Saturday, March 5, 2011


The stories people told me about this valley bring the past alive, providing insights into the dynamics of friendships and animosities that developed among the area residents. Each recollection brings a better understanding of our heritage. This chapter is written verbatim here, just as they told the stories to me, and is woven together from each separate perspective as lived by the teller. You can find more information about the context of the stories by referring to the bibliography, because the stories evolve from details in dozens of memories.

Loren 'Lanky' Jamison, Clate Bauers, Stewart Hampton and Lucy Allan Jenkins are only a few of the people who shared intimate memories about the settlers in this chapter. You'll find more names in this chapter's bibliography.
"Ed Skoles homesteaded on Bull River. He had crippled feet and lived on the riverbank with his brother, Bill Skoles. They had a still there, too. Got there in about 1920s -30s," Loren 'Lanky' Jamison said. "Bob Saint and John Jenkins were hunting on Smeads bench. Bob had gotten a deer. In some kind of an accident, Bob shot John in the leg with a .30-40 Craig or a .30-06."*1.
"John was hit in the thigh from about a two foot range. It was late in the day and had started to rain," John's sister, Ellen Jenkins said.*2.
"Where it came out, in the back of the leg, was a hole you coulda laid a grapefruit in. Bob took off his shirt and put it around the leg."*3.
 "John had presence of mind to remove his belt and cinch it above the wound to try and stop the excessive bleeding. This most certainly saved his life because it was hours before help came to carry him out of the trees."*4.
"Bob took off running down off Smeads bench to the highway. (The road between Heron and Noxon on the south side of the Clark's Fork River was the main highway.) Only one time in a dozen a car would be coming along but a tourist came through. Bob flagged the first car that came along.
"A salesman with a new Buick he'd just bought a few days before. He took that Buick up on Smeads bench, the road was dry enough."*5.
"They searched for John, finding him in a very weakened condition. This kind stranger drove John to the hotel where Everett and Minnie were. They were so shocked. And yet so grateful to the man who brought him."*6. "John was very close to death."*7.
"Everett got word to Dr. Rue in Thompson Falls to care for John as soon as possible, which he did," Ellen Jenkins said. "The first thing he did was pour iodine into the wound. I can still hear the screams because iodine caused terrific pain.
"Everett had time to flag the train to stop so he could get John to Spokane and into the hospital where he stayed for many weeks, recovering.
"Everett was dissatisfied with the recovery and brought John home and took over the recovery program. They released John with a perforated tube completely thru his leg so it could drain.
"This tube had to be moved back and forth twice a day and medicated and bandaged to prevent infection. Before many more weeks John was walking on his leg, but he carried that awful scar to his grave."*8.
 Tragedies left painful memories. Cora Brown Roth's husband got blown up with dynamite. 
Lanky said, "He was blowing stumps and it was just before dinner and instead of going to eat dinner, as was normally done, and then come back to check the fuse, he went to check the stumps. That one had a slow fuse in it. He bent over it and it went off. It just filled his chest with gravel and killed him."*9.
Rural Montana life could be dangerous in other ways.  Another story that was just as disturbing is Clate Bauer's recollection about the Pilik family who lived on Bull River,
"Mrs. Pilik was a nurse. She had a kid every year, you might say, never went to the hospital. When a baby died she just went out and dug a hole and buried it.*10.
Stewart Hampton also recalled how the Pilik family had to cope with infant deaths in the remote mountainous environment where they lived,
"When they died in wintertime, the bodies were put into the woodshed until the ground thawed."*11.
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Caption: Fishing on the North Fork of Bull River, fed by Chippewar Creek. Ibex Peak is in the background. Courtesy Wallace 'Wally' Gamble collection.

Lottie and Jim Finnigan wintered in Noxon, too, so Lottie's children, Audrey and Carmen Moore could attend school. But as soon as they were old enough to walk from home to the schoolhouse, the family stayed out on their homestead west of town. Jim had a little machine shop with a turning lathe.*12.

