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Sam Schrager: Well, in those days when you were a kid there, did you get intotown much?
Mary Edwards: No. You didn't go any place. If you went any place you went ahorseback—you walked and if the family, that is, if, well, say my mother and dad, some of the kids were going, you had a surrey, you filled your surrey; they had a fringe on top.
SS: They did?
ME: Sure they did. And about the only time I can remember..—I was init more than that—but I can remember going to my grandmother's funeral, 'cause we had this surrey full and we came to Genesee— the cemetery, and I knew the neighbors, because you thought nothing of walking. Of course, we were, oh, about two and a half or three miles from school and I walked a great deal of the time, sometimes we went on horseback, but—it just depended, you know. But we thought nothing of walking to school. I was pretty,small and we had a pretty steep hill, and sometimes my brother would carry me part way up that hill, my older brother. Of course, when we moved to town when I was still pretty young, J was, oh, I suppose, twelve, thirteen, somewhere in there—I really don't know, and I know someone was saying the other day, they were talking about bathtubs, and said they couldn't remember ever not having a bathtub. I said, "I remember when they didn't have a bathtub." You pumped the water - there was no other way of getting it. You carried it up, heated it in a boiler, and put it in a tub and had your bath. I said, "In my day there wasn't such a thing as a bathtub."
SS: Would each kid use - do that whole thing over again or did abunch of kids use the same water?
ME: No, I don't think - I think I suppose when I was small enough mybrothers probably pumped it for me, but I was still pretty young when I used to do that myself, because it didn't take too much because your tubs were only about so big. If you have to you can take a bath in not too much water.
SS: What was that tub shaped like?
ME: Perfectly round and it was about like that...they used the washingboard. machine - you, well you washed some on a A but as far back as I can remember they had a washing machine that you went this way - you did it by hand...
SS: Back and forth.
ME: And it went through a wringer and then you used this tub to rinsethem and you - they had two of them, you'd rinse it into one and then you'd rinse it into the next one to get the soap out. Oh, and they - you know, one thing I think of - you know as a kid I never heard an unkind word about a neighbor or anyone criticize anybody and that never dawned on to me until recently when now people are always just talking so much, you know, and saying some thing about somebody - maybe it's true, maybe it isn't. But when I was a kid I thought everybody was, I guess, perfect, 'cause there wasn't anyone, and I knew them for a few miles around because we went to school, they called it the Grey Eagle District, and there were programs and had church services now and then, in another area that was east and well, we usually went on horseback or maybe we'd go in a buggy or someway. I knew we'd go down there to that, and there was always good turn-out.
SS: To go there - you would go to church services there too, you say?
ME: Yes. They had church services sometimes - not very often, but Iguess they were kind of special, but, ah...
SS: But never an unkind word - does that mean that you think yourparents never, even among themselves, between themselves, would talk about other people.
ME: I don't think so. I don't think they did because I never heardanything until after we moved into town and I got to know people in town, and of course, I was getting older then. Once in a while you'd hear a little something, but not very much. It seemed like the older I got, is when you begin to hear people talk about some body - there was something wrong with this one or that one, and maybe they weren't as bad as the one that was doing the talking. But as a child I absolutely didn't think there was anything wrong with anybody because people that I knew never said anything unkind that I ever heard or ever would hear anyone bawl anybody out and as I remember I don't remember the teacher having any trouble with the kids. I can remember one thing, the only punishment I ever remember of was maybe when they was supposed to be quiet, was taking an exam or something and somebody would whisper, would go up and stand in the front of the room with your back to the class* That's the only punishment I ever saw in school when I was a kid. I never saw anything - I don't know.
SS: Do you think the kids always behaved their parents?
ME: Well I would say they did. I can't remember my folks ever saying'no' about anything because it - well, we weren't tempted to do any thing that wasn't right. There wasn't any reason as I look back at it, and I just wonder sometimes about it, because I never heard of anything about any of the neighbors out there ever doing anything that wasn't right - or saying anything mean about anybody. I always just thought everybody was fine. Do you think everybody was? I do - I really do. You think they really were almost perfect? Well, yes, I do - because there was no occasion - there was nothing to, well I don't know why. I can remember one time my sister corrected me for something - she was going to give me a spankin'. She went out and got a switch; she came in and of course, she was a lot older than I, and I looked up at her and of course, I was really pretty active for such a youngster, and I grabbed that thing and broke it in two and threw it out in the yard. She walked off, she never said another word*, it was dropped right there. And I, I can't - I can look back and think of some of the things they said and done, now I appreciate it. Cause I was so small and I didn't like it because my brothers, mostly, of course, some of them, there was one short one, but they were fairly good sized and my two sisters were larger than I, so I thought it was - I felt real bad about it - I was just awfully upset about it.
SS: About, ah...
ME: Being so small. And I remember one day my dad was sitting in arocking chair and I don't remember what he was doing, and he picked me up on his lap, he says "You know, good things are done up in small packages." Well I remember things like that more? I don't remember him ever getting after me. I wasn't any angel either 'cause I was active and climbed up on top of the house, I was told to get down, but... (Laughter). You didn't, it just seemed to me, I don't think there was any temptations - there wasn't any that I know of.
SS: Did your brothers and sisters that were bigger and older than youhave any interest.in bossing you around at all - did they do that?
ME: Well this story I've told many times - it's a brother that's, hewas five years older than I and this was when I got older and was in town, we lived in town and I had - they learned the dance quite young, that was the recreation they had and I learned to dance aw fully young 'cause we had family dances, not family dances but neighborhood, would come into your home and they'd dance and there'd be maybe a banjo and a violin and a piano or whatever. Well, when I got into town I, of course, wasn't going to miss a dance. I had one-this brother and - was smarter than I was and he knew a lot more than I did, and I don't care who I was going to date, he dated my girlfriend and it was the four of us together. I was never out of his sight, and yet he never got after me for anything or did It ever get in the way - well, I just thought he was a wonderful brother. He was such a wonderful dancer that I was tickled to death to have him in there to dance with. Only once did he get after me and I was going to something and he said,"Who are you going with.", and I told him, he said, "No you're not." I said, "Well, I sure am.", and so when this fellow arrived at the front door he went to the door and said, "She's not going.", and I didn't go and I never said anything 'cause it wouldn't do any good and Ididn't know what to say 'cause I'd never quarreled with any of them, but Ididn't speak to him for aweek. (Laughter) That ended that. Well, would you see anything like that today? Indeed you don't. But of course, now everything - if you don't know it, you can see it on T.V. So I - it was different.
SS: He was really looking out to protect you? He was trying to protectyou?
ME: Sure he was - he was going to be right where I was and see thatI was taken care of and he wasn't going to let me go with some one that he thought I shouldn't, and he saw that I did it, but the way he did it, it worked out. I think of him an awful lot and I think now I could've thanked him for taking care of me, but I didn't then, I didn't think he was taking care of me, but he was.
