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LAURA SCHRAGER: Did she have much say in money matters?
CLARICE MOODY SAMPSON: Well, you know, my father, you pretty near always hadto ask him for money. He just. But you could charge and he'd pay the bills. But like we youngsters, course I was the last one and if anyone would have had an allowance I'd been the one because he liberalized his way of thinking about his family so much. And my brother who was five years older than I, we did so many things that our older brothers and sisters couldn't do. We weren't told you have to be home at ten thirty from a party. I was never told that in my life. But we didn't go and stay unearthly hours or anything, but my older brother and sisters even if they went to a dance they had to come home at ten thirty. Of course, the dances started earlier, but that was just the rule of the house. But as far as money was concerned there wasn't a lot of it but we had to ask. And I think I showed you a check the otier day my father had written; I think it was to buy a hat one time. But he never said you can't have it. thad to ask for it, and sort of say wlat you were going to do with it. And with running the house, my mother was never restricted as to what she could buy or anything but of course, once every year when Creighton's had their "Red Tag Sale" she would go in and buy so many sheets. Well,she made the sheets, you see, she bought the muslin and made the sheets way back when I was a child, and so many white tablecloths and like, yardage. And then I think it wasn't charged on a monthly basis, it was probably paid twice a year, the account at Creighton's Store. And as far as the groceries were concerned, the man would cd% around to our door each morning to see what we wanted. We always had a charge account. And Mama would order what she needed and they would deliver it later|in the day. But, of course, didn't need to go in because there were no fresh vegetables or anything, you didn't need to go in to see what you wanted. It was just a matter of staples and things like that that you ordered because the vegetables you had, they were canned and in your own cellar rather than being in bins at the store.
But my dad, every night, he'd read the evening papeis after we'd hadsupper. And he'd read the papers, the daily papers, and then he'd go to his desk which was in Papa's and Mauris bedroom and sit at his desk as long as it took him to account for all the day's spending and put it in a book4.a a ledger. And that was done every day, and he knew exactly the amount of money that had been spent or that hft been given to each child or if he'd given Mama any cash. I know in that book that I'm going to let you see, that register: "Wife—$2." WellnoY don't have no idea what Mama wanted to spend two dollars for, but that was the way it was recorded in the book: "Wife—$2."
And as far as our school books and school supplies, Bodg in's werethe only ones vho had school books in those days. W'e got what we needed and charged it, and my dad would pay the bill. And we weren't extravagant, I mean buying junk and stuff we didn't need. We knew we should get what we needed and that was it. And my mother's health wasn't very good. When I was a little child, about eighteen months or two years old, she was taking my oldest sister out to visit friends in the country and some boys came along on horseback wearing chaps, and yelling and shouting and having fun. It frightened the horse and he ran away. And he went off of the read down an incline and I don't remember this of course, but it broke my mother's collarbone and s onebody brought her into town, and I guess got the horse and the buggy and so on. And I had wanted to go so bad with Mama but she left me at home with my other sisters. And it was very fortunate that she didn't have the baby sitting in her lap or something while she was driving. But the way they, and I think it must have been Dr. Watkins, I don't remember, but the nextdoor neighbor came over to help when the doctor came. And he like had her make out of muslin, an old sheet or something, two big doughnuts, stitch 'em together, and my mother's arms were put through the holes; they stuffed 'em with cctton, and my mother's arms were put through the holes and they laced em together, front and back,to hold that collarbone in place.
Well, as a result, it mended across at the end—it didn't heal directlythe two parts of the bones together, one was on top of the other. And she always, always had aches and pains in that collarbone, you know, damp Wiather or anything. But it must have been neuritis, it - pfbably pressed on a nerve or something. And so years later—I remember this—Dr,Gritman did an operation on Mama's collarbone and sawed the bones apart and wired them together and she was that way . the rest of her life, with her collarbone wired together. But from the time, oh I would judge I was eight or ten, she had to have some very, severe surgery. I think it was for a kinked bowel, a kinked colon. But it was very serious surgery and they despaired of her life, but my mother always went to prayer meeting, every Wednesday or Thursday night, whenever it was at our church they had the mid-week prayer meeting. And so that particular night they turned it into a piayer service for Mama. And she finally recovered. But it was such a big incision they made in her abdomen that she was never strong again, you know. And sa I remember my father got her, it was bigger than my little girl rocker, just a next sized rocker. And she would sit in that because it was hard for her to sit in an ordinary rocking chair. And she wore what we oiled dressing sacks. They were like our house robes now, only they were short,.she wore a skirt underneath. But her abdomen was . quite big after that because of the surgery. I suppose the muscles never recovered from such a big incision. And so she always wore a dressing sack. We usually had our clothes made at home, but a dressmaker made her a fancy one. And I can remember, it was lightweight wool, grey, and it was tied with a ribbon around the waist and it had a fancy collar. So that was sort of her dress up clothes while she was recuperating from her surgery. But so my mother never could do heavy housework or anything after that. And everybody had their chores to do in our home.
LS: What did you do?