Jim Finnigan worked a short while for the railroad bridge crew, but quit and did odd jobs around Noxon thereafter. Lottie Finnigan's life included piped-in-water that froze in wintertime, putting the wash boiler on a sled and hauling water from a stream about 400 feet from the house through deep snow and bitter cold.
Audrey said, "Usually Lottie had to cut up small logs with a bucksaw for firewood. Tramps were quite common. Whenever one stopped by for a meal, Lottie put him to work on the woodpile and was so happy to have a nice big pile of wood. Most of the time the wood was wet and had to be dried out in the old kitchen stove oven, which always made a mess of bark and chips."
"Lottie was up at 4:00 a.m. building fires to warm up the house in the winter, for the children to prepare for school. The house was bitter cold with thick frost on the windows. She liked her cup of coffee first thing in the morning and it had to be Hills Brothers, which she said was the best! Lunches had to be packed and warm clothing readied."
The county road wasn't always plowed out so Carmen and Audrey and their little brother, Bill, had to leave early in the morning to get to school by 9 a.m. The snow was deep and the children had to wade up to their waists sometimes to make it through. Tears trickled out and froze on their eyelids.
"Kids were determined to get their education. It was a fact of life. We considered ourselves blessed to have a high school. We were devoted to our teachers, holding them in high esteem," Audrey said.
"Lottie was a devoted Christian, reading her Bible everyday and quoting Bible verses to her children. It sustained her through difficult times. She liked to sing, especially hymns, Bringing In The Sheaves, What A Friend We have In Jesus, etc. She was also interested in geography and other reading. Neighbors loaned her the magazine, Grit, and religious papers. She talked often of the happy times she'd enjoyed growing up in Clark's Fork Idaho with her brother and sisters in their Christian home. She had a great sense of humor and loved to visit and laugh with her family and neighbors."
Lottie rubbed lard and turpentine on their chests for colds, flu and whooping cough, and sent onion syrup to school in bottles with her children. Audrey said the Finnigan family was very poor and life was hard. but Lottie never complained and was very supportive of her children and their endeavors, although she didn't take much part in community activities.13.

Harry and Sarah Tallmadge and family enjoying a day of boataing on Bull Lake.The shoreline and Angel Island in the background reflect on the still waterof this lake in the upper Bull River valley about five miles beyond the border of Sanders County. Courtesy Harry and Sarah Tallmadge collection.
 I learned about Thelma and Ford Harvey through the letters their daughter, Sybl wrote to me. Sybyl Harvey was born to Thelma Pringle Harvey and her husband, Ford Harvey, on September 25, 1923, in the steep roofed house next to Mary Cox, "she of the beautiful yard and flowers." Her grandmother, Annie Pringle Winter, midwifed her birth.

Ford Harvey built the only English style house in Noxon, helped by Jim Finnigan and Burnie Winter, and had it almost finished when Sybyl, was born. *14. Because the roof was the steepest one in all of Sanders County, it looked better suited to the Alps and thus out of place in the tiny Montana hamlet, so people gossiped, saying 'That don't belong in Noxon!' *15.

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Caption: Mary Cox with her son, Laurence 'Larry' Cox, on an outing on Smeads Bench, a few miles west of Noxon, May 1921. Courtesy Laurence 'Larry' Cox collection.

Most of Harvey's time was spent up Rock Creek, even though he did build a home in town for his wife and their two children. Harvey cut cedar in Rock Creek and hauled posts in his Model T Ford. He had a badger for a pet that rode in the back. Ford Harvey's pet badger wasn't much of a pet. Dale Lake got bit severely on the thumb once when the badger got loose and he caught it.*17. He operated a sawmill between Orr and Engle Gulch and they lived on the old Rock Creek road that followed the creek between the first bridge and Orr Gulch. His mill was east of Rock Creek.

