different than the Troy Lutheran? The Mission Friends, it was a separation from the Lutheran Church.
SS: Was it still Lutheran?In doctorine it was much the same, only a lot of formality disap peared there, and they had more liberal interpretations, I suppose you d call 'em, I don't know of what it consisted. I don't know- I m not sure- I never had the creed of either church to find out real differences.
SS: But the Nora Church was really a whole different—?It a different kind of government, although the worship appeared to be about the same. Not too much idfferent from any Protestant church; from the normal kind. The Episcopalian is a bit more form than some of the others, but not all that much and I would say it was more like the disciples of Christ than any of 'em. This missionary work that they did, did they send out missionaries right from Nora?
GC: Well, no, I don't that any went out directly from there, but therewere missionaries. I know these two men that served there had al ready served as missionaries. One left there to go in the missionary field and another one came from the missionary field. lie was an old man when he came back from the missionary field, too, he must have had quite a few years there, I don't know how long.
SS: Did your father go to that church at all?
GC: oh» we didn't go very often. We'd go Christmas or something likethat.
SS: And that, you'd go to Nora?
GC: Go to Nora.
SS: What was the name of that Swedish- that church?
GC: Well, the word is (gives Swedish pronunciation) that means MissionFriends. In some places that group and the Congregationalists often combine. There were quite a few of those things. They had a large church here in Spokane, the Mission Friends, did. SS Do you know what caused there to be a separate OH,it was a separation that took place in Sweden and I think the same thing happened in Norway. And they used the term Free Church to de signate those people; that is, they were not- they were more or less believed in local government and not a hierarchy, with the central churches and bishops and all that. I don't think they had any here, I think they were all organized on units, but then they recognized each other and had their conferences.
SS: Was this church right at Nora?
GC: Well, not where old Nora post office- it was a post office once. Itwas on the Deary road, but the church of Nora is past the old millsite, climb that hill, it was sort of beyond Granman's place a little ways, and it was kind of on the place where it rises to a more or less of the highest point along there. And Eric Nelson the place on the other side there. And actually there was a house there that the minister lived in regularly. I think that some rented it to him. I'm not sure, but I think that one minister rented the farm. He was out there, took care of his farm, too.
SS: Help make a living then?
GC: Help make a living, yes.
SS: You were talking to me about that planting and plowing; was thatgenerally done- How many horses did you use on that?
GC: Well, I think maybe 190 acres in all, canyon hay fields on the homeplace, thereabouts. I think they made a measurement of it later on, when this conservation took place the Roosevelt Administration. We ordinarily kept seven or eight horses.A Some people farmed with maybe six and so on. But until the automobile days we regularly kept a riding horse out there a lot of the time, too. We just got along at least with horses that we could ride, we usually had one horse that was pretty good under the saddle and worked, too.
SS: How many would you have- hitch up for plowing?
GC: Well, not more than six. And when we used walking plows* gang plowsmore than two to that and had three horses on a single walking plow. It took two men to run two plows that way, so eventually got a gang- plow. I don't know, I think .we were a little late on buying that My father was skeptical about gangplows doing a better job of plowing as a walkingplow. I think it does, I don't that had any real effect.
SS: What do you think he thought why- what was there about it?
GC: A man could handle that in his hands, (if) there were clay spots, hecould lift up a little, not turn up clay. Places where it needed to be Mftt out, a little bumpy, you could shove it in hard maybe and loosen up it, and^the harrow would smooth it out afterwards and things like that. He thought that the two plows set together and set for so much, why, the handles they always hit every piece of ground the same way.
SS: Which is true, more or less, isn't it?
GC: Uh-huh, yes.
SS: Where do you think your father would get his information about farming?About, you know, what he ought to do? Would they exchange it a lot?