SS: You thought you was just going on double dates?
ME: Yes, that's what it was to me, and I don't think a brother and asister double date any more. If they do, I haven't seen it or heard of it in recent years. But he was everyplace that I went to.
SS: What would be the kinds of things that you would go to - just bemainly dances and dating in those days?
ME: They were public dances in town. There was a hall they had thepublic dances inland everybody was there -nearly everybody danced then,' there wasn't any other recreation, really. They weren't out running around on the streets, not that I know of, I never knew of it,
SS: Well I heard that in some communities that some of the people wereopposed to dancing - didn't want people dancing at all. Have you heard about that?
ME: Well they did around Genesee I don't think there was anyone inGenesee that objected to dancing. Of course, the dancing was a lot different then than it is now. What it is now, I don't know, but there was, as far as I know., if you go to a dance now, there's more or less drinking, and they all do. But I don't believe that they ever did then. I remember as I got older, that once in a while there would be someone up there that had had a little too much to drink, and I know one night this man, had always been very nice to me and he was a beautiful dancer., and he started over there and he came over to ask me for a dance and my brother knew he was coming to get a dance and he walked right around him and in front real quick, and he said, "Gome on, this is our dance." He didn't think I should be dancing with him, so I didn't. But he just did it so quickly, and there wasn't a word said, he never said a word to me. He didn't say, "Well, he's been drinking, you can't dance with him." He never said anything about it. I knew, I was old enough then, and I knew that fellow had been drinking, but.
SS: But you would have danced with him if he'd have asked you'anyway,probably?
ME: I don't know what I would've doneJ I really don't know whetherI would have got up and danced with him or not. I have no idea 'cause there was so little of it, that you just - you just didn't see anything like that.
SS: In those dances, did a person usually dance with almost everybodyelse that was there during an evening? Is that how they went?
ME: Uh-huh. You didn't dance with one person all evening, which Iunderstand they do a great deal now.
SS: Yes, they do.
ME: Then you didn't - you danced with your friends, all of them. Theywere all friends, and, it was just so different.
SS: Would they ask you right before the dance?
ME: Well, when the music would start, well, then the men would startover where the women were sitting down and come up and ask for a dance. Once in a while, before the music started, if you happened to be standing around somewhere, or close to one that wanted to dance, you'd "May I have the next dance?", but that was all. You wouldn't ask, only just the next dance. I don't know when this other started, really. 'Cause it seems like it kind of came on so gradually that—it was just different. I never said, I was no angel, I was in to things and done things that I shouldn't, I know that. Like when I climbed up on the house... I knew I shouldn't - I had no business up there, but I did.
SS: Did you get punished for doing it?
ME: No, they just saw me and told me to get down off of the house.I got down. There -was no fuss made about it or nothing more said; that was it. Now, why there's correction between the parents all the time. You tell a child he can't have it; they're going to do it anyway, and they'd look up out of the corner of their eye and keep going and starting to do it. I don't remember ever seeing anything like that when I was a child, never.
SS: I wonder why the kids were so obedient then?
ME: I don't know, whether it had anything to do with us living onthe ranch 'cause we did have, we went back and forth. You spoke of Tom Wahl, of course, Tom, I knew his mother, his mother was a wonderful woman and.I came from a large family and I loved to go over there because she was a real fussy person and she was the only person I knew that was always dressed up - she never wore a house dress like other women around there and she had a little white apron that she wore only when she was getting the meals - and the meals were served why, I was in my seventh heaven when I could go over there and she asked me to stay a day or two and I did. I'd go over and stay. She gave me piano lessons, she had some beautiful paintings and things. I told Tom, I said, "I know more about your mother than you do.", because he didn't know her until later, and she had a family and they - I don't know whether you know or not, the one child was crippled and, of course, I think he passed away when he was about 20 years old; he was fairly young, anyway. She spent all of her time with him instead of on her house - she took care of him. He couldn't take care of himself, and so he, Tom, doesn't know his mother being so immaculate as I do.
SS: When you knew her was that before she had this baby that was crippled?
ME: Yes, yes,that's before they had any children that I used to go overthere a lot. Then after she had her family and Cal, of course, was crippled; he was born that way, and I guess it was a, I really don't know the particulars, but anyway, she had her hands full.
SS: Could the child walk at all - could he...
ME: Well, he got so where he got around some, but, he couldn't - well?she had to put him to bed and he wanted to turn over, she had to turn him over in bed.
SS: Did she have to feed him too?
ME: Well, I can't remember that she fed him or if she didn't. But Iknow that she had to turn him over in bed and that she, well her time was spent with Cal,and I imagine I would say that he might of, as he got older, could feed himself but I kinda question that - I just can't remember that.
SS: So that would have been really having her hands full.
ME: Oh, it was terrible, it really was. He wasn't exactly deformed,but he was in a way,too5and held his head funny, you know. Well you would think at a glance that he just didn't have a brain and he really had - he was very smart^but he couldn't pass it on. He couldn't express himself, but those that really knew-of course, I was so young that I didn't think - you know, it didn't impress me too much. Well-it did, cause I felt sorry for him, but I can't remember of him ever doing anything on his own, that he was helped. But in later years they got a car for him and he did drive^and I know people were kinda shocked, they didn't think he should be on the road. He might have had better control of his arms than he did of his legs, but on the other hand, how could he have too good of control of his arms or why couldn't he have turned over in bed? I don't know, because...
SS: But he was smart?
ME: Well they said he was brilliant really, but, if you didn't reallyknow him you wouldn't know, because it was hard for him to talk; he couldn't express himself. It didn't come out the way he wanted it to.
SS: Well, I wanted to ask you about Mrs. Wahl being immaculate. Wouldn'tthat be kinda rough to do in the country farms in those days?
ME: She's the only one I know of.
SS: I thought living was pretty rough then anyway.
ME: No, not for her. They had a porch and they had a long diningtable in there and at that time the farmers had hired help, 'cause of the machinery and everything was so different they had to have quite a bit of help, and when she had hired men she fed them out there because their house—in the kitchen and the living room she didn't want their dirty clothes in there. I can remember that very well. And I know that - Tom took me down to show me his son's new home and I said, "You remember your mother had this room built off of the kitchen to feed the hired help?" He laughed, because he didn't.
SS: Do you think she could be so immaculate because she had help inthe home?
SS: She did that all herself? All the housework?
ME: She did it all herself. About the only help that I ever rememberat that time you couldn't go buy clothes like you do now, and she Lewiston ... had a dressmaker come up from, I think it was but she was from out of Genesee anyway, it wasn't in Genesee, and she had this woman come up and sew and she'd be there for a week or two and she'd make these fancy aprons and things for her. And that's the only help I ever remember. In later years I wasn't around them so much,, and Cal got worse and she'd taken him to the doctors and different places and so forth, I wasn't around her as much, but she got so she wasn't like that. She was more like ordinary person, For instance, she came by one day, so many people rode a-horseback well she had been some place and she came by, she tied her horse up front, and came up and was sitting on the porch and when she got off, the horse had rubbed his head against her, she said "I should have gone on home and changed my shirty" and we were, you know, said why, "Well there's no excuse for dirt." Even if that horse had just did it, she should have gone on home and changed it. She said, "There's no excuse for dirt.".