Thelma and the kids, Sybyl and Elwood, spent winters in town enjoying music from her grand piano - probably the only grand piano in Sanders County at that time.*16. Ford and Thelma moved in and out of their house in Noxon several times while they worked timber on Rock Creek. Their kids, Thelma and Elwood had a
"fine time as young children in Noxon, the two or three different times that we lived in our house. Billy Finnigan was a special friend. "We had a treasured pet, Bessie Badger, who occasionally dug under our fence and came up in Mary Cox's flower gardens, raising cain."18.

Lucy and Bob Jenkins with their family, Robert, Agnes, Clyde and Claude, Merle, posed in front of the new family car. Courtesy Agnes and Stewart Hampton collection.

The Jenkins were another family clan that came to the area. Bob Jenkins had lived at Heron for years, coming there with his folks, Mr. and Mrs. Freeman Jenkins from Kansas in a covered wagon in 1903. Two brothers, Jack and Everett came, too. Each had their own homes. The men folk worked in the woods cutting timber and hauling it to mills at Heron. They attended Rev. Lee's Methodist Church at Heron.19

Fred and Annie Allan lived at Heron, also. Fred was deputy sheriff and Annie midwifed, and the Allans and the Jenkins families were destined to unite. One of their children was a petty brunette daughter, Lucy.
"I quit school when I was in the sixth grade because my mother was midwife and she was always out on trips. Sometimes she'd be three weeks at a time. So us kids would be there alone so we had to learn early to cook and keep house, "Lucy, said.*20.
Lucy Allan met and married Bob in 1913 when she was fifteen. Eleven years later, in 1924, they moved to Noxon. Lucy Jenkins said,
"Bob and I first moved to Noxon in 1924, when our baby, Merle, was two years old. Robert, Agnes, Clyde and Claude were older. Richard 'Dick' was born in Noxon."
"We moved into a little bit of a house at Noxon owned by Jim Finnigan, next to the old Cottage Rooms which had been remodeled into a duplex. The Cottage Rooms duplex, painted yellow, was rented out to people, too. Bob filed saws. He was a blacksmith, too. Bob moved up a little shack and that was the first chicken house we ever had."*21.
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Caption: Clifford A. 'Buster' Weare (standing) and his dad, Clifford R. 'Cliff' Weare, fishing on Bull River, circa 1940. Courtesy Wallace 'Wally' Gamble collection.

Lula Lake sent me many letters to provide information about her family. When Walter and Lula Lake lived in the Bull River Ranger Station, their children, Stanley and Almeda, attended school at Pilik. Dale was too young yet.
"But when the (Pilik) school closed, we moved to Noxon," Lula said. Dale started school in 1924. "Walter got multiple sclerosis. When we moved to Noxon I worked for Mrs. Henry Larson and also kept a teacher each year."*22.
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Caption: Waunless Lake, high in the Cabinet Mountains of Sanders County, Montana, has long been a favorite of fishermen. These four are rewarded for the nine-mile hike, the last mile of which is a straight down drop into Waunless Basin. Lots of shoe leather has been worn off on the straight up climb back out. Bob Crit, Kay Bib and Hubert 'Hub' Tauscher pose with a friend, and a typical 1930s-40s catch of fish. Courtesy Ruth McKay Tauscher collection.

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Caption: Harry Tallmadge and son, Les, enjoy some good ice fishing on Bull Lake in Lincoln County, Montana. Courtesy Harry and Sarah Tallmadge collection.

Noxon had a lady beautician and barber for a little while. After finishing school at Noxon, Doneita Pringle attended the Schultz Beauty School in Spokane, and then returned to do beauty work in her hometown. There was no such thing as a beauty shop in Noxon then, and the valley lacked electricity for permanents or anything else.

She began writing Beauty Parlor Notes for the county paper, telling about hair care and waves. Doneita visited often with her parents, Mr and Mrs. Burnie Winter.*23.

