The Ladies Page


| September/October 1966


The voice of Col. Ingraham is rising and falling in an effortless chant of the auctioneer's song. The belongings of our beloved Steam Engine Brother, Walter Kienow, are being sold. We arrived early and the truck is parked so that I have a ring-side seat.

There is a certain sadness connected with an auction of this kind. And now the rain has begun to fall and the crowd is dispersing or moving inside the building. A large whistle just sold for $120.00.

It was only a shower, this we soon learn. The sun is again shining down on this rather unusaul crowd. Steam Engine Joe is right in the front row buying steam guages at the moment. I see many familiar faces among the large steam engine family, and there are some bib-overalled figures from the past.

But there are ladies here too. wives and even grandaughters of our Steam Engine Men. (Notice? I capitalized Them) They are special, aren't they? Leaning against the fender of our truck is a nice red-haired, freckle-faced girl, and a taller one with equally lovely brown hair and pretty brown eyes. They have a nice little brother under their care, it seems, and he is giving them the usual trouble that little brothers can give. They tend him with a mixture of irritation and sisterly love.

People are walking here and there with the treasures they are acquiring. I am rather prone to leave the restful security of this truck seat to mingle with the bidders for I am just recovering from graduating a daughter.