happiness

A History in Photos 12 (FGK 169)

Today marks 4 years since mom passed. I started sharing these stories last year in the hopes that I would get to understand her better, to know who she really was. I’m not sure I found what I was originally looking for, but this process has helped me in ways I never could have imagined. I was still feeling pretty broken in my own life from the challenges of recent years and I was seeking guidance and support, although I didn’t know that at the time. I think I have a better understanding of the strength and courage the entire family had to get through what they were faced with . Polio didn’t just impact mom, but her entire family. And the faith Grandma carried, the grace and humility she showed in her letters and memories have left me with gratitude for the incredibly strong line of women that I come from. The letters helped me see how Grandma was held steady by her faith in God during what must have been an unbelievably challenging time. It’s one thing reading the letters on this side of history – knowing that mom survived and knowing how things turned out. But at the time…. There would have been no way to know, no guarantees, and everything was just blind faith. As someone who really struggles with trusting that God has my back even when I can’t see it – this has been very comforting.

Look at how dressed up Grandma and Grandpa got to go visit mom at the hospital! And the garden in the background!! I remember as a kid playing with the snapdragons in this flower garden. It’s gone now, and there’s a deck near here – but I really miss the flowers growing along the side of the house. Grandma really had a green thumb.

Percy and Edna going to visit Margie who was in hospital
Margie and Len Carrol on the horse (I think this is “Slim”??)
Sheila, Margi, and Mother (Grandma/Edna)
Aileen, Sheila, Margie 1949
Sheila and Mother (Edna Copithorne)
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Edna’s Story 42 (FGK 149)

As I said before, her life was very lonely, taking grades 9 and 10 at home. I wrote all over America trying to find a school without steps into it and in a warm climate. Nowadays they do build one-story schools in this country. I was finally successful and found a private school in Daytona Beach, Florida. This was built by a former headmaster who had been injured and had to spend the rest of his life in a wheel chair.

Margi and I flew down to enrol her and make arrangements for her to board at the home of one of the teachers. I also arranged for her to have her physiotherapy after school with a very fine physiotherapist, Mrs. Franks, who became a good friend of ours. While there, I celebrated my birthday and the teachers’s wife where Margi boarded had a small dinner parry for me. Just as we were starting our meal, someone banged and pounded on their door and shouted to them. Mrs Rich went to the door and there stood a neighbour with his arms full of things that looked like huge pineapples. He kept shouting “It’s blooming, it’s blooming, come and see it.” Mrs Rich promised him we’d be right over after dinner. It was a rare night blooming Agave or Century Plant and only blooms about once every hundred years. Mrs Rich put one of the huge buds in the centre of the table and before the meal was over it had opened out and filled the room with perfume. It was all very interesting to me, especially the unusual fauna. Guava grew along their back fence and they just looked exactly like lemons but you eat them skin and all and they make delicious jelly. The huge old trees around the school were heavy with silver moss and mistletoe.

Interesting too was the beautiful home across the street where Betesta lived and Cuba was in such turmoil then. Margi took her Grade 11 and 12 there and we had many interesting trips down there. She graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1958. What excitement that was and so beautiful. That was the year the girls were all wearing crinolines and fluffy dresses that suited their southern accents so well. They had two or three different affairs, all very exciting. One was a big lawn party at the headmaster’s home with the honour students in the receiving line. It was all a very happy and proud moment for me as I listened to the praise of Margi and saw them place a bronze plaque with her achievements inscribed on it in a place of honour in the school. She also gave a very good talk in her valedictory address. I took her to the Bahamas to celebrate before we returned home.

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Edna’s Story 41 (FGK 148)

I love Grandma’s Kitchen (obviously) and I really appreciate all the thought and love that went into building this room. It truly is the heart of this home. I also love that the photo of Grandma standing by her fireplace includes the best dog and by best friend ever – Kayla. When I was away, especially when times were tough, thinking about this room that I love to much was what got me through. This room is filled with memories of all of the people I love, and I feel incredibly blessed that I am making new ones with my family.

Harry used to send Margi comic books regularly and Slim sent her flowers. And all through her stay in the hospital the J.P. School sent her a weekly newsletter. In the fall of 1955 she was able to come home to live with us again. Percy built a physiotherapy table in her bedroom and we fixed up all the pulleys and sandbags, weights, etc. I went in and learned how to give her physiotherapy and took schooling by correspondence. It was a lonely life for a young teenager. Both Sheila and Marshall were gone to town. She still had great difficulty climbing steps and had one or two nasty falls on the three steps down to our kitchen. We decided then to tear this lean-to off and build a new kitchen level with the rest of the house. And build up the earth to be level with the back door and widen all our doors so that a wheelchair could get around easily.