Donieta had her barber chair in the barbershop in a front room of the Baxter building downtown on Main Street. George Jamison and his kids, Laura, Loren 'Lanky', and Walter 'Tag' were among Doneita's many customers. Charlie Knutson fell in love with Doneita, and built a snug little house on the hill between the schoolhouse and the businesses 'downtown.'.*24.

Shortly thereafter, the sweethearts married.
"But," Lanky said, "Charlie's folks, Andrew and Mary Knutson, wouldn't have anything to do with Doneita. And wouldn't attend the wedding, either.
"Mrs. S. S. Brown's group met one afternoon. Mrs. Knutson, and Katie Engle and the whole group. They knew Mary had no use for Doneita so Grandma asked Mary if she'd been up to see the bride. Mary said, 'Why no!' Fanny Hampton was there and she said, 'Well shame on you.' Mary Knutson took her glasses off and wiped them on her apron. They wore aprons when they come to visit," Lanky said.
"After she and Charlie married, the barbershop was also a moonshine place. It was a short-lived marriage. Well under those circumstances it couldn't last. Doneita left Noxon."*25.
S. S. Brown bought the barbershop building from Lena Baxter after Doneita left. George Jamison helped Don Maynard move the barber chair out, taking it to Clark's Fork where Maynard opened up a barbershop. Jamison, not generally a drinking man, couldn't drink much.
"When they brought him home he was really drunk. While moving the barber chair they'd found some moonshine."*26.
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Caption: Fishing on the North Fork of Bull River, fed by Chippewar Creek. Ibex Peak is in the background. Courtesy Wallace 'Wally' Gamble collection.

Noxon gained its first mechanic when Howard Ellinwood moved his family from their homestead on Bull River, with the intent of establishing a repair garage. At the homestead, Howard had honed his considerable mechanical abilities designing and operating a water powered seven foot drag saw to cut blocks of wood. He'd spent months building the big iron-rimmed wooden wheel. Water from the ditch he'd dug to channel water down the mountain fell onto the wheel, turning it to power saws. However, he didn't have a circular saw and couldn't saw lumber.

Next to his big log barn, behind which the forest service trail to Squaw Peak began its steep climb to the mountaintop lookout, the wheel turned long after the family left, but the blade would be used no more, nor would Howard use the little cabin beside the barn that had been his blacksmith shop. Instead, he'd be using his skills to work on autos. Equally important, their children could now attend school.27.

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Caption: Merle Jenkins and his two favorites -- his car and his girl, circa 1930s. Courtesy Stewart and Agnes Hampton collection. 

Sanders County Independent Ledger noted that as more valley folks adapted to the newer mode of transportation, there was a need for a new enterprise. On May 13, 1920 the editor wrote,
"Noxon is getting quite classy in the automobile line, there having been quite a number of new cars purchased since last season ... the Noxon garage has been kept quite busy the past week overhauling cars."
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Caption: The caption on the back of this photo says, "Emmett Thomson's car," but doesn't identify the man sitting proudly behind the wheel. Courtesy Ruth Mercer McBee collection.

H. R. Bob Saint said Ellinwood's Garage was at the west end of Noxon, just north of Buck's old store building in which the Greens lived.29. Men now had a new exciting topic to chew the rag about, as well as a job opportunity of another sort. Fred Minear said,
"While they were building that garage they needed a roof on it. Stewart Hampton and I, we contracted to make the shakes for that garage. It was a fairly good-sized building because Stewart and I went out here on some doggoned place, west of Noxon, and we found the stub of a great big old cedar that had been burnt in 1910.
"About 20-30 feet of it was solid. We just cut 'er down and started making shakes out of it. We made enough shakes for that garage and we made enough shakes for a woodshed up on the place where we were living.
"We didn't get much money. A penny a shake, I think. And I don't know who paid us."30. You see Hamptons were [living on the] next [place] and then, we were living up on the Brown place out towards Smeads. Originally it was S.S. Browns, then George Phillips bought it. He told my Dad if you do this work for me I'll let you live out there free. So we moved out there."31.

