Wednesday, December 16, 2015

On This Day - December 16, 1861

On This Day....

One hundred and fifty-fours years ago, my Great grandmother, Elisabeth Drollner, was born. 


Here is an article that appeared in the Casper Tribune Herald in 1953 when she celebrated her 93rd birthday.

MRS. ANDREAS WICKENKAMP CELBRATES 93RD BIRTHDAY

Like the little old lady who had so many children she didn't know what to do Mrs. Andreas Wickenkamp has so many grand children and great-grandchildren that she can't keep track of them.  Mrs. Wickenkamp who celebrated her 93rd birthday anniversary at her home at 703 South Washington, was born in Soest, Germany, and came to the United States in 1883.  She has lived in Casper since 1922.

She is shown with a wedding wreath which she wore at her wedding Sept. 30, 1880.  The wreath which is framed was the only thing which the little family of three saved during their six weeks trip on the Atlantic Ocean.  During a storm a sea family had to throw all of their possessions overboard to keep the ship from sinking.

Mr. Wickenkamp who died 10 years ago was 89 when he passed away.  Mrs. Wickenkamp is the mother of eight children.  Two of them, Mrs. Alma West and Henry Wickenkamp are Casper residents. Mrs. Wickenkamp has 18 grandchildren and about 18 great grandchildren.

The little lady said in very good English that she felt fine and didn't feel any older despite he 93 years.  She pointed out German words on the wreath frame: "Jesus Christus gestern ahd hente and derselbe in Alle Ewigkeit- Amen."  She said they meant "Jesus Christ yesterday and today and the same in all eternity - Amen."

Mrs. Wickenkamp makes her home with her son, Henry, and likes it.

Elisabeth Drollner was born December 16, 1861 in Rollingsen, Westfalia, Germany to Franz Drollner and  Elisabeth Theimann. She married Georg Heinrich Andreas "Andrew" Wickenkamp on October 30, 1880 in Ostonnen, Westfalia, Germany. She died on February  9, 1956 in Casper, Wyoming. As stated above, she had 8 children. My grandfather William George Wickenkamp was the seventh child. My mother, Jerry Lynn, was one of the 18 grandchildren, was quite young when she saw her grandmother in Casper. She told me that grandma used to call her "My Yerry". 

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Thriller Thursday: Knocked To The Floor By Sharp Thunder Clap

8 June 1909
Anaconda Standard (Anaconda, MT)
Tue., Page 1


KNOCKED TO THE FLOOR BY SHARP THUNDER CLAP


   Billings, June 7. -- While engaged in setting the table for the noon meal, Miss June Gardner, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles I. Gardner of 410 North Twenty-fifth street, was knocked to the floor by the shock of a sharp clap of thunder and remained in an unconscious condition for about 20 minutes.
   Several other persons in that part of the city are said to have been more or less affected by the shock.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Thriller Thursday: Attempt Made To Kill A Citizen Of Billings



The Anaconda Standard (Anaconda, MT)
5 December 1906, Wed., Page 1



ATTEMPT MADE TO KILL A CITIZEN OF BILLINGS

Special Dispatch to the Standard
  Billings, Dec. 4. -- An attempt was made to take the life of Charles I. Gardner. a well-known citizen of this city, last night.  Mr. Gardner had just entered his home in East Billings when the report of a revolver rang out on the stillness of night and a bullet whistled close to Gardner's head.  As near as could be told the person who fired was in the cellar under the house, the door of which cellar opens on the porch on which Gardner was standing.  Investigation was made by officers who were telephoned for, but no one could be found.  The person had escaped from the cellar, presumably by means of a passage leading out on the opposite side of the house.



Monday, September 21, 2015

Amanuensis Monday - Andrew Hobson Last Will and Testament

Recently I was searching the U.S. Will and Probate records on Ancestry.com and I was excited to find a  Will for my 4x great grandfather, Andrew Hobson, died 10 February 1874 in Henry county, Iowa.



In the name of God Amen, I Andrew Hobson of the township of Danville. In the County of Desmoines and State of Iowa being of advanced age and feeble in health, being of sound mind, do make and publish and declare this my last will and testament in manner following that is to day.

first.. Subject to all my just debts, I give and bequeth to my son John C. Hobson, one dollar,          to my son Zimri Hobson, one dollor, to my son George M. Hobson, one dollar, to the              heirs of my son James R. Hobson I leave one dollar, to my daughter Belinda Melcher,          one dollar, to my son Nathaniel W. Hobson, one dollar to be paid within twelve months          after my decease.

second.. I give and devise all the balance of my Estate Real and personal of which I                           shall du seize to my wife Sarah C. Hobson. to be used and enjoyed by her during                 the  time of her natural life.  And from and 

immediately.. after her decease, I give and devise the same to my son Barnabas Elmore                     Hobson his heirs and afsigns for for ever.

                                                                            In Witness

              where of I have here unto set my hand this fifth day of February in the year of our Lord One thousand Eight hundred and Sixty eight.

