More memories and looking back today. Homesteading....not me, my Grand-Dad.
Dewena, over at Across the Way, mentioned the author Hal Borland in her fine series of posts called February faces. That rang a bell with me and I remembered my Dad "encouraging" me to read a book when I was a lad. So I researched a little and found the book, by Hal Borland.
Good ole' Amazon. I was able to locate an old battered copy of High, Wide and Lonesome for only $10. Hal Borland moved with his family to the High Plains of Eastern Colorado at the age of 8 or 9 in about 1908. They homesteaded south of Brush, Colorado and the book recounts the tough times they experienced proving up on the homestead. In 1915, his father returned to his trade of printing by buying the newspaper further south in Flagler.
So the hook is that my Grand-Dad homesteaded in 1908 just 20 miles from Flagler; my great-grand parents (Grandma's parents) had homesteaded there in 1907. My Dad, born in 1918, was raised on the homestead place and my cousin still lives there today. Dad wanted me to read the book because it closely paralleled his childhood. The book must have kindled something in me, because as a boy, I devoured all books about wagon trains, moving west, etc.
I really enjoyed reading this book again, some 55-60 years after the first reading. And I also really appreciate that I have family still living there. Most of my living cousins live in the small town there...one on the old farm and another in the house in town to which my grandparents moved in retirement.
According to my Dad's memoirs, Grandpa built this barn in 1919; quite remarkable for that time, as it had concrete lower walls. Here are some pictures taken in 2008.
I appreciate the fact that so much has been left mostly untouched. There is not much left of my home place in Idaho, as it has been developed. Here are stanchions my Dad milked in as a boy.
A saddle from days gone by.
Thanks, Dewena, for the reminder about this author. I enjoyed rekindling these memories.