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Latah County Oral History Collection

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

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Date: August 22, 1974 Interviewer: Sam Schrager

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the room was over the mill and everything, and then Munson was in between Bloom-

What was the name of that fellow who used to run a saloon there? At Bovill?

Charlie Black and— Alec. Alec Black, he died, too, didn't he?

Oh, he's been dead a long time. Adair, was another one. lie had an other joint there.

Sam Schrager: Were you there in Bovill, when they had those saloons going before prohibition?

SS: Was Bovill a different kind of town then, before prohibition?

Kind of wild and wooley. (chuckles)

SS: What was the fellow that run the general store there?

Oh, Parker had one.



Joe Parker—?

No, no.

Not Joe

No relation to that feller at all.

Joe was at Bovill, wasn't he? Joe Parker?

Well, he was at Lewiston, used to come to Bovill. But he was born at harvard, don't know whether he was born there or not, but he lived there. SS: He was the guy that used to be a ranger? Used to be in the Forest Service? Or is that somebody else? OK.

No,he worked for the Potlatch. He didn't work around there til after the Clearwater absorbed the Potlatch.

Oh, yeah.

It was all— what do they call it now? Clearwater—

Who was that?

What do they call that outfit up there now? Clearwater-

Clearwater Timber Company,

I guess that's it. It used to be Potlatch and then the Clearwater—

Well they call it Potlatch fcrests, Inc. PFI, that's the combination, but there's the Clearwater Timber Protective Association. T)M- Tnat was before the Potlatch Forests. There was Rutledge and Potlatch and Clearwater. Three different outfits. And then now it's all th one..

Potlatch Forests, Now.

SS: Did you ever hear why they put them all together, instead of keeping them apart?

JM: Well, everything in the fbtlatch Forest— Bovill closed down, wasn't much doing at Potlatch, and then the Clearwater was doing all the work, practically, so they changed the whole thing into Potlatch Forest-

The idea was a big coutfit could save money and do it better than a smaller outfit. Now, they found out that they were wrong, and the smaller outfits done it better than bigger outfits.

Small outfits can make more money than even the big outfits could.

Down there now, I guess they got several mills around there. There's one in Pierce. I don't know whether that mill at Bovill's dead or not.^

SS: I always wondered about why they ever shut down the Elk River mill, be cause it seems to me they're getting a lot of timber from Elk River country. Then they wanted to make it all in one. ^Make it all one great bigthe outfit down at Lewiston could handle the whole thing, see. They could handle everything, in fact, they couldn't get enough timber. They had to take the whole thing in order to get enough timber to keep that thousand mill going. They cut five hundred, half a million feet a day.

DM: Well, the Potlatch mill was z^oA*bA 1930 and its still going yet. That's forty years ago.

SS: You mean they set that thing up just to run that long . Did they set that up just to run til '30? .Well, the Potlatch mill was built in 1905 or '06.

1905, yeah. They was going to abandon it in 1930, but its still going. Even though their ideas didn't pan out. That's when Jones come out there wasn't it? And took charge of it in 1905?

Yeah. He was in the woods, and old Bill . was in Potlatch?

Yeah, that's right.

And now, everything is in Lewiston.

SS: What do you know about that when they first came in? What did they say about? Had they gone out before and checked the timber over, got as much timber as they could? Did they have that all set up in advance?

It was all cruised and bought maybe a year before they started in, see? They cruised it first and got the amount of timber and so forth, and then they bought it, then it took about a year after that they started in. They have to do that to get it by the timber. couldn't afford to go in unless you had the timber before hand to build the mill and spend all that money, you know, you'd have to have the timber bought first. So the cruisers went in there, maybe worked a year before that.

know, I think it was ab out 1900 they started cruising it some.

That's right. Just like when the Clearwater started, you know, why they had, they musta had twenty five thirty cruisers in there for two years before they started up. You couldn't operate any other way, 'cause you had to have the timber, you couldn't go ahead and spend the money.

Let's see, the Clearwater, that was gonna be sold two or three times before the mill started. I was down there once with old Bill I don't know when that was, about 1920, I guess, there was about a dozen cruisers there, and there was a combination of outfits. Winton was one of 'em, and there was two or three others, they was going to buy that, and then they had all these cruisers in there, there was ten of 'em. I was with Bill Helmer. And then, we didn't get any more than through and they didn't want to

SS: Where was that?

You remember Comerford, the old horse doctor that used to be up there? Remember the horse doctor for the Potlatch Forests?

Well, there was one at Bovill, er- Palmer-

Palmer was Comerford was there— well, he was way back when Jones was there.

Well,Palmer was there when Jones was there. What did you say his name was?

Comerford. Comerford, yes.

He was the doctor at Potlatch.

Potlatch, yes, horse doctor.

No, I don't know whether he was—doctor in Potlatch, I can't remember his name.

SS: I heard they took good care of the horses, Potlatch did.

Old Palmer-

JM: ooine of the finest horses in the world.

SS: So they had full time vets there for 'em?

JM: Sure. Yeah, hell, they had lots of camps and lots of operations, you know. They had to have horses.

At Bovill they had about ten camps and they had about ten teams or more in each camp. That would be about a hundred teams. Two horses to a team, that would be over two hundred horses.

SS: You knew Bill Helmer, then?

Yes, I worked with him.

SS: Did you?

I heard that he was really quite a good cruiser.

I don't think they made 'em any better.

He was one of the best in those days.

He was conscientious, he never went out the door and put it down in his book, he went to the line every time. He didn't pass up anything.

And Chilte, he worked up at Bovill and Elk River, both, didn't he?

DM: He was check scaler, he and Dunavan.

Ed Chilte, yes.

And after they got out of it, why then Parker was the next one. He worked for that realty outfit down there in the Madison Pacific Realty. He was, I don't know whether he's still there.

Joe Parker, yeah, he's still in real estate with the New Madison, down stairs, uown on the ground floor. New Madison apartments.

First and Madison.

First and Madison, yeah. office, the name of that office is—

Well, he stepped in after the consolidation

That's right. Dunavan and Chilte were there ahead of that.

What was the old feller's name that run the Cedar Pole yard, there?

O'Mara, Bill O'Mara.

Ever get ahold of him and his ?

SS: No, I haven't even heard of him. I don't imagine he's still there.

Well, Chapin's running the -poU yard about 1921, or '22, or '23 or something like that, when the Potlatch bought 'em.

Bill O'Mara was from the time they started, wasn't he?

Well, he was a checker there.

Yeah. Chapin bought the cedar and he was check for the Potlathh.

That's right.

tie worked in the pole yard, I guess from the time it started.

SS: Did you cruise timber, yourself?

No, Iwas the compass man for Bill Helmer. Bill done the cruising.

SS: Do you remember if they did it the same way they do now? Do you know how he went about doing his cruising?

Well, just a job. He had maps of what timber he had to look at, and he went out, and got a quarter section at a time.

Well, they had a cruiser, there all the time, the Potlatch Forests. 1)ft. I think they retired him about the time, or shortly after that in '21 or '22 when we was down in the Clearwater. 'TM'. Yeah. tI forget- the Clearwater guys took over after that. Phil Peterson and Hanson. I didn't know those Hansons, I knew Phil Peter son.

SS: I remember-to told me some stories about Bill Helmer, about cruising with Bill. He told me there one time when they got lost -

married Helmer's niece. died here a few weeks ago.

SS: I know. I know.

Who was that?

He married old Helmer's niece. And she was off the beam, I don't know what they're going to do with her now.

SS: Do you know when she got sick, or when she sort

No, I don't remember. That must have been about 1930 or so-

SS: Well, Leo was the guy that told me about you. Leo was the guy that told me to come and see you. I talked to him a lot. I went down there.

Was Joe Parker around Bovill much in the later years? He worked mostly out of Lewiston, all the time, didn't he?

Well,he was head over Clearwater and Potlatch, over the whole thing.

0n I see,

And Chilte and Dunavon was under him. And, I don't know, I don't know when he quit or I don't know who took his place.

Well, just take all those superintendents and foremen, I think every one in Bovill, there. I think every one of 'em' dead.

Yeah, there isn't any of 'em left.

SS: I think, except for Axel and Oscar Hagbaum— Oscar Hagbaum was a camp foreman, too.

Where's he now?

SS: He's in a home in Moscow.

JM: Moscow?

SS: Yeah.

camp in Elk River, under Axel.


And then he Bovill during the Depression and after that, for a while. And then they kinda quit logging around Bovill and he was out I guess.

SS: Was Axel a real hard worker? I get the idea that he worked real hard as boss.

He was always on the job. He knew what was going on. That's the main thing. 'Course his actual physical— he didn?t have too much physical labor, you know.Me was always In charge of operations and stuff like that.

SS: What about the jungles?

The what?

SS: The jungles. Jungling. Jungles. Do you remember anything about that? The jungles. They used to have jungles around, didn't they? Guys that were just hoofing it on the rails going from place to place.

They had here in Spokane. I don't think they had any up there, did they?

DM: What's that?

Jungle camps. Where the fellowsnungled up in?

Oh, yeah, there was one there.

You had one there at Bovill?

That about 1908, '10, '11, some wheres along there.