GC: Iwould say that he did not know much about farming when he boughtthat, he'd been working at carpentry since he came to this country. He was raised on a farm in Sweden, but ,ithat vzas a different kind of farming. Very small-scale farming in a wooded country where he spent a good deal of the time in the woods. They were more woodsmen than they were farmers. They wanted to raise- the farm was an economy to produce food which they used themselves and keep a few cattle, hogs for milk and meat. And I think he learned most of it from other farmers; talked them and saw how they did. Of course, sort of learned how things were after years. Experimenting, too; that is, the land was quite young when they were young; that helped, too, so it still had a good deal of spring in it from having just been virgin soil before it was broken, and that helped out to make crops pretty good. But we still didn't have it to summer fallowing, like some of the others did early. It didn't wait. of the farmers on Burnt Ridge were pretty conservative that way. They used fallow ground I think and they used grass. Quite a long time.when those laws were put in to effect about con servation and how much you could be paying for laying up land, putting in grass; I'd say most of porNr Midae didn't need it. When you say- They'd already been doing it. the greater part. Some farmers used fallow ground. How did they use it? They just didn't fallow it at all?
GC: Just fallowed the land and plowed it and let it lie there and smoothedthe top to hold moisture in and put a disc on it every so often to cut down the weeds.
SS: Oh, so, they were fallowed?
GC: They were fallowing it to get weeds- weed seed killed. It was better,probably to let weed seed often sprout and grow up and then it, you see. That way there's less weed seed in the soil. It grew once and it was killed, then it wouldn't grow again.
SS: I see, so the proper way to fallow is to let it lie there and notdo anything until-
GC: Well, until it began to come up. You wouldn't want it to get to theseeding point.
SS: Right. Were there farmers that didn't fallow at all then? Put acrop in every year?
GC: Well, there were some farmers I guess that did that- in someplaces, I don't think it occurred on that ridge very much. But then when beans came along practicing no more fallow ground. They started raising beans and they kept the fields clean by cultivation and hoeing.And later peas came into effect as another croP»^ like beans, because they are thick and there s no way of down. They will grow in there spraying and all the rest of eomc Op.
SS: You know, you're talking about the old country.
SS: was that they had just kind of no say-so and their husbands reallyexpected them to keep quiet, and do what they were told.
GC: Oh, yes, that was a very common thing with people that came over.But, I m not sure how successful it was- (Chuckles) Didn't follow the rules.
SS: Did you feel like your own mother could have her own way if she wanted to enough?
GC: yes, yes, I think so. I don't think there was much doubt of that.
SS: What about the daughters?
GC: What did you say?
SS: Oh, I was just thinking about the daughters of the old country folks.
GC: Well, I tell you, they changed a lot, and everybody did, I think.They adapted themselves to the new conditions, they didn't probably adapt as fast or so far quickly, but they up with different ideas. They just saw what went on around too, after all.
SS: When did you start working for the Bureau of Census?Oh, I just decided I'd try something else and I learned down at the post office of the examinations that were in progress and took one. Oh, they called 'em analy sts- social science analy st/examination is what they called it. I don't exactly know what it is. Oh, I have to do mathematics and questions on economics, political science, government. There were a whole series of different tests. You had a little choice there, too, as I remember it. You wrote on ten, maybe there was fourteen or so, different tests one could take. And I got a notification of a grade and later- noisy
So, what did they have you do?
Oh, I worked most of time as what they called a field analy st, ora field man. They changed the name of the thing and they said field consultant, later on. You spent a good deal of time traveling to state bureaus of vital statistics in answer to calls for this and that, what kind of statistics to get out and what kind they'd like provided for them by the bureau and the filing systems and various things of that sort. And number of campaigns in birth registration and death registration, which were not good in lots of states at that time. We ran tests on them; tests say, on a few counties. Find out how many- send out registration cards for chil dren born within a certain time, say one year and check them against state records to find out how many of them- the cards would show where they weee born. Check against the home office to see how many regis- tered. Some counties would be lots better than others Then we generally showed them there, and some of the first counties we conducted some sort of campaigns traveling around and things like that. We had one in New Mexico and Arizona and one in West Virginia, as I remember, the early ones, and one in South Carolina and one in Mississippi- it was just a plain test in Mississippi. And in Loui- siane, we just traveled about and talked to the local registrars and doctors in towns which they were already foundAdeficient, places they'd already found were deficient and explained what it was all about, and showed them how badly their registration of births and deaths was going on. And then later, I stayed in the office a good deal. I kind of liked the traveling around, it was kind of a relief to be in one place, too, for a while. I worked on different phases of vital statistics summarizing reports on conditions in different pkcts and still later on I began handling the life tables. United States life tables that they put out every year. The short method way of calculating life tables on that year, year's births as opposed- and based on an estimated populations. And they put those out yearly.
