Thursday, March 17, 2011

GROWTH AND ACTIVITY - THE PEOPLE

BEHIND THESE MOUNTAINS VOL. I

Small clusters of population dotted the valley bottomland of the Clark's Fork River little towns thrived or survived or perished, according to the energies of the people inhabiting them. Some simply ceased to exist because economics made it impossible.

Larchwood, which at one time sported about 40-50 residents, but had gradually declined after the NPRR Division Point was moved from it, closed it's post office in 1925. It had a colorful background.

At first named 'Trout Creek', the name changed to Larchwood. In early May 1909 the town burned when,
"a most disastrous fire early Monday morning wiped out a large portion of the business district, entailing a loss conservatively estimated at $25,000."
The fire had started in a building storing Brown Mercantile's half a carload of hay, and consumed an entire block of buildings. Destroyed were The Rocky Mountain Lodging House, a two-story structure, owned and conducted by Mrs. Ida Daniels, a building owned by the Garden City Brewing Company, and rented as a lodge hall to the Order of Owls; Holcome and Smith's saloon, the building being the property of a Mr. Rowe of Philipsburg; Jeannot and Hauge's General Merchandise store and warehouse; and D. O'Donnell's two story lodging house, restaurant and dwelling.

Discovered about 4 a.m., flames ran the whole length of the row of flimsy structures before it was put under control. All the railroad engines in the yard began a continuous 'tooting'. Efforts centered on saving what could be removed from the doomed buildings. A considerable amount of property was saved,
"only to be pilfered by a throng of tramps attracted by the prospect of being able to secure booty unobserved in the excitement," the editor wrote.
Jack Pettitt, proprietor of the Mullan House, strapped on his six-shooter and went after them. Grappling with one of them he was bitten. When another one tried to flee, Pettitt fired three shots after him, aiming at his feet,
"at least one of the shots taking effect."
A crowd, attracted by the shooting helped capture the pair of would-be thieves. Goods found on them were identified, "their propensity being toward shoes. Seeing a freight train about ready to leave, a party of six or seven citizens looked it over, capturing two more men with property on them that the store keeper identified.

All four served fifteen days in the county jail, pleading guilty to a charge of petty larceny.

The Pruders had a turkey farm in Larchwood. Woodson's store was behind it. Marshal Poe, the Attleberrys, the Havilands, John Burton, who took squatters rights in the middle of the road and later bought from the county, and the Millisons were among the homesteaders.

Several houses were on the NPRR right of way. Brocks, and Fishers lived in Larchwood and there was a used car lot back against the hill with a church and barn between the hill and the street.

Mullan House was the hotel name. It sported a restaurant with a pool table, gambling and liquor. A 12'x14' storage room also held ice to keep meat for the restaurant.

But that was in the late 1880s. The hamlet became known as Larchwood when a new town and post office, Trout Creek, located a few miles upstream. Now, in 1925, Larchwood post office closed. Remaining families would henceforth get their mail in the new Trout Creek.

The once bustling and proud town declined to being referred to as 'Poverty Flats'. The school continued to operate, known now as 'Poverty Flats School.'*1.

Tuscor, with its store, school and depot, was a lively, dance-loving hamlet downstream a bit from Larchwood and also on the south side of the Clark's Fork River. It was much frequented.

Noxon not only survived, during this period it thrived. Annie and Burnard Winter's family increased as their daughters grew up and married. Thelma and Ford had a baby son on August 2, 1925, and named him Elwood Ford Harvey, Jr. Shortly after the baby's arrival the family rented out their new house and moved up Rock Creek, where Ford established a post and pole business and a sawmill.*2. Annie and Burnard enjoyed these grandsons, and stayed in Noxon where they continued their religious interests and activities.*3.

Elwood's aunt Bernice married Lester Gordon on June 1, 1925, in Thompson Falls, and the couple made their home in Noxon. Clyde Lester Gordon, their first child, was born in Noxon Sept 13, 1926.*4.

As the Noxon high school's news paper, Noxon High School Buzzer gained popularity, it became an important resource to keep abreast of school activities as well as community news.