There used to be one here, right just north— east of the Division Street Bridge. Used to be a jungle camp , where all the boys, they'd go broke, they'd go up there and jungle up, you know, and lived there til they got a job, and go on out. Especially in the winter. It used to be here they'd close down about the first of December, and they'd all come into Spokane til about the first of April, see. Then you'd start sending 'em back in the woods, to camp, different ones'd open up and they'd work all summer,they come in here and they'd go broke and they'd go out in the jungle camp and jungle up, see. And down in Peaceful Valley, oh, that was all down there, they were all little shacks and so forth; everybody had a shack and they lived in a shack down there, two or three of 'em together in a place, til they had a fight, then one'd move out. There was no other way for 'em to live.

This one in Bovill, that was only a small thing. Sometimes there'd be nobody there, and sometimes one or two. I don t think there was more than half a dozen there at any time.

That's right.

There used to be a hundred of them. So there used to be maybe a hundred fifty, two hundred down there in Peaceful Valley down there. And also back out in this jungle over here where this post office is now up here, the terminal, the post office terminal. And the fellows on the railroad would stop off there too, you know,stay for two or three days and then they'd move on. That was their life.

SS: Jungle up? You just live there with no money?

3F1: That's right. No money and beg everything you can eat...

DPI: Bum enough to eat and cook it in a frying pan or boil it in a stew kettle.

3M: Build a little fire, throw their blankets on the ground to sleep.

DM: You carried your bed in those days. You had your bundle on your back so you just lay under a tree anyplace.

3FI: Something like the jungle camp they have one down here now that, west of the Monroe Street Bridge there about a half a mile. Theres about a hundred down there shacking up right now. Some have got tents up and some just sleep on the ground. They don't give a damn where they're at. They have a little place there, a little kettle, frying pan, they cook their meals and so forth.They all go in together, kind of a common?

DM: Comune.

311: Comune, that's what they call it.

SS: These are young kids. Not like the old lumberjacks.

3M: Anything from sixteen to thirty. The old lumberjacks, hell and these fellas down here now, they steal anything they can get their hands on. They don't give a damn. They get full of dope and so forth, the old lumberjacks, they'd get a bottle of whiskey and you know they'd drink it up and get drunk, but they'd wake up in the morning, they'd be sober- But these fellows-

You could give those old guys the shirt off your back and you'd get it back. They'd pay you. There was never any deadbeats, that I remember.

If you gave him a dollar, he'd never forget it til he paid it back. That was one thing about 'em.

Course, I was here in Spokane by Frank Featherston, Featherston Employment Agency. We hired for the Potlatch.

SS: That's right, I heard he was down there.

We sent thousands of men out there, from the time they'd start up til they closed out. Then, of course, we had the fellows all lined up for when they'd go back out in the spring, they'd all be waiting for their job. All be broke. (chuckles)

SS: Would they come into you, and you'd fix 'em up with a job?

Yeah, I'd give 'em a ticket for the job out there. We'd charge 'em for the job, but they never had any money, so we'd trust 'em for it. And they'd go out, and they'd always send it back. You never had to worry about 'em. 'Course we charged two dollars in those days for a job. Now you have to pay ten per cent of your first month's salary, or something like that. (chuckles)

SS: That's changed a lot. Did you pay their way out to the job, too?

Lots of 'em. We knew them and they were all right, you know. 'Course the company would call in for certain fellows lots of times, for cer tain jobs they had. Well, if they were broke, we'd pay their way out, to the job.

SS: They ask you for a particular ' guy? A man?

Oh, yes, yes, sure. Well, fellows worked there for years, you know, and they'd come in and when they started up, why, they'd call in, and the superintendent'd call in for certain guys. Find 'em and send 'em out. And nine times out of ten they'd be broke and we'd give 'em the job and send 'em on out. But Fourth of July come along, they'd all come back in and pay you. That's good.

SS: That's something. You could really trust 'em.


SS: You could trust 'em.

Oh, yeah, never had any trouble. You give 'em money, and they'd pay it back if it was the last thing they ever done.

Well, about all those old fellers, you know, that's the first thing after they got their stake made before they'd get on a drunk, they'd settle up their bills.

Yes, you bet.

After they had everything paid for and bought maybe a new shirt or a pair of shoes, they'd poop away the rest.

Yes. I remember one night I'll never forget. A fellow up at the Diamond Match Company in Priest River. He come in town and he got drunk, and there was a couple of guys after him, see, and I happened to be going by the Old National Bank about nine o'clock at night, 'course our office was only a block and a half down the street from there. We were on Main, at that time we were.on Stevens, Stevens and Trent, and he handed me his pocketbook, he says, "Take care of this for me, Joe.r' And, I says, "OK". "Don't stop me, just keep again'. I don't want these fellows to even know I even know you." And he handed me his pocketbook, and I stuck it in my pocket, and I come to the next corner, and I turned around and I went back down towards the office, and I went down and put it in the safe. And, he says, "I'll see you tomorrow morning. Six o'clock." And I says, "OK". And by God, next morning te come there and he never showed up, and I kept the pocketbook for about a week, and I thought, well, what the hell's happened to that guy? Those fellows must have threw him in the river or killed him. And, so, I took the pocketbook out and looked at it and he had thirty five thousand dollars in it. Thirty five thousand dollars in the pocketbook, carrying around in his pocket. So I took it up to the bank and put it in the bank under his name, in the Old National Bank. And, God, he never showed up.

Two years went by. Never heard anything about him. And he had a home back in Minne sota, his father and mother were old people and they were living back there, and I had their address, so, if he hadn't showed up I was gonna get in touch with them and have the money transferred to 'em. But one morning on the first of April two years after that, one morning on the first day of April he walked in. I'd just opened up at six in the morning, he says, "Hi, Joe, how are you?"^ I says, "Well, for Christ's sake where have you been?" He says, well he says, "Remember that night I saw you?" I says, "Yeah." He says, "You know, there was two guys after me then," And, he says, "they followed me, and I circled around down to the Great Northern, and there was a freight train pullin' by and I jumped on the freight train and I landed over in Seattle. The next morning I went up and got on a fishing boat and went to Alaska, and I've been up there ever since." "Why the hell didn't you write me?" "Oh, hell," he says, "nobody giveAa goddam about me, I didn't think any body'd be interested." And so I didn't say anything about the money, because he didn't have nothing then, and I said, "What're you gonna do?" He says, "Yesus, you got a job?" And I says, "Yeah." Well, he says, "First," he says, "give me five dollars.> Want to get a breakfast and a pair of socks." And I give him five dollars and ha went out and got his breakfast, and pretty soon he come back and he says, "You got a job for me?" And, I says, "Yeah." I says, "How about going back in that job, on the Diamond that you had when you left". I sayd, "The same camp and the same outfit there." He says, "Jesus, could you give me that? You know, I used to make about two thousand a month up there." He had one of those bulldozers and operated his dozer, he was a gyppo, see, and so I says, "All right."

And I sent him up there. Well, I didn't hear anything more from him til the Fourth of July. And he come in- 'course he come in and that night he got drunker than hell, so I didn't dare tell him then. So, I waited about a week and finally he sobered up, and he come in, and he says, —I expected him to go back on this job, you know, and pay his fare up on the bus and give him enough money til he got to camp, and so he come in and paid me back the money, and he says, "I'm gonna keep a hudnred dollars", he says, "here's four thousand," he says, "take care of it til I get back. I don't want to carry it with me, some S.O.B.'ll roll me like they did before." I said, "Did they roll you before?" He says, "Yeah, that's the reason I had to leave town." And he was sober then and ready to go back to work. I said, "Well, now, just let me give you a little surprise. You remember the night you passed me up in front of the Old Natdonal Bank?" "Yeah," he said, "and those fellows were after me then." I says, "You rememeber you gave me your pocketbook?" "Raw, didn't give you no pocketbook," he says, "those bastards rolled me and took my pocketbook and all my money." I says, "No, they didn't," I says, "you gave me your pocketbook and you had thirty five thousand dollars in it." "Oh," he says, "you're crazy," he says, "I didn't have nothing", he says, "they took everything I had." "Well," I says, "let me show you. See this bank book? There's your name on it. There's thirty five thousand dollars, and there's two years interest on it, up in the bank, waiting for you." He says, "You're crazy!!" (laughter)

"Well," I says, "come on with me, up to the bank." So we went up to the bank, and they said, "Yeah," and they told * the amount of interest he had in two years on thirty five thousand dollars. "Well," he said, "Jes' don't let me take it out. Keep it there." (laughter) So he kept it and he went back to work, and I put the other money that he gave me, he didn't want tkiit either, so I took and put it up, -£our thousand more with it. And, of course, it amounted to over forty thousand dollars. So,he worked up until the first of October. And the first of October he came in and he says, "Joe, I'm going back home. " And I said, "What's the matter?" "Well," he sayd, "may Dad's sick and they don't expect him to live." And he said, "Will you go up with me and help me to get that money?" I says, "Sure." So I went up with him, and I said, "Wait a minute, let's transfer this money back to the bank in your town. You don't want to carry that money with you. The banker here will transfer it back to the bank your town. You give us the name of the bank." So he give us the name of the bank. So, we transferred— he had enough money with him penny of that, so he transferred, I think it come to forty two thousand dollars back to this bank in the home town where his parents were. And I've never seen him from that day to this, (chuckles) But I know the money got back there.