SS: But you found her home to be a very special place to you., too.
ME: It was very special to me. It certainly was and she, I justthought the world of her, and you didn't go to your neighbors like you could now, because you didn't have the transportation. It was said you had to either get a horse or walk quite a distance. Tom's grandmother was hard of hearing,and she had one of those horns - I bet you've never seen them.
SS: I've seen pictures.
ME: She held that up to her ear, and you talked in that and I alwayswanted to take a hold of it; I was curious to get ahold of it, but I wouldn't. Now show me a kid today that wouldn't. If they were curious they'd go up and they'd ask her questions and they'd want to touch it but for some reason., I didn't have the nerve and I always wanted to take ahold of that horn and"take a look at it 'cause I just wondered how she could hear through that and what it was. I didn't know what it was all about. I knew what she was using it for, but that's all, but I never touched it.
SS: I like to tease my wife sometimes, she can't hear in one ear andsometimes I tell her she should have one of those horns.
ME: There's an awful lot of that in here, hard of hearing.
SS: Well, it's been that way for her ever since she was a child.
ME: Oh,for goodness sakes, well that's too bad. Bad enough when itcomes on when you get older.
SS: But you know what made that place, her house, so special toyou, what was it that made her placed I mean it was clean and it was cultured, too, from what you said...
ME: She was a marvelous person and they were such kind people, herhusband too, he was a, oh, I don't know, they just seemed like such wonderful people to me. They were so good to me^ and I was always welcome and, well, I don't know.
SS: How far away was it from your house?
ME: Oh, I don't know, I suppose a mile and a half or close to twomiles.
SS: So you just walked?
ME: Uh-huh. Up over through the fields. Over and around the roadyou go a little farther. They were just wonderful people and I think all the rest of the neighbors were. I never heard, and even after I was older and you began—we'd moved into town and I'd heard things about people in town, I never heard of any of those people out- there ever doing things, that they shouldn't. Or they never, well, they just didn't I don't think. I donlt think they did.
SS: Maybe she had time to spend with you because she didn't haveany kids at that time. I wonder if that was...
ME: Well, she spent a lot of time on her house, but, I think onething she knew that I thought the world of her? and I loved music. I started going over there, I just don't know J I haven't any idea because, well, time meant nothing. I never thought of age, I guess.
SS: Well, how close was your family to the other families around,to the other neighbors...
ME: Well as far as I know they were all good friends. Of course,we had cousins that lived on out farther east? it was about three or four miles, and that was a large family, too, and we'd go over there, but not real often, because we both, they were two big families and they couldn't all go. So maybe just a few would go at a time, but you just didn't go very often and yet, I never heard them say an unkind word. I never heard that one wasgirls or boys would ever say anything about their sister or brother or give them heck for anything they done. Never, ever.
SS: Well,when they socialized, your family, how did they do ifiDid they visit with other families or did they get together after school or what did they do?
ME: They - I guess considering socializing they wasn't verymuch of that. We went to things, like I said when they had the program in Pine Grove, we'd go down there, but really there wasn't much talent 'cause no one, well, there wasn't any way, you couldn'tthere was no teachers to teach any talent, anything unusual. At school why, the only thing that I can remember taught that was any fun was when they taught the spelling bee every Friday. Well, what would that mean to a kid today. They'd be bored. No, you didn't seem to - somehow you got along and you were happy with what you had, and if you had a house or had a horse and quite often each one would have their own horse, or maybe like the three of us that were younger, we all got on one horse, or maybe there'd be just one on the horse at a time, but we'd ride that horse around. I don't - and they did have these country dances.
SS: At person's homes?
ME: In their homes 'cause I know we had them in our home and we had -there wasn't any piano then,I think, there wasn't any piano. We had an organ, and my oldest brother played the violin, or fiddle they called it then because they never had a lesson, he just picked it upland my sister played the organ and another fellow played, I think it was a banjo, but I'm not even sure of that, one of the neighbors. And the whole family would come. There wouldn't be too many, the houses were built - the kitchens were always large, and the living rooms, seems to me most of them were pretty good sized. They'd dance and thought they had a good time. And how they'd get together - I don't know, I don't understand it. I know Tom and I had talked about it there for a time.
SS: How long would they stay - would it be a long evening, dancinguntil the early hours of the morning?
ME: I don't think so. I really don't.. They possibly be between12:00 and 1:00 o'clock, maybe 1:00 o'clock, but I doubt if it'd be anything after that.
SS: Would there be eats?
ME: Don't remember being - like at our house mother had a largefamily, well, she couldn't serve to all these people. I don't think that any of them did, I can't remember that. I don't think they did. I don't remember ever eating at a dance until after we moved into Genesee and then they'd go - there was a restaurant there and the kids would go up there and eat and so forth, but in the country I don't think they did.
SS: Did all ages come to Genesee dances, just like country dances,or was it more the same age in town?
ME: No, I think they were all there. Kids not quite as young asthey did in the country. Because in the country they didn't leave them at home? I don't think they did. No, it was different, it was altogether different, because I know that - I don't remember seeing any small youngsters at a dance in town,and Idon't believe that women took small youngsters and went to things like that. When we first moved to town they kind of more stayed home with their kids. You didn't leave them with babysitters.
SS: And you didn't bring them with you, either, like in the country?
ME: No, they didn't. No, Idon't remember -it doesn't run in my mindof ever seeing a youngster there. In later years, I did, yes, but when I was young and I think they averaged almost a dance a week 'cause that was about the only amusement they had.
SS: In town?
ME: Uh-huh. And then maybe they'd be in the country, if somebodywould build a new barn, they'd have a barn dance.
SS: Were there other things like clubs that you took part of in townin Genesee besides the dances when you were young?
ME: Well, eventually, you did, of course. I didn't - I knew therewere clubs, but actually I was never interested in playing cards or anything like that until after Iwas married and of course, I went along with the group and went to the card clubs.
SS: Is that what the clubs were mostly - card clubs?
ME: Yes, they were card clubs. There were quite a few in Geneseethat played cards and pretty good card players there,too.
SS: Were they women's clubs or for...
ME: Well, sometimes there'd be a group that would form where there'dmaybe three or four couples, four or five or so, you know, had so many tables, but, it's more women's clubs. Now when I was younger, I was with a group and we had four or five tables? we played cards and men were there. But., in recent years I don't believe they do that anymore. There maybe a couple get together and go play cards with each other, but, not as a group.
SS: Were those clubs affiliated with - you know, like national women'sclubs or were they just a local? .
ME: Just local.
SS: Did your folks have a 160-acre farm out there or what was thefarm?