NOXON HIGH SCHOOL BUZZER
November 1925, Edition No.3
"Miss Thompson, nutrition specialist from Bozeman gave a talk, "Why We Need Food", at the 'Noxon Mother's Club' at Mrs. Green's house. The club meets every two weeks. Campfire Girls and Blue Birds are to be organized in Noxon.
Mrs. Green lived in Noxon and Nellie Scheffler cared for her children. Aunt Lilly Cotton cared for the children after Mrs. Green died. Ed Scheffler played outside with Bryce and Lyle Green and Lanky Jamison while his mother attended the club. Mimicing their dads, the boys swapped yarns and circulated whatever news they chanced to know.
"Once, before I was school age, I stole eggs from Mrs. Greens chicken house to make mud pies under the house," Ed said. "She caught me and paddled me good."*5.
Lanky's grandfather bought a Columbia car.
"When he was parked over by the pool hall, he went to make a turn," Lanky said. "There was a big post pile six and a half feet long. Grandpa was hollering 'Whoa! Whoa!' and backed clean over that post pile and down the other side. "If he'd a went a few inches either way, the car would have rolled over. He was used to driving a team of horses. But he didn't hurt the car at all.*6.
"Mr. and Mrs. Tom Moonan and Grace Finnelly came in from Spokane on Sunday evening. Karl Kiser cut his foot with an axe and went to Spokane for treatment on the train No. 3."
The boys played outside in the dirt frequently until after Christmas, as 1925 was the first "black" Christmas in thirty years at Noxon. Making snowmen and sledding were out. No snow fell.*7. No severe weather was encountered up until January. Howard Larson put up ice but it wasn't very heavy. Considerable rain fell early in January, followed by sunny days.

When schoolteacher Anne McDonald married Bob Larson, they lived in the mercantile store next to Norton's from 1925-27. It was then known as Larson and Jefferson's Store. Their "home", the back room of the store, was about sixteen feet wide, made into three rooms. Anne grew flowers behind the store, using water carried in buckets from 'Iron Mike', the water spigot at the base of the NPRR water tank alongside the NPRR tracks.

The store had a small electric plant in the basement to supply their electricity.*8. A tobacco cutter was regular store equipment. High shelves lined the walls, with the clerking counter in front of it. Customers couldn't serve themselves. The clerk had to put up their order, writing down everything bought. In 1925 the store sold swimming suits for $5.00.*9.

In addition to kerosene lamps, barn lanterns, copper wash boilers, harnesses and various and sundry agricultural implements, barrels of dry goods, and clothing such as woolen longjohns, work shirts, gloves, pants, hats, etc. the store began to stock items for ladies. Toiletries and sewing notions were added to the growing stock in trade.

'Trade' was meant literally. Store keepers let buyers put their purchases on 'credit', redeemable when their posts, poles, hay, or whatever they had to barter with, was brought in.

In 1925, Jamison bought a Big Six mower from Missoula Mercantile, having it shipped to Noxon to put up hay, on shares, for Jim Freeman. If they had any extra hay maybe they could peddle it at Larson's.*10.
"Henry Larson had a little bit of a power plant just for the store," Cliff Weare said. "But Jim Finnigan had the first electricity of his own. He put in that little power plant on a creek with a forty, fifty foot fall there, dammed it up above there as it comes off the mountain.*11.
"Jim got the bright idea he'd have a water system there. He got a bunch of old 3" boiler tubing from the remains of the burned down sawmill at Weare's landing in Noxon. At that time he was working on the Bridge Crew (NPRR) and got a bunch of couplings and built the pipe up and we put a line up there and on cross pieces. Made a little dam and brought it down and put in a little water wheel he'd made, himself, out of a pulley and buckets and stuff.
"Eventually, he went to Spokane and got a generator and run the line up to the house. We had one 50 watt light bulb that would run just fine. But in the wintertime it was so cold and the wheel was running and made so much air inside of there it would feeze up," Carmen Moore said.
"That light plant run for years and years and eventually we got some more pipe and put in a new pipe line and improved it some.*12.
 "Most of the time in the wintertime, the only lights we had was a little old kerosene lamp. A wood heater and a wood cookstove. But the light plant, if it was thawing weather and wasn't freezing, well then we had one light bulb.
"If we went from the kitchen into the bedroom you had to turn one out to light the other one because there wasn't enough juice. It was direct current, not alternating current. By the time it went all the way from the light plant in the shop to the house, the juice dropped down so much you couldn't run very much on it.
"The waterwheel gave us some power there. Jim had an emery wheel set up and used to sharpen axes for the forest service. There wasn't any other power in the country unless they had a gas engine, which most people didn't have. Bill used it for several things. We had a line shaft in the shop and pulleys and the lathe Jim bought in 1907 in Spokane.
"It was an old lathe then. And a band saw. And different things like that to use which the power was cheap and always there when you wanted it.
"The power from that waterwheel was very nice. Jim rigged up a dragsaw to saw logs into firewood. You could start it up and put the saw down on the log and go away and leave it if you'd want to. It'd run all day. Didn't cost anything. When it went through, the block dropped off. It just sat there and run back and forth and it didn't hurt anything. Of course we didn't do that very often. Sometimes we'd go away and leave it run. But we'd come back and shut it off when the wood was cut up."*13.
Finnigan's English neighbors, the Hamptons were special. Always friendly, supportive and passed many happy hours neighboring. Kids visited back and forth. Audrey and Carmen would walk home in the dark after telling ghost stories with Hamptons, sure there were ghosts lurking behind every tree. Indians traveled the roads in wagons, coming from huckleberry picking. Hearing them coming, the kids hid in the roadside bushes until they passed, afraid of being kidnapped.*14.
Ruth McKay said, "There was an apple orchard east of the Noxon bridge, south of the river. Most of the trees were not cared for, but they didn't seem to have much of a worm problem. Old Dad Foley lived right at the mouth of Government Creek, on the north bank of the Clark's Fork. He was a fine old man who kept all us kids in vitamin C because he'd have an apple for us every night when we'd troop by. The Dodge kids, the McKay kids; and all of us that went up that way.*15. A bachelor, name of Dryer, who had a sixteen year old son, also lived on Dry Creek.*16.
"Dad Foley would get about ten boxes of apples, driving all the way down to Wenatchee, to pick them. He had a feeling for the young children," Ruth said. "He wasn't married. He was an old man when we knew him. He was a heavyset man. Don't know where he came from. But one of his friends was the barber, the hunchbacked barber, Harry Skillicorn. He used to come over there once in a while.
"Everybody knew him by Dad Foley and he was ... people thought well he was just giving those children apples because he was ... his eyes on the girls. But it was a lie. Because I was around him from the time I was about ten and he was a decent old man. He never talked bad.
"Occasionally he was a little naughty with the older ones. But it was a risqué community in lots of ways. The boys and girls, I heard stories later, they were the instigators. They used to come drive these new cars and things like that. But they were kinda naughty little girls anyway and they had quite a reputation. Raised up pretty permissive."*17.
"In 1926, when the little Chryslers came out, Dad Foley, over across on the north side, got this brand new car," Carmen Moore said.
"He was an old fella, but he drove up to Noxon. He was crossing the NPRR tracks, on his way from the bridge into Noxon. A train was coming. He was driving real slow and all of a sudden when he got right to the railroad crossing he saw this train coming from the east.
"So instead of stepping on the gas and getting across he just jumped out and left his car there. The train took that down the track. Took it down almost to Noxon before they stopped and pried it off the cow-catcher in front and rolled it over the bank, and kept on a goin."*18.
Mrs. Everett Jenkins father, John Hagerty, died at Marshfield, Oregon in early spring, 1926. John, Howard, Ted and Ellen Jenkins were excused from school to attend their grandfather's funeral when he was buried at Heron.*19.

The Campfire Girls group grew in popularity. Mrs. Lake, assistant Guardian, encouraging them. A hike to Smeads was such fun in April they had an outing, hiking to Heron May 7, where they stayed overnight, and hiked home the next day.