SS: What year did you start working for them?
GC: In 1938. I stayed there about twenty-five years- no, I left therein '62. But I did have some time out in the U. S. Army though.
SS: Do you think that a lot of people that left here went to the WestCoast and California?
GC: I think the general migration from Idaho lias always been westward,to Oregon and California and even to Alaska. Seattle has been a great place for an awful lot of people from this area to go, so has Portland, and other places, too. To go into the homesteading rash in Oregon and Washington both when I was a small kid in certain parts they opened up. And there was going to be irrigation there and some of those stayed and some of them were disappointed in certain areas they went to out there. And then, they went to California, too, they drifted that way. A lot of them drifted to the coast and then southward into California.
SS: I'd like to ask you just a little more about what the motivationswere for people those days. Do you think they were looking to make a lot of money, they expected to make money?
GC: Oh, a lot of them wanted to and tried various ways to do it. SomeA fellow who succeeded, I guess, and some went. had a small town business down here, finally made a good thing of it in San Fran cisco, ran a grocery store in company with another man.
SS: Who was that?
GC: His name was Johnson
SS: In Troy?
GC: In Troy. Yes, he pulledftabout when I was- about the time I wasgrown up, around twenty-one. Went to Spokane first, later to Seattle and to San Francisco. And I don't know, of course- his sons are nearer my age now, a little younger, but they carried on the business and are well-to-do there. Big automobile industry they had there.
SS: You think that it was big money, or just a chance to make a livingthat; most people were looking for?
GC: Well, I think they wanted to get ahead; figured that they'd do better somewhere else. Try to at least.
SS: Do you think that's a reasonable assessment of what the opportunieswere here in those days?
GC: Uh-huh. Of course, I remember, too, a lot of just sort ofmoved around on farms. They'd rent a farm here one year and a farm somewhere else, and then they'd be gone from the country and you wouldn't see 'em again. Or a fellow who bought a farm ° maybe worked a few years in the town then they sold out and left. What became of 'em.'Jdon't know. Just people- well, you never got well acquainted with who they were. There were some of those particularly too. I don't know about the present population down here, whether there's mush movement at all or not, right now. I guess there's some, there must be, the names grow different over the years.
SS: Do you think that people with strong family ties, the ones thata lot felt they had strong family ties, would be more likely to stay here?
GC: I think that family ties had something to do with it. There weresome stayed a long time, and that probably had something to do with it. Lawrence Johnson's family, one girl married away from here and was away a good many years, but she returned here with her husband. All the children were in this vicinity, still are. Well, there's two dead now, but they died here. I think the family ties were strong for those living ones among those and still are,^and also for the children- well, I wouldn't say that for^neither of the two that died had any children.
SS: Do you think the depression had a very big effect in this area?
GC: Well, it sure made things tough for people. They lived pretty closeto the bone in those days, I think. They had to. But I don't think it caused so much movement because they knew that the same thing was going on^elsewhere. In fact, that movement there in the Depression didn't help much, it just wasted the time moving around, a large part of those that kept trying. I 'spose some were better off, I don't know.
SS: What were you doing in that period in time?
GC: Well, I was teaching school the main time it took place, a littlelater I left teaching. tranras on the railroad? Oh, there were some. Years ago they used to tramp the railroads or ride them, sometimes get put off.