CS: Well, I don't remember so much, only I always had to wipe dishes 'cause wewiped em then, you know. And I can remember having to wipe dishes after supper. And ray oldest brother was in the Philipines then because he graduated from college in 1901, and he took his degree in absentia because he was sent to the Philipines. And I have a picture of Albert telling Mama good-bye out on the front porch, and she had this dressing sack on At I've told you about. And Albert there in his overcoat with his suitcase, and he'd for some reason had gotten a wide-brimmed hat like, well Teddy Roosevelt wearing them, you know, I don't know why, it probably was a Stetson, a good hat or something. But he was sent to the Philipines by the United States government, he was a civil engineer. And he had charge of lighthouse and bridge construction in the Philipines. And it was considered a very fine job, and I think President Taft was president then. And they had a great deal of social life in Manil a and my brother kept polo ponies you know. Their houses were built up and the animals were below, but they were built up for—well, it was thier to live up off of the ground because, I don't know whether it was swampy ground or what it was. But Harry and I visited Manila in 1963 on a trip to the Orient, and it was three to four weeks voyage to get there, y'see. And when my brother, older than I, Morris, who was five years older than I an, he was in prep school at the university. Well,he was at the age, he just didiPt think he was getting anyplace. And my father was pretty lenient with Morris like he was me. And Albert wrote that if Morris wanted to come over there, he knew he could get a job.
And so Morris, I think he was eighteen or ninetten, he hadn't finishedprep school, and he went over there. My father let him go over there. And he lived with Albert in his home over there. And of course they kept Filipino to do thair work and Morris really.thought that was the heighth of perfection, to have a Filipino boy come and hand him a book or his cigarettes or something, whatever he wanted, you know, to be waited on. He just ate it up. And Albert had told him, you had to have your white clothes all made, you know, made to measure. They wore whites entirely because of the heat, white ducks and so on. I think they were all duck material. And so he told Morris he could go to his tailor and have him what Morris thought he needed. Well, Morris liked clothes awfully well. So. went all out, he had everything. He had just everything he could use. And then after he'd been there a little while he got a job with the Manila diMftil Hospital, which was a huge hospital as chief clerk, that was who kept the books and the accounts and so on. So he did all right for himself even though he was very young. And of course there was a great deal of social life which he enjoyed. But my oldeat brother Albert then, had to come home in 1908 because his health was getting bad—the climate and his work and all. And even before he could come home he went to some health clinic on the coast or some place, or San Francisco.
I don't know where became I just was young enough thatI didn't pay much attention, to build himself up a little before he ever came home. But he arrived home in time for my sister Ethel's wedding which was in December of 1908. But in 1911, Morris, who was still over there and working as chief clerk in the Manila General Hospital became very ill and had to have surgery. And it was evidently a gall bladder operation. Well, my mother and my father didn't know about this surgery ahead of time but somebody wrote in the meantime that he was in the hospital and had had surgery. But in February of 1911 the cablegram came to my brother Albert who was living in TaiComa then, he'd taken a job with a big construction company, in fact he built that big, famous depot in Tafcoraa that has been made a national And the city of Tacoma is keeping it although it isn't in use as a station anymore. But it's a beautiful building with a big dome on top, it's beautiful. Whenever I've gone th%e, I always admire it with great pride because my brother built that, the company he was with. But this cablegram came to Albert that Morris had died of septicemia, which is blood poisoning of course. And they were to have a funeral service there in Manila and then his body was to be sent home. So about the middle of March his body arrived in San Francisco and my brother and my father went to bring it home, and he was buried the Moscow Cemtery at the age of which was pretty sad. And ray mother never quite got over that, it just about broke her heart.
LS: Was Morris sort of her favorite or something because he was young?
CS: Oh no, he was just her boy. Of course when we were kids we always saidMama favored the boys in the family and Dad fajbred the girls. (Chuckles). You know how kids are. But to Mama, her boys were just perfect, and they were good to her. But my brother Albert, my two sisters were in college, and he was so good. He sent them money every year, and they bought nice material and had a new ball gown every year, party dress. Because they were in college and maybe Dad couldn't always afford it, and having two in college at the same time was expensive in those days for their family income as it is now. But Albert always did that for the girls evety year, and I know they were so proud of the dresses.fney had that Albert had sent them the money to buy the material to make their party dresses.
LS: Was that unusual for women to go to college in those days?
CS: Oh no, no. Many Moscow girls went on to college, and of course by that timethe Ridenbaugh Hall had been built so they had a dormitory for women although they had no accomodations for men stutters* Sutptnere were quite a few girls who went.And well many Moscow girls went on to college,, tnat was the thing in our family—everybody was supposed to go to college. Although my oldest sister, Mabel, did not finish college, and this is a long story, shall I tell it?
LS: If it's a good one.
CS: Do you wat to shut it off for a minute?
LS: Sure. (Break)
CS: I suppose their boys went through a time when they didn't like girls. Ofcourse, I know my bro'her, Morris, when I was, ha-was five years older, and when I was about ten and he was fifteen, he thought I was the scum of the earth, you know. And I used to resent it that the boys could go out to the satfpit and swim and good little girls never could do things like that. And the boys would go on hikes and girls couldn't. Of course I was enough younger that Mama wouldn't have let me go because I would have been a responsibility for him. But it alfc seemed like everytime he went on one of those hikes that the boys used to have something, always happened to him. Whether he was accident prone or what, I don't know. But my dad hai given him—this shows how lenient he was--a .22 for Christmas. And one time Morris had taken his,22, which any mother worry about, went out with several boys and some way, whether he was walking along or what, I don't know, but he got shot through the calf of his leg. That was one accident. And then another time, he was always collecting, wherever he went he was collecting something. And on this hike he was looking for some special kind of rocks. And some boy in the group threw a rock against a tree, a live small tree and it bounded right back and hit Morris in themouth and knocked out hi8 two front teeth, his upper teeth. So I can just imagine my mother hating to have a Saturday come when the boys wanted to take a hike for fear something would happen to Morris. But I don't thiik she ever deprived him of going. But those were two things I remembered that happened to him on these hikes.