Selling subscriptions to Better Homes and Gardens offered many fine "prizes" to the solicitor. Yankee Ingersoll watch for subscriptions amounting to $2.60; Eagle writing set, for 2 one-year subscriptions; fine damask tablecloth, for $4 worth of subscriptions; a 10-inch disc-wheel scooter, for $8 in subscriptions; Eastman camera, 'for only $4, and your own subscription may be included.' Hamilton hunting rifle, 1,000 shot Daisy air rifle, Carrom and Crokinole Board, a popular family game, teakettles, dolls, dishes, pocket knives and even peony plants for your flower garden!
"Along about 1926-27 the brakeman that used to run on the train out of Spokane decided he wanted to move up to Noxon," Carmen Moore said. "He rented a house from Jim Finnigan; that little house he had along the main street east of the stores. He rented to the brakeman, Fred.
"He had a couple of kids going to school. The boy was about 8-9 and the girl a year or so older. He had a Maxwell car and used to go over across the railroad. The road crossed over to the depot. And there was a big water hydrant there and they used to go over and put water in their car. In those days they didn't have Prestone [antifreeze], just water.
"So Fred went over there and his son was in the car with him, in either the front or back seat. Just at that particular moment there was an engine and a caboose that was going back to Spokane and it was high-balling it right through there at about 60-70 miles an hour. He got in the old Maxwell and cranked it up and drove across the track with, it right square in front of that train.
"When it hit that. the car just flew in the air. And it cut both legs off the little boy. The engineer finally got stopped down about a mile and backed up and they loaded the little fella on the train and tried to make it to Sandpoint. But he bled to death before they got him there.*20.
"Sherman Raynor's mother lived one block down from the school and Sherman got a Model T Ford car and he come up there just a singing, he used to sing," Lanky said. "He wasn't a good singer. He sang loud and off key. But he loved to sing.
"So he come up there, doing probably 10-15 miles an hour. And he hollared, Whoa'.
"Here's four or five posts. He hit 'em and went right up through the fence, upended it, put the radiator through it, took the windshield off on the top pole. He hit a big cottonwood tree, still hollaring 'whoa, whoa'.
"He got to be a good driver. He hauled wood to Sandpoint. Got $2 bucks a rick, put on about 8 or 10 rick and haul them all the way. He got a truck. And drove logging truck."*21. Joel Sherman Raynor and Mabel Jane Elphick were married in Chewelah.
"Mr. and Mrs. James Bauers, Chess and Alzire Greer, Dan DeLong and also McTice had places east of town, towards Furlong," Carmen Moore said. "President Teddy Roosevelt had signed DeLong's homestead papers. Each was a small place, with maybe only forty acres. A little hay field each is about all they had.*22.
"During a period of time Chess's cousins would come out from Yakima and stay with them and fish. Boys name of Greer, Homer, Eldon and Charlie.
"Chess Greer caught a little bear in 1921 on Elk Creek. He named her Topsy. Fed it on a bottle. Had it around for a couple years or more. Chess had a Model T touring car. Topsy'd climb on the running board of the touring car and ride down the road that way. "They made kind of a den in one of the old buildings and tried to get Topsy to go in and hibernate but she wouldn't go in. So Chess goes in and set down and she come in and laid down beside him.
"Once we drove went way up Cedar Creek to get rid of Topsy. Topsy was sitting on the front step waiting when we returned home.
"Milking the cows those days we'd put the milk on a shelf outside if the weather permits. Once, hearing the rattle of pans, Chess went out there yelling at Topsy. But it wasn't Topsy. It was a wild bear."*23.
Dan DeLong bought a mowing machine and had Clate Bauer come down and help put the mowing machine together. Chess Greer and Dan raised a bunch of spuds and put them on a boxcar and shipped them back east. They didn't even get enough for them to pay the freight bill.
"About 1924 the Farm Loan Corporation, made up of the different banks, willingly loaned people around the country a little money on their places, taking a mortgage on them.
"Chess wanted to buy another forty acres of land for a pasture," Carmen Moore said. "He owned about forty, but he wanted some more so he borrowed $1,000, which was a lot of money. He bought some railroad land. It was cut over. The timber was cut off of it and they'd burned it off and left it. Also on the other side of the river, over where the Gordon Ranch is now, a man by the name of Hammon had that. And he borrowed a $1,000 on that to clear a little more land or something. But when he got the $1,000 he bought a brand new Dodge touring car and left the country.
"Jess Beason lived west of Noxon about five miles. His place had lots of swamp, and he borrowed $1,000. Then he bought a Dodge car and away he left. The bank was left with the land.
"But Chess Greer paid on that land and paid on it and he and Alzire milked cows and sold cream for I don't know how many years. But they never did get it paid for. After along about 10-12 years he finally had to move off. He just had to walk off and leave his land because he couldn't make the payments even on $1,000. Things were so tight those days and money was so scarce. It was hard to get a hold of. They eventually lost the place.*24.
"The Land bank foreclosed on Chess. He just couldn't make enough to pay it off. He had some cows he sold for $1000 and he bought the old place up Pilgrim Creek that old Sandy, the bootlegger, had. Then he sold that and moved to the highway near Weare's ranch and had a little house to live in."*25.
Young Dan DeLong's dad, Mr. Dan DeLong, was a quick-tempered neighbor of Chess and Alzire Greer. He had a Model T Ford. One day he drove home, opened his gate and drove through, then got out of the Model T to close the gate. The T engine sputtered, then stopped.
"He didn't know anything about cars and of course it didn't run too good anyway. So he got around there and he cranked. He cranked and he cranked until finally he had a heart attack. Someone came by and saw him laying there," Carmen said. "They came into Noxon and called the coroner. He had to come on the train. Meanwhile Jim Finnigan took his son, Carmen, and another fella or two, and loaded the dead man into the back of Finnigan's car and brought him into town and laid him out until the coroner came down.
"East of Noxon there was about a mile of railroad grade that had been abandoned years before. That was the only straight piece of road and the best piece of road in the whole of Sanders County," Carmen said. "Because boy, could you fly on that. You could get up to forty or fifty miles an hour with a car. But it was kinda washboardy. After they'd taken the (railroad) ties out, it left washboardy road. But still they hadn't pulled all the spikes out of the ties, and when they did pull them they left them on the ground.
"People would drive their cars up there and all of a sudden they'd get a railroad spike through the tire which would just ruin them when they did. They had those great big tall wheels on the cars with heavy duty tires but they were made out of just rayon and the spike would go right through them."*26.
Cliff Weare said, "A fella named Howard come along the road. He'd been at Trout Creek and was lookin for a place to trap. I got talking to him and found he came from Stack, Wisconsin. I knew his folks back there.
"So I give him a job and he stayed there with me a year. He was a nice old fellow. Then he went hunting one day. He had an accident and went in that deep ditch at that 'Y' at the Noxon bridge. He drove in there and the truck laid on his arm, pulled the socket out, you know.
"Well, they didn't do a damned thing for him when he got to Missoula. 'Oh, he's gonna die anyway,' the doctor said.
"Another doctor come there and says, 'His arm's out of joint.' He laid down on the bed with the old fella and took his shoulder through his arm, and put his foot underneath his shoulder, and straightened it out and put it back in place. And the old fella got well! But [his arm] never was good, agin. They always stay weak, you know. And he stayed out there with Jenkins and the next year he died."27.
Harry Tallmadge live trapped
this martin and kept it on display
in a cage at his Halfway House
Store on Bull River in Lincoln County,
Montana. Martin were very
numerous throughout the regioin
and highly prized for their pelts at
one time. Circa 1930s. Courtesy
Harry and Sarah Tallmadge collection.
Frank Berray said,
"I remember Howard, that old fella that worked for Everett Jenkins, the old fella that stayed there. "I tore that old icehouse of Bob Larson's down. It was all gone anyhow so they wanted me to tear it down. And that sawdust was left. I was supposed to haul that out next. Well this Howard wanted a lot of the sawdust put on some ground that was a mess of Canadian thistles. Just thick. "He said, 'We'll cut them thistles off and then I'll put that sawdust on and then I'll plow it under'.
"So when he planted his spuds, I said, 'Gee whiz, I wouldn't put spuds in all that sawdust'. 'Why?' he says. 'I'm afraid they'd get woody,' I replied. And it made the old man mad! Hahaha It just made him madder than a wet hen."28.
"Bill Hayes come over," Clifford Weare said. "He'd got a chance to buy a carload of spuds at Eddy for $1.50 a hundred. 'Can you use half of them?' he asked me. I says, 'Yes, I think I can.'
"Then Skinner, from Missoula Mercantile Company, come along and he had some samples of spuds raised up at Bitterroot. They were nicer spuds at 75 cents a hundred, just half what we'd pay at Eddy.
"I went over to Noxon and told Hayes, showing Skinner's samples. So he says, 'We'll buy up there, then.' "So I bought a carload there at 75 cents but I charged Hays $1.50. Hahaha.
"He had no place to put his except an ice house. So he throwed the sawdust out and put the spuds in there, and covered them with sawdust. They tasted like sawdust. And they looked like sawdust! Hahaha.
"I kept mine in my basement. He bought the spuds of me the rest of the year for $2.00 a hundred. Hahaha. That was such a good joke I had to tell about it after a while. Hahhaha. And he laughed about it."29.
"In all those years when I was a young fella in Noxon it seemed like there was always a ball [baseball] team in the summer time," Carmen Moore said. "Clark's Fork had a team. Thompson Falls had a team. Noxon had a team. They were usually the three that played together. They traveled back and forth. Heron didn't have a team those years. Nor Tuscor. They were too small of towns, at that time.
"The ball diamond was east of the Phillips house in a big open space there without grandstands or anything. When you went there you just stood up or sat on a box or something. It was a lot of fun.
"Mrs. Bauers was one of the spectators who came. Clate, her son, and Granville used to play on the team. When the ballgame was going you could hear her above everybody else, rooting for the team. "Maybe the next Sunday they'd be at Clark's Fork to play, or maybe Sunday after that, they'd be up at Thompson Falls. That was the only entertainment we had those days other than the moving pictures once a week in Noxon.
"Of course they had the dances on Saturday nights, too, around different towns. There was a dance hall in a small building I think was a schoolhouse in Tuscor. And there was one in a little schoolhouse in Whitepine. And we danced at the schoolhouse in Heron. The dancehall in Noxon was up above Larson's store until Mr. Norton built his place. "We danced in the basement of the 1922 schoolhouse, the gymnasium part, but that was more or less just the town. No public dances there with everybody coming from all over the country because I guess they just didn't want them in the schoolhouse. It wasn't very big anyway. It was more or less like when the P.T.A. meetings would have a little square dance.
"Mrs. Bartholomew would play the fiddle. She played the fiddle with her left hand instead of the right. It seemed funny to see a person do that. Most people saw the bow with their right hand. But she used the left hand.
"Moonshine was the main entertainment. Maybe there'd be a dance, or fellas would come and get drunk Saturday night. They'd spend their time in the pool hall playing cards or playing pool. They'd usually get so drunk that they'd just more or less pass out and go to bed.
"Mrs. Bartholomew had some rooms in the back of her restaurant. There was also Mrs. Jenkins hotel for a dollar a night.
"Once in a while I ate in Mrs. Bartholomew's restaurant. Goldie, her daughter, waited on tables for several years. The meals were fifty cents. That was a regular meal of roast pork, roast beef, pork chops and so forth, always a good meal. I only ate there a few times because I stayed at home most of the time."30.
Along with dances and cars and community goings and comings, sad news also troubled familes.
Over a year had passed since Cliff and Ethel Weare received the letter from Wauwatosa, Wisconsin telling them Cliff's eldest son, Neal, had died after only a four day illness. Donald and Lloyd, two toddler sons, and a wife eight months pregnant and sick, survived him. But Cliff and Ethel weren't able to attend the funeral.31. Cliff had wrote back, enclosing a check for $50 to help out.