ME: They had - I don't know, my dad homesteaded out at thereservation^.and my brother owns that farm now. Now I don't know and I've been always going to ask my brother - I want to see the deed to it. Cause it's supposed to be a little different. It was signed by the President at that time, and I don't think the President signs deeds anymore. And I always think, "Why didn't I ask Bob to see that?" In fact, I never even thought of it until later years and one time it was mentioned. No, I never have seen it. But he homesteaded this and the Indians rode horseback - they came up over the hills from, they was more from around Lapwai and they had a trail came up there and it came right close to my dad's place, where they were living then, and while he - I don't know how long after he homesteaded that, he bought some more land, that was a couple or three miles from there where they built a home. But the Indians used to come through and for some reason they took a liking to my dad, and they called him Chief Robert. No one ever called him Bob when he was young, they called him Robert. And they called him Chief Robert. But he kept a horse saddled, they said, and I don't remember that 'cause, but I was told later that they did keep a horse saddled. But that wouldn't do them any good 'cause the Indians, if there was more than one there was nothing they could do anyway.
SS: What did he keep a horse saddled for - to get away if he needed to?
ME: I guess so. But they never bothered us at all or - they'd comeand maybe ask for something - you gave it to them. But I really didn't see much of them.
SS: They wouldn't abuse that, they would just ask once in a while forsomething?
ME: I don't think it happened very often.
SS: You gave it to them to keep on their good side?
ME: Yes, you did. If anybody asked you just did, if you had it; ifyou didn't, why you'd tell them you didn't have it. But I don't think that people ever misreprepresented to other people; I think they just told them Lhe truth. I don't think it ever occurred to them to try and lie out of anything, or maybe I wasn't around enough that I heard it. I don't know.
SS: Well do you think that your father would treat the Indians just thesame as he would treat white people, or would he treat them different?
ME: He was friendly with them as much as he could be, but they didn'tmix much, and I know that they didn't have any trouble - my dad didn't have any trouble whatever at any time with the Indians. And in later years when I was a little older and could go a little farther, there was a family lived oh, about a mile from there, and his wife was a full-blooded Indian, and I don't know how - I'd heard different stories how she learned to cook, 'cause she didn't know how to cook, Indians didn't know. And anyway, they had two girls and a boy, and we were good friends and I used to go down there - I'd walk down, and this Mrs. Williams would be sitting out on the front porch with her feet straight out, just like the Indians sit - there she was. And how she could sit there and why, when they had chairs, but there's where she was. "Hello,Mary - how are you?. Becky, he in the house." That was about all she'd say. She was friendly; she was not the least bit unfriendly and I'm sure she was glad that we came whenever we did, or anything, and the daughter was an immaculate housekeeper and very well res pected and well, all three of them were, the two girls and the man, the boy in the family, all of them were very well respected. And when she had a family and her girl got old enough.in her high school, of course, she had gone to the country school, her mother was a little leery of sending her into Genesee into school 'cause there wasn't any Indians in there, even though this daughter was only a half-breed9 So they had decided, I don't remember now just where it was, but they were going to send her to some school what was Indian. They thought maybe that she might be embarrassed or they'd say something to her that they shouldn't. Well there was a good friend of there's that liked them, and was glad to have her, and so this women told Mrs. Williams, or her name was Cameron then, Mrs. Cameron, she said "I'd be glad to have her to stay with us and go to school." And she went through high school, and she was treated just like any other white person^ and her sister did,too. They both graduated from high school. And the oldest one, you wouldn't know she had any Indian blood, but the younger girl looked more like an Indian. Genesee accepted her completely she was Indian, two take her daughter. - No, cause the family respected ith her and attended church her, as one of the and she was accepted. And she came back and years later, I'd s'een belng part Indian. you just her mother because of that h0„ that -because she was full-blooded Indian and married to a white? there ever said or done anything.
SS: Did she come and take Part in tne dances like other people?
ME: No, her mother didn't.
SS: Her mother is the one Imean.with them,and I don't thaink, of course, they don't live there any thank of anything different.
SS: Weren't there afair number or at or at least some, well there were somepeople that were just liu. woman, that were Indians and married whites and...
ME: Well that was more around through, maybe, Lapwai, I think it happened down there. But up in our country it wasn't. There was only this one family, that I knew of, that married an Indian.
SS: But they didn't mix really then, that family didn't mix with theother families on a social basis?
ME: Well,there wasn't such a thing as a social basis in those times,really. But Mrs. Williams didn't go and call on her neighbors. All I can remember of her is sitting out on that front porch, and she never learned to really do housework and to cook like she should have. Maybe, I don't know how they did before they had this daughter that was old enough to do the work, 'cause I wasn't in their house then. I was younger, so much younger, and I got older, they were accepted, and I never even thought to ask my mother. My mother probably could have told me more about it, but it never occurred to me.
SS: Did they seem to have a happy marriage?
ME: I think so. I really do. Because they all seemed to be so kindof easy going,and I was there quite a bit and I never, ever heard any of them say an unkind word to each other. The sisters, or the brother or the mother or the father, and of course, I didn't talk to the mother very much; she was a little hard to talk to. And he was just like any other white man; I didn't think anything about it. I thought it was perfectly all right, because people didn't talk about those things. In this day and age, everybody would be talking about it and you'd think about it and you'd probably ask some questions. Well they were accepted, and that was it, and when Rebecca, of course, as I said, she was a half-breed, started in the country school they were all white people, and she was the only one that wasn't. Well she was, as far as I was con cerned, she was white, and I knew she wasn't. I knew her mother was an Indian, but it never - there wasn't any difference between her and any of the others. She was just a real, nice person. But I don't remember of her ever being to any of those country dances.
ME: Uh-huh. Now whether she was or not, I don't know, but I don'tremember of ever seeing her at a dance.
SS: Do you think maybe the family would feel hesitant about it?
ME: She herself may have, 'cause she was a little hesitant aboutsending her to school in Genesee because they were all white people. So my idea would be, that Rebecca herself might have felt - I don't know. There was never, ever anything said.
SS: Now Rebecca is the one that went to school in the city?
ME: Yes^ No - she was the half-breed.
SS: Oh, it was her daughter?
ME: It's her daughter that went to school in Genesee,.
SS: But it was Rebecca's mother that sat on the porch?
ME: Yes. I don't know what her name was. I haven't any idea; tome she was Mrs. Williams, and when I was a kid you didn't callany married woman by her first name. It was Mrs. I didn't know their names.
SS: Well, Rebecca, she married and lived and just stayed right there?
ME: Well, she married a Genesee man and they bought a farm, and weregood farmers, made a good living, retired where the retirement place - oh, I don't know just where it is, I've never been over there. But between here and Seattle, and it's quite a nice home. I've heard people speak about it and they thought it was a real nice place. It had a good, very good reputation. And I don't know, as I understand it you had your own apartment and you could, if you wanted to, fix your meal there or you could go and eat in the dining room? you had a choice.