LS: Did you play outside much?
CS: Oh yes. In the winter we did lots of coasting. And I can remember I alwaysstayed too long and my hands get so cold. My mother knitted my mittens, and she made me new ones every winter, whether they were worn out, whether I needed them or not. And if the old pair, there was a real poor family who lived around the corner from us and they so many children, but they were proud. But she'd take those mittens out,, way from the sidewalk in front of our house and drop them down. And when they'd come along for school they'd pick them up, and of course they didn't know to whom they belonged so they had a pair of mittens. they were always bare-handed. And she used to feel so sorry.
But I'd come home from coasting and I'd squall because my hands were socold. Well, instead of putting them in warm water as we think the thing is to do now, she put 'era in cold water and t!at made 'em hurt all the worse. I'd cry all the harder, but she was very patient. But we'd stay out too long, you know. We were having such a good time and all at once we'd just be so cold we had to go home and get warmed up.
But the snow was different then, It stayed on so much longer. Sometimeswe had snow for Thanksgiving but not always. But it would stay on for several months as I remember. And then as I got a little older we had sleigh ride parties and go to Pullman and have oyster stew or something over there, you know.*go out in the country to some friend's house have a supper. And that was a form of our winter social life, going on sleigh rides. And I remember once my sister, Myra, who was home, chaperoned one of our sleigh ride parties, boys and girls. Of course the man who drove the team had this big bed on the sleigh and he it with straw and we'd all take blankets and we were cozy and warm. But because my sister Myra was the chaperone they thought she should sit up on the seat. And I know I had a muff, and the style then in muffs, they were kind of flat and they weren't with a lot of llling in them,aso I insisted she take my muff. And why, she practically froze to death. She held the muff up in font of her face, you know, I don't know that she ever chaperoned a party again for my group of friends because she was] just entirel5°uncomfortable on that sleigh ride. Do you want to shut it off a minute?
LS: Um hum. (Break)
CS: We didn't as far as bofrs and gkls being together, I can remember when wewere around twelve and thirteen we had a club. Oh, there must have been twenty-four or twenty-five children, boys and girls mixed. And we would have parties every once in a while somebody in the group would have a party. And we called our club the Q. A. E. Club. Did I tell you this?
LS: Urn hum.
CS: Well, we better cut this out, well, you've heard this, um hum. (Break).
CS: poor households. Sometimes just didn't have adequate, warmclothing. But I don't know tiat there was every any. We didn't have rummage sales, and maybe church organizations, women's aid societies and so on, ladies' aid societies in the churches did something to help out those people. But this family around the corner from us, the^father was a blackfnith, and in the winter, I suppose, he didn't have tocjmuch to do. And we always considered that they were poor people, they didn't have as much as some of us did. But of course then none of us had. Telephones weren't too common. Not many of us had phones; we couldn't call other up. Only, we had—did I tel you this? neighbor who was a young lady in the family was one of the telephone operators, you know. And they lived about blocks from our house. So I used to go down to--their tune was to the Ralph home and call up Lillian , my friend, because her father was a doctor and they had a telephone. So I could call her up. I think she was about the only one of my friends who had a telephone. But I always thought that was pretty fine to be able to go to the neighbor's and telephone. And , another friend of mine—this is funny—and it was the Naylor family. They lived in town4hen, and Roy and Ralph and their sister Ruth lived out on the farm. They ware through high school and lived out on the farm. And Mr. Naylor had an insurance business in Moscow so they lived next door to Ralpht two blocks. And the youngest grl in the Naylor family, and I were great friends. And they had a bathroom put on their house before we did, the sewer hadn't gone up as far as our house. And so Saturday morning Mrs. Naylor used to tell rae,"Bring your clean clothes over and take and bath at our house. I used to do that, and oh it was fun, you know, to have a bath in a real bathtub. But of course it wasn't long after that the We had city water, of course, but the sewer came up Lynn Avenue so my father built on a bathroom and we had our own bathtub with toilet facilities right in the house then.
LS: Can you tell what you know of Wild Davey?
CS: Well, when I was a little girl, we lived down Lynn Avenue, 722 Lynn Avenue.And Wild Davey lived, I don't think it was in the city limits, but it was down at the end of Lynn Avenue toward the bridge that crosses the creek down there on the Highway 8. And a little house, and I thine it must have hd about two rooms in it. But when we'd go on picnics or anything and walk by there. Of course a favorite place for us to take Sunday walks was to go to the cerat.ery and took at the monuments. And of course I was very interested of my father. But we had to walk by Wild Davey's house and we always went by pretty fast because we weren't actually afraid of hira, but we just knew that was his home. And then he always had at least three dogs around and I don't remember even that the dogs barked at us, but we didn't tarry when we were passing Wild Davey's house. But he did go along Lynn Avenue going to town with his three dogs and I thought his hair was braided but I see it was just flowing long hair in the picture. I don't remember of him wearing a gun or anything as he hadt in tne picture. But he would pass our house, and of course if I was out in the yard playing or anything, I always looked at Wild Davey as he passed by. But did I tell you the experience at Naylor's farm?
LS: Not on tape, I don't have it on tape.