THE CAR!! Bob Jenkin's first car, a Star. What proud moments they were when families were able to replace their saddle horses with an automobile. Courtesy Stewart and Agnes Hampton collection.
In 1922 Minear moved from the Phillips place to Andrew Knutson's farm and went to work for the railroad.
"There was kind of a mix-up there, too, because Cliff Weare and Strawberry were driving this river road at night, in their old Model T's, and no lights on, and they bumped. Weare's car was over there in that garage.
"They fussed back and forth over that deal for a long time. And during that time it seemed that they made some changes. I don't know how long Ellinwood was in there."32.
Ellinwoods moved back to Ohio in March 1924 because of serious illness in Howard's family back there.33.

Minear said that eventually,
"There was a garage on the road to Hotel Montana, across from the People's Store. Up on the hill was an old house. That was kind of vacant across from the (Gordon's) hotel. Everett built a storage shed south of the People's Store. Gee whiz, I remember they bought the lumber rough from some mill around here and then planed it. But at the time we were here there was only one garage because there actually wasn't that many cars."28.
Automobiles it had -- if only a few -- but Noxon didn't have movies yet. Not silent ones nor talking movies. So people went to Thompson Falls to see this new novelty, and a few went to Spokane.
"I was at the first talking movie that was in Spokane," Clifford Weare said.
"It was in '24. I had an Englishman with me. A great big funny guy. I hunted all over Missoula to get him a pair of shoes. I couldn't find anything. And they went down in the basement of the old Missoula Mercantile there. And they found a pair of shoes they could get on that guy. They were 14's! What I started to say, we was in to Spokane. I said, 'Let's go to that talking movie'.
"So we went to the place. But we couldn't get in. It was jammed full. So it come on again at 11 o'clock. I'd been working pretty hard up here. But we waited and we went back at 11 o'clock and we got in.
"And I don't remember what the picture was. I don't know if I seen it or not. I went to sleep. I woke up. I was the only one in the theater. I was sitting there. Everybody was gone! And I thought, what if I'm locked in. I betcha I am. So I got up and went to the door. And it was open so I got out. And they were hunting for me outside. They didn't know what had become of me. Hahaha!"34.
Ruth McKay, one of the many youngsters not fortunate enough to see movies, told about the men who came to Noxon and partnered with her father, John McKay, or worked for him,
"This Fanslow, Dads partner, was married to a highly bred English girl," McKay said. "She'd come over and went to Canada, I think, and met Fanslow and they got married. And he was an uncouth man. Mrs. Fanslow helped study ballet and she played the piano. And here was this refined, beautiful lady ...
"She couldn't stand him, actually, but they were married for a while.
"Some friends in England, the Newtons, came because of Mrs. Fanslow, who said, 'Come on to America'. Mrs. Newton and her husband, Donald, came right directly from London. He was a clothier. He worked first for Dad … He was a small man. He never was outside of London until he came up to Canada. Then he worked for Henry Larson in the store. They lived at Noxon where he worked for years for Henry Larson and Bob. And they had a daughter."35.
H. R. Bob Saint said, "After Ellinwoods quit and left, Kenny Miller got into their garage. He was running the garage, I believe, at the time he and Mary were married. Which would have been about 1927. Kenny Miller ran that until they moved over across the river east of the Noxon bridge."36.

In 1923 Vivian Olver brought his family to Noxon from Higgins, Texas. Olver was interested in mechanics, but his reason for coming to the remote Montana valley is lost to history.