SS: So Rebecca, she went to school in the country. Did she go on tohigh school?
SS: In Genessee?
SS: But she - it wasn't her that they were going to send away toschool, it was her daughter?
ME: It was her daughter. And she was afraid that she wouldn't beaccepted.
SS: But she married a white man, -Rebecca did?
ME: They all did, yeah. Yes, she did, she married a white man. AndI know at the time it seemed kind of strange to me, I thought, gee, he's marrying her,and she isn't a white woman and he's a white man, but I really hadn't been around Indians at all, because they were mostly in Lapwai and I don't remember when they used to come up through there - to ride up through there and do this war whooping like they do. And they did a lot of it out there, but I don't remember much about it. I think I was too young to remember.
SS: Did you grow up being afraid at all of Indians?
ME: No, not at all. No, no, not one bit. To me they was just likeanyone else. I think that if - when I was young, if an Indian had asked me for a date I would have been embarrassed. I think it would have bothered me because I wouldn't want to be disres pectful to him, and I would hate to admit that I wouldn't go out with him, but I don't believe I would of. Because I never was really around an Indian, 'cause to me Rebecca was a half-breed, but she was a white woman. As far as I was concerned she was just like any other white person.
SS: Well did you and she - where you two friends?
ME: Yeah. Yes, we were good friends, and I never even thought ofher as being an Indian, 'cause she was treated just like any other white person and everybody, well, everyone respected her.
SS: She went to school in Genesee herself?
SS: Well, you know when you say that she wondered about her daughtergoing to school there, it makes me think that maybe she didn't have the easiest time herself.
ME: Well, it could've been things that I wouldn't have known about.Maybe a few things came up and she kept it to herself, I wouldn't know. I just don't know.
SS: She probably didn't - as you knew her, probably, she didn't have -her whole life was with white people, not with Indians, probably.
ME: She was never around Indians, hardly at all, I don't think. Theymight have come up from Lapwai and come up, some now and then, but I rather doubt it.
SS: And she must have dated this white man that she married, I mean,they must have gone together some?
ME: Well I suppose they did, I really don't know.. Because it wasnever discussed or ever heard anything about it. Whether he just - the way laws were and so forth, whether he just married her, saw her and married her and that was it, I don't imagine that he really kept company with her any length of time. I should't say that I don't think so, 'cause I don't know. I have no idea, 'cause I never saw much of him.
SS: Well do you think that people had the idea then that Indianswere kind of inferior at the time, 'cause of the way they lived and the way they acted?
ME: Well, I don't know. I never really had any prejudice againstthem in any way, and in later years I knew of a couple of girls from Lapwai that were full-blooded Indians, and were lovely girls, only they had a drinking habit.. And, of course, that's one thing that Indians.do like their liquor. They have a little trouble there. One of the girls that I knew was, I think, see Chief Joseph was her grandfather, and her father's name was Joseph too. And he tried to talk to the Indians when they'd get a sum of money, just buy land, you know, and try to get ahead, and she told me herself that you couldn't do anything with, 'it didn't mean anything to them. Said they got this money and they just drank it and that was it and they just lived on anything that - well, I haven't been in Lapwai for several years, but they didn't used to be hardly, well there was just old shacks mostly, you might say. And I think they just didn't care. But I think, and now they've spread out more and they're around through the country, they're probably a lot different. But I know, Josephine, used to tell me quite a bit about them and that, well, she just didn't think they had any ambition and they just thought the government should keep 'em.
SS: But she had ambition herself?
ME: She wasn't that type and neither was her father., and her father wasa full-blooded Indian. So, but she didn't go along with it at all.
SS: This is Joseph's daughter, Josephine?
SS: Was her mother a white?
ME: I never - no, her mother was an Indian, I saw her once, and she was afull-blooded Indian. And, of course now, Josephine dressed like anyone else, but one day I saw her mother and she introduced me to her and I remember she had one of those scarves tied around her like the Indians do,and I was very much surprised 'cause I expected her mother to be more like a white person, 'cause Josephine was a nice looking girl, and very neatly dressed and everything, and I know this surprised me, when I saw this scarf tied around her mother's head. But I had always thought that I would go to Lapwai while Josephine was there and see where they lived, 'cause she had asked me out, but I never did. I guess maybe I was a little reluctant, because they were full-blooded Indian family and, well, I didn't think, I don't think I'd have the courage to walk in, if there were more Indians there I wouldn't feel at home. He had a half-brother; his mother had been married before and evidently lost her husband in Scotland and then she married Grey, and then she had two sons and a daughter, that were Grey's, and they came, well.I can't tell you, I'd have to look, I'd have to look it up. I have it written down when they... But they came out to Salt Lake City, I don't know, you may be a Mormon for all I know...
SS: No, I'm not.
ME: Well^ at that time the Mormons didn't like the other people and mygrandfather went to Salt Lake City, and.I don't, it must have been just kind of a little shack that he had, and he worked with harnesses and things like that, kind of a harness shop, and the Mormons run him out of Salt Lake City, they didn't want anyone else in there. So he went to Carson City from Salt Lake City, and then my dad and my uncle came up to Walla Walla and they stayed there for awhile, and they came on over to Genesee and they both homesteaded.farms out there and their farms were, oh, a few miles apart. They both homesteaded.
SS: And they got that land just when the Indian reservation opened up forsettlement?
ME: I don't know whether you paid anything for land then. Didn't you justhave to... I don't know...
SS: Had to live on it for five years I think and do so many improvementsand then it was yours - it was a filing fee, but I don't know if there was anything else.
ME: Well i never heard that mentioned and I never even thought to ask. Ifthey did, they didn't pay much, 'cause he didn't have any money.
SS: Well do you think he was there waiting - I know a lot of people werewaiting at Genesee for the land to open up and then they just, you know, took what they could.
ME: Well, I don't know, really; they were homesteading it when he and myuncle came, and when they opened up, I don't know.
SS: But they actually homesteaded the land, didn't they?
ME: But he actually homesteaded this 200 acres so a little over, or a littleunder, it's alittle over 'cause some of it has alittle canyon right in it, in the farm land, and he homesteaded that, and as Isaid the thing that I've always been curious about is the deed to this. I think that that should be framed. And I suppose my uncle's was the same thing, was probably signed by the President 'cause it was about the same time, and of course, they bought more land.
SS: When did he meet your mother? Did he know her before he came there?
ME: No, my mother came from Nebraska, and her father and mother came out,and they homesteaded a place down towards the Pine Grove District, down there, but I really don't know what her folks, what nationality they are, even. But, Ijust don't know where the Folletts came from, buto
SS: Related to Mahlon Follett?
ME: Distant relative, we don't claim any relation, but in, oh, at one timethe parents, I guess, kind of got together and found out there was a distant relation in the Folletts and just where Mafalcma mother and father came from, I've never talked to Mahlonabout it, because we've never really said much - ever discussed it. I never thought of him as being related, 'cause I didn't know it for so long, when they came up in later years, it didn't make any difference to me.