CS: Well, when I was a little girl then at this time that Wild Davey lived downhere, I was invited to the Naylor ranch every year for a week two or three different times during the summer. And he used to drop in at Naylor's every so often and they'd invite him to eat at noon, he'd be hiking around the country. And they were always good to him, they gave him dinner. And Neppa- Naylor and I, you know, Ruth the oldest sister was living with her brothers and they were running the farm and she was always scared we might be kinda smarty or somefeiag with him. And she always cautioned us. But then a favotite game of ours was to run through the rows of corn and pretend that Wild Davey was after us. And I don't know that he ever diased anybody in his life. I don't think that he was that kind of a person, but it was fun to imagine that.
LS: Was it just his looks with his dogs that were so.
CS: I think so, and then he was very much to himself. I don't know that he everAnd how he happened to stop at Naylor for his noon meal, I don't know that. And the Naylor farm was four miles out of town or something and probably it was just a good morning's walk out there, but we were always told that whoever ran the hotels were very good to give him leftover food. And Mr. Creighton, who owned Creighton's Store, would give him clothing we were told. But as far as his ever doing anything, working at any job, I neveir knew of it if he did. But he was a character in Moscow and we all accepted him as such, you Nobody seemed to step over bounds and try to communicate with him or anything unless he wished it. LS Did he just leave town?
CS: Well, I don't actually know what ever happened, and I can't remember how oldI was or when we didn't know there was Wild Davey anymore. But finally somebody bought the house and moved it out on Orchard Avenue where it still is. Rooms have been added to it. And then in the upper part of that land that his house occupied people built a home, and if was afterwards, I can't remember who built it, I could If I thought a while. But afterwards, Mrs. Lainey, that was Dr. and Mrs. Lainey's home. He was on the faculty at the university, and that was on the land that Wild Davey had lived on.
LS: Did you ever hear that he had written a book?
CS: Well, I don't think I've ever heard that Wild Davey wrote a book, but I knowa man came here, not too many years ago, it sems to me, getting information on Wild Davey. And I didn't know that Wild Davey had been with Kit Carson and so on. I just knew him as a child as Wild Davey in Moscow, and that was it. Course the children used to say that why he had so many dogs if he didn't have any food he'd kill and cook one of his dogs but I think that* just childhood speculation, you know, I don't believe that was ever true because I'm I know the hotels were good to him to give him food
LS: Are there any other people that were like him, that were sort of unusual?C : Well, we did have a man here later, and they called him "Seven Jackets." And it was because he actually wore seven jackets. I don't know whether he wore all the clothes he had. But he wasn't around very long. And I don't know where he lived or anything about what he did or anything. But he was called "Seven Jackets", and he actually wore seven jackets. And whether he did it just because that was all the clothes he had or not, I don't know, but he wasn't around Moscw for very long. And of course, they were eccentrics, those two men, but we had , other people to wonder as a child and I never asked for an explanation how they came to Moscow.and one was Sir John Moore. Did I tell you this before?
CS: But I don't know why he was called, but my parents always called himSir John Moore. And whether he had come from England or what. . .i know where he lived in Moscow, but I don't know anything about him. But I know that he was always known as Sir John Moore.
LS: Was he an English fellow?
CS: Well, I just rather imagine he was. And of course you know about the Bovills?
LS: Did you meet them as a chtd?
CS: The Bovills? Oh yes. I went with my family up there on a camping trip atHog Meadows, I think. They expected to fish, and I was a small child on that cfhping trip because my mother drove her horse and and I was the baby, left so early in the morning that I wasn't even dressed; I was carried out in ray nightgown and wrapped in a blanket and put in the buggy. And I suppose when they stopped for a lunch or something later on, I was dressed. But I don't remember too much about camping trip. Only that that was when Dr. Watkins was shot. And as we came back home on Sunday after the week's camping trip, out at the half-way stopping place where the A/egro family, the black fanily lived, a man drove up with a team of horses in a buggy or a hack or something and told the news about Dr. Watkins being shot that morning and what had gone on in Mcsw. But by the time we got to the afternoon, which was real late afternoon, there was no evidence of it at the Steffen home. But afterward we were told there were bullet holes in the house. They wald have been on the other side anyway, than the roadside on the road because the posse came down though the field and were in that. The creek was different in those days, they dredged it and made a new chanel for it. But it did cross the Steffen's place, Paradise Creek, so it was summer you see, and the posse wai down , perhaps the creek was dry or almost dry and that was their barricade, the bank of the creek. But of course as you know, the story was-feid of how young Steffen mother came out and seid,"Don't shoot any more, he's dead."And so the posse didn't. . .i don't know how they happened to see her or whether she carried a white something so they didn't shoot or what. And several in town claimed it was thenbullet that killed him. I know there were two men in town that I know of , thought they were the ones who shot him. But maybe he killed himself, you don't know. But that was an event in Moscow, of course, that will always be remembered I presume by oldtimers. And of course It- in Carol Brink-s book so it
LS: Another thing I wanted to ask was were there any divorced women in townand was that
LS: Because Carol refers to a few and she makes them sound like they were veryostraized by the people in town.
CS: Right off I can't think of any that I actually knew who were divorced. Ofcourse divorce was very much out of line in those days, you know. And I just can't think of any. Of course we had what they aall the red light district. And of course that was always a great source of curiosity amongst the youngers in Moscow because we knew the houses that ttey occupied in the part of town where they were. And of course, about delivering things down there to them, but it was just all hearsay as far as we children were concerned. We were terribly curious aboout the red light district and so on.
LS: You didn't know.