September 1926, Cliff and Ethel's son, Clifford 'Buster' wrote from LaLeche, Saskatoon, Canada where he and Hank Red were working for $6.50 a day and eating mighty good at farmer's houses. They paid $80 for a permit to take their car across the border, 'which will be refunded upon returning to United States.'32. A couple weeks later 'Buster' wrote to say snow had put them out of work. Buster wants to know if "pa worked up in the mine anymore?"33.

Christmastime brings sorrowful news to the Weare's again. Their daughter-in-law wrote from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, that her own mother was taken ill, and she's had to put Weare's grandsons
"in a home because I couldn't make ends meet. Lloyd took sick and is the hospital. I go to see them as often as I am allowed. Would like to have them home for Christmas but don't know."*34.
Weare's teenagers who were no longer going to school, were leaving home. But Cliff's life remained full and active. Freda Weare is in Spokane and wrote home to her parents that she's looking for work. She quit her job in a cafe that was paying only $8 a week and plans to stay with her Grandma Weare.
"Thought about going to Wenatchee to pick apples."*35.
Cliff wasn't above bringing difficulties on himself by ignoring laws he didn't agree with. The fish and game asked J. J. Meany, deputy game warden, to look at Weare's premises ... and to look for skins, which can't be disposed of until after they are tagged.*36.

