Three Pioneers

by

Kathy Easter

 

As long as I have been in school I can remember hearingabout historical essays. In the last few years I have been working on them.As long as I remember some of the kids have written a lot on Jack Turnerand Eli Gooselaw. Every year some one writes on them.

I'm a bit more fortunate than a lot of the students atHumboldt. A lot of them have met Jack and Eli personally but my whole childhoodwas centered around them.

I think that enough has been written about what they havedone and seen and how they came to The Red River. In this historical essayI would like to tell a little about their personal lives and personalities.

First about my grandfather, Jack Turner. He has many hobbies.I think the one he likes the most or talks about the most is hunting. Hehas hunted ever since he was old enough to shoot. He is a very good to thisday. Now that he is getting older it is surprising how well he keeps upto his sons and grandsons. I remember a few years ago when he was huntingin a party of about six men. He shot half the deer for the party that year.He was really excited because the year before he hadn't done so well. Thisreally built his confidence up again.

Another one of his hobbies is trapping. He was good atsetting the traps so the muskrat and weasels wouldn't see them. I rememberabout five years ago when he was trapping near a lake in St. Vincent. Hetold me the ice was hard enough to skate on and us girls should go. So aboutfour or five of us girls got some food ready and got up about eight o'clockin the morning to go skating. He picked us all up in the morning and tookus out there. He had found a clearing and built us a fire. It was a beautifultime of year. There was no snow yet so the ice was real nice. When he finishedchecking his traps and us,he left. Thanks to him we had a great time. Westayed out there all day long.

My grandfather used to be a mailman too. If I was up earlyenough he would let me go on the mail route with him. It used to be funto be with him and be able to see all the farms and things.

Another thing he is really good with, is animals. Theyhave always had dogs. My cousins and I, too have had dogs. When ever somethingwent wrong we went running to grandpa. He set more broken legs for our dogs,that would have been shot. They always healed perfectly.

I remember my cousin had a puppy who jumped off a highsofa and broke his leg three times. Grandpa set it every time it got broken.Once when my cat had kittens, she had a white one. My grandmother fell inlove with this kitten. She had this cat for a few years when he swalloweda bone. Grandpa operated on this cat and took the bone out, then he sewedhim back up. The cat lived for years after. Another time when I had a kittenwho got a fish hook caught in the back of his neck. I thought Dad was goingto have to shoot him. I grabbed the kitten and was crying like mad. I tookhim to Grandpa. When he smiled or rather laughed, I knew every' thing wasgoing to be all right. He took the kitten and talked to it. Then he simplycut both ends of the hook and the cat was okay.

In my eyes my Grandpa is really smart. He knows a lot andputs a lot of it to use. I know in the eyes of his children, grandchildrenand great grandchildren he is really helpful to all of them.

My grandmother is just as great as grandpa. For one thing,grandma is just a great cook. All of us grandchildren love her cookies,and they are always there when we go see her.. She loves flowers and cangrow them better than a lot of people. She's got a certain touch with them.In the summer, she transplants a lot of them outside in the garden and takesthem in, in the winter. Besides flowers, she has a vegetable garden. Shehas an enormous strawberry patch and raspberries. Of course, she cans alot of them. She raises pomaranian dogs. I remember her feeding more thanone of them with a baby doll bottle.

The one thing I really love about my grandmother is herunderstanding and patience. She used to put up with my troubles and everyoneelses. I used to bug her all the time when she was baking. There wasn'tonce she got mad at me, she always let me help her. All of us kids usedto be at grandma's doing something. I don't know were she found time toput up with us.

I remember she used to read to me, sing and teach me howto dance. She used to fix my hair, sew up my mittens, warm my feet, anddry my clothes. If I wasn't feeling good she stayed with me and would doanything to make me feel good.

One thing that always amazed me was the way she kept things.She has a great big Bible with all the names of her grandchildren and theirchildren's birthdays in. She had many pictures and all sorts of things ofinterest.

The reason I'm including Eli in this is because he is closeto them too. He is also close to me. When I wasn't with grandma or grandpaI was with Eli. For as long as I remember, Eli has been eating at our house.He eats his three meals there everyday.

When I was little Eli would come every morning and getme. We would walk up to the post office then go to the store. On the way,there is a town pond where people used to get their water. Everyday therewas a duck in this pond that we would watch. We saw that duck for abouttwo or three years, then it was shot or flew away. On the way home we wouldstop in and see grandma and grandpa. We all lived on the same road withme in the middle. The one thing that really sticks in my mind is a walkEli and I took.

It was a winter where it had really snowed a lot. The snowwas high and hard. We started our walk from Eli's and walked around on thesebig snow drifts. We went way behind his house and way around to the backof our house. It was really fun. Eli was always interested.in the thingsI was interested in. When my cat had kittens she used to hide them. Elialways helped me find them and take care of them.

As I got older, Grandma, Grandpa, and Eli and I spent alot of time together. Every night Eli and I would go watch television orplay cards with Grandma and Grandpa. If wrestling or baseball was on, Grandmaand I would find something else to do. The only reason for this was to keepme quiet. When Grandpa and Eli weren't busy we played cards. We really gotinto some good games. I used to play with Grandpa a lot. He taught me allsorts of things. We always beat Grandma and Eli. Then before Eli would takeme home, Grandma would fix lunch.

My Grandma and Grandpa and Eli also had a great sense ofhumor and still do. They used to play tricks on me and each other a lot.One time Eli and Grandpa turned the gas off on my Honda. It was just a littlehonda that went about 30 mph. They talked me into going way down the roadand back. They about died laughing watching me push it back up the road.

One night in the summer, when Eli and I were walking homeGrandma jumped up and scared us from behind the garage.

Even to this day we are very close. I know not one of themwould do anything to hurt my feelings in any way and I wouldn't hurt theirs.Eli puts up with my cooking and wouldn't say a word against it.

I really think I'm lucky to have grown up with three peoplearound like them. I know it is good to hear what they have done and seenbut to me they mean more than that.

They made my childhood interesting and unforgettable. Idon't know what I'd do without them. I don't see them as much now but Iknow they are there if I need them. I still see them quite oftenand love every minute of it. see them as much now but Iknow they are there if I need them. I still see them quite oftenand love every minute of it.