SS: What was the guy's name?

Well, I'd have to look up the book.

SS: I was just curious. That's some story.

That's twenty — thirty five years ago.

SS: That's some story.

Remeber that Dick Green that used to drive team?


You know he was an awful drunkard. He was a good guy when he was sober. (noise interference) or longer, then be on a drunk. He saved up five hundred dollars and he was going back East, and he had his ticket bought. And he had five hudnred dollars plus the ticket. 'Course always some one laying for him to blow him in. Finally got down to the Milwaukee depot with a bottle of booze and getting two or three drinks. That was another drunk and he spent the five hundred and never got out of town. Fer Gad's sakes. Well, Bud Mc Gee worked for me and he used come in and blow in everything, so, I said, "Well,Bud, I think you'd better stay in camp and not go to town," I said, "save your money, and I'll put it in the bank in Spirit Lake for you." Well, it come to ten thousand dollars. And when he had ten thousand dollars he got a letter from home and they wanted him back home. His mother was very sick. Well, he got down to Spokane. He got the ten thousand out of the bank, he got down town, and I saw him about a month afterwards. He never did leave town he spent the whole ten thousand dollars and he was broke. So I says, "Well, how about going back to camp?" "Oh," he saya,"you wouldn't want me back there." And I said, "Sure do." I said, "Your job's waiting you."

He drove a four horse team, see, and I paid his bill and took him back on the train to Spirit Lake with me and up on the lake: put him back on the job driving a four horse team, (chuckles) And, he worked there til he died. But those old fellers, you know, they had nothing ^oi^come along and do everything. Throw their money away like water. All the girls downtown, the sporting girls and all of 'em, they made their living off'n 'em. Well, I can remember when T was running camp at the panhandle there at Spirit Lake, I'd start up the first of April and the boys come downtown, maybe take a hundred of 'em up on the train with me; have to pay their fare for all of 'em, get 'em out to camp. And then the first month (chuckles) they'd been living with these girls up in the sporting houses all winter and they'd been carrying 'em along from the time they went broke, maybe for two or three months, and then the girls would come in the first two months and pick up their checks. (chuckles) They'd get 'em and sign 'em and hand them over to 'em. (Laughter)

That's the kind of people they were, hard workers. I've taken two hundred men out of jail down here, and Charley Fleming was mayor then. And I'd go down and try to make a deal with flharlie, I'd say, "Charlie, now, the city's going broke,, feed all these guys. They're all fine guys, you got 'em in here for being drunk, that's all." I said, "I'll take 'em all off your hands, if you leave 'em go without any fine." "By God, " he said, "would you do that"? I says, "l/sure will, I'll take 'em all off your hands, if you leave 'em go without any fine." "By God," he said, "would you do that?" I said, "I sure will, I'll take 'em on the train in the morning." I was hiring about twelve hundred men up there then, four camps operating; take 'em out on the train, pay their way, take 'em back up and put 'em to work. ,^fter three days, as soon as they get thr liquor out of 'em, the best workers you ever see in your life. Go up there, the sawyers would be stripped right down to their waist, take their shirts off and bang 'em on a bush and work there all day, work like hell. You never better workers then than they were, these old lumberjacks. in camp, in those days we'd have maybe a hundred and fifty, two hundred men in the camp , and once in a while guy'd steal something.But, boy, those fellows's rout him out, and he was gone within the next day or two. have him around at all. You never had to say anything. They'd make it so tough for him he'd have to leave i, So the consequence was they were honest and upright, and good workers, better'n anything you ever saw. They loved to work. But they loved to play, too, when they got In town, (chuckles)

SS: It's so hard for me to understand how you could that much money in those days, when a dollar was worth a lot more than it is today. God, they must have lived high to be able to

Do you know what the wages were when I started in in 1915, for the Panhandle Lumber Company of Spirit Lake? We worked twelve hours a day, and the men carried their own blankets on their back, and we paid twenty cents an hour to a swamper, paid twenty four cents an hour to a sawyer and L man and ' man. Twenty cents and twenty four cents an hour back in 1915. And those fellows'd come up and work all summer long and then come into to town and go broke in a day. Well, we had one fellow, he'd come into town and he'd in camp six months, .he'd come into town go up to some of these house and pick up two or three girls, get a taxi cab, and ride around and make every beer parlor in town- nigntclub. And then the next day, he'd take k taxi and go to Seattle, and he'd make the clubs over there, and the beer parlors and so forth. And then he'd come back and he wouldn't have enough to pay his tax:U bring the girls back with him, and he couldn't even pay— I've paid two hundred dollars taxi bill, just for him, you know,'get back out to camp. Soon as pay day come, he'd send me in the money, (laughter) They were\justi that kind of guys, when they came in— they worked hard in the woods and they played hard in town. And that was their life. You don't find 'em any more. I used to know every man down on Trent and Main Avenue^ .." name. Go up through the street there, and most all of 'em worked for me at one time or another. That's after I was In the employment office with Featherstone. And most of 'em worked — and they'd come up there, and it a short way to get out there, you know and make a stake for a couple of weeks, and then they had enough money to go some place else. So, away they'd go. (chuckles)

SS: You mean, they'd come in to you for a stake to get out and then they'd go someplace else?

No, no, they come in to me for a stake, that was for the job. But if they'd come with a stake, but they'd be broke, they'd go up to the Pan handle, the fare was only a dollar forty cents up there, see, and they'd go out there, and they'd work two or three weeks and they'd get enough money to go some other place where they had a job where they can make more money.

They used to call 'em camp inspectors. They'd stay about a week til they got ten or fifteen bucks, and they were gone.


Some of 'em had a bed roll, and a gunny saciifith a frying pan and a couple coffee cans, or other things to cook a littlein. And there were lots of 'em, you know, never rode no place, they just keep hiking. Up there at that St. Maries branch, you know, have breakfast in one camp, lunch in another one,supper at another one. of 'em only four or five Biles apart, and some of 'em ten or fifteen. There was a lot of camps.

SS: Were there many guys that did that? Just went through, didn't stay and work? Was that a rare guy, that'd do that, or was that- went from camp to camp?

A lot of 'em. Probably the majority of 'em. £aia*fem camp inspectors, they'd come along and stay at camp a couple of days and go to another one til they'd get the job they wanted someplace, then they'd stay.

I was keeping time/one timeSup there and^, there was a fellow used to make his rounds about every three or four years, and to hear him tell it, he'd been all over the United States in the meantime, and maybe he was, nobody knew. Butj he was a good bullshitter. He come in one morning, he come to camp and he had supper and stayed all night, and breakfast and he came in, and he says to the boss, "Well," he said, "I had supper last night, slept all night, and breakfast this morning, the chuck's pretty goodj jjood place to sleep, how's the chance to go to work?" The boss, says, "I don't know whether I can find anything for you or not." "Well, now," he said, "don't overexert yourself, it won't take very much to keep me busy." (laughter) They had a YMCA car, had a pool table ana a phonograph, and a preacher running the thing,/+ Wtfs 4V* and* So, he said, "Well, come on, I'll find something for you." So he took him to the saw ^ " and got a saw. Camp had just moved in there, hadn't been in there more'n a week or so, logs scattered all over hell. There were a lot of buckskin dry stuff lying around there. "Well," he said, "you can cut wood for the YMCA car." So he come In that night, and he said, "Well," he said, "you know what that fellow told me over there, at that YMCA car?" Said, "No, what'a he say?" "He told me that me cut ting wood for that car was the greatest act that'd been done towards Christianity in a long, long, time." And, he said, "Sly credit ought to be good for a package of Peerless. "It sure is."

So, him the package of Peerless, and he stayed about a week or so. (Laughter) Well, he come in one morning and said, "You the official timekeeper here?" "Yeah." "Well',' he said, "I'd like that legal bill of separation between me and this corporation and the piece of paper they call the time check." (laughter) So, I give him time check and he was off. Oh, he had a wonderful line of baloney. He could just talk, but, after while, you know, it was too damn much you couldn't go any more of it. (Laughter) "Well, I'll see you next year, or maybe the year after." And away he'd go. Never rode a train. Oh, Boxcars, he didn't pay any fares, he'd hike. Get in the boxcar and go as far as that went. We had a funny thing. I was scaling for the Rutledge up at Clarkia, Idaho. So Fred and Charlie Weyerhaeuser come in there and they wanted to go up to Camp 3, so that was up the other side of the incline, so I say£, "Well, let's catch the log train up to the incline, and we can walk from then into camp 3." "Well," they said, "that's a good idea." So we got on the train and went up there and, hell, there was about twenty other guys on the train, too, going up to get a job, you know and so we walked with.them to Camp 3. We didn't get in there til about seven o'clock in the evening. They didn't walk very fast, taking it slow. went into the foreman's office, the office there and some one of the fellows x^ent in there, and they said, "Sorry, ve haven't got nothing for you. We have no beds, the cooks are done for the day," and, he said, "we can't do a thing for you." So Charlie and Fred walked in , and I was right behina 'em. And, they said, "We'd like to have accommodation for the night, ana we'd like to have something to eat first, and I'd like to have something to eat for all these men out here." "Well," he says, "I'm very sorry, but we can't do nothing for you." lie said, "You mean you coulan't do nothin' for any man after they walk in here ten miles, to get to this carap, and then you haven't got a job, or you can't give 'em nothin' to eat, or you won't let 'em sleep?" lie says, "I'm sorry", "Now," he says, "I'll tell you. My name's Fred Weyerhaeuser and this is Charlie Weyerhaeuser, we own this Goddamn out fit", and, he says, "we want you to get those cooks out, roust 'em out, and those flunkies, and we want something to eat, and we want it in the next hour." Ana, he says, "I want you to get some bedding and get some beds for these fellows, and bed 'em down, and also beds for us. and Joe, here, he's right along with us, three of us here. We'll sleep here in the office." (Laughter)