                                                                           Andrew Hobson

          The above instrument as signed at the date thereof, signed and declared by the said Andrew Hobson as and for his last will and testament in presence of us who at his request and in his presence have subscribed our names as witnesses thereto.

                                                                        Thomas (can't decipher last name) residing in Baltimore township Henry county, Iowa
                                                                         Emerson Arnold residing in Baltimore township Henry county, Iowa

Monday, August 31, 2015

On This Day - August 31, 1893


On This Day, August 31, 1893


My great grandparents, Joseph Clinton Smith and Josephine Evaline Payton were married in Ashgrove, Iroquois, Illinois.
Mr. Joseph Clinton (Clint) Smith, age 18, of Stockland, Illinois,  was joined in matrimony on August 31, 1893 to Miss Josephine Evaline (Josie) Payton, age 20. The ceremony took place in Ashgrove, Iroquois county, Illinois. The groom was the son of Francis (Frank) Marion Smith and Mary A. Hobson. The bride was the daughter of Henry Payton and Sarah Smith. The marriage solemnized by F. W. Collins, Minister and witnessed by Alice M. Simmons and Minnie Payton.

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Census Sunday - 1880 Maroa,Macon, Illinois - Francis Marion Smith

Year: 1880; Census Place: Maroa, Macon, Illinois; Roll: 229; Family History Film: 1254229; Page: 502C; Enumeration District: 157; Image: 0470

In 1880, Francis Marion Smith,26, was living in Maroa Township, Macon county, Illinois, with his wife, Mary A.,25. They had two sons, Joseph Clinton age 5 and Robert Francis age 3. Francis,  born in Indiana, was a farmer. Mary, born in Illinois, was keeping house.

Francis "Frank" Marion Smith was my great great grandfather.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Follow Friday: The Patient Genealogist's The Narrative Project: Did You Start?

I have been wanting to start writing the stories of my ancestors but did not really know how to start. I recently came across the post on the Patient Genealogist's blog entitled, Narrative Project: Did You Start?  I read further to see how this was done, she had steps for writing a simple birth story, a marriage story and a death story. All you need to do is take the information you have and make a simple sentence. http://patientgen.blogspot.com/2015/03/narrative-project-writing-simple-birth.html

 I decided that sounded simple enough, so I pulled out my dad's birth certificate and looked at the information that was included, and there was surprising a lot of information.  So this is what I came up with.



On December 29, 1929 at 8:00 p.m., a son was born to Mr. and Mrs. Frank P. Smith, ages 33 and 30,  at the Rockwood Clinic Hospital in Spokane with the assistance of Dr. Robert Stewart.   The Parents, Frank and Viola Smith, named him Don Kennedy Smith. However, a few days later they decided to change his middle name to Francis.  Don's father, Frank, was born in DeKalb, Illinois and was working as a mechanic at Riegel Bros. Dodge. His mother, Viola, was born in Winona, Minnesota. They lived at 3120 W. Providence Avenue in Spokane.

I then got adventurous and I took the 1930 US Census with my dad and his parents on it and crafted another narrative.

On April 2, 1930,  Frank, 32, along with is wife, Viola, 28 and son, Don, 3 months, were living in Ward 4 block 504 in Spokane, Washington.  They owned a home valued at $3600 at 3120 W. Providence Avenue. Frank, a veteran of World War I, was employed as an assistant manager of an auto repair shop.

Of course, I need to work on the proper grammar and sentence structure, but I have a good start in writing my family story thanks to the Patient Genealogist.

Friday, June 19, 2015

On This Day - June 19, 1955

On This Day, 60 years ago, my parents Don Francis Smith and Jerry Lynn Wickenkamp were married at the Methodist  Church in Valley, Stevens county, Washington.


