Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Homestead Horror!

A Plentywood rancher once told of a childhood experience that made a lasting impression. Before the Rural Electrification Administration brought electricity to many ranches in the late 1930s, the New Deal’s Agricultural Adjustment Administration helped Montana farmers by channeling some ten million dollars worth of contract money into the desperate economy. Some families who benefitted from this new money splurged on automobiles. This particular family was proud of their new car, and in the evenings they would go visiting. One warm spring evening as the family returned home after such a visit, they drove into the driveway. As they approached the dark house, the headlights flashed upon the attic window, and they saw a white figure moving back and forth in the light. As was the family custom, the children drew straws to see who had to go into the dark house first to light the kerosene lamp. The short straw fell to this youngster. He was terrified, but his father told him to get to it, and so he approached the house with weak knees. Instructed to discover what was in the window, the youngster slowly made his way up the stairs, taking the treads one by one. He thought he would faint he was so scared. Finally he got to the top stair, took a deep breath, and flung the door open. Relief flooded through him. During the cold winter months, his mother used the attic to hang the laundry, and hanging in the window was a forgotten pair of long johns swaying in the breeze.

No comments:

Post a Comment