SS: Would they come by your place? On
GC: Well, sometimes they would- see our house from the railroad andclimb up there, and , well, they'd tell us where they were going and what they were doing and we generally give 'em a bed overnight and a meal and they'd go on. Once in a while we had worfc to do around there that it was useful to have another hand, and we gave it to them, in fact, I think we gave them some every so often when we didn't need to.
SS: Would you have—?
GC: Some of- what?
SS: No, go on. What were you going to say?I would say some of them were pretty darn good workers, just came off the railroad tracks. Would you usually have any hired hand during that time? Well, there would be times when we would, yes. The times- well, in the early days, earlier years when they didn't have much- two threshing machines, they used to go out stacking the grain and wanted to get that done as soon as possible before- when it was still dry and before any rain fell on it. And probably might rush things through and get some hired hands.
SS: Just for a short period?
GC: For short periods of time. And then the beans came along, why, itwas impossible to handle hoeing weeds, and had a crew every so often, and that would be for a short period of time, too. And sometimes taking care of the crop in harvesting, needed a little rush.
SS: Would these be usually farmers' sons?
GC: Once in a while they were, usually you picked up in town wheresomebody didn't have a steady job the year around would be available. And sometimes the teamsters wouldn't be in the woods or anything like that, would do that. I don't know.
SS: These tramps; what kind of people were they? Were they just peopledown on their luck, or people that were bums, or what?
GC: I think there was some of both. I think some of them lacked a gooddeal in the way of ability, they could do what they set out to do, simple things. Some were kind of down on their luck, maybe some of 'em made their luck,not being too efficient in whatever they did. I know one fellow came in there, he was a Dutchman, born in Holland, he still spoke with a very accent, but he worked for us a while and he worked for somebody else after that and harvested there and was around for, oh, I don't know, maybe a year working for different people then I think he left on the track- left somewhere along the line, must have moved on, I never saw him about and I guess he just gone. I can remember one that tickled us to death there » he was from Ireland and somebody had been talking insurance there, oh, for some reason we were talking and insurance came up and Walter and Paul who were grown up then were exchanging interviews and Dad^was always leary of insurance, only fire insurance and crop insurance he thought he'd go for but.life insurance, "Oh,"this fellow says, "I don't believe in life insurance at all," he says, "I knew someone once that was insured for $10,000 and he died anyway!" (Chuckles) We kind of laughed at him, I remember I was small, but I remember that Walter and Dad tried to explain to him what life insurance meant. That was the idea he grasped , he said he wasn't joking. He thought he was insuring his life.
SS: There is just one more thing that strikes me about this questionabout leaving, about going someplace else, and that is- I have an idea- you read about in the early days, there was a lot of talk about rags to riches and about the chances of getting rich. Now, do you think that was on people's minds a lot. Do you think that believes that people they could go from rags to riches?
GC: Yes, I believe a lot of people believed it. They heard it. Theysaid, "Here a man has a chance." And they thought that. A lot of them claimed they were going to get somewhere, the kids. And got that imbued into them. But, well, I guess, living has a sort of a way of taking care of all these things; some made it better and some didn't.
SS: But of the kids you grew up with-
GC: I know, they were enthusiastic most of 'em, what they were going todo in this country.
SS: Do you think it made people unrealistic or discontented when theymight have been happy?
GC: Oh, I don't know, I would say those on that ridge were fairly contented with farm life. Somehow or other whenever I chance to talk to them a lot more of them were contented with farm life than most of them. I don't know: I know some weren't because they didn't see where they were getting anywhere and their practical sense told 'em too many of 'em couldn't stay there. I think any one of them might have been content to stay, but they let someone choose the situation. That, by the way, was our farmhouse out there; Dad built that about 1906.
SS: That's a good-looking house.
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
18:00 - Lou Wells, Doe's wife, uses sheep wool to knit socks; hose is located halfway between Troy and Collins
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link:
Direct segment link: