BRANDON WISCONSIN R.R-2 ZIP-539/9
Looking ahead to May and June is always an exciting experience.
Things are usually growing nicely by this time, the early flowers
have cheered us as they came and went. Now it is tulips and lilacs
and roses, iris, peonies, bridal wreath and so many other pretty
blossoms. The oats fields should be green as they will be all
summer, and early peas the greenest of all.
This past February we went to visit a sister in Florida and
thought we could get a breath of summer ahead of time. But Florida
had a rather cold winter. All of the snow in the north-land sent
them cool temperatures it seems.
On our way down we saw an interesting old covered bridge in
Indiana. Being of rather practical minds we questioned each other
as to why they covered bridges in those days. When people used
sleighs in the winter surely they needed snow on the bridge as well
as the road. Perhaps some alert reader can give us the answer. Can
As we traveled down Highway 41 we saw a marker which interested
me particularly. This was just before we got to Vincennes, Indiana,
if my memory serves me well. It said, First Settlement of Shakers,
and then said something about Shaker town. I think it was closer to
Oaktown, Indiana. The miles go so fast on a trip it is hard to
really localize anything. You see, my Uncle Ben was a Shaker.
In Kentucky we lost our road for just a short way and found
ourselves in Sebree. There was saw the loveliest playhouse beside
an elegant house which probably dates back to around 1900. I love
well-built houses from that time. There are so sturdy, and yet so
decorative. Again I so badly wanted a second look but we hurried
on. We had bologna, wieners, and summer sausage in a cooler in the
trunk of the car so we were trying to make Florida in two days.
But this house stayed in my mind all day. The playhouse was
built exactly like a large house yet so charmingly miniature. Some
one must have loved his little daughter or daughters a great deal
to have ever conceived the idea. How I would like to know the
history of this sweet little house! Can someone fill me in on
Also on 41 we stopped at a nicely kept gas station, and as is
usual I headed for the rest room. This one was run by a negro
couple I assume. The man filling the gas tank was black. Inside
were two things I had never run across before, a lovely poem about
starting the day with Jesus, and other poems, but also a bottle of
hand lotion above the washbowl. There was a note pinned to the wall
which read, ‘Dear Ladies, Use the lotion on your beautiful
hands but please don’t take the bottle. Then no one else can
use it. Thank you, Mrs. William Brown.’ There was a glow around
my heart as I left that place. But GET ON YOUR WAY the wieners
would be getting warm. By this time I was already ready to say,
‘Drat those stupid wieners.’
The next morning we had breakfast in Chattanooga, Tenn. We chose
the Toddle House and I had the time of my life watching a superb
cook shaking scrambled eggs around in a very hot and quite small
frying pan. The food was excellent. She tipped that omelet over
with such skill as to make me gasp. I wished I could have watched
her feed everybody who came in. But the bologna was barking
‘Full speed ahead.’ It was also along 41 that we saw such
interesting soil holding plants planted on the steep slopes on each
side of us. They looked like small green fountains pouring out
freshness in the morning sun.
On the evening of the second day we delivered the bologna. It
was still sufficiently cool. I sighed with relief and fell into bed
Two days later we attended a Florida Steam Engine Show. It was
quite different from ours up north. There was a ‘freak
engine’ there which Dot and Ray Schlisler of Clear-water have
brought down from Ontario. He built most of it there. ‘The
Freak’ has the name of Miss Dottie. It was interesting.
Col. Herndon had many small gas engines on display. He was born
in North Texas and now lives in Sarasota. His Lady was trying to
bandage his hand to cover an ugly scrape, and he was protesting at
such feminine foolishness when I first saw them. How typical!
We watched Mr. and Mrs. B. F. Raulerson of River View squeezing
the juice out of their sugar cane stalks and boiling the juice into
syrup. I bought a bottle. It was a three roller mill run by a sweep
on which they use either horse power or a tractor. Later we visited
their farm on Rosemary Flats. It was a real highlight of the
But at the Steam Show we also watched a lady sewing name tags on
a modern sewing machine run by steam. She was Mrs. C. C. Idol of R.
3, Western Salem, N. C. Her husband told us of his Peerless engine
and that the Steam Show is only two years old. They are doing well.
As of now they have practically no large engines. But who ever
threshed in the deep south? Or am I wrong?
We also saw a couple of hot air engines which was a new concept
to us. They ran with such quietness as to be unbelievable. There
was a good display by Darke Co. Steam Threshers of Greenville,
Ohio, and a portable steam engine owned by W.B. Clement. This is
now leased to ‘Whistles In The Woods’ a display at
Ellamore, West Virginia. This had run a paper mill, I understood,
until 1959. I hope I am right on this. My husband Isn’t here to
ask right now and this must get in the mail.
Another interesting man we met was R. L. Marshall of East
Bloom-field, N. Y. He has had as many as 11 engines, and 50
whistles. He has only one left, a Buffalo Pitts. But he had models
at the show. All steam men die hard. They have iron in their
As we left the show and took to the road the trucks of
grapefruit and oranges kept passing us. We were in no hurry. We had
a lot to talk about and no bologna pushing us. As the trucks passed
us an uncertain grapefruit or a bevy of oranges jiggled from the
truck and rolled off the highway into the ditch. What a strange
sight for northerners in February. We had left a yard treacherous
with ice. It seemed unreal. But it was only the beginning of
wonderful adventures which were to come in our sixteen day
And isn’t it so true in our earthly life. It is only the
beginning of wonder. ‘What God had prepared for those who love
Him’ is to me a most marvelous prospect. God willing, I’ll
meet you again on The Ladies’ Page.