And, let me tell you, young feller, as long as you work for the Weyerhaeusers, don't you ever turn a man away this camp hungry or without a bed. If you can't find any place else, you go dorni and make 'em a bed in the barn. Get 'em some, place, do something for 'em. And, if I ever hear of you turning another man down for something to eat and a place to sleep, your job is done for. Now don't forget that, as long as you work for us." That fellow never did from then on, when anybody come along he took care of 'em. bourse I was getting a big kick out of it. (laughter) They were a couple of fine old guys that way, you know. They just-"#y God,"they says, "we've been all through the country, and we never turned anybody down if we knew anything about it." "We're a big outfit, and we can damn well/easy well affora to pay these fellows for"

Well, when I was clerking up there scarce, young fellows all going to war, and he told me, he said, "Oh, if some guy quits, and he's a pretty good worker," he said, "slip him a buck or two, make the check a dollar or so more than he had comin' or give him a pair of socks, or a patch of tobacco or something, and don't say nothin' to hira, just don't charge him for it, and he'll think that he got the best of you, and if he doesn't think that, he'll say, well, after he goes down and gets drunk, on the way back, "They treated me pretty good, I guess, I'll go back.." And, hell, they gotta have cash on the line to get anything now. Oh, God, I'll tell you.

SS: So you used to pad it for 'em a little bit? Give 'em a little bit extra.

A lot of months up there that I gave away more stuff than a lot of those would soId, today. (chuckles)

And men were hard to get in those days, it was a different thing, you know then when you got a lot of men, and so forth. And when you're up in the woods and you can't get men to do the work, you're up against it. You gotta be a little free.

SS: That's why they leaned on you guys to get their

That's rignt.

There was a foreman up there, name was Pilton, This Palouse country that was all horses in those days, there was no machines, and every rancher had ten or fifteen teams of horses, or twenty, more than that, I guess sometimes. One guy come up there and wanted a job driving team, foreman looked at him and he said, "Where did you ever drive team?" "Oh, I drove twenty head on the Palouse, on a combine." He said, "I can't use you, haven't got enough horses." (laughter) Some of those- Old Bob, you know, some of those guys stayed with him for fifteen or twenty years. A fellow only stayed a year or two, he'd say, "I knew he wouldn't stay when he come here." (laughter)

SS: Oh, this is homer Pilton's father, huh? That Homer Pelton's father?

Yeah. Is homer in Moscow, yet?

SS: Potlatch. Potlatch.

PM: Is Ray, in Pullman yet?

SS: I think he is.

Well, that was their dad.

Say, what were those three boys up in Bovill? One of 'em was an engin eer, and he went from there down on the Clearwater, and was engineer down there, and then one was a top loader, and the other one —what the hell did he do?

It wasn't David, was it?

David, David boys. What happened to all of them?

Oh they're all dead.

All dead? All of 'era?

All but Henry.

Henry, where's he?

He's in afaursing home in Lewiston. That's not a nursing home, he was in a nursing home, he's in a private home.


e and one sister, a nun, that's In the hospital at Lewiston. That's the only two that's left.

Well, what do you know.

SS: Well, this Pilton's father, he was a foreman even before - he was a logger even before they came into that country, wasn't he?

Oh, yeah. He was In the State of Maine, and he logged back there, then they came to Minnesota, and from Minnesota out here. That's what a lot of 'em done. There were a lot of state of Mainers around here.

I was on my first drive, log drive, on the Susquehanna River, in 1910. And that old river was a mile wide in lots of places. Rough and ready, I'll tell ya. And get on there with a drive, mayie fifty million feet of logs, couple hundred drivers. In those days went down in arks, they had arks, maybe forty men to an ark. An oar in the front and an oar in the back. Put the horses on arks, take 'em right along with us. Ana strike a bar someplace and then d have to stop, get the logs off the bar into the river again. See, the river, when its big like that,.always high in the middle than it is at the side, and the logs keep going to the sides all the time.

SS: That's where you got your start in logging?

That's right.

DM: There used to be an old skinner, he's dead now long time, he ended up here in Spokane, and got on relief or whatever they call it. And he stayed sober for years and years. He never drank anymore, but, anyway, he was walking down the street one day, down here, and a guy bummed him for fifteen cents. He said, "What do you want fifteen cents for?" "Well," he said, "I want to catch the bus out on East Sprague." "Hell," he said, "young fellow like you, walk", he said, "I walked to Sandpoint lots of times." (laughter) And they did, lot of those guys, they didn't make it in one day, probably take 'em three or four days, but they'd jungle up on the way.

That's right.

Walking Dayley, he never rode anything, he walked all the time.

SS: He did, huh? I never heard of him. Guy named Walkin' Dayley?

Dayley. Walkin' Dayley. lie was a lumberjack. He never stayed long any place.

Did you ever get lined up on Dick Farrel? He was a preacher, the lumber jack preacher.

SS: I've heard of him. What do you know about him?

He's dead, I think.

Yeah, he died a couple of years ago. Dick made ^. the camps around here and he ^fotfV^in the camp, and they always kept him in the office, made a bed in the office for him, and he'd go out and preach to the boys at night for about an hour, and he'd stay there, and the next day he'd go on to another camp. Take in all the camps all over the country. One night there in camp some young fellow came in, strapping young fellow, you know, anu he started to make fun of Dick. Dick said, "Young man, this is nothing to make fun about."

DM: Do you remember that well, he had a son that was a cook, the son was a flunky and the old man was a flunky, and then the old man got cookin' for small crews. Sam , used to be around Blackwell, Fernwood a lot. Sam . And then he had a son, I forget what the boy's name was. But, anyway, he'd been to Potlatch there, Bovill, flunkeying there for quite a while and he left and was gone two or three years, when he came bactc they give him a job cooking at Camp 8. There was only a dozen of us there , ^or dinner and supper;there'd be twenty five or thirty there, maybe for breakfast so he rang the gong, the dinner bell one noon and he come out and shook hands with all of us, he knew us iU, 'course we knew him. He said to Mickey Flynn, "Well, Mickey, I learned a lot about cookin' since I was here before." "Yeah, yeah,Sam, but a lot of room for iuprovement, yet." (chuckles)

Well, this little fellow was the lumberjack preacher and so he stopped this feller, he said, "Now, here, either you or I is gonna walk out of here." "now," he says, "I never had anybody interrupt when I'm preaching that's preaching for God," he says, "I'm here preaching to try to make people see things better, and live better, and it would heed you to listen to what I'm sayin', it may help you a lot." And this feller kept talk ing, "Well," he says, "I guess the only thing I can do is throw you out." Dick throws hit coat off, gets down and tackles the guy, and the first thing know, here was the guy going right out the door. Flyin: (chuckles) Dick was a scrapper. He used to be a prize fighter back in Chicago, see. And of course this fellow he wasn't a big guy, you know, he was well proportioned, stooa about five foot five, and by golly, he could fight, I tell you, he really could fight. It didn't take him long to get that fellow on the floor and drag him out that door. I tell you, and he never came back in, either. That's the only fight I ever of,— knew of him having, and he came in there for twenty years. \>W- There was a cook up there, name was Baker, great big, fat, fellow, and He was a good cook and a good fellow, everybody liked him. And, anyway before World War I, before we got into it, and afterwards, you know, the camps was full of stock salesmen, mining stock, principally mining stock, and they all had a prospect hole someplace that had a million in it, and one salesman came up there one time and was talking to Old Baker about his mine, and Baker was interested, and talking and asking him questions about it. Strung him along, you know, to think that he was gonna him, you know, getting all the dope he could out of him, and fin ally, he said, "I'll tell you", he said, "I'm just working for a living, and I haven't got any money, but", he said, "I got a little invention here", he said, "how about trading some stock in my company for yours?" Had a piece of tin made like a figure eight, you know, and a hole in the top. And the guy looked at it, and Baker kept bullshittin' what a good thing it was and everything, how it was gonna be worth millions, kept leading him on, and finally the fellow come out and asked him "What is that for?" "Well," he said, "just to hand on a dog's tail, to K.eep the sun from shining on his ass" (laughter) The salesman left.