SS: Was it rough going, you say he had no money when he started. Wasit difficult in the early years for him on the farm?
ME: 'I don't think there's a difference from what it is now, because peoplenow have to have so much and demand so much and their children demand so much, nobody needed it, nobody had it. And, of course, I think it'd, well, he lived on a farm, you raised everything you ate, you had pigs, you had cattle, you had chickens, so you had your bread, baked your bread, you didn't buy it, that's for sure, and you raised your garden^and I remember there was an orchard back of the house, and they, my dad had a big pit—he dug this pit, one was for potatoes and vegetables that you could keep were put in different pits. Well these pits were lined with straw for the vegetables so -they wouldn't be in the dirt, then you'd put straw over them and then dirt over that. We'd go out there and dig out enough of whatever you wanted and you'd - well, I don't think you ever bought groceries to speak of.
SS: How deep were those pits, I don't mean exact, but I mean, wouldthey be deep enough you could stand in them.
ME: No, they weren't too deep, 'cause he had, of course, more thanone.
SS: Oh, he had two.
ME: And there would be one for potatoes and carrots and, oh, you seethere was many vegetables you couldn't put in a pit. And I don't know whether they canned vegetables then or not, that don't register with me. I can't remember, 'cause I don't remember seeing any fruit jars.
SS: I think in those earlier days they weren't.
ME: I don't think so. No, to me, there wasn't. And I remember theyhad the back of the house was a - he dug a - quite into a bank and then they lined that with something - I don't know what, so that the dirt wouldn't come down into it. And in the summertime you had to put your milk out there in pans, 'cause you couldn't keep it in the house. You had to have milk, 'cause everybody ate bread and milk, or drank milk. But, I don't know, there was never any lack of anything 'cause we had plenty of meat, 'cause we had our own beef, and there was, we had the pigs and everything, and they did their own butchering.. I can remember seeing the meat hung up; it was frozen. I think the winter's - to me, the winter's were more severe, they were colder. You could keep meat for quite a long time. But maybe, that's just I don't remember.
SS: I've heard other people say that, that the winter's were colder.
ME: Well I would say so. And we always had, and of course, we had allof this fruity but there was no way— I think, maybe, I would say, but I'm not sure that either they probably had a pit of apples too, because there were quite a few apples, of different kinds, so I think there would be - 'cause I know there was quite a few pits back there.
SS: Well, could he make his entire living by farming? Did he do anything else for a living besides the farm?
SS: Do you know if he farmed before he came here? It doesn't soundlike it...
ME: No, I'm sure they didn't. I think he was pretty young and as Isaid, he and mom both came to Walla Walla and then came on up here and I think they were fairly young and just went out there and homesteaded and now whether they got a little work then, but I don't think there was any work. I don't know where they'd work. No one else had any money around there that they could pay them for anything.
SS: Well, you know, the reputation of the country around there is sogood that I wonder whether he just couldn't get a pretty good crop off that land right from the start?
ME: Oh, I think they did. I really do, I think they did. I thinkthey did right at the beginning, I don't know how they bought machinery, that never even entered my mind, to start out with, because they'd have to have a plow, but they didn't have machinery like they do now, but, they had to have a mower and they had to have a plow and a few things. I know dad had quite a few horses, but, before that, I don't know.
SS: Well he must have been able to do well enough from his farmingto get the horses and the equipment that he — when you were young he had pretty good equipment, did he? Did he have what he needed to farm right?
ME: He had all he needed, and of course, for that time, when I remember,he'd bought more land and built this home. Because when they'd first moved on this reservation, it was just kind of a little shack, little two-room shack out there and just when, or how long it was that they bought this land and built a home, I don't know. Because the home was built when I was a baby, so that's the only home that I was ever in till we moved into Genesee.
SS: Well, did they live in a true shack until they built that home?
ME: Just a kind of a shack.
SS: Was that right near the other place, did you say?
ME: No, they were about two or three miles a part.
SS: Is that on the reservation too?
ME: No, it isn't. No, it isn't on the reservation. Well, it's nearout there where Tom Wahl, that farm is. I really just don't know how they managed, of course, machinery didn't cost very much then, but I know they paid for it somehow, and there was not, you couldn't go out anndo ageett an I'm sure of that. So Idon't know how they maniiadgyeeda, iT,know how
SS: What about your mother, did shue huave to do alot of work on theplace -alot of responsibility? Just her housework. She never went out in the field or anything downstairs, besides the bedrooms upstairs So it it wasn't a small know What before, but, when I was that time they'd probably started comino out with Jars not too long after that.
SS: Can you remember if there wat!
SS: CaSh ln your family? If you had money
ME: Nobody wanted anything.
SS: Well, clothes closet. There was aboart about so wide, nailed on the wallnever saw acoat hanoer or anythino like that when 1was achild. After we moved to town, we had clothes closets up, is that it?
ME: People didn't have any clothes. I suppose, I probably had, Imight have had two or three dresses, and you'd wash them. You didn't have a lot, that's for sure, 'cause they'd only have behind the doors where they hung the clothes. I know I was talking to someone not too long ago, I said "Do you remember when we used to hang our clothes behind the door, we didn't even have a clothes' closet?", said "Well, I sure do." (Laughter) What would you do without a clothes closet now? aren't
SS: I don't know. Clothes closets big enough now for all theclothes people have got.
ME: Well buddy, they didn't demand it, nobody seemed to care, 'causeno one else had it. They weren't trying to outdo the other one and I think that's one reason they got along so well, no one was jealous of anyone or had - I don't think there was any ill feelings.
SS: But not having clothes, say, you know, I've heard them say howthe town kids used to make fun of the country kids, say, "Well, those kids don't change their clothes; they're smelly, they're not clean like around town."
ME: Well I think maybe that was in later years, because I don't thinkthat happened; well, it wasn't in our family, 'cause I know they took their baths and I think that anyone in our family came in from the field and needed a bath, they got it^and they took it. But, again on the other hand, it could have been some older—and maybe I was kind of accustomed to it and expected and never thought of it. But I can't hardly believe that I'd be accustomed to it; I just can't, because I know they all did the same thing, as I said, they had these washtubs, as they called them, and they had their baths.
SS: You probably had to wash every week if you had only so little clothes,just a few dresses, it was probably pretty often that they washed.
ME: Well, I'm sure that they washed more than once a week.
SS: Oh, boy.
ME: Well, I'm sure they did.
SS: Well, do you think that your folks were taking the money that hemade farming and putting it into more land - do you think that's what they did?
ME: Oh, they bought more land, yes. He bought, oh, I don't know, Ithink it's close to 120 in one field and 80 in another, something like this, where they built the home, later, where they lived, not where they homesteaded. And now they are going to tear down that house and the man that bought this, of course, this land has been sold, and he's built a new home out there. And I said to Tom WahJ:, went by there, I said, "You know I've always wanted to go back there and go inside that house again,"r—he said, "I'll take you over sometime." I said, "Oh, no." 'cause they've built a new home now out - a great big one, out in front.
