Saturday, December 3, 2016


Christmas 1933, Ina’s son Vance (my dad) set out from his home in Raymond, WA (125 miles south of Seattle), to spend Christmas with the folks on the farm. Apparently he became concerned about the weather and stayed in Seattle, but somehow the family at Gilbert didn’t get the message that he wasn’t coming. His sister Myrtle, however, did make it home, traveling to Lewiston from Portland on the train. She writes as follows on December 29, 1933:
I got through in good time, the train was five hours late into Lewiston and we used all the tracks north and south bank, but still I got in in plenty of time to catch the stage* to Orofino. Ed Ingram came for me and we had a hard time making it in from the highway – six inches of snow on top of soft roads. There was a heavy mantle of snow over all the trees. I got a picture of the house [before] the snow began to go. But we will have more, I hope. Myrtle Dobson (Aunt Lynn), Christmas 1933

Well, Vance disappointed his mother Ina “big-time,” so it wasn’t the happiest of Christmases. Oh well. Some Christamases are like that. We wouldn’t know a thing about this if he hadn’t saved the letters, and that’s why my mother tossed them. "Too much information," she might have said.

*I don’t know what “stage” means. In my day, the bus was called "the stage," but in those days, I would think they rode the train . KW


Hallie said...

Why did they go through Orofino rather than the other way through Nez Perce? Through Nez Perce seems like the safer route to the farm over the prairie rather than up Gilbert grade.

Kathy said...

If they took the train from Lewiston to Orofino, it was just ten miles to the farm. The train from Lewiston to Grangeville probably stopped in Craigmont and Cottonwood, which I'm guessing would have been at least 25 miles from the farm. (I don't think the train went into Nezperce.) Beyond that, what can I say? They expected to go to Orofino, which offered more goods and services than Nezperce.