I was clerking op there for Big one time, way up on Cougar Meadows; Baker was cooking there, too, and he was always jobbing somebody, Old Ed Connor was running the donkey there, and , i Gyppo John was tend ing hook for him, and anyway, Connors haa a shack, his wife was up there, she came to Spokane as long as for a week or two, and he said, I got some chickens', and he was talking about some chickens, pullets, 'and as soon as they start laying eggs", he said, "I'll bring 'em over," he says to Baker, "will you cook 'em for I and Murphy*" And, said, "Sure, sure." But, he said, "I won't need to cook 'em,"— he was tellin' about he read in a poultry journal where if you give chickend warm water, that'd make 'em lay— And Baker said, "Well," he says, "I won't need to cook 'em. they'll be hardboiled." "What do you mean, hardboiled?" "Why,", he said, "you're givin' warm water," he says, "they'll lay hardboiled eggs." "Why, you damn fool, you're crazy'. "Well," he saia, "go ahead." And so every day Baker'd slip over there ^in the afternoon, and whatever fresh eggs was there, one or two, he d put in hardboiled ones. So, the fellow brought over a dozen or so one night. "Well," Baker says, "what do you want 'em, deviled," or I don't know what all, "I want 'em fried" And, he said, "How in hell you gonna fry a hardboiled egg?' And he cracked , 'See, I told you ^ivin1 those damn chickens that lukewarm water they'd lay hardboiled eggs." (chuckles) So the guy didn't say nothin', he said, "I'll get even with him." So his wife, wasn't back yet, so, the guy killed a chicken and smeared ulood all over his nightgown and the pisspot and everything was all blood. And he another fellow, he got the other fellow, he said, "Mow, go over and tell Baker that I'm having hemorrhages, and that you're going to town for the doctor and ask him if he'd come over and stay with me until you come back." "Sure." So Baker come over and the guy was crawling up the wall and a whoopin' and hollerin' and blood all over. Baker got him quieted down ana sittin' in the rockin' chair, and pretty soon he'd doze off, and just.the time he'd get off, the guy'd have another fit. Hollerin' and that went on all night. About -four o'clock in the morning, the guy says to Baker, "What time is it?" Baker looked at the clock, 'Four thirty." He says, "Alright, you S.O.B., go home and get breakfast for the crew. I'll learn you to hardboil my eggs."(laughter) Well, he was quite a guy, that old Baker. .They had lots of good tricks that's what kept 'em human, you know. Playing tricks on one another.

SS: Tricks on each other?

Yeah. Nothing to do, you know, in the evenings. And they'd do some thing like that, you know, make amusement for the whole crew. And if there was some real good story teller, boy, I tell you, they could really put 'em out. Manufacture them. Think about anything, you know, and start a story out of it.

SS: Shootin' the breeze.

We was about ten miles from Bovill, you know, this fellow'd,"Wonder what time that doctor's gonna get here?" And Baker'd calm him down, !You know it's ten Lniles, the guy had to go down there and back, hell, that's gonna take two-three hours, he ain't going down there and back In fifteen minutes' And they'd chew the rag, and finally the guy kind of preten* ed he'd open ais eyes and wake up, 'Is that doctor here yet?" "Ho, no, just calm down, sleep,he'11 De here.' And it went that way all night long, til four o'clock in the morning, and he told him, Go and get breakfast for the crew .

SS: Do you remember the way that Dick Farrell used to preach? How he used to preach to the men? I mean, did he preach hard? Did he preach— did he threaten 'em, or, how did he do it?

Just like a preacher, get in and give a sermon, and stuff like that, you know.

SS: He wouldn't say to 'em, "You fellows are damned because you're not lead ing a good life." That sort of thing.

Never lead 'em to believe that they just told 'em in a nice, just like any preacher would get on the altar, and give a sermon, the same thing. Give a sermon and always the good things, never anything about the bad at all. And then he'd crack a joke or two of some kind, to get 'em laughing. A typical showman, you know, and he could go along, and he could get 'em very serious and then all at once he'd crack a joke, and bring em all out laughing,you know, and launch into it seriously again, and he'd talk for about an hour. Very good. Most of the boys all liked him. Just listen to him and tickled to death— well, they was always tickled to death to have someone come along like that, anyway, see. But Dick would come in and he'd come In, he was a regular rough and tumble guy, and talk to 'em, and talk to 'em about prize fights and baseball games and everything like that afterwards, and give 'em the news from the outside, you know. This camp's doing this and the other camp's doing that. And they all liked to have him come. Everyone of 'em liked him very much. He lived here in Spokane and had a wife and fonu children. He passed away here, just about a year ago.

SS: So if a guy came into camp, there were other guys who would come in and everybody would listen to them. They liked to hear people—things about people.

back in the early days the sisters kp in Sacred Heart used to come in to camp, and they'd take a dollar a month, that's Sacred Heard Hos pital up here, and that's where it started. They come and collect a dollar a month from every man there.* And we never had no place for 'em, so we'd have to go out in the bunkhouse and leave them have the office. They'd come every month regular and collect the money and all the camps there. 'Course, we had two hundred men and they'd leave with there with five or six hundred dollars, every time. And that's the way they paid Sacred Heart off.

Whether they were Catholics or Protestants or anything else. It didn't make any difference.

SS: Iheard that some of those cooks were pretty tenemental. Some of the cooks were good, some of 'em were bad.

Well, agood cook and agood blacksmith were scrappier than hell, they were awful damn hard to get along with. (Laughter)

Yes, if they were good they were always cranky. (Laughter)

Nordman, above Priest Lake, had ahell of agood cook, God, he was a good cook, but he was broke. He was quite abullshitter, he thought he was gonna get akind of asuperintendent cook, after all the camps. Well, we didn-t plan anything like that, he landed at this campit was in acanyon, the hill went straight up on each side, Iused to laugh, doggone, he wasn't supposed to put astovepipe through tent, you're supposed to run it out from the end. Hell, the da™ stoves wouldn't draw. He'd stand there, you know, with, piped in, you know, fanning the stove and turning the hotcakes with the other, and cussing a blue streak. And, finally, I'd been down to one of the other camps, and went in and had lunch with aguy there, and the cook said- Iwas telling hlm we was having' trouble with the stove, "Well," he said, "we did too, til we shot that pipe straight up." and he said, they haun'f had any trouble since, worked fine. Said it won't work the other I went home, back to camp. Next day, Isaid "I'm gonna leave acouple of fellows in here and Ithink we're gonna fix that stove." "Oh, the damn thing is no good", he says, "never was any he says, good."

"Well," I said, "there's hundreds of 'em here — every damn camp the Forest Service has got here has got a stove like that. It must be the exception, if you's the only one that's no good." "Well, allright, go aheaa and fix it." So, we shot the pipe up through, — cut the seam p«. Once a month. Checks wasn't coming, and he had about two monthsover two months coming, and I went down. There was this cook down there upper lake and lower Priest come together. There was a cook down there, he was a barber and he was cutting hair, so I got my hair cut and I come up and I didn't see him that night, and the next morning at breakfast,— after breakfast, "Hey, come here. Where in the hell'd you get that haircut?" I saiu, "Howii there at the . Down taere at the , whatever it was," "God," he said, " I need a hair cut, and how in the hell am I going to get a hair cut, I've been here dama near two months, and haven't got a paycheck yet?" "Well, " I said, "come on and I'll pay for your hair cut. We'll go down tonight." It was five or six miles of walking aown."^ So we went down and it was right after payday, and thett there was a bootlegger there, I forget what the hell his name was— anyway, I bought him a couple of drinks and his hair cut, and by, golly, he run onto some other cooks that he knew. And the other cook had got paid, and so, he helped blow him in— a little bit anyway. About midnight we started back to camp. I thought, God, he'll Never make it. Anyway we tried. We had a tomato can, one of those gallon cans, you know. Stuck, a hole in the bottom and put a candle in there, and a piece of haywire on^for a lantern, works pretty good. Anyway, wer after we left the that meadow there was just like walking on car pet, spongy, all water underneath. We got to he edge of the meadow, there was a creek, no wider than a ditch, maybe a couple of feet, and we had to jump across that. Well, he didn't make it and he landed in there in kinda quicksand, you know, and he started going down, and hol lering bloody murder. Two or three guys come a runnin' over there, and we pulled hmm out. And we started up the trails "Let's sit down a while." "No." "I wanna sleep." "How the hell will you sleep?" Well, finally, I let him sleep a few minutes and then give him a hell of a good kick in the sole of his shoe, you know, and he'd wake up and cuss me and want to kill me and every other damn thing. We'd go on for a mile or two further, and he'd want to lay down again. So I'd let him lay down for a few minutes, and then give him another kick in the sole of the shoe. And got to camp and there was a pretty good sized creek there, about half as wide as this building, and a log across there, a foot log. The horses and mules wadea across the creek, but the men used to go across there. But he was still drunk, and it must nave been between one ana two in the morning, and, "How in the hell am I going to cross there?" "Well," I said, "Get on your ass and work your way across, if you can't walk, why do it that way." Well, anyway, got out in the middle and he fell in. (Laughter) Cuss and swore , and every damn thing. I thought, well, there won't be any breakfast this mornings So too And, by golly, he was up and at it. Had breakfast same as nothing happened. So, that drunk done him good, kinda quieted him down. A good cook, you had to le 'era go about every three months. If you didn't ler 'em go to town every three months, for at least four or five days or a week, they soon'd be hitting the extract bottle. They cou^d go three months. I used to take 'em, when they put three months in I'd give 'em week in town, and if they came back, and be there the next Honday morning and their pay'u go on. and it they wouldn't, that'd be it. So, it worked oat pretty good, that xray, because they'd get down town and blow in, and get arunk and then come back and go to work again, ana gooa for another three months. But they had a lot of good cooks in this country. hest in the country. You had Benny Harsh up there in Fernwood, run the hotel tnere at Fernwood. He used to cook in all these camps, then he went down the Clearwater, and he cooked there for years, and his son is still cooking there, from the day they started and that's back in about 1922, around there.