SS: Well did that mean that your mother had only the house work todo or did she have leisure things she had time to sit...
ME: There was no leisure time. I think she was busy all the time withhouse work and, I don't remember of ever seeing her in the garden. She might have gone down and got some once in a while. But I can remember going down, she told me to go down and get some carrots, or this or that, and I can see Dad down there hoeing the garden. He spent a lot of time hoeing the garden, 'cause the older boys were doing quite a bit of the farm work. And I don't remember mother doing anything like that at all.
SS: But leisure though, she didn't have time to sit down and justrelax and read or...
ME: I never remember ever seeing her sit down and relaxing. I justdon't remember ever seeing her do that.
SS: It doesn't surprise mes 'cause I've heard other people say thesame.
ME: I don't remember ever seeing her sit down and relaxing. Andof course she didn't have magazines; I don't think we had a daily paper. I'm not sure they even had a mailman come out there, but there must have been, but I just don't recall anything about any mailman or anything. They did later years, but as a child, I don't remember, 'cause I just don't think there was a great deal of mail. I think we'd go to town, not very often, but they did go in now and then and probably picked up what mail there was, if there was any. But I know we didn't have magazines or paper when I was real small and on the ranch; of course, in later years we did.
SS: Was there, a lot that you were expected to do - a lot of choresthat you were expected to do, or did your older brothers and sisters take care of that stuff.
ME: Oh, no, I helped with the dishes. Always dusted, that was one ofmy jobs, and I milked the cow, but not because I was told to*, but see, I have several brothers older, and my sister was quite a bit older, so we weren't very close. I mean, we weren't together a lot 'cause she was so much older than I am. The boys did the milking and so there was a cow that I wanted to milk," I thought that cow should be my cow, and I could milk her, and they let me. I'd take my pail and go down and milk her, maybe they'd milk part - maybe if I didn't do a good job, they'd finish it, I don't know, 'cause then I didn't pay any attention. But I milked a cow for quite awhile. We always had cats and we'd squirt the milk in the cat'and... (Laughter), feed the cat while you was milking. But I did quit milking, I didn't keep that up too long, I'm sure of that.
SS: Well did you have as much time as you wanted to play, and dowhat you wanted to that way?
ME: Sure. There was horses more than anything else, get on a horseand ride to the neighbors or maybe ride them up and down a bank somewhere. I know there was a bank, they told me not to go up that bank, I shouldn't, and I thought well I bet I do, and I did. (Laughter) But whether they knew it, they did, they never bawled me out.
SS: Sounds like they treated you pretty good, then, really.
ME: But, the only one thing I ever pulled over on them, and then Inever told them. Dad had—there'd be two horses that would go together, they were in pairs, this pair of grey horses. One was a real gentle horse, and the other one wasn't, and no one could get on his back; hebucked them off right now. And that didn't make sense to me. And of course, the barns were built with a stall and a wall up between, and I wondered why I couldn't climb up that wall and slip over on this horse, and he wouldn't even know I was there, and I did. He never moved. I sat there, if I'd of kicked him, you know, or done anything, he probably would of thrown me off, but I sat there quite a while, and I thought, "Nothing wrong with this horse, he's just as gentle as the other one," then pretty soon I slid off, got down, went out of the barn. I never told them what I did, 'cause I was afraid then I would get into trouble, so I didn't tell them.
SS: You know it sounds like you were really treated well by your parents,I mean, you weren't really afraid of them hurting you or hitting you or, it seems like you felt free to be somewhat independent - it sounds good to me.
ME: Well, I think they all were. And the people that I knew were allthe same way. They were different families where I used to get on a horse, you know, and go over, and as far as I know if was all the same. I don't think there was any disputes to speak. There might of been once in awhile, but I just can't hardly believe they did.
SS: How do you think the husbands and wives got along in those days,like.
ME: Well I never heard one of them ever say anything back to the otherone. Now, why, they just say it, that's all. But I never heard it, and I know I was in different families, like going over to my uncle's place, well, I never heard them ever say anything to each other, I mean, to contradict one another or anything. I've never heard them And there was different families where I used to go, and I would be there, maybe, all day, but I didn't pay too much attention to the parents 'cause I was there to play with the kids, but I never heard anything. Never. Never was a word of disagreement. We must have, at times, had disagreements, I don't know. But...
SS: Do you think, well, in other words, you figure that they kept itto themselves or they just would talk to each other in private?
ME: If they did, they kept it to themselves. They sure did, 'causeandthey don't anymore.
SS: No, that's true.
ME: No, and I never - and as I said, even with all the brothers thatI had and everything, I never was really, they never really got after me or was strict with me in any way. Except this brother was taking care of me in a round-about way that I just didn't even know what he was doing. He was just being nice to me, as far as I was concerned.
SS: I have understood that in some families,,that, say, the women weren'ttreated as well as in others, like some families, the wife would wind up having to cut her own wood, orr even have to work in the field, and that sort of thing. Was that looked down upon...
ME: There wasn't anyone around there that did that, that I know of.Of course, I had these brothers to do things like that and my dad, and I didn't think women split wood, and a few neighbors that I went to, I don't think that any of the women that I knew*-they may have, but I don't believe they ever did. But I may not have known what was going on.
SS: I was going to ask you a little bit, too, about the - well, themerchants in Genesee. Now I understand that the Rosensteins were a big store there - did you deal with them at all, did you trade with them?
ME: Yes, I remember them very well.
SS: What did you think of that family?
ME: Well, they was just - the only difference that I could see, theywere someone that told me they were Jews, and I didn't know what a Jew was. I don't know whether that's true or not.
SS: No, they were. That's what I understand.
ME: That's what I was told, and I wondered why it would make anydifference. I didn't see what the difference was whether they were Jews or not, and I'd been in their home and we'd traded at their store, but of course, they left there! was still pretty young when they left;* I think they went to California. But I don't know if they mixed very much with the other people, or whether they didn't want to or whether they were afraid they wouldn't be accepted or not, I don't know; I haven't any idea, 'cause to me they were just another family.
SS: You don't know whether they did or didn't mix? In Genesee?
ME: Well, they were a little older than I, and I wasn't with theirgirls -I can't remember how many there were in the family or anything, now - about the age of my older sister, and my older sister was a friend of one of them, but they didn't go back and forth a lot, but I know they were good friends. But I really just don't - I thought there was something different about it, and I didn't know why or what it was.
SS: About them as a family?
ME: Well, I just thought that it was strange and there seemed to bea feeling, and I don't know whether it was that they were Jews and were a little reluctant to mix with the other people, or whether the other people - I think the other people would have accepted them, if they were raised like I was; and I wouldn't have made any different to me whether they were Jews or not. But I think maybe they kept to themselves a little more.. That's the feeling that I had, and I never saw Mrs. Rosenstein out very much, very few times. She seemed to kind of stay at home by herself, I thought, a great deal. Of course, the girls went to school and so forth, but— and they supposed to have a nice house for that time, you know.