At this age in my life, I have enough experience to really know what I wanted in a kitchen and I got it. Small kitchens were the style then, but to me and our way of life the kitchen always seemed to be the heart of the home. I compare a good kitchen in a home to a good woman. Like a good woman, a kitchen should be efficient and beautiful and always have a pleasant fragrance surrounding it. What is more alluring than the aroma of fresh baked bread, hot fries, and a roast in the oven?

One wall of my new kitchen is of knotty pine and has a fireplace with built in china cupboards on each side, a television set and two easy chairs. The cooking area has knotty pine cupboards. Natural wood adds warmth to a room. The southwest corner is all windows which look out on a panoramic view of the Jumping Pound Valley into the wide range of the Rockies. This area is an indoor garden of flowers because we seem to have nine months of winter in this country. It also holds our old red leather covered chesterfield. My range is a beautiful old-fashioned one Percy bought me many years ago and I wouldn’t trade it for any modern one, even an Ultra Ray. There was one small window – about three feet by two feet in the south wall which I didn’t like in it so I designed a stained glass one which portrayed our wildflowers, our friendly wild birds, and of course our source of existence – cow and calf on pasture. This adds colour and conversation to the room. My kitchen table seats twelve comfortably but of course often more. Adjoining is a very efficient mud room and extra bathroom.

I worked hard in that kitchen. The summer we built it I cooked for 18 men all summer in just a make-shift kitchen. At the same time I gave Margi her physiotherapy which consisted of 38 exercises with resistance and each one 15 times. This I did twice a day. Margi also caught the mumps that summer to add to the confusion. We heard of more modern treatment and equipment for polio in Warm Springs, Georgia, and the USA President Roosevelt built this wonderful place. Percy and Sheila and Margi and I flew down there to see if there was any way we could improve her condition. It was quite an experience for us. We landed in Atlanta, Georgia, and the moist heat really hits you. We rented a car and drove the 70 miles through the pine forests, peach and pecan orchards, to the beautiful spot called the “Georgia Warm Springs Foundation”. She got much better braces there – more modern, lighter and stronger metal. We took her there many times after that.

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Edna’s Story 30 (FGK 147)

By now Sheila had graduated very successfully from Grade 12 and had her application accepted in the university to become a teacher but suddenly decided she would try the nursing profession instead. That Christmas, Percy and Marshall were both very sick in bed with the flu and Sheila was on night duty in the General Hospital. However, she wanted to come home for Christmas Day and we both wanted to see Margi for the few minutes they would allow us. It was a cold, snowy day and poor Sheila looked so grey from being on duty all night but we had to sit in the cold empty basement of the Red Cross Hospital for hours before they let us see Margi for a few fleeting moments. That was one of my worst Christmases.

While Sheila was still in Mount Royal, one weekend she brought a girlfriend home with her and they wanted to go to the Friday night dance in Cochrane. Percy and I were in such distress over Margi, we just didn’t feel like going dancing so we asked Slim if he would mind taking the kids in and looking after them. Marshall went too just for the fun though he didn’t like dancing. When they got there, Slim took his nice suede jacked off and Marshall’s coat and they locked them in the car before going into the hall. Slim was an excellent cop. I’d swear he could tell you how many fillings a motorist had in his teeth a mile away. That night he spotted a car driving around Cochrane without its lights on so he followed it on foot until he got all the particulars such as make, etc. By then it was time to go back to the hall and take the kids out for supper. But when he got back they were sitting in the car waiting for him. He wanted to know how they got into the car when he had locked it but they said it was open, he just thought he had locked it. Then people all around him began to complain of the same thing, purses and coats were missing. Marshall’s and Slim’s fine suede jackets were gone. Even our own family didn’t know he was a cop but Percy and I sure laughed and teased him about that. However, he went into the police in Cochrane next morning and told them who he was and gave them a good description of the car. Both garages in Cochrane had been robbed. They were able to catch the car in Banff, a stolen one from Saskatchewan and they caught the thieves.