There was liarsa and Hush- Billy Mush in the Potlatch. He was a hell ova good cook, too.

Oh, a cracker-jack.

Till he got doggy. Chuck was kinda scarce and far between anyway. Tell em about—Says, 'You know, this colored candy they put on cakes, Christ mas time?" "Pink and red and blue, yeah." "Well," he said, "That sob has got it on the hotcakes now. No", he said, "he's got it on the dough nuts now," he said, "the next thing he'll have it on the hotcakes." (Laughter)

SS: 1 heard they did gyppo cooking. That they went to that, some guys worked out good as gyppo cooks, and some guys didn't work out good on that.

JM: Well, gyppo cooks never uone much good, unless he was a good cook. If he was a gooa cook, why, you got along fine with 'em. Most of 'em wasn't much good. They'd start skimping on the food, and then the men'J start kicking. That didn't work out.

Well, they startea that, you know, when they started gyppoing logging, they started gyppoing the cookhouse. And that didn't work out so good. like Joe saiu, if they got a good cook it was all right, but if he wouldn't stay, he wouldn't hold, he'd throw in the sponge. (Well, the board was sixty cents a day and then seventy-five and then ninety, and then a dollar or a dollar and a quarter. It was a dollar and a quarter when I left. And now, I guess, its two or three dollars a day.


If there was any camps. There isn't any camps any more. To speak of.

If you want men to work, you gotta feed 'em. If you don't feed 'em you aren't gonna have any good workers.

SS: Do you think that the chuck was good in most of the camps?

Yeah. Just as gooa as you get in the Davenport.

hose lumberjacks worked hard, and boy, they could eat, too, I'll tell you.

Three kinds of vegetables, three or four kinds of meat, three or four kinds of pastry, a couple kinds of pie. The tables there has got a double deck, the shelf up there with all tne pastry on, there wasn't room for on the table. Some of those felin the morning lows would eat fifteen twenty hotcakes ..for breakfast plus five or six eggs and a pouna or two of bacon. Yeah, boy, they could really put it away. In the evening I'd often see a fellow put two T-Bone steaks on his plate. Plus everything else along with it.

Fellow by the name of Big was down there one time, in at the old Rockaway and he ordered a dozen eggs and two T-bone steaks.(chuckles) And the hasher thought he must a been off the rocker or something, and she brought him one steak and three or four eggs, and he looked up at her cockeyeu, and he said, "That's a hell of a meal to put down in front of me. I order me two steaks and a dozen eggs, and that's what I want." She got the rest. (chuckles) You know when he died—

SS: Would that be gil Pippin?

Yes. They had the funeral service it was up there to Hennessey's- Third plumbing on where that . outfit is now-


I went to the Rosary that night. And this Big Gil. fs sister was married to another Frenchman that had a hotel and saloon in lone. He was a a little short fellow, wasn't any taller than I am, but Lord, he had a belly on him big as this table. And he was standing, and Dan Claus was talking to him, and the three sons were over on the other side of the funeral parlor, one of 'em was dressed up you'd think he'd just stepped out of Hart, Schaffner Marx window, the other eellow as a priest and then there was a rounder. He was clean, but he just got out of work. And Claus says to him, "Those three your sons over there, Mr. Le Goux?' "Yes," he says, he had this French the fellows saying back East. "I didn't do so bad, I got one priest, one dude and a S.O.B." (Laughter) Ana old Le Goux's wife came down here. At that time the Pedicord, everybody stayed at the Pedicord, all the lumberjacks from the Canadian, I guess, to Southern Idaho and Oregon. But, anyway, this S.O.B., he was always drunk, he never worked, just bum and bum and fat^Oy .Anyway, he knew his mother was in town, he found that out some way. So he went up to the hotel and stole her purse. So, she was out someplace, and when she come back her purse was gone, so she went to the clerk, and she said, "Somebody stole my purse. You calx up m lone and tell I want some money." So the clerk called up Papa, and she got on the phone, "Papa, lost my money, lost my purse, somebody stole my purse, ain't got no money. Send me some money." "You didn't lose your purse, Mama. You see Freddy?" "No." "Freddy got your purse." The old man knew it. Freddy. He used to come up tnere about, oh, maybe, once or twice a year, or three or four months, and come up there just shaking, you know, and Big Gill would put him to work, practically doing nothing for two or three days til he got over the shakes, sobered up, and then he'd give him a job. He'd work two or three months and away he'd go again. Mother'd get Big Gil to get him up there and sober him up.

SS: Were there any lumberjacks that didn't drink?

Oh, maybe one out of a hundred. About one out of a hundred didn't drink. Lumberjacks.

Wasn't very many.

Everybody arank.

Hard drinkers, hard workers.

Hard workers. Crankier than hell. I was just a putk twenty one years old when I went up there, and the crew was— majority was middle age or elderly, was very few young fellows. And some of those old fellers, you'd say, "morning." "What the hell's good about it?" (chuckles) "How do you like the weather today?" "What do you care." Bax^l you out. Oh, you couldn't even look at 'em, or they'd bawl you out. (laughter) But there was one old fellow up there, old Tom Oman, who was all crip pled up with rheumatism, walked with his always happy,"ha,ha, ha!'

And, I thought, by gol, I hope I go through life with that and I have up til now. I don't know. He was always laughing and al ways happy. And you knew damn well he was' in pain lots of times. Never crabby. But nine out of ten of those older fellows,you know, bawl you out if you looked at 'em^Well, you take those fellows used to work in the woods til they were seventy five, eighty years old, you know. Gad, they were just tougher than. old George Foss, one of the old men up there, logroller, and George lived til he was eighty two, and he could get right on a log in the middle of the stream and turn handsprings on it. I see him do that when he was eighty. .Lust some thing he'd done all his life.

I'd say O'a Brown, he was another one. He was in his eighties I'd see him coning down the road trailing alog the old runway

But you take those fellows, you know, they worked, after a couple of ; days work, they'd get that liquor all out of 'em. Sweat like a- take a sauna bath, you know. And take about two days and they were cleaned up. And then, they'd go to bed at nine o'clock at night and get up at five in the morning, and just fine and dan^y, you know. Eight hours sleep. And they were very industrious, , they'd come in and spend their money like a drunken sailor, but up in camp, they'd sew up their own clothes, they'd wash their own clothes, and if there was any thing to sew, or anything like that, and they'd all be smokin' a corncob pipe, and a lot of 'an a rollin' their own. If they smoked cigarettes they always rolled their owu.lhty

SS: They'd stay sober when they were working in the logging camps, when they were out logging, huh? XM- They'd stay sober as long as they couldn't get any liquor. 'Course, if anybody brought any liquor^ they always helped 'em drink it. (frhuckles)

SS: Well, my guess is, wasn't there a lot of moonshining going on those days, with the stuff coming in.

We never haa much trouble with it in camp. Sometimes somebody'd get In once m a while, but, as a rule, didn't allow drinking in camp and that was it. If somebody brought a bottle in his packsack, or something like, they'd all help him drink it. But a quart of whiskey wouldn't last only about three minutes among a bunch of lumberjacks. (laughter)

SS: Would you say that, too, Dan, that there wasn't much drinking on the the job? There wasn't much drinking in the camps?

there might be— get alittle too much some night, if somebody brought in some. But the next morning they always went to work, it didn't bother them any. They wasn't laying around drunk for aweek, or anything like that.

SS: Did most of the guys have to wait til Spokane to get their women?

Some of these small towns. St. Maries-

St. Maries was wet, and then St. Maries went dry, and then they had to go into Montana to get it.

SS: Now, I was just thinking about the women. What they did for that, 'cause I know that they did up in Spokane. Is that they did mostly? They waited til a chance to go into Spokane, like you were saying?

That's right. Well, see, Lewiston always had lots of girls, Ahen the Clearwater started down there andASt. Maries had a lot from up on the St. Joe and on the St. Maries. Lot of girls, they lived on the riverboats down there, right in town. And then the rest of 'em come into Spolcane, pretty much.

There was an old fellow there at Camp 8, an old Frenchman and he had a black spots and white hide or his skin, x^hatever you call it, black and white, anyway, mean son of a gun of a dog, too.

He had about a dozen houses here in Spokane, too.