CS: Oh no, we didn't realize what they were talking about. In those real earlydays, maybe before ray fattier and mother and the family came to Moscow, before I was born, there was a great deal of gambling in Moscow and for high stakes, too. But I don't know where the gambling took place or anything because if it was still going on after they came to town, my father was not a gambling man and Jo we never heard of who participated in these big, high stake card games. But I think I'll tell you this. One day ray father was going to town, and he, walking along, he was going to work. He saw a ring and he picked it up, and it was a diamond ring Nobody ever put an ad—well, we did have a pper but there was never any advertising for that ring or anything. And evidently ray father didn't run an ad that one had been found because he just kept it for a while in safe keeping. But we presumed that somebody had bet that diamond ring on cards; that/es always what our presumption was in our family and perhaps were intoxicated and lost it.But by and by, my father had my mother start wearing that ring, she just had a wedding ring. And she wore it, and that's been handed down In our family. I don't have it but it still belongs in the family. It's an unusual mounting. My sister Myra wore it after my mother died, it was given to her. And then when she died she wanted it to go to a niece in the family, and it's there today.
LS: Can you tell me some more about some of the things that went on in the gradeschool that you remember and high school?
Things like, you know, what the school day was like. Things like that.
CS: Well, I went to three different schoolhouses; we had three during then.And none of them are in existence now. But my first two grades were in what we call the old high school on Third Street, which is where the educational unit is there now, across from the Methodist church. And then my third grade was up in the old Russell School, which was a wooden structure, which was the first schoolhouse that was built in Moscow. But it was just a two room school, one above and one below, aroora below,when but they'd added a wing across the front with four rooms—two above and two below. And I was in the lower room toward the north when I was in the third grade. And Miss Clara, an old family here in Moscow was ray schoolteacher. And there were outside toilets. You had to go out of the building to go to the toilet and I think they were just a privy sort of a toilet at first. But then I went back to that building when I was in the fifth grade, in an upstairs room in theprginal part of the building and by then the toilets were outside but they were the kind that when you sat on the seat caused the water to coiae down from the tank or something. You didn't flush them yourself, they automatically flushed when you sat on the toilet seat. And then after that, my fourth grade, however, was up in Irving School which was a wooden structure up on the corner of Adams and A Street, right on the corner. And I think there were only four rooms in that building as I remember, they were huge rooms because the teachers carried a very great student load in those days.
LS: How big were the classes?
CS: Well, I think there wee at least forty children when I was up there inmy room in the fourth grade. And Miss Lena Whitmore was ray teacher. And ray sister Myra, that was her first year of teaching, and there was a little building down in that same block where the Russell School and the Irving School were that they called the And she taught a fourth grade that year. There were lots of fourth graders it seemed in Moscow tlft year. And she didn't have that many students though because the building was small. But all my friends went to my sister but she didn't want her little sister in her room so I went to Miss Lena Whitmore. But Miss Whitmore was a lovely, lovely teacher and I enjoyed my year in her room. And I remember so well at the close of the year, I probably have it yet some place, she gave us a little folder with her picture on the front, and then maybe it was the program for the last day of school or something inside because we always had a program and spoke pieces and sang songs, and our ithers always came to the progr^j. There was never any fathers because they were working. But out mothers always came to the last day of school for where we. the afternoon program I used to speak pieces there, and then as I told you before, I gave readings as I got older so that was my particular talent.
LS: What kind of things would you do at reading What was the difference betweena reading and a piece?
CS: Well, a piece is usually poetry—that's what we considered then. But when Igraduated from the eighth grade we had graduation exercises just like high school. Only of course we just had a new white dress to wear for graduation. And I read the class reading, I gave it that year, was James Whitcomb Riley's, "The Bear Story". And you probably don't know that; it was several pages long. But it was, he sort of wrote free verse, you know. And tJat was the reading I gave. It was on the program as a reading. And then when I graduated from high school I gave tiie class reading, and that was a chapter from Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch. And I don't suppose you've even heard of that book.
LS: I've heard of it; I never read it. How were you picked to give the reading?
CS: Well,just because you had spoken piecesall your life, I guess.
LS: Did most people go on to higfi school from eighth grade?CS" Well, our eighth grade class was very big; I think there were two eighth grades, proBbly all these fourth graders had come on to be eighth graders together. And that was in the Irving School, and we had the two upper rooms then, the eighth grade.And Mr. who was principal of the school taught one. And well, I think they were, how was it? I don't think there were any little children downstairs, no seventh grades were downstairs. And it was departmentalized, we had different teachers come in for different subjects, you see. They'd come to stage in our education. And before you go I'll show you a picture of that eighth grade class. I've got it downstairs already to go to the museum. But the eighth grade classes were big because there were several families who had gone to country schools. Well, all the families hadNmoved to town because Arthur tt^e was in ray eighth grade and his family still lived out on the farm. So whether the country schools quit having anything above a sixth grade then I don't know,the country schools surrounding Moscow. Because there was a girl Clarice Abrahamson, they called her Clara, but her name was Clarice, like mine, came in from out here at Blaine. And I think she was driven back and forth by the family. And Arthur would have had to have been brought in to school. And I think there were others in that eighth grade who—Ward Gano was in that class, but his family had moved in from the farm by, the time he was in the ejghth grade.
LS: Was there any difference between the kids that tame in from the country?
