Tuesday, February 2, 2010



pse said:

I remember hearing one time when in the feed bin part of the barn that it was one time Grandma's "old" house. Do you think they first built and lived in those two rooms before adding on to it?

Well, thanks Pallie! I never thought of their building those two rooms first. They did have to build something first. I'm willing to accept the possibility. All I do know, it was always said they built the house in 1900. I just thought that meant the whole thing. And I remember Daddy telling who lived in those rooms (I thought it meant when he was growing up and / or even later). I believe he mentioned Uncle Melburn and his family.

Uncle Melburn and Aunt (I think her name was) Minnie were at the barn choring one morning. Their daughter was in the house. I believe she was 12 years old. She was trying to get the wood stove started. Whatever she had started kept going out, so she poured in a splash of kerosene. There must have been smoldering embers from the night before, because it exploded and she caught fire. She died from the burns and was buried in the beginnings of a small family cemetery in the pasture south of the house about a quarter mile. She and another young boy cousin, son of Uncle Zeb, who died from dephtheria were latter moved to the Odema Cemetery. Their bodies were moved after we moved to the farm. Uncle Lawton recently told Keith that soon after he helped with moving those bodies, Edwin got sick with diphtheria.

All of that to say, I don't know were Uncle Melburn was living when that tragedy happened. I'm thinking they may have been living in those two rooms, rather that the main house.

Thanks, I appreciate your raising the questions. This project has sure stimulated my brain. I wish I would have asked more questions of more people. And I wish I would have written down what I might have learned.

Donnie said:

This weekend I was reading in one of the Family Chronicles, Volumes 8-9, Feb. 1997, page 80.
Mother wrote, Our Life Story, Part 1.
Papa, Gordon,Lawton Easley and Dillon Shumaker had formed the Shumaker Easley Company. (She didn't say what year), but in 1936 Daddy, Gordon and Lawton were batching and taking care of the 650 head of sheep at a camp about a mile of so from where Granddaddy and MotherShumaker lived. They lived in an old abandoned house. Lawton took care of the sheep the day Mother and Daddy got married, Dec. 19, 1936 and a few days afterward until the new Mr. and Mrs. Gordon Easley arranged to go the the sheep camp. The sheep went to market in April, 1937.
The big blizzard came April 8, 1938
The next time she told about being in the tent at the sheep camp was January and February of 1940 they had bought 900 head of sheep and had them on pasture near Duke, Ok. So Daddy, Carlton and I lived in the tent and camp to care for them. It was cold, cold those days, but nice and warm in the tent. We had snow during that time and lost several head of sheep. I should ask Carlton how much of those days he remembers.
January 31,1941 we moved out of the little two-room house to the Easley farm on Red River. How pleased we were to have a large three-room house with a side room.
Our Life Story, Part 2 is on page 113
How interesting your memories are. Maybe some of these dates will help with the timeline of some of the stories.

Let me make a few comments here:

A few weeks ago I was talking to Uncle Elbert about the sheep range era. He first told about that old house. And I remember Mother saying there were goats living there. I've written about that before. I didn't know, but Elbert said there were 200 sheep. I don't remember hearing about 650 sheep.

That blizzard in April 1938 may have been the one where Daddy got stuck in the road by our mail box, and later that evening was walking to Shumaker's. I would have been little less than 4 months old at that time.

Uncle Elbert didn't remember so much about the sheep range, where we lived in the tent. I think that was because he was already in or about to go to college at OCU in Oklahoma City. I do remember hearing there were 600 sheep. I don't remember any thing about 900 sheep. I remember Daddy's story about the snow storms, the sheep being hungry and the weather finally cleared one morning. He opened the sheep pen and they rushed out into the pasture. Almost immediately the weather turned bad again.

He saddled the horse and began trying to bring them back. It was an impossible job. Finally he roped one sheep at the time and tied it onto the horse. At one point he led the horse into the pen and untied 20 sheep from hanging onto the horse. I don't remember hearing how many died, but I do know they lost a lot of them to that storm. He unsaddled the horse and closed up for the night after the moon rose about 10:00 that night.

So we were supposed to go take care of Grand Pa by January 1, 1941. But due to his dying "prematuraly" we relaxed (?) and made the move January 31.

Ca n you imagine trying to write a history about Homer's eating habits, or Chief Joseph's views on space travel?


  1. I wonder how many "branch roads" we will take during your memories?

  2. Your memories bring back some of our memories. How fun! An early picture of the house we lived in, has written on the back that it was built in 1907.

  3. AND I remember Daddy telling about moving those graves too! AND he said soon after, Pallie (and I think Donnie also) contracted diptheria. AND he described in great detail just how they moved the graves and what the "children" looked like.
    So I told you all I know in just 3 "AND's"!