Well, anyway, he used to come to work for a while, a week or two, when he'd get ten or fifteen bucks, go to St. Maries and wanc over and walk back or come back on the train, carrying a bedroll and then he'd get three or four bottles of liquor, or moonshine, or whatever they had and the Milwaukee used to come through camp, those days and stop there. He'd get off the train and everybodyfd see him comin.' I was the first one up to the bunkhouse, and he and the dog was in the bunk, the bedroll and I thought "Hell, no use fooling with that bedroll, that damn dog'd eat you up." So, I went back down to the shop. I said to somebody, he's in the bed sleeping". "Well," Isaid, the damn dog is in there with him, how you gonna get the bedroll?" "Come on, we'll get it.' So we went up there and we went in the bunkhouse and walked around, and looked everything over, sized everything up. And Bill says, "Leave that door open. You stand by that door, and we'll get that damned dog out of here." "How you gonna get him out of here?" "I'll get him of here/the top ,and the dog raised and every hair on his back standing up. Watt? said, "Back up afew steps you get outside and the dog out, and if you ever kicked anything in the ass," he said, "kick that dog." And the cork shoes, ripped his whole hind end, and away he went. Bill come in and shut the door and qdt the bedroll, and he had four quarts.

Well, Iguess that about winds it up. You got anything more you ?

SS: Yeah, yeah, there's some more I'd like to ask you. Just because this is the only chance I'll have to talk to you both. So— I'm enjoying break it a lot. The stories. If you want to we could for a bit then talk some more, if you'd rather.

No, Ithink you'd better get through^Jl'm about run down. I'm about run down.

SS: Let me ask you then, we'll just talk for a bit.— is there a time you've got to go by?

Yeah, I got an appointment at four o'clock. Its about ten to four now. OK, let me ask you then. There's one more thing I'd like to ask you about, and that's the IWW. About what you know about the old, you know the old labor disturbances, the strikes in the woods.

Well, the strikes- Iwas running camp at that time with the Panhandle ^ Lumber Company in Spirit Lake. And they'd pull a strike every Friday night. They'd all come— I'd stay up all night and help the bookkeeper -rite the checks and pay 'era all off after breakfast in the morning. They'd come in town and then I'd come in toxm Sunday, and I'd hire 'em all back again and take 'em back on the train Monday morning. One summer they went out fourteen times during the summer. When it come to September, Igot the boyalSd, Isaid,filings arc getting pretty bad I said, "what the hell are you fellows going to do next winter, you're not going to have any money,spending it every week this year. You get your paycheck every Friday night, the winter." "Well," they said, "we're getting damn tired of going out." So, I says, "If you'll-" this was the second year of Wobbly trouble IWW. Come in, pull the camp and away they'd go. "And if you'll back us up, if you'll drive those fellows out of camp when they come in tonight," I says, "by God, we'll be back of you." So they came in ,couple of guys came in the office and they said, "Mr. Malonew. two boys out there and they are going to pull the camp tomorrow morning." I said, "OK, thanks," So I put on a new pair of(cork)shoes and walked out, I says, "You gentle men got a ticket for a job here?" Says, "No, we haven't." And I says "Sorry, we got nothing for you. We're filled up. We don't have bed room, we haven't got anything else. And if you had a ticket, you'd even have to sleep in the barn." "But," I said, "you fellows are not— are you looking for work?" "No." Said, "We didn't come in to work. We're gonna pull the camp in the morning." "Well," I says, "you're not gonna pull this camp in the morning," I says, "you're all through," I says, "Now you get the hell out of here, and I'll give you three minutes to hit that door." (chuckles) They looked at one another and sit there two minutes and I said, "You've got one minute." And they grabbed their stuff and away they went. And that was the last walk out we had. And they walked ten miles down to Spirit Lake, stayed there that night, and the next morning the paper come out:' MALQNEY, THE PANHANDLE GUNMAN, held up his crew at the point of two guns last night, forced the Wobbly organizers out of camp and they had to walk ten miles to town to get to a place where they could find a bed for the night. (Laughter)

Well, that's just one of the things, the Wobblys, you know. And they come in and they, well, they come into camp, they'd cut somebody's cork shoes all to hell because he wouldn't join 'em. Cut his clothes up. Stuff like that, you know. Well, then that'd make the rest of the boys mad, see, and so he wouldn't last long, they'd drag him out. But they caused a hell of a lot of trouble. Of course, they done a good job, when you look back on it. They done a damn good job, because the conditions at camps before the Wobblys was rotten. They carried their own bedding. Some guys come in and louse up the whole camp, and stuff like that you know. And they'd steal. They'd come in and steal the feller'ssteal their cork shoes. If you had anything good, jackets, and stuff like that. And, of course, that made the men mad'. And, of course, you had a fight, you had the Four Ls, and you had the IWWs. And they was just back and forth one another. The most of 'em joined both of 'em.

SS: Oh, they did?

OW Yeeh. So they belonged to both of 'em. (chuckles)

SS: Wasn't the IWW headquarters in Spokane?

Yeah, down at Bernard, see it was Bernard and Main. They had a place down there, and, in fact, what broke 'em up: They done so many— now, a fellow would die out in the woods, and then the Secretary down here in Spokane would send out to all the woodsmen to send in a dollar to help bury him. Well, hell, every month there was maybe a couple of guys died and they'd be chipping in, and they got a lot of money that way, see. And, finally, the end of it was, the top men were getting ready to pull out, and the secretary, he wasn't in on it, so by God, one night, and he had charge of the money, he had fifty thousand dollars in the bank, and he pulled the fifty thousand dollars in the bank and left town. Nobody ever heard of him. (Laughter) Well, that busted up the IWWs, right there. Of course, it was getting pretty they'd got all the demanded, fixed up the camps— they'd been out on strike all over the country, and they had the jungle camps, they'd put 'em in you know, and they had a place up at Spirit Lake. They had two hundred out there. And one night I got a call up in the woods from the General Manager, Mr. Hagenbow, he said, "I'd like to have you come down, Joe, want to talk to you about some serious talk tomorrow." And, I said, "OK." So, I went down there Saturday night and we had a meeting next day, and he says, "How's things going?" He said, "Do you think you can get started up soon?" And, I says, "Sure." It was just in the spring, see, about the fifteenth of March, the first of April, and he says, "Well," he says, "been feeding these guys here", he says, "now for a couple of months", and, he says,"the citys almost broke, they can't continuejvery long. Now, if you can start up, if you're ready to start up, maybe we could take these men off of their hands." I said, "Why, sure, I'd be glad to." So, he says, "If you'll stay over tonight and not go back til tomorrow," he says, "you can order the boats for tomorrow morning, take the whole crew out." And, I says, "Well, If the city'll let 'em go with out any fines, or anything like that, why, that'd be fine." So, I went up and talked to the city council, and I said, "Well, gentlemen I'd be glad to relieve you of all these fellers and take 'em up to the camp and put 'em to work." They said, "You mean you'll take those guys up and work with 'em?" "Why," I says, "sure, some of the best men in the country out there." "So," he says, "All right.^Take those men out of here." And, he says, "When you want to do it?" I says, "Right now." "OK," he says, "if they'll go, why, you can take 'em free of charge. No charges, we'd be very grateful to you for taking 'em." So, I went out and get up on a barrel. I talked to the boys, I says, "Now, boys, I'm opening up camps, I'd be glad to give you fellows all jobs, but you won't need your blankets any more, you can throw them all away. All you'll need is your clothes, cork shoes, and whatever clothes you wear. But we won't allow blankets in camps any more." So, we took the gang—they throwed away their'blankets aud Imarched 'em down through town, two abreast, got 'em all on the boats. Had two boats there. Had big plat form boats, you know, and took 'em all up to camp and started operations the next morning. And we never had any more IWW trouble after that. But for about three years, they sure give 'em hell. But they got clean sheets, they got asingle bed. They used to come into camp, come into to camp for ajob, and you know, you go out there you'd have to get in and sleep with somebody you didn't even know. And you had your own blankets, and he'd have his, see? They was all double beds, and after they went out on strike, they were out on strike about four months. In the meantime, we'd built a recreation place for them. We put in shower baths, put in wash ing machines where they could wash their clothes. Before that they went down to the creek and built a little fire to wash their clothes. And put in washrooms, all of 'em could take a bath every night.

SS: You mean, while they were on strike you were fixing up the camps?

That's right. We were fixing up everything.

SS: What year was that, do you remember?

Oh, that was about 1919, wasn't it?

No, before that, about '14 or '15. Ijoined the army in 1919.

Well, it wasn't over

I got out of the army, Ijoined the army in '17. And it was before '17. '15 or '16, somewhere along in there.

Yeah, it was about 1917, Ithink. That is, that was the last one. It run from '15, '16 and '17.

SS: Do you remember the camps striking around Bovill?

Some of 'em would quit and some of 'em would stay, there was never no I whole crew left.

SS: But, this all went on around Spirit Lake?

Well, it was all over, every place.

They blowed that thing all out of proportion.

Oh, yes, sure.

They thought that aWobbly was a- AHell, they would go out on strike and I'd come back in town and hire the whole damn bunch back again. (laughter) They weren't no trouble, the finest fellows in the world. These fellers come in and order up the strike, you know, and there wasn't much they could do about it.

Few radicals, but the most was— the most of the guys weren't very ex cited about it.

SS: A lot of the lumberjacks You had to join or you couldn't live in the camp if you didn't have a card.

DM: I was booking up there for old Rob, and about forty quit, end about forty stayed, so ..