Meanwhile, Weare begins investigating the cost of building a brick or tile building, getting price quotes from Washington Brick, Line and Sewer Pipe Co, Spokane.*37. He also hears gets a request for help, from Dan Conner,
"I want you to sell my land if you can find a purchaser. I had a letter from Ben Saint last winter ... he said that land had gone down rather badly out there so I suppose I will have to come down with it." Dan thinks it should bring $10-$12 an acre and would sell for half down and a mortgage. "If you sell the place Cliff I will repay you for your trouble. Am in Dakota now ... write me % Ed Purcell, Buford, N.D."*38.
Noxon attracted the usual number of newcomers, who provided gossip for wagging tongues. J. A. Carlisle was well remembered for talking to his mule, and Carl Biber came along to Noxon. O. J. Bandelin was another. Patrick E. Green, was an engineer who lived at Noxon. Oscar Dingman, another Noxon man. Alex Orr was a cedar worker (post splitter). Alex Norman farmed on Pilgrim Creek.*39.
"In about 1927, when the battery radios came out, several people in town Everett and Minnie Jenkins, Henry Larson and Mr. Thomson, who was the (NPRR) depot agent, had battery operated radios," Carmen Moore said.
"They used to take their car batteries out in the winter time when they couldn't run their cars and use them on their six volt radios." Jim Finnigan had his water-powered electricity. "And we had the equipment there to charge the batteries.
"We could charge two batteries at a time. It would take about a day and a night. Maybe two days and two nights to charge the batteries up, depending on how far they were run down.
"Then I used to wheel the batteries into town on a hand sled after I'd get home at night. In the wintertime I'd take the hand sled and pull the batteries in, two miles, and deliver them right into their house and hook them up.
"The only other place they could send them for re-charging would be Thompson Falls or Clark's Fork. They'd have to pay freight on them. The railroad didn't care much about handling batteries because they had the old wooden boxes and they were usually leaking acid. We'd get $1.50 for charging a battery. That was quite a meal ticket for our family at that time because things were pretty tough in the wintertime to get any kind of work."*40.
When The Red Network, Blue Network and Columbia System radio stations broadcast programs the newspaper listed them in a very popular column.

For those not fortunate to have battery-operated radios, there was one sort of community news or another for entertainment. George Phillips, the depot agent for the NPRR, sold his big, two-story house next to the school to Bob Larson in 1927, keeping his land between the bridge and the railroad tracks. After they bought George Phillips house in 1927 and moved out, their vacated living quarters became storage for the store. Anne's uncle gave them a cow. Anne made butter, and rented upstairs rooms to schoolteachers. Red Sheridan built them Noxon's first indoor bathroom, downstairs.*41.

F . J. Korshisnik, Sanders County Agent, sent out a monthly newsletter, announcing that the County Fair at Plains is assured for this year, the popular event to be held September 21, 22 and 23, 1927.

A bid was accepted for a new exhibit building and construction got underway. The Lonepine community was up in arms over the date, as they'd selected that date, so that exhibits from over the county could be sent to Lonepine, and then later taken to the County Fair at Plains.