Slim was a big fine looking man 6 feet 6 inches tall. Marshall was at the aggressive age. Sometimes he would come to the table defiantly, with his hair uncombed or his hands not too clean. I would ask him to spruce up a bit and he’d say “Oh, I’m all right.” Slim would just get up quietly and tuck Marshall under his arm and hold him under the laundry tap in the back kitchen. It didn’t have to happen very often. We had an equally as big and tall Swiss man working there then. One cold rainy morning Harry was late coming for breakfast. Finally he burst in the door just steaming with anger. He couldn’t find the milk cows and was out in the rain all that time looking for them. He lit on Slim and said “You sitting there all nice and dry! You should be out helping me!” He was quite right and Slim said so and would have gone, but Percy took Harry in the other room and told him all about Slim. From then on, Harry just idolized Slim and Percy knew where to find those cows. There’s a little pocket in the hill below the house where they often hid and strangers couldn’t find them.

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Edna’s Story 29 (FGK 146)

Another emotional one – although I think that Grandma’s reaction at the hospital was completely appropriate. I’m glad that times have changed enough that we can show some of these emotions. I’ve never heard/read these details of mom’s illness and time in the hospital and while it’s incredibly painful to read I’m grateful to Grandma for writing it down. On a different note, the “favourite sauce” at Christmas must be what is now called “Grandma’s special sauce” (which sounds more like devilish than it is – the extremely high calorie delicious spoonfuls of goodness that we no longer have to put on gross pudding or disgusting fruitcake and instead smother our gingerbread cookies or panettone with the sauce).

By now Marshall was going to Mount Royal College too, and he and Sheila would bring their new friends out to visit. For Christmas I cooked our usual oyster soup, roast turkey, and Christmas pudding with our favourite sauce. It was a big dinner but Margi insisted on eating it like we did. But she wasn’t able to get it down. She soon was becoming dehydrated again. We bought a big rubber boat hoping to fill it with warm water and try to give her underwater therapy in her bedroom. The hospital didn’t have that facility at that time and it was supposed to be good for polio victims. But we couldn’t get it to work. I used to see pictures of Mahatma Ghandi and shudder at the sight he was so thin – but by now Margi was worse than that, she weighed only 56 pounds. Clarence came to see her and was almost ill with the shock of seeing her. Dr. Price came to see her and decided to put her in the Holy Cross for a while. We hired three special nurses and were able to visit her whenever we wanted. They gave her one or two blood transfusions that seemed to put new life into her. Dr Price brought many of his colleagues to see her and we decided she was able to be back in the Red Cross Hospital where they had special equipment for treating those with paralyzed limbs. This time one nurse, Miss Homer, took her in hand and just about hypnotized her into into eating a bit and keeping it down. Gradually she was successful, and by the following summer Margi was getting a little physiotherapy. By now she was so rigid that the agony of her physiotherapy just doesn’t bear thinking about. Miss Olsen, her physiotherapist set her goals ruthlessly and just persisted until Margi could lift her arms. She still cannot lift them very high but just being able to move them was wonderful.

About a year later when I went in to visit her one day there was an air of excitement in the room and when the other mothers left, they asked me to wait a few minutes. Then Miss Olsen came in and said “Well Margi, are you ready to show her?” Even when the patients couldn’t move the nurses always put a dress on them and noted lay on the bed nicely dressed. This day they had put a back brace on under Margi’s dress and Mis Olsen lifted her off the bed and Margi was able to stand up by leaning against the high bed. It was the first time I had seen her stand up for well over a year and the shock or surprise was just too much for me. I crumbled up and cried when I should have shown such happiness. I have never in all my life been so ashamed of myself. Everyone was embarrassed but I think the children understood, each one in there had endured so much and they were all such wonderful characters. Margi was able to sit in a wheelchair then and go down to therapy instead of on a stretcher. She was taking her schooling by correspondence with the help of a wonderful volunteer teacher Mrs John’s. That year (1954?) they fitted her with a leg brace which was the worst and she learned how to walk with crutches. I spent hours down in the physiotherapy room learning all I could about it and Miss Olsen often came out and spent weekends with us teaching me more.

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happiness

Edna’s Story 28 (FGK 145)

I’ve mentioned that talking about Mom’s years in the hospital was pretty much a taboo subject in our home. Reading this and some of the letters, I can understand why it was – it must have been incredibly traumatic for Mom not to mention the rest of her family. I can not imagine leaving my sick child at the hospital and not being able to go visit them. Grandma’s strength and faith just continues to blow me away. I always knew she was a fantastic woman but the more I learn about how she handled herself during challenging times the more in awe I am. And Mom – the strength she must have had to pull herself through these years -she was only 11 when she went into hospital.