SS: Stool pigeons?

DM: Yeah.U old fellow, think his name was Jordan, he was deputy sheriff or something over there to Moscow. They had those guys. They caused more damn trouble than the Wobblys did. Well, anyway, —

The worst thing the Wobblys did, they'd pull astrike and all come to town-

Get drunk and then come back. (Laughter)

Yeah, (more chuckles)

DM: Well, anyway this old company stool pigeon he'd come in after— there was forty of 'em quit and I'd made out all their checks— he come in and put on his glasses and got out his pencil and he wanted a piece of paper so I gave him a piece of paper, "Oh, you want to write a letter, some thing"? He says, "I want the names of names of everybody that quit here today." I said, "What the hell do you want with those?" indistinct "I don't know who in hell you are, or Idon't give adamn." Isaid, "If you want the names of everybody that quit here, go down to the office in Bovill or go and see they'll put out the information. I ainft puttin' out anything. Iain't gettin' paid for puttin' out. How long is my job going to last here if every damn fool comes in here and wants to know everything about all the company's business? I'd be out of here the second day." Old Bob said, "That's tellin' 'em kid." (laughter) He says, "I'm gonna tell 'em something a mouthful some of these days." And It went along three or four days, old fp came up, and this old stool come in— and in the meantime a, guy come along, and Old Bob says, "don't give a damn whether he can do anything or not, he can take a seat at the table, anyway, fill that up." And there was a goofy guy come up there, he put him to work.

He worked four or five days or aweek; after he left old ? come up, and on an inspection tour, and he and Bob was sittin' in the office, and I was sittin' in there, and this old stool pigeon come in and he said, "Mr. Jones, your brother had afellow here workin' about aweek, he shouldn't around here at all, he was absolutely crazy." Old Bob jumped up and he called him everything he could think of, and he said, "Go and get your bed and get the hell out of here. Ibeen wantin' to tell you what I thought about you for a long time." And-6 said, "Hold on, Bob, hold on, hold on." "Not by adamn sight, he ain't no good and never was any good, he's more trouble than all the Wobblys put together, and get the hell out of here." -JtP took him down on a speeder. They transferred him to some camp down here, near here somewheres, and Old Bob surely give him hell.

Well, if Iremember right, they had a big- all the companies, there was the Potlatch Forest and the Diamond Match and the Federal Match and the Humbird and the Panhandle and all these big companies around here, had a big meeting here, it was in August, and they all agreed to fix up the camps and put things in good condition. There single beds, no double beds anymore, one over the other, all single beds. Sheets and pillows- pillowcases, and they raised the board to a dollar and five cents a day, and they raised the wages to six dollars a day. And that was in the latter part of August, 1917. We were all in at these meetings. We met here in Spokane for two weeks, and then when they agreed to do this, why, then, we went back and the Panhandle at Spirit Lake on Monday morn ing and old man Hagenbo? was the general mangger then, called us all in told us to go back and operate and start the camps and get 'em all So, we did. And then from then on, everything was fine and dandy, they never got a foothold after that. Then we started gyppoing after that, see. And the gyppos— first the Wobblys— some of the worst Wobblys we had were the first ones to go gyppoing. So it just crucified the whole organization. I met that guy that left here, the secretary, down in Los Angeles about two years after that, that took the fifty thousand dollars. Well, he said, "Joe," he says, "I seen what was happening, and these boys were padding their pockets", and he said,"By God,"I says, "I better get the hell outta here or they won't be anything left." He said, "I had fifty thousand dollars up there, so, " he says, "I went up and got it and flew the coop. " (chuckles) And they never caught up to him, never found him. The organization busted up. They kept an office down here on Bernard Street, a little small office in there, and they kept that open for about three months, and then they closed up.

1:00 - Names from Bovill logging country; Bill Helmer

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Segment Synopsis: Some names from Bovill logging country. Combining into one lumber company. Bill Helmer.

15:00 - Loggers camped through winter in Spokane; jungle near Bovill; employment agency in Spokane; sent loggers to the Potlatch camps

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Segment Synopsis: Jungling-up. Broke loggers camped through the winter in Spokane. There was a small jungle near Bovill. Hippies jungle-up now in Spokane. Joe sent loggers out to the Potlatch camps from his employment agency in Spokane. The company asked them to find particular men. They were nearly all broke, and the agency would grubstake them to the camps. The men always paid off their debts before they blew their earnings.

21:00 - Logger chased by two men; found $35,000 and deposited in the logger's name

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Segment Synopsis: A logger gave Joe his pocketbook to hold while he was being chased by two men. The man didn't come to collect it, and Joe found $35,000 in it, which he deposited in the man's name in the bank. Two years later the man showed up, and when Joe finally told him about his money, he refused to believe it, convinced he had been robbed that night.

27:00 - Dick Green blew $500; Bob McGee blew $10,000 in Spokane; made a deal with the mayor; took 200 men out of Spokane jail;

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Segment Synopsis: Dick Green's friends get him to blow in the $500 he saved to get back East. Bob McGee blew $10,000 in Spokane. After carrying men through the winter, the Spokane sporting girls came to camp to pick up the men's first paychecks. Joe took 200 men out of Spokane jails, making a deal with the mayor.

30:00 - Throw a thief out of camp; man who took girls to Seattle and back; camp inspectors

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Segment Synopsis: The men would throw a thief out of camp. They were very honest and very hard workers. One man took girls in a taxi to Seattle and back. "Camp inspectors" were men who went from camp to camp but didn't work long; Dan knew one who talked a good line of baloney.

37:00 - Arriving in Camp 3; no food or bedding; gave foreman a lecture

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Segment Synopsis: Arriving with other men in Camp 3 in the evening, Fred and Charlie Weyerhaeuser found that no food or bedding was available, and gave the foreman a lecture.

40:00 - Gave men extra when they quit so they'd come back; Old Pelton turned down a farming teamster

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Segment Synopsis: T.P.Jones told Dan to give men a little extra when they quit, so they'd think they got the best of the company and come back. Old Pelton turned down a farming teamster, and kept his men for many years.

44:00 - First log drive; Susquehanna River

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Segment Synopsis: Joe's first log drive, on the Susquehanna River in Pennsylvania in 1910.

45:00 - Walking daily

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Segment Synopsis: An old skinner told a young man to walk. Walking Daily.

47:00 - Dick Ferrell preached to the men; cook came back to the camp; playing tricks; entertainment at the camp; the Spokane Hospital

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Segment Synopsis: Dick Ferrell preached to the men, and had to throw one out; he was very popular. A cook came back to the camp with "room for improvement yet." Baker, a cook, strung along a salesman with an invention of his own. Baker tricked Ed Conners about hens laying hard boiled eggs, and Ed got back at him by pretending to hemorrhage all night. Tricketers and storytellers gave entertainment to the camp. The Sisters from Sacred Heart collected $1 a month from the loggers in camps to pay for the Spokane hospital.

59:00 - Camp cook couldn't get the stove to work

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Segment Synopsis: A camp cook couldn't get his stove to work because he ran the pipe the wrong way.

60:00 - Took cook for a haircut; got drunk and could barely walk back; food was good

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Segment Synopsis: Dan took this cook down for a haircut, and after getting drunk, he could barely manage to walk back, falling into creeks. Joe's cooks had to have a vacation every three months. Marsh and Musch were among the good cooks. Gyppo cooking didn't work too well, The food was good, and lots of it.

68:00 - Big Gil's wake; Gil's sister's sons

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Segment Synopsis: Big Gil ordered a dozen eggs and two steaks, but didn't get it. At Gil's wake his sister showed off her three very different sons. One son stole her nurse; he'd come into camp for a job from Gil, after he got over the shakes.

72:00 - Jacks that didn't drink; old jacks were cranky; sporting girls in Spokane, Lewiston, and St. Maries

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Segment Synopsis: One out of a hundred jacks didn't drink. Most old jacks were very cranky; Tom Logan was good natured, though in pain. George Fosse and Sleigh Haul Brown logged in their 80's. In camp the men were very industrious and didn't drink much. There were sporting girls in Spokane, Lewiston and St. Maries.

78:00 - Taking care of a dog to steal whiskey

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Segment Synopsis: Dan and Billy Watts had to take care of a mean dog before they could swipe his master's whiskey.

81:00 - Camps would strike every weekend; threw organizers out of camp; improved camp conditions; brought men back from strike

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Segment Synopsis: Joe's camps would strike every weekend, and he'd pick them up again in town for the coming week. He threw two Wobbly organizers out of camp. They pressured men to join, but they also improved conditions. The IWW secretary in Spokane took $50,000 from the treasury and got out of town, and the organization crumbled. Joe brought the men back from strike after the company improved conditions.

90:00 - Company stool pigeon tried to get names of men on strike; fired stool pigeon; companies met in Spokane; ended the strike and IWW power

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Segment Synopsis: A company stool pigeon tried to get the names of the men who'd gone on strike from Dan. Bob Jones fired the stool pigeon over his brother's (T.P.Jones)objection. All the companies met in Spokane, decided to improve the conditions and then went to gyppo logging, ending the strike and IWW power. Joe met the man who took the IWW money, who explained why he did.


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