CS: Not that I remember, urn hum. Not that I remember. They fitted right into thewere school program here. But thereKbig classes and how the teachers could handle so many. . .But having it departmentalized it made it easier with those big classes because probabjr one teacher in all four seventh and eighth grades, y'see. So that they actually didn't have to cover as much as if tlry taught all the Because I know one thing we had was agriculture. We had a little red book and just about farming and land in general, you know, that was what it was. It wasn't a very big book. But that was one subject that was taught in eighth grade—agriculture. And I don't know of anything else that was different. Of course they weren't dividedJfcto social studies and scientific studies and so on as they are now. But we had physiology, and spelling and even writing, we had writing lessons and reading, and a separate course in grammar from the readingcause the reading was actually reading literature out of a book, ysee. And you were asked to read orally. And I think that's why the children don't read so well today, many of them, because they tiaven't had oral reading in school, but we did. And it was always a great pride if your mother came, and ray mother would visit the school several times, visit my room several times during the year, unannounced of course. She'd knock on the door and the teacher would open the door and here was my mother come to visit the school. But many of the children's mothers did that. But if it would happen to be reading class and you were called upon to walk up front and read you were quite delighted, you know. And that was one of my better subjects so it pleased me greatly to be asked to read when ray mother was present. I read a great deal as a child, though to myself, books.
CS: Quite often some member of my family would get me a new book for my birthdayor Christmas, but when I was a little girl, and this was before ray oldest brother left home because he used to tease me so. I read the Elsie Dinsmore books. Have you ever of them?
LS: Uh uh.
CS: Well, Elsie, her fathov was at^ay and she seemed to live with her grandparents.This was a whole series of books. You took Elsie through many years. But her father woild come home to visit occasionally, and he expected such perfection in her, you know. And he would punish her if she didn't come up to his expectations, you know. And so my brother would tease me and Well, come Elsie, father's going to spank you for not doing so and so." And of course Elsie would weep. And so I shed many tears along with Elsie. And that was a whole series of books—Elsie Dinsmore books. And then a little later the Five Little Pepper books came out. And I have Five Little Peppers and How They Grew and Five Little Peppers Abroad. And then of course when I was a little older I read Louisa Alcott's I progressed through my reading.
But when the library came to Moscow they had a room up over where Brown'sfuniture is now, where they keep their appliances, maybe you've had this story told to you about one summer. Well, every so often a big chest of books, as I remember it, it was abig wooden chest, would come in from Boise with a new series of books, and you could borrow a book. And one of the books I got, I think the books were in Moscow for a month from this one chest load. And of course, you'd try to read several, you know. But the last book I got was quite a big book and I didn't get to finish it and I had to return it and I don't know to this day what that book was, but I thought it was fascinating.
But when I've described it to people, they have told me they bet it was Brinkerand the Silver Skates because it was quite a thick book. And it may have been I didn't get far enough into, that I just don't know whether I was reading Hans Brinker. Of course I read it afterwards. But I just can't associate what it was.
LS: What kind of books did you like to read?
CS: Oh, just children's stories. Of course I can remember from a child I wasinterested in the newspapers. I didn't sit down and read the newspaper through but there were certain things I loved to read as a little child in the newspaper when I could read. And then of course the magazines that came into the home like the"TL.adies' Home Journal" which was like this then, you know. And the "Delinear" , which was a style magazine and so on. Those things even as a small child I enjoyed. And then when Carnegie gave the money for the city library, why of course I started getting books there right away. And because no home library had enough books "keep you supplied with reading if you were a reader in those days. And so I started, and you they got a new card every so often, Jchecked your books out on a card. And I don't remember what my first number was. Mrs. McBride, her husband had been— now there's a case about a divorce—a dentist here. And she became librarian,and I don't know whether she did before he died or not. But she was the librarian for years and years and finally whoever held number one card, my card ran out and Mrs. McBride told me, she said,"You've read so many books in this library I'm going to give you the number one card now. And so I held that number one card until they quit using that card file system. And I thought that was pretty nice. Do you want to shut it ocf just a minute?
LS: How did people feel about him and about her.
CS: In the divorce. Well, I never knew Dr. McBride personally, he wasn't ourdentist. But she was a very intellectual sort of person.
LS: His first wife.
CS: His first wife. And I think she probably had a great deal to do with likethe Historical Club and study clubs in those days because she was that type that liked that sort of thing. And I don't know why they were divorced but he did marry this younger woman who became the city librarifi. I can't her name. But as far as I can remember right off that's the only actual divorce case I know of a little
LS: What you said reminds me of what you had to say about Mrs. Lebrooke Canyou describe
CS: Well, no I really can't. She was a great friend of this Mrs. Heddington whoboarded in our home when she was in Moscow after she gave up her own home, she was a widow and had lost her little girl. And she lived in our home for several years, was a boarder. And at that time she was very active in tfts Historical Club, and I know Mrs. Ledbrooke was too. And then later Mrs. Ledbrooke moved to Spoane and Mrs. Heddington used to go up to spend the weekend with her and so on because they had such similar likes and enjoyed the same things so much. But I don't know anything about the Ledbrooke homelife more than the episode that Carol tells about. I didn't even know they were Methodists or anything but Carol of course tells about the episode.
LS: Did make much of an impression in Moscow?
CS: Well, I tell you, Mrs* kedoYoeke lived down in Moscow for quite a few years.But I don't remember that there was ever much discussion in our home or amongst my friends about that. But of course we didn't go to the Methodist Church and we didn't know this family of Booth like the Methodist people, you see. And the Ledbrookes were also, evidently he was a Methodist anyway.
LS: Did most of your friends as a child go to the Presbyterian church also?