The first summer, they pitched a tent on the east side of Broadway, across the street from Maude and Henry Larson. (The author never discovered whether that was the site of the first church and parsonage in Noxon, built by Reverend Lang in 1914 and later burned down by a wood-thieving preacher, but Olvers pitched their tent where a church was built later, and still remains.)
"They pitched a tent there for a month or so before they finally got a place to live," Fred Minear said.*37
"Olvers got a place out towards Arthur and Fannie Hampton, on the road to Smeads. Vivian built an automotive garage. It was a large building framed up with poles, covered with rough lumber. It was right on the corner where you come down Pilgrim Creek and turned onto the county road. That was the Olver Garage right below Grandma Baxter's place."*38.
"He put this garage up but before he ran it very long he got so badly crippled with arthritis he had to give it up," Bob Saint said.
"But they had a big old Hupmobile touring car. How they happened to hit Noxon nobody will ever know. Just seemed to be a magnet that drew them. "I think he just kinda of moved out of the garage and I don't remember of anybody ever doing much with it, after he gave it up. And I would say he probably quit it along about 1928 or somewhere along in there. I don't think he ran the garage but just a few years."*39.
"Charlie Munson was a single fella and had a little old Model T Roadster," Fred Minear said. "He'd take us up to huckleberry, way up past the Baxter Place, way up on Huckleberry Ridge."40.
The Clark's Fork River flows between steep mountainsides, with flat tillable land on either side of it ranging only a mile or two wide. Many of the families in each community had relatives living in another of the hamlets between the Sanders county seat in Thompson Falls and Heron, the hamlet closest to the Montana Idaho border.

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Caption: Bessie Knott and Anna Knott, sisters born and reared in England, who married brothers and emigrated to the United States. Circa late 1890s. Courtesy Dan DeLong collection.

Two sisters, Anna and Elizabeth 'Bessie', were born in England and married brothers there, Harry and John Edmond Knott. Anna and her husband, Harry Knott, immigrated to Illinois. Bessie and John Edmond Knott arrived in Heron, Montana.

John was also called 'Henry' or 'Ed'. Anna and Harry were hog farmers. When their hogs died off, they went to Texas and were living in Galveston when the 1900 tornado hit them. It took the top section off the barn, dropping it on the house. Harry Knott got malaria and died.

Widowed, Anna and her daughter, Louise, moved to the wilderness of western Montana where Bessie and John 'Henry' were living.

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Caption: Bessie Knott, an excellent cook who loved to bake pies and have her table filled with guests. Courtesy Dan DeLong collection.

John 'Henry' who was also called 'Ed', worked for NPRR.
"Anna and Bessie lived in the same house for 35-40 years with never a squabble, mad talk, or dirty look nor nothing of that sort. They got along just perfect. Each one had a certain thing to do,"Dan said. 42.
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Caption: A rare portrait of Louise Knott Taylor with her daughter, Emma. This was taken before Louise took up her homestead on Elk Creek near Heron, Montana. Courtesy Georgia Knott Mac Spadden collection.

The county road went between the front of their house and the Clark's Fork River.

Bessie was an easy, happy-go-lucky person. She also had a daughter, Georgia (born in the last leap year of the century, 1896). And she had a dog.

Bessie was a handsome woman who liked nothing better than to cook.
"Heck, she'd go out there on the road and drag people in if it was dinner time and they'd slow down, she'd go out and drag them in to eat," Dan DeLong said. "She could make the best doggoned pies you ever ate in your life."
Anna had a quieter nature, and always sat straight up. She had a daughter, Louise, who grew into quite a pioneer lady who took off up out of Heron to start a homestead, choosing to settle on the last place up the Elk Creek drainage. Her aunt Bess's husband, Uncle Ed, helped her a lot in building the road and getting the house up. He got a bunch of lumberjacks to gather together to hew out the logs so she could have a house. Dan DeLong helped, too. Dan was a Noxon area lumberman, and Louise took a job cooking in his logging camp.

It wasn't long after Anna and her daughter came to Heron that Louise fell in love with DeLong. Dan wanted a son. So the two married and had children, naming one son Dan. But Louise and her husband were ill-suited and her husband deserted her.
"Someone told her to look down the track, and there was her husband [Dan] leaving town on a train," Dan said.
"So grandmother Anna took over, looking after Betty, the youngest child. Louise's son, Harry, was allowed to go to his other grandparents in Seattle. Louise regretted that decision. Soon she was working as a janitor in the Heron School, keeping a daughter, Emma, with her."43.