We took her in to see Dr. Price early in the morning and he had us take her to the Holy Cross Hospital where they took a spinal test to confirm our fears. Dr. Price took us into an office to tell us he was very concerned about us having to receive such shocking news. But somehow the full force of the tragedy hadn’t reached me yet. We had to take her to the Isolation Hospital and they wouldn’t let me go in with her but asked me to wait on the steps for a while. Then they brought me all her clothes and the full force of it hit me. I broke down. We were not allowed to visit her but to get first hand information we would go down to the door and talk to her nurse. It seemed every time we went down there they were wheeling in another victim from an ambulance. It was a terrible epidemic. The government put out a call for more lung machines and they didn’t have enough. Margi said she will always remember the terrible noise of those big machines all night and all day pumping air into the people around her whose lungs were paralyzed. Margi was fortunate that she could breathe but her arms, legs, back and some of her abdomen muscles were paralyzed. She lay on her back without moving for well over a year. I lost track of time somehow. The government sent to Australia where they were more used to a polio epidemic and asked for skilled people to come and help advise us. One nursing sister who had worked with Sister Kenny in Australia came to the hospital and asked for me to meet her. She put a sterile gown on me and let me go in and visit Margi for a few minutes, then she walked with me to the door. She said she had given Margi a thorough muscle test and that it wold be much better if Margi would die right now because her back was so bad she would never even be able to sit in a wheelchair. And her stomach muscles were so bad she couldn’t keep her food down and she was too sick to stand the hot-pack treatment. The hot packs were strips of wool blanked put in hot water, wrung out then wrapped around paralyzed limbs. That was a famous cure of Sister Kenny, it kept the limbs from becoming rigid. The constant odour of hot wool packs was anything but pleasant but that didn’t matter. I told her I just couldn’t accept defeat yet, I still had plenty of faith and hope and felt she would improve if we could get her out of there. The allotted time for her quarantine came and I was so pleased to think I could visit her now. But there was a lot I had to learn. I had never heard of a closed hospital until then. Our own doctors were not allowed in the Red Cross Crippled Children’s Hospital, only as a visitor and if the parent was unable to visit. They had more rules and regulations in that hospital than the most fiendish mind could ever think up. As I later often said – “God never made laws like they had, they were just too unnatural.” Another thing that made it so hard for so many polio victims was that the hospital just wasn’t geared for very sick people, the children they were used to were healthy lively, but deformed ones.

Margi didn’t improve, she was just rapidly fading away and couldn’t keep anything in her stomach. We were allowed to visit her for about a half hour on Sunday afternoon and Wednesday if it was convenient for the staff. Finally we went to one of their leading doctors and told them she was so ill. He was quite surprised and got on the phone to confirm what I had said and was quite upset to think nothing had been done to keep her from becoming dehydrated. He ordered an intravenous immediately. She just lay there for months like that then, they could hardly find a new spot to put the intravenous needle in. People often told me you go into that hospital to visit and come out counting your blessings and that’s certainly true. There were so may very sad cases there. Christmas was coming and Margi still couldn’t’ keep any food down nor move at all. I asked the doctor if he thought a change of scene might help her. We would get a hospital bed, a nurse, and bring her home in an ambulance for Christmas. He said “You might as well she’s not going to get any better.” We brought her home for Christmas and it was so good to have her with us.

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Edna’s Story 27 (FGK 144)

Then by 1947 to the 50s, Margi became quite a good little rider and Clarence gave her a black saddle mare to ride to school if she would let him have Buck for his small fry to start on. Marshall had bought a beautiful little thoroughbred from Laurie Johnson named “Daphne” and Sheila had a fine looking thoroughbred named “Sleepy”. Sheila went to Mount Royal College in 1950. In the spring of 1952 Margi’s mare had a colt so she often rode Daphne to school, and what a lively ride that was as Daphne dearly loved to run. Lorraine Kumlin started Jumping Pound School in 1951 and she tried to ride a very mean horse which no one could ride, and she was just a tiny tot just starting school. Clarence let her ride faithful old Buck. One morning Buck died of a heart attack right at the school gate. Everyone felt they had lost a loyal friend, especially Lorraine and Margi.