CS: it just happened so. One or two didn't when I was real small, one ortwo didn't. But my real close frieBs, because we were in the same Sunday School class. I remember when we were about ten, I judge, or maybe eight or nine, the oldest Butterfield girl was married and so she asked four of us to be flower girls. And she taught our class in our Sunday School, but Butterfields were originally, I think, Episcopalian. But I know Ralston Butterfield was a great Episcopalian afterwards. But Mrs. Butterfield, the mother, in her later years she lived at Hotel Moscow, I believef she always came to our church. But anyway this Miss Butterfield, and I can't say her name right off—her first name— asked us to be flower girls at her wedding and that was held jtfe the Episcopal church. And that wasn't this church that's here now, it was a wooden church. It burned up later. But there was a center and it wasn't very big, just as I remember about the size of the Episcopal church as It is now. And I remember when we had the rehearsal the night before. Mrs. Butterfield, the mother of the bride, we were taking it so seriously to walk up the aisle two by two just as we were supposed to do and with our little baskets of rose petals. But we were so serious about it, I remember so well she said to us,"Smile children, smile" because she didn't want us to be like that at the wedding. She was trying to put us at ease I think, and she didn't want us to be little sour pusses at the wedding.
LS: Were most weddings big?
CS: Well, that church wasn't too big so I'm sure it was filled for that wedding.And as far as the—I thiflc they had the reception up in the bjg Butterfield home which is up on Polk Street. Because Miss Butterfield used to have us to her home for parties, her Sunday School class. And of course none of us had come from big homes like that and we just thought it was wonderful when she had us for a party.
LS: Do you remember the first cars coming in?
CS: Yes, I do. I think Dr. Carathers had the first car. And I can just rememberseeing it, but I never had a ride in it or anything. And then Dr. Gritman got a car. But then some friends of ours had moved in—this was the Brown family from the country—and they lived in house built home just within the next block and around the corner from us. And their d'.tugheter and I were good friends. And somebody they knew had bought a car and it was a front seat and then one little seat—it wasn't a rumble seat, it was just a little seat sitting behind. You didn't lift up anything, the little seat was just there. And so he was going to take my friend, Alma Brown,for a ride, this man, ho was a friend of her father's and so she asked rae to go along and I sat in the little seat behind. And o I thought it was marvelous to ride in t3^ car. That's my first experience with cars. And then Ward Gano, when we were in high school his father got a car, and I used to go places with Ward sometimes in the car he'd fill the car with high school kids to go someplace.
LS: Do you remember the first movies or motion pictures?
CS: Yes, uh huh, I do. And there were two movie houses here. And I think Mr.Kenworthy had one on one side of Third Street and somebodyMse had one across the street. And we went to the show so often on Saturday night, and they cost ten cents a piece^or children. And if you had a quarter we could go to both shows and have a. bag of popcorn tao, which we did. And I don't remember of us going any other time of the week—only Saturday night. And then later on they started having matinees for children on Saturday afternoons. Bat I think that was when the theatres had moved out on Main Street, and that was when they started ! the matinees for children. And ofcourse I thought I was much too big to go to a matinee then. But along when there was a theatre on Main Street, we had a stock company in the summer. And they just lived here, you know, and I don't have no idea how they made enough money to keep them all on. But my sister,^ and I were at home. This was after 1908 because I don't know whether I was in high school or where I was. But we went to every change of , which was every week. We just thought the stock company was wonderful.
LS: What kind of things did tiey do?
CS: Oh, they pretty near always had sort of a wild west show with a love storygoing in because there was pretty near always shooting and I had to hold my ears of course because I didn't like the shooting. But oh the man who played the leading man we thought was just—the young girls of the town thought he was perfectly wonderful. I don't think the company consisted of more than four or five people. Sometimes they had to do a dual role, you know, to take partv And the scenery was, I imagine if we'd see it now we'd just think it was—they had backdrops, you know, with a city street on. And of course the front curtain, before they'g raise it was all these little ads of businesses in Mcrcow painted all over it, you .They had printed programs the cast I can't remember the names of any of those, but they were--oh, theywere quite some shows we thought.
LS: When you went to . prep school from high school, what was it that made youdecide to go up there? What kind of kids would go up there?
CS: Well, Just thought it was kind of—this same group of girls that we'd beenall through the grades together, ray friends, three of us, and we were three that were always together. We just thought it was kind of smart, you know. We were just doing something different, we were at that age. But of course, I just went the one year; the other two girls stayed on. They didn't live as far as did, though. To get to an eight o'clock class wasn't as hard for them probably.
LS: Did many people come from the high school to the prep school?
CS: Not too many, no, no. Not too many. Most of them stayed.
LS: Did you have to have good grades or anything?
CS: No, no. They were just glad to have the students in prep stool. Because thefloor wasn't used for dasses .It did draw in from over the state, young people where there weren't high schools, you know. know in my class, from southern Idaho, he was a state legislator from down in southern Idaho somplace for I knew he lost out on an election. But then Fred came here from someplace and I never would have gotten through physics if he hadn't a helped me set up my apparatus every time. And then I remember a boy, I don't know where he was frora--a country boy—who came. And they all stayed on for college,y'see. It was just a chance for them to get their high school a3 then go on to college.
LS: Was it any harder than regular high school?
CS: Ho, no Only it was departmentalized, you had different teachers of course. Butwe had that in high school too. Only I think instep of the teachers changing room in high school, the pupils shifted to anaher room because the halls weren't very big and there was always much confusion. Of course we dih't mind that a bit when we weri that age.
LS: So prep school wasn't really that different.