Bill Ellis grew wheat on Copper Creek up Bull River, but whether or not he entered it the fair went unreported.

Dan DeLong was wintering with his mother, and growing into a fine young man. Every weekend he hiked his trapline in Lost Cabin Gulch, sending his furs to Sears Roebuck.
"Jess Lee used to drive the bus, a team of horses. We had to get our mail at noon hour. And when I got the check (for my furs) I handed it to Mrs. Larson, the Heron store owner, and she looked at me. Then she looked at that check. "They paid $55 for my pelts. Some of the kids in school thought I was a millionaire and so did I. I suppose I was about 15."*42.
Fishermen in the valley who were accustomed to fishing to while away the long hours of winter when jobs were scarce were outraged when they heard about the government's plan to take away this source of food and pleasure.

The Fish and Game Department was closing the Clark's Fork River to winter fishing!

An uprising of severe magnitude occurred. Angry men gathered at the NPRR depot to send telegrams to Helena. They succeeded in getting the Clark's Fork River re-opened to winter fishing, and then got together to form the Noxon-Thompson Falls Rod and Gun Club.

Monthly meetings would be held in Noxon.*43.

BIBLIOGRAPHY
  1. Edna Mcann, and var. Until 1934 when it consolidated with the new school built in Trout Creek in 1933. Evelyn Schwet was the last teacher at the Larchwood school, known as Poverty Flats school.
  2. Sybyl Harvey Smith, biography February 1990.
  3. Annie and Burnard, biography, by Sybyl Smith, 1975. When Burnard retired from the railroad, they moved to Oregon in 1936 to be closer to their married children. Before her death, Annie's dearest prayers and diligent searches were rewarded. Both of her kidnapped daughters were located and reunited with her. Annie is buried in Oregon. Bernice Winter Gordon Adams, biography 1988.
  4. Bernice moved to Prosser, WA in 1927.
  5. Ed Scheffler, oral history, 1987.
  6. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history December 26, 1986.
  7. Noxon High School Buzzer.
  8. Anne Larson, tape-recorded oral history 1972.
  9. Stewart Hampton, oral history, var.
  10. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history February 19, 1990.
  11. Clifford R. Weare tape-recorded oral history March 10, 1972.
  12. In 1941, the Rural Electrification Association put the line out to Finnigan's place.
  13. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  14. Audrey Moore Brixen, letter February 6, 1990.
  15. Ruth McKay Tauscher, tape-recorded oral history July 9, 1986.
  16. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990. Dryer left the area.
  17. Ruth McKay Tauscher, tape-recorded oral history July 9, 1986.
  18. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  19. Noxon High School Buzzer, April 1926, Vol 1, #6.
  20. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  21. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history December 26, 1986.
  22. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  23. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987.
  24. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988. Sanders County Independent Ledger, April 24, 1929, Mary Beason offered her 80 acres near Noxon for sale for $1,000. 4 springs, timber and bottomland. Beasons had moved to Brewster Wa.
  25. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history may 26, 1987.
  26. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  27. Clifford R. Weare, tape-recorded oral history 1972.
  28. Frank Berray, tape-recorded oral history 1972.
  29. Clifford R. Weare and Frank Berray, tape-recorded oral history 1972.
  30. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  31. Clifford R. Weare papers, letters, var.
  32. Clifford R. Weare papers, letter September 7, 1926.
  33. Clifford R. Weare papers, letter September 23, 1926.
  34. Clifford R. Weare papers, letter December 18, 1926.
  35. Clifford R. Weare papers, letter September 23, 1927.
  36. Clifford R. Weare papers, April 4, 1927.
  37. Clifford R. Weare papers, letter May 27, 1927.
  38. Clifford R. Weare papers, letter September 9, 1927.
  39. Stewart and Agnes Hampton, oral history, November 18, 1983.
  40. Carmen Moore, tape-recorded oral history January 1988.
  41. Bob and Anne Larson, tape-recorded oral history March 6, 1972.
  42. Dan DeLong, born 1913.
  43. Jim Watts, President, Noxon Rod and Gun Club, Letter to the editor, Sanders County Ledger September 29, 1983.

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