All that summer of ‘52 Margi would be sitting on the top of the corral at 6am to see her mare and cute little colt when the men ran the horses in for the haying job. She put in a long day without rest after that. In August she spent a few days in Cochrane with my sister and was very active in there, trying to learn to ride Gordon’s bike. There was no way you could make her take a rest even though we warned her about the epidemic of polio that was raging through the country at that time and she was intelligent enough to be very concerned about it. Then on August 22, 1952 she became very ill and I was almost certain before the night had passed that she had polio. There seemed so little I could do, the doctor said to wait until morning and then bring her in. I have always been thankful to both my parents for the sound religious training they gave me, especially my mother. It gave me strength to bear that night and the severe test of my faith in the following years. Little quotations from the Bible kept coming to my rescue: “Have faith as a grain of mustard seed”, “God can move mountains”, “Lo, I am with you always”, and through it all “Thy will not mine be done”. That quotation took all my strength and faith to believe in, believing in a loving Father who would not willingly hurt His child. And I had to keep Margi’s faith strong too, through these years. Perhaps my greatest strength came from knowing we had the prayers of all our community and friends and relatives everywhere, backing us up and again another quotation “Where one or two are gathered in my name”. How thankful I am now to each one of you because this story does have a happy ending.

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Edna’s Story 26 (FGK 143)

Chapter 4 – The 50s

In 1950 we were a bit short of feed or were afraid we would be, so Percy arranged with Mr. F.E.M. Robinson of the Alberta Ranch in Pincher Creek to pasture our steers there for the summer. That was an interesting place, one of the first ranches in Alberta I think, and the rolling hills had wonderful grass for the cattle. It was a successful venture but perhaps unnecessary as it rained enough to give us grass at home. But we were becoming a bit cramped. In 1951 we heard that Mr. Chas Matthews was wanting to sell his ranch in Grand Valley. Percy and I talked it over carefully. Should we sit still and lead a placid life or work like mad for a few more years. I don’t believe you can sit still, you either go ahead or slip back. We went immediately over to see the place. We bought it the next day.

Trailing cattle back and forth across the Bow River and by Cochrane to Grand Valley was no easy feat. It always seemed to be done when there was snow on the ground and it was a long, cold ride. I used to time it so that I’d catch up to them just before they reached the river and I’d give them hot coffee and fresh hot doughnuts. Then I would race home and pop in the oven and individual chicken pie full of good vegetables for each rider, a dessert, and more hot coffee. I would meet them for the noon lunch just north of the railroad track where there was a good spot to hold the cattle. Sometimes the smell of the hot steel railroad track would panic the spooky cattle and they would have to scatter hay over the rails to get them cross. The bridge across the Bow was another bad place, it didn’t take much to spook them.

By this time the whole country was joined together by well built roads and the cattle rustlers thought they had it made. We were just losing too many as were the other Alberta ranchers. There seemed to be a syndicate of rustlers taking them across the border to the USA. In 1952, the Alberta government decided to place mounted policemen in Cochrane on a few of the ranches, secretly, to work as seemingly regular ranch hands. We were chosen to have one of these men and we nicknamed him “Slim”. Things really began to happen. A lot of comical things, and our share of tragedy.

The day after Slim arrived, Clarence moved his cows and calves to summer pasture. That means he drove them by here – strung out for a mile or more or dust and noise. The hullabaloo upsets the adjacent livestock considerably. That night a black and white milk cow of Kumlin’s went missing. Naturally you would expect it to get tangled up in all the excitement of Clarence’s cows and would be easy to pick out of a herd of Herefords. But Kumlins rode and roe and never found her and Percy kidded them about being so dumb and he went out, and rode and rode and couldn’t find her. Finally Len Kumlin went in and reported it to the police. Poor Slim had to hand in a report every week and did he ever take a ribbing for letting a cow be stolen from right under his nose the day after he arrived here. To end this little yarn, that cow came in with Clarence’s herd in the fall, and she had twins with her, we had many a laugh over that.

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Edna’s Story 25 (FGK 142)

These stories are a big part of why I have my giant velociraptor aka guardian dog. I don’t remember bears or cougars being an issue in the area when I was younger, but as the city has grown and more people are in the mountains we sure have a lot of them around now. The story of Uncle George killing the grizzly is pretty legendary around here.

