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Latah County Oral History Collection

Remembering Latah County and Idaho Life at the turn of the 20th century

« View All Edward Halseth interviews

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Date: December 20, 1974 Interviewer: Sam Schrager

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1:00 - Father emigrated from Norway and sharpened tools for Vollmer mines and homestead in Janesville; raised cattle

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Segment Synopsis: Father sharpened tools for Vollmer mines, and homesteaded at Janesville, after coming from Norway and working in Colorado. He raised cattle on the homestead.

6:00 - Ed breaks his leg falling off his horse and lays in the barn a couple weeks after a few homesteaders set his leg.

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Segment Synopsis: Ed breaks his leg falling off his horse and lays in the barn a couple weeks after a few homesteaders set his leg.

10:00 - Pork and porridge were staples on the homestead. The family didn't hunt deer, despite their abundance on the meadow.

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Segment Synopsis: Pork and porridge were staples on the homestead. The family didn't hunt deer, despite their abundance on the meadow.

13:00 - Ed was scared of Big Anderson at the Water Power Sawmill

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Segment Synopsis: At the Water Power Sawmill at Anderson Crossing, Ed was scared by Big Anderson, who came out of his shack yelling at him as he explored the area around a tunnel. Big wore a cap made of overalls and was guarding his perpetual motion machine.

18:00 - Businesses on Janesville and Big Bear Ridge

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Segment Synopsis: The Lawrence store, where Halseths traded, was Janesville; he put in a saloon when the railroad came through. There was also a whore house on the meadow in the railroad boom days. Father sold place there and bought place on Big Bear Ridge for the same price.

25:00 - Agnes Liner was murdered by Jessie Dillman in Mica Mine. Bill Dillman trapped bear and had a travelling bear show.

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Segment Synopsis: Agnes Liner was murdered by Jessie Dillman in Mica Mine. Bill Dillman trapped bear and had a travelling bear show.

28:00 - The Hog Meadows school, used as the church and voting place too.

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Segment Synopsis: The Hog Meadows school, used as the church and voting place too.

30:00 - No money for Christmas; Big Bear was largely used for grazing; sleighs used to travel on ridge for snow

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Segment Synopsis: No money for Christmas when he was young. Big Bear was largely used for cattle grazing. Much more snow in the old days: sleighs were used to get around on the ridge, wheels on the main road to Kendrick.

35:00 - Living and working in Montana; people homesteading and working in Montana

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Segment Synopsis: Living and working in Montana. Ed met his wife there, while she was homesteading. The story of two girls homesteading in northern Montana who were found frozen to death in their beds. They had a man take them out to their homestead as a winter storm was coming up, and they had no matches. His wife worked out while she homesteaded, for low wages.

41:00 - Ed made money driving mule teams and working for the government on contracts on the Sun River Dam

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Segment Synopsis: Ed made good money driving mule teams and punching stakes, working for the government or contracts on the Sun River dam and other projects in very isolated country.

45:00 - Sick man dies in Ed's bunk

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Segment Synopsis: A sick man died in Ed's bunk. He pleaded with Ed to let him stay inside. Ed got the doctor and the sheriff, but he died anyway.

51:00 - New country, gun was law and life was cheap

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Segment Synopsis: In new country the gun was law, and life was cheap, "the rope around your neck and over a pole." A man killed in a drunken fight was buried in a hole east of Hog Meadows.

57:00 - Ed gets job in harvest at Genesee; quits job for Cameron after accident with dynamite

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Segment Synopsis: IWW's, "I Won't Work": Ed got a job in harvest at Genesee because they wouldn't work for the wages. He quits a job for Cameron when a stick of dynamite falls out of a bundle, Once a thrashing machine burnt up because a box of matches was thrown in. Sleeping on the harvest crew.

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