Connected Bloodlines

Country Life Revisited: Part 02: Transcription




Gm = Hazel Louise Miller Lowell

Gp = George John Lowell

J = Gerald Ray Lowell

M = Mitchell Scott Block

Gm: The corn looks like it's suffering from lack of rain.

Gp: Dad always used to say that this area was an awfully sandy area and the crops would be dried out here but out at the farm it’d be good.

J: By the way, did you have a storm last night? It stormed to beat the band.

Gp: It rained about 2/10ths or a quarter of an inch.

I got three rain gauges: 2/10ths, 3/10ths, and 5/10ths.

J: So you averaged them out, right?

Gm: That 2/10ths one…

Gp: This house to our left right here started out as a church and they made it into a pretty decent… you know that’s hard to do sometimes.

J: Isn’t this the farm that we got the bantam chickens from?

Gp: Nope, nope, you’ve got to go farther yet.

J: At the next intersection?

Gp: Yeah, the next.

J: What was his name?

Gp: Eichstedt.

J: Yeah, Eichstedt.

Gp: Conrad Eichstedt.

J: Yeah, Mitchell got to see a true Midwest lightning storm last night as we were driving back up. Boy was it cracking.

Gm: Oh, it was lightning when you drove home?

J: Yeah.

Gm: For heaven’s sake.

J: More north to us was the worst stuff. There were tornado warnings.

Gm: You know it’s been all around us this July and August; everybody gets rain except right around Sioux Falls.

Gp: Here’s where Sandy’s father-in-law used to...

J: Oh yeah, the Dunlaps.

Gp: I don’t think that they’ve been there for quite some time.

Anyway, that’s where they lived when Ken and Sandy got married.

Gm: Boy, it sure looks dry.

J: I had asked Nell today where she had met Cliff. She said at a dance out at Wall Lake. Was that where the roller rink was?

Gm: There was a dance hall on one side of the lake and a roller rink on the other.

J: That doesn't exist anymore, does it?

Gm: One of them is.

Gp: The building is there, the roller rink building is there, but it's all boarded up.

Gm: We can just swing down by the lake and back up.

J: Yeah, we can show Mitchell Wall Lake.

Gm: Yeah, why don’t we do that.

Gp: We can do that on the way home too.

Gm: Yeah.

Gp: Or either way.

J: Let’s do it on the way home so that I can know how to get to this place.

Gp: Jerry, we was talking about this being a prairie road.

From this corner here on into town this road was just ruts in the prairie.

J: When Great Grandpa hauled hay, from where to where? Where would he be doing it?

Gp: After he moved to town, on what is now our farm, he kept the hay ground. He and Aunt Minnie's hired man used to put up hay together. They also had some hay ground and they would put up hay and then in the winter months he would haul hay. At that time, all the ice wagons and hay wagons were horse drawn. This wild or prairie hay was what they wanted for horses. Alfalfa hay is not good for horses -- it gives them the diarrhea.

J: Oh.

Gm: There are a lot of pretty horses over there, I wonder..,

J: So, he hauled the hay from the country to town?

Gp: Yeah, and then they had what they called the hay market. He'd go out in the country one day and get a load of hay and the next day take it to the hay market and sell it, and…

Right here now is where Eichstedts lived.

And this Starns [spelling unconfirmed] lived here, where Jim used to take

his tractor. He had that big quonset building.

J: That’s gone now, isn’t it.

Gm: I think he died fairly young.

Gp: Yeah, Starns died you know.

Yeah, this grove of trees is where Eichstedt lived.

J: Now, when, Grandpa, your father went into town, did he go to that place on 9th street?

Gp: At the time he was hauling hay we was living in West Sioux at 1201.

J: Grandpa, do you want your sunglasses?

Gp: Yeah, please.

But earlier than that when I was a little kid and they’d go into town, then they’d go to 926 W. 9th and we'd always have dinner with Grandma Lowell. My grandma.

J: That’s where she lived?

Gp: Yeah.

J: By herself there?

Gp: Her husband had died by then. He was living when they built that place.

Now over on the left that used to be John's farm.

Gm: Oh, we’re at Jack and Florence’s.

Gp: He still owns the land.

Gm: This fence right here.v

Gp: Yeah, here’s where his land starts.

Gm: That's where the wagon tracks are from the old trail.

Gp: Yeah, the wagon tracks goes through there.

And right up here about three quarters of a mile is where Grandma and I went to school when we were real little.

J: Oh, really?

Gp: We never went at the same time but we went to the same place. I was too ooooold to go when she went.

J: When John Fairfield was at Cliff Miller's place, did he die out of that place?

Gp: No, he died at 926 W. 9th.

J: Did Great Grandpa go from Cliff's place to 1201?

Gp: No, he went from there to Jack's place. See, I was born in Cliff's place and then, I don't know how old I was, I mean, but, then he built that house up there where Jack lived and that's where they lived until they went to 1201. Jack was born in Jack's place and Charlie was born at 1201.

Gm: Right straight south of here is the city dump we had such a time about.

Jerry, you probably weren’t around that much.

J: I heard about that when I was talking to you on the phone and stuff.

Gp: Now the next turn you got to make a left.

Gm: You got to make a right to show us the lake.

Gp: He’s going there on the way home.

Gm: Oh.

Gp: He wants to get to this farm first. Right?

Gm: I’m sorry.

Gp: That’s why they say it isn’t good to have two navigators.

Gm: I’m sorry!

I thought you was going on the way out.

Gp: Well, you can, which would you rather do?

J: Let’s go to the farm first and Wall Lake on the way back.

Gp: I guess I told you that you had to turn but you don’t have to. The pavement ends.

I don’t go on anything...

And right over there, Jerry, where you see that clump of trees in the middle of that, that's where my Grandpa Volsch lived when I was a kid.

J: Oh, really. That farm right there?

Gp: That grove of trees diagonally over there. We used to cut through this pasture here to get to his place. That's my mother's, my grandpa on my mother’s side.

J: She was raised there?

Gp: From seven years old. She was born in Germany.

J: And that’s where they came?

Gp: Yeah.

m: Boy, it’s a shame. That corn had such a beautiful start.

Gp: Well, I wouldn’t sell it too short.

Like Rex says, you gotta remember it’s two to three weeks ahead.

J: Is that how your parents then met, Grandpa, because they lived near each other?

Gp: I suppose, yeah, you know in those days that wasn't that far away, I suppose. I don’t know.

J: They were probably neighbors.

I don’t think that I’ve ever been on this stretch of road.

Gp: Probably not.

You go to the right when you turn, and instead of following the pavement,

I’ll have to break my rules and we’ll go straight.

No, it’s dirty anyhow.

Gm: It is dirty.

Gp: I got Grandma in on it. I wash it and get it all wet then I got two chamois and Grandma helps me chamois.

Well if I get another car, it’s going to be white.

J: You know what’s amazing about white cars? They can be filthy dirty and they don’t show it.

Gp: And, it’s much cooler.

J: Really?

Gm: Oh yeah.

J: We were astounded by that, we didn’t have any choice and had to take this white car but it’s amazing how long we can go without washing and still have it look okay.

Gp: Talk about cars and cadillacs, you know we was talking about Hank Brockhouse and his, the old Ray, that was after he retired and Hank was running it, and he remarried and moved down to a little town in Iowa and built a brand new house and he had a pink Cadillac. And so he drives up and he parks his pink Cadillac and oh that pink Cadillac and that house… so he goes down and buys a new Cadillac.

Gm: I thought he painted the house to match the Cadillac.

Gp: No, he bought a new Cadillac.