SS: Why was it that the family moved in to Genesee? What was thethinking?
ME: To put the kids in school. (Laughter)Oh no, dad bought a place. He bought a home in town, and we just moved in and my brother farmed the ranch, so we lived in town then the rest of our lives. Lived in the same house until, well,:we got married and went and so forth, and that was it.
SS: Well did your father then retire at that time...
ME: Oh yes, he retired when...
SS: When you moved in?
ME: He might of gone out a little in the summertime, but I don't remembereven going out or thinking much about it again.
SS: Well was he older than...
ME: He was ten years older than my mother.
SS: But he probably, still, when he moved into town - what would hehave been, about 50?
ME: No, I think my brothers did most of the work by the time we movedto town. He might of done a few things around, but not very much. He kind of retired - he did retire. And when we first moved into town there was hardly any running water - nearly everybody had a pump. There was a pump almost on - well ours was on the back porch; that's where most of them were. But it wasn't very long that I remember we had coils put in the stove and a tank in back of the stove so we had a hot water tank., and had bathtub and so forth, but I don't know what year that was or a thing about it.
SS: What did you think of living in the town as compared to livingin the country?
ME: Oh, times began to change by the time we came to town, and as Isaid, when we lived in the country I never heard anyone say anything about anybody, and that was kind of a pleasure. And then after you got into town, you began to hear things, and they'd, well, people talked more. And I guess they got to talking more all the time, and that was really about the only difference, as far as I know, because you had your own pleasure. You didn't have any money to spend, or you couldn't buy a lot of toys and things, you didn't have - you might get a doll for Christmas.
SS: Was there much different in the - it sounds like you had more conveniences in town, at least...
ME: Oh, yes, we did because shortly after we got to town, as I said,it wasn't- I think that he started working on that probably right after we moved in and put the water in the house so we-had running water and could have a bath without taking it in the washtub.
SS: Do you think that meant very much to, like your mother, to havethe conveniences?
ME: Oh, land, yes. Sure it would mean quite a lot. The work was less,but then she didn't - well, we did: have a cow in town,, too, for quite a while; they had, my dad had a barn, and quite a few people had a cow and milked the cow for years, and sometimes we had two cows in there. But we had our own milk and he still raised the animals on the ranch, did the butchering and so forth. But things have changed considerably. I don't know what a young person would do, today, if they were put back in that situation; they'd be lost, and we were perfectly happy. We didn't know any better.
SS: You would have lost the connection with knowing how to do thingsand knowing how to cope with it, because when you grew up that's the way it all was, and now we're so far away.
ME: Yeah, that's right. Yes, it is. No, you had to do what had to bedone, and you couldn't hire things done. We did have a hired girl a time or two, but not for very long.
SS: What year were you born in?
ME: You're asking my age.
SS: Well, I thought I was being a little more delicate than that.(Laughter) Just-think of it as for the historical record, really.
ME: I was born in '97.
SS: I was just trying to think of how old you would have been when youwere getting through high school. Did you work at all at that time when you were in high school finishing?
ME: Huh-uh. No, very few people did. My sister, after she went tocollege and was teaching, she was gone a lot and she'd come home in the summertime she used to clerk in one of the stores usually through the summer, but I never did. I helped more in the house with the housework.
SS: After you finished high school what did you do?
ME: Got married.
SS: Right away?
ME: (Laughter) It was foolish to get married, young like that, butsometimes they do. They still do.
SS: Uh-huh. Do you think it's better to have some experience withliving first before you get married, to grow up a little more?
ME: No, I don't. No, I think that people, times have just changed isall. It's different. I've thought so many times that if my mother and dad would see what was going on today, I wonder what they'd think.
SS: I wonder, what do you think they'd think?
ME: They wouldn't believe it. I don't believe they could believe that -it took so little to satisfy a person, you really - you didn't demand anything of people. I don't think they did, as far as I know. You got along with what you had, you knew that was it.
SS: I think I should get going. I've stayed quite a while. Ireally enjoyed talking with you. In fact, I'd like to, if it would be okay, maybe...
ME: I said I don't remember those things, because it didn't mean anythingto me. I thought, you know, everybody was the same, and I thought everybody told the truthfand I thought everybody was honest. I didn't think that anybody would take anything that didn't belong to them. We weren't raised that way, and I don't think any of them were then. I just don't know.
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Segment Synopsis: Nothing had was ever said about neighbors in country, so she thought everyone was perfect. No punishments from family. Being short upset her. Older brother always accompanied her on dates, protecting her without her realizing it; he refused to let her go out with one boy. Dances in Genesee. Brother protected her from dancing with a good dancer who'd been drinking. Dancing with everyone there. No lack of obedience then and now.
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Segment Synopsis: Visiting Mrs. Wahl was a great pleasure for her. Mrs. Wahl kept an immaculate home, and taught her to play the piano. Caring for her crippled child. She fed the hired men on the porch She had a dressmaker come to make clothes. Grandmother used a horn to hear. Friendship with Mrs. Wahl.
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43:00 - Indian-White family; description of people and the household in Genesee; her friends drank and had little ambition
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Segment Synopsis: An Indian-white family. The Indian mother sat like an Indian on the porch and never learned housekeeping. Daughter became a skilled homemaker and married a white man. She almost sent her daughter away to high school, but a friend in Genesee offered to keep her. Acceptance of the family. The daughter probably didn't go to country dances. Women were addressed formally. Indian presence around Genesee Her attitudes towards Indians - she saw the daughter as a white. Her Indian friends from Lapwai drank. One complained that Indians couldn't save their money, having little ambition. Surprise at meeting her friend's mother, a traditional Indian; her reluctance to visit her friend in Lapwai.
60:00 - Grandfather run out of harness shop in Salt Lake City by Mormons; homesteaders came to Genesee
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65:00 - Self-sufficiency on the farm; father wasn't a good farmer, mother worked entirely in the home
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Segment Synopsis: Self sufficiency on the farm. Pits for storing food. Father started farming as homesteader and never worked out. His successful farming. Building a home on his newer land. Mother's work was entirely taking care of the home; she never worked outside. People hung their clothes behind the door, and had no closet. Her family kept clean. Father worked in the garden and the older boys did much farm work. Mother had no leisure time. She didn't have a lot of work at home - milking cows. A horse that was supposed to be dangerous. Parents seemed to get along well.
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Segment Synopsis: Son took over farm house when they moved into town, and father was mostly retired. When they moved into town most people still had hand pumps for water. Town gossip. No more spending in town than country. Usefulness of conveniences. She didn't work, but got married right after high school. Her parents wouldn't believe society today. People didn't expect much and got along with what they had. Honesty of people then.