Baby Dan grew up, and schooled at Noxon while living with his dad, and visiting often with his widowed grandmother, Anna Knott at Heron.

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Caption: Ed 'Henry' and Bessie Knott. In 1913 Ed Knott fell through the haymow, receiving fatal internal injuries. Emil Gavin, a hired hand, promised the dying man he's stay and help the soon-to-be widowed Bessie keep the homestead. Courtesy Dan DeLong collection.

"In 1913 John Edmond Knott died. He fell down through the haymow in the barn, caught his hands on one side and feet across the hole on the other and it stretched him all loose inside," Dan said.
"Knott had hired two men out of Spokane to help with haying and chores. One of the men was Emil Gaven. The other stayed one day and left. When Ed Knott was dying he called Emil in and asked him to stay with his family and help with the farming. Emil kept his promise.*44. (Emil is buried in the Knott family plot at Heron).
"Emil not only farmed, he rescued them from certain disaster," Dan DeLong said. "Before he died, Ed Knott had charged things. There were a lot of bills come in so Emil went ahead and set up a moonshine still and paid off all Knott's bills."45.
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Caption: 1913 photo, taken on ranch on the West Fork of Elk Cree, of Dan and Louise DeLong with their baby son, Caniel. The family didn't remain together, but young Dan enjoyed both his mother and father as he grew up, spending part of every year with each of them. Courtesy Dan DeLong collection.

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Caption: Louise DeLong, Heron's lady trapper, with some Canadian Lynx pelts trapped in Lost Cabin Gulch south of Heron, Montana, 1931. Courtesy Dan DeLong collection.

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Caption: 1915 photo of Louise DeLong and son, Can on Louise' homestead on the West Fork of Elk Creek, near Heron, Montana.

Louise DeLong kept working out every place. She cooked, did janitor work and whatever job she could get. She and her husband quarreled. Their little son was left, before he was out of three-cornered underwear (diapers), with Chess and Alzire Greer, a childless couple who loved him.
"Louise became quite a trapper, running her trap line through deep winter snows on snowshoes. Canadian lynx," Dan DeLong said.
"In a big snowstorm they'd come down Elk Creek gulch. She had traps and I did, too, in Lost Cabin Gulch. Just above where the Lodge is, on the right hand side.
"The trap line was probably about a mile long because Mom couldn't get around too good on snowshoes. Snow used to get about five feet deep up there.
"Mom, when she'd get like a coyote or badger or something she could chain, she made a fenced in area. She had this made. She'd put it in there and wait until it's fur would get prime, then kill it. She had a badger in a trap. The only way she could handle that badger was to take a chunk of wood and bonk it on the head and knock it out. So then, packing it home, about a mile it'd start coming to and she'd set it down and give it another whack. That's the way she got the badger back and put it in the pen. They're vicious things."*46.
One day when her daughter, Betty, saw a rabbit in the garden Louise went to get the .22 to shoot it. Betty shoed it away.
"My sister, Betty was always at the ball game. She never done anything in her life. She always had somebody looking after her.
"My sister Emma had a lot of spunk," Dan said. "She wanted to make enough money to go to high school in Thompson Falls, the only school there was. So she hauled posts out of West fork of Elk Creek. Frank Dobravec was making posts up there and she took on the job of hauling fence posts.
"She'd get up about 3 or 4 in the morning, go get the horses and harness them up and go up the East Fork up to the West Fork then haul them to town."*47.
These "slice-of-life" recollections are only a peek into some of the population of the valley, and their dreams. Dates are as precise as memories and documents can make them.