CS: No, no, no. It was just like high school. Only were a little freer. Youdidn't have to sit in a study hall, y'see, if you weren't classes. We jist always hung around in the hall and looked out the ter by the fnat of the building. And from the floor we always saw everybody. And ff course college wasn't so big now, and there were girls we admired very much and we'd watch for them, whom we thought were very pretty and think it was just a desire to be adult and grown up. We figured it was more like gotig to college, y'see.
LS: But then you went back to the high school for your.
CS: Yes, and then the prep school went out within a year or two. They closed itout when they felt the state then had high schools—that everybody had a chance for high school.
LS: Can you tell the story about your wanting to go to college and your father's.
CS: Oh, well.. it was the year I was in prep school, the physical educationteacher said,"Why don't you figure on (this was a coming thing, you know, physical education in the public school) why don't you go on with that?" And well, at the university everybody was required to take physical education. wasn't much more than calisthenics; I don't think we even played volleyball or basketball or anything. It was just mostly, calisthenics and folk dancing. And so the Lewiston Normal offered a course un physical education.
LS: I want you to tell the story about enrolling at the U of I.
CS: Oh, yes.
LS: Your father, you know, thinking that there were only certain majors.
CS: Well, yes. My father was of the old school. And he thought you should efcherbe a teacher And he came to being a secretary was all right too, I or stay at home. And he was always a great admirer of fancywork we called it, h9dwork and so on. He thought it was wonderful when young girls just could be satisfieto do that sort of thing. Well, I wasn't of that disposition and so I did start to college, regi stered and went to college. And I took home economics which my father thought was a very fine thing. And the home econoraics, was before they were even in the Administration building. That was one thing they did in the Administration building when they got rid of prep school, they put the home economics later on up ttfre. Of course it was the law school for a while too, in the third floor. But I registered in home economics and the first assignment in home economics over in Ridenbaugh Hall, where they'd set up this temporary home economics department, was to can fruit for Ridenbaugh Hall. And if was of course fall, and the pears were on. And we were to can pears. Well, we had to wash the jars, and so everybody took their jars--old Mason fruit jars—to the sink to wash them. And I ran hot water on mine and broke it. And of course that wasn't the thing I was supposed to do and so the teacher—I don't know that she said to much—but she explained that that wasn't the way to wash fruit jars, just running hot water over them and so on. So I didn't last very long that year because I just knew that I wasn't the right temperament for that sort of thing, so I didn't finish the year.
And so then the next year my father let me go down to Lewiston Normalto take my physical education. And it happened that a head of the department in Lewiston was a Miss from New York who was teaching to earn money to go on through medical school. And I liked her very much and I liked what she taught us, and I just thoroughly enjoyed her, and that just made me want to be a doctor because we had to take so many courses that were so foolish for young people to take. We took the same anatomy that ttfy took at medical school and kinesthiology. She'd had a year or two of medical school, y'see, so as I remember, she didn't teach any of the floor work as we call it in physical education. She just taught the book subjects that went along with the course. And we just adored her. And she had a skeleton that hung ' a on the line. screw up in a box case, you know, And we knew physiology and we had anatomy and bacteriology. The bacteriology was over in the home economics building becaise all girls in home economics at Lewiston Normal had to take the course in bacteriology too. But after I was through and I wanted to go on medical school—ray father, no, no daughter of his would go to medical school. That wasn't a profession that woen should be in. That was a man's profession. And then so I just was at home.until. And I told you my experience of teaching in the Kendrick schools, didn't I?
LS: Yeah. Did that bother you when your father said that or did you just accept it?
CS: Well, I just had to accept it, that was all. And my brother was the same waywith my niece, she wanted to be a nurse. And she would have been a wonderful nurse, they lived back in Chicago. But she went to Beloit but he wouldn't think of her to8study nursing. That just wasn't done in their way of thinking. Do you want anything else, we've got to get our breakfast pretty soon. We can finish the tape.
LS: Okay. What was it as a young woman after you came back from Lewistn, whatthings did you do?
CS: Well, I'll tell you, there really wasn't too much in the way of social life.There was quite a little group of us who were not In school and we'd get up a dance occasionally. But then you see during the flu years, we had soldiers at the university, in ROTC. Well, it was just a general, it wasn't ROTC, it was just they were sent in to be trained. And the flu epidemic came on and I wdked in Red Cross then because I was needed and other young women in town who weren't in school worked in the Red Cross. There were so many ill people among the soldiers that they had them in many places, in just temporary hospitals, y'see, they took buildings in town. So there had to be bedding provided and pillows and sheets and everything. It just seemed to ihe every week I had some certain amount of solicitation among the residents of Moscow something. But people were so good because te necessity was so great. And thai some Of the youngjomen they had a place where they prepared meals for all of these outbuildings that were hospitals. And so, well the food had to be taken, you know. And I was driving at that time, my father had gotten a car; he didn't learn to drive it, but I drove it. And so I often was called upon to drive. But that was a very difficult winter here in Mosco because of so much flu. And like Harry was in the store then, in David's and he'd measure a man, he ordered all the uniforms, and maybe the young fellow would be dead before the uniform euer came. There were so many deaths. It was very sad. But that's the way I occupied my time. Until I was married.
LS: did you help a lot at home?
CS: Well, yes. Yes, I helped with the housework. I didn't learn to cook, butI did other things, because my sister Myra was home and my mother died in 1918 and of course she hadn't been doing the housework anyway. We both did...
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79:00 - Going to prep school and being interested in physical education; disliking home economics; wanting to be a doctor
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