There were four legged predators destroying cattle too. About 1947 a large grizzly began killing our cattle and once they become killers there’s just no stopping them. This one was very cunning and hard to find. One time Percy found four carcasses in one spot that he had killed. We figured he would kill one and the others smelling fresh blood would come bellering in to chase him. It really scares you to see how powerful they are. With one swat of his paw he would bash in the head of a full-grown cow. With another swat he would rip off the ribs from the backbone. Nobody really wanted to tangle with that fellow but the men did try very hard to find him for the two or more years he was active. They posted a reward of $500 to anyone who could catch him. In the spring of 1947 we had two experienced hunters come from Crossfield and Percy gave them an old horse to take out on the range and shoot it and leave it for bait. But the bear was too smart for them. One day Percy’s brother George rode upon a fresh kill, the carcass of a yearling. George was used to the ways of the wild and he very carefully concealed a huge bear trap in a sort of natural windfall of logs. He succeeded in trapping him and shooting the monster dead first shot. It was a seven foot, 700 pound male grizzly.

Talking about bears, Percy nearly shot Clarence once thinking he was a bear. I had a girl working for me who had lived all her life on the prairies. She hated trees and got the creeps when she had to walk under one. Of course, the boys delighted in spinning tall terrifying yarns to her and this evening she had walked down to visit the girl at Jack Copithorne’s. It was almost dark when she hurried home and Clarence and another boy put fur robes over themselves and hid under some brush about halfway down the hill and jumped out behind her. Percy and I were sitting quietly in the kitchen when she hit the back door. If she had been more fragile she would have come right through the door. We were very concerned when we saw her white face and when she finally was able to speak we had our doubts about it being a bear, but we hadn’t been told about the trick. Percy grabbed his shotgun and went out and shot it off in the air anyway, just to satisfy everyone. I guess those two boys never scrambled up the hill so fast in all their life, expecting maybe another shot.

We have occasionally had a black bear turn killer and molest cattle and once or twice a cow came in off the range with a big patch taken out of her side that looked suspiciously like a cougar’s work.

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Edna’s Story 24 (FGK 141)

Grandpa was finding dynamite like he was hanging out with Wile E. Coyote and the Road Runner.

All through the years we felt a close tie between us and our neighbours, the Indians at Morley. We would contract fencing jobs to them all summer. In the fall they would often help us harvest. And in later November would often ride with the men to help round up stray cattle. I loved our Indian friends and felt I could always trust them. We looked forward to the first of July when they held their annual Stampede in the beautiful natural setting where they had built their corrals. What a magnificent picture to view. We would park our car on the hillside looking down into the corrals and beyond them the big circle of teepees and tents with their bevy of children, cats, and dogs. And back of it all were those glistening blue foothills leading up the Rockies. Where on earth could you find more beauty and activity? I always felt well entertained. My chickens were just nice fryers by July 1 and I always fried four or five along with a salad, cake, and sandwiches that would do us for the day. Mr Harry Jacques, the jeweller from Calgary, used to have a contest with a prize for the best-dressed Indian baby. He very often asked me to be a judge and I wanted so badly to give first prize to everyone there, they were so cute and the beadwork on the buckskin was beautiful. Our kids just loved the first of July and the Morley Stampede.

We always tried to get to Banff or Vermillion Crossing for a few days holiday and fishing just before haying. Once we went to Everett, Washington, USA and dug clams just as Percy did when he lived on the coast as a boy.

Shell Oil started drilling for oil all over this country in 1946. They really messed up our country and way of life, but only struck gas. We have several wells drilled on our land and what a scar they left when they were gone. The seismograph outfits seemed to take a delight in putting a scar across a beautiful wooded area. Sure we have fine gravelled roads now because of oil companies. Roads everywhere. You have a choice of either riding your horses down the gravel road and ruining its feet or risk a bad cut from a broken bottle in the ditch. And broken bottles were not the only hazard. One fall when Percy was riding his sharp-shod horse in the ditch, the horse’s hoof hit a round cylinder that looked like a stick of dynamite. He got off and sure enough there were two sticks of dynamite carelessly thrown there. In effect, some seismograph crew hadn’t time to bother to take it back to the warehouse where it belongs. The roads faced another big problem too. We were always plagued with a little cattle rustling, but it increased drastically after the oil companies built good roads into our summer range. One year about 1949 or 50 when we brought our cows and calves home from their distant summer range, there were ten cows without their calves.

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