  1. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history December 26, 1986.
  2. Ellen Jenkins Innes, family biography, October 1987.
  3. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history December 26, 1986
  4. Ellen Jenkins Innes, family biography, October 1987.
  5. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history December 26, 1986. Lucy Jenkins, tape-Recorded oral history February 2, 1970.
  6. Ellen Jenkins Innes, family biography, October 1987.
  7. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history December 26, 1986.
  8. Ellen Jenkins Innes, family biography, October 1987.
  9. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history January 8, 1987.
  10. Clayton Bauer, tape-recorded oral history November 1979.
  11. Stewart Hampton, oral history, var.
  12. Clayton Bauer, tape-recorded oral history November 1979.
  13. Audrey Moore Brixen, family biography, January 21, 1990.
  14. Sybyl Harvey Smith, family biographies, February 7, 1987. Sybyl left Noxon in 1928, at the age of five.
  15. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  16. Sybyl Harvey Smith, family biographies, February 7, 1987.
  17. Lawrence Cox, letter 1990.
  18. Sybyl Harvey Smith, letter February 2, 1990. Thelma and Ford divorced in Noxon and she moved to Junction City, OR with her kids, married a farmer there, George Adams in 1936. Thelma was a Christian teacher, lecturer, artist, traveler, writer and musician. Elwood became a logger like his dad, Ford Harvey. Ford Harvey spent his last thirty-some years in Grants Pass, OR where he cut and sold firewood until he was 88 years old. An avid rock hound, he traveled widely collecting specimens and maintained a rock cutting and polishing facility in his basement. Raised large organic garden. Died in 1986 at age of 90.
  19. Ellen Jenkins Innes, family biography, October 1987.
  20. Lucy Jenkins, tape-recorded oral history February 2, 1970.
  21. Lucy Jenkins, tape-recorded oral history February 2, 1970.
  22. Lula Lake, letter 1978. Both Almeda and Dale graduated from Noxon High School. Stanley went to Thompson Falls High School.
  23. Sybyl Smith, family biographies. Sanders County Independent Ledger, June 19, 1929.
  24. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history, January 8, 1987.
  25. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history, January 8, 1987.
  26. Sybyl Smith, family biographies, 1975: Dr. Doneita Pringle Knutson Leopold, 1975. After the marriage failed, Doneita moved to Thompson Falls, opened a beauty shop where she could give permanents using electricity. Continued there for fourteen years. At the same time wanted to ease peoples fatigue, stress and various muscle problems. So enrolled in correspondence course in Swedish Massage. Passed final exams in 1938 exam in Chicago. Continued education, graduating from National Chiropractic College. She married Harry Leopold, another student from MCC in 1941.
  27. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history January 8, 1987.
  28. Loren "Lanky" Jamison, tape-recorded oral history, var. 28. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  29. H. R. Bob Saint, tape-recorded oral history, November 18, 1983.
  30. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  31. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  32. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  33. Ellinwood letters, var., 1980s.
  34. Clifford R. Weare, tape-recorded oral history March 20, 1970.
  35. Ruth McKay Tauscher, tape-recorded oral history July 9, 1986.
  36. H. R. Bob Saint, tape-recorded oral history, November 18, 1983.
  37. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  38. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  39. H. R. Bob Saint, tape-recorded oral history, November 18, 1983.
  40. Fred Minear, tape-recorded oral history February 1, 1990.
  41. Clayton Bauer, tape-recorded oral history November 1979.
  42. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987.
  43. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987. Georgia MacSpadden, tape-recorded oral History, var. 44. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987.
  44. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987.
  45. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987.
  46. Dan DeLong, tape-recorded oral history May 26, 1987.


  1. The photos referenced in the last portion of this chapter, photos from the Dan DeLong collection, do not appear in the blog posting. Are they available online?

  2. The majority of the homesteaders photographs are not in the free online Behind These Mountains, Vols. 1, 2 & 3. However, the entire collection is available on DVD in .PDF copies of the books, $50 [S&H included, plus permission to print, or have printed, a copy of Vols. 1, 2 & 3.] Request via email: Mona Leeson Vanek, author