JERRY WICKENKAMP AND DON SMITH WED IN VALLEY CHURCH SUNDAY
Pink and white spring flowers with candelabra decorated the Valley Methodist church for the Sunday afternoon wedding of Miss Jerry Lynn Wickenkamp and Don F. smith.  The Rev. Ronald K. Johnson officiated at the double ring ceremony.  The bride is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Wickenkamp, of Valley.  The bridegroom's parents are Mr. and Mrs. Frank P. Smith, of Jump Off. Given in marriage by her father, the bride was lovely in her chapel length, white taffeta gown covered with nylon net and a chantilly lace fitted bodice which had a stand-up collar.  A cap of lace and Lillies-of-the-Valley held the finger-tip illusion veil.  She carried a white orchid on a white Bible which was a gift from the bridegroom. The gown was designed and made by Mrs. John Seubert.
Attendants:  Miss Carol Elliott, of Edwall, classmate of the bride, was maid of honor.  She wore a light green nylon gown, made with fitted bodice and portrait neckline, and matching Juliet cap.  she carried a Crescent bouquet of delicate pink daisies.  Douglas Smith, brother of the groom, was best man.  Nick Skok, of Jump Off, and Harold (Bud) Lucht, of Reardon, ushered.  Miss Shirley Roloff was accompanist for George Welte who sang "Through the Years" and "Because".  The mother of the bride wore a nylon print dress with pink accessories and a corsage of pink rosebuds and Lily-of-the Valley.  Mrs. Smith, mother of the groom, wore pale blue nylon with white accessories and a pink rosebud and Lily-of-the-Valley corsage.
Reception: Mrs. Vern Claflin was in charge of the reception for 150 guests.  Mrs. Esther Higgins and Mrs. H. L. Fisk had decorated the church and reception room.  Mrs. Charles Koch, aunt of the bride, served the wedding cake; assisted by Miss Carol Hoffman;  Miss Donna Robertson served the punch; Miss Betty Koch, cousin of the bride, was in charge of the guest book.
When the newlyweds left for a honeymoon at Lake Louise and Banff, the bride wore a pink and blue check orlon suit with pink accessories.  They will be at home to their friends at E 1644 Longfellow, Spokane.  The bride  is  a graduate of Eastern Washington College of Education in Cheney.  She is a member of Kappa Delta Pi, Key, Golden Circle. Tawanka and Who's Who in American Colleges.  She will teach in Spokane this fall.  Mrs. Smith is employed at the Otis Elevator Company in Spokane.  He served 15 months with the Armed Services in Korea.
Wedding Guests:  Out-of-town guests at the wedding were Betty Shane, of Lincoln, Calif., Mrs. R. D, Newton, of Cheney; Mr. and Mrs. Bernard Robertson , of St. John, Wash.,; Mr. and Mrs. J Logan and Michael and Al Shane, of Lincoln, Calif.,; Virginia and Pricilla Proxel, Opportunity; Mr. and Mrs. R. Anderson, Davenport; Gail Hayden, Spokane; Mr. and Mrs. George L. Kerkow, Winona, Minn.; Edward Proxel, Spokane; Mr. and Mrs. Otto Lucht, Espanola;  Mr. and Mrs. George Elliott and Ed Wollweber, Edwall; Mr. and Mrs. C. Murray, Gilbert Pryor, Joyce and Ricky Ayers, Mr. and Mrs. R. W. Bixby, Bruce Hayden, Lucille Hayden, Lynn Hayden, J. R. Ellis and Ron Hayden. from Spokane;  Mr. and Mrs. Phil Skok and son, Mr. and Mrs. Win Cook, Mrs. Kenneth Kester, Mrs. Viola Marshall, Donna and Judy Cook, Mrs. Robert Reichenberg, Mr. and Mrs. Clifford Reichenberg and Mrs. Ronald Johnson, of Chewelah; Pat Anderson, Tacoma. 
 
 
Today June 19, 2015 would have been they 60th Wedding Anniversary, I wish they were still here so I could celebrate this milestone with them as we did for their 50th. 

Happy Anniversay mom and dad, I love you and miss you. You always with me as I wear your rings around my neck.
 

Monday, June 8, 2015

World War II Letters Homes June 2, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                              Royal Air Force Station
                                                                                              Marham
                                                                                              King's Lynn, Norfolk
                                                                                              June 2, 1940

Dear Mr. Wickenkamp:

I am afraid your son's award of the O.B.E. for gallantry will be somewhat 'bittersweet' news to you, but I am glad that His Majesty has been pleased to approve of the award of this medal as a recognition of a very gallant act on the part of your son.  My only regret is that it came through after his decease.  you have every reason to be proud of him, this act in deliberately risking his life to save his companions is in keeping with the highest principles of civilized manhood.

The poor little widow of his 2nd pilot is staying with us now - Mrs. Wardlaw.  She is trying to start life anew in our Women's Auxiliary Air Force, but the sorrow of her loss lies heavily upon her.

The spirit of these lads, of whom your son was one, is just beyond praise and in my Officers' Mess here.  I have some of the 'salt of the earth'.  Our empire may thank God for every one such.


                                                                                             Yours Very Sincerely,

                                                                                             Keith
                                                                                             Group Captain


(This is the last letter in the collection. I have enjoyed sharing them with you. I just wish that they ended happier. Thank you for coming along with me on this journey. I hope you enjoyed them.).

Sunday, June 7, 2015

World War II Letters Home May 2, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                         8 Milton Avenue
                                                                                         King's Lynn
                                                                                         Norfolk
                                                                                         May 2, 1940

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Wickenkamp:

After all this time, just a mater of about 2 years I come about to writing to you.  I am, as you might imagine, completely at a loss as to what I have to tell you and the shock of late events leaves me feeling heavy of heart and mind.

I don't know quite what you would learn from official reports but I think you would like to know just what did happen and where it happened.  First, I'd like to tell you that this last action in which I saw Wick went to prove the gallant airman he was and his thoughts were for others even in such a time when so much was at stake for himself.

On Sunday afternoon,  April 7th, we were out patrolling the Danish Coast,  I suppose looking for German troop ships which were at that time transporting men and munitions for their entry into Denmark and Norway. About 10 miles west of the Danish Coast and the Skaggerack we encountered enemy fighters - German 110's, what they call the "destroyer".  At that time we were in 2 sections of Vic formation, flying as a flight - that is a Vic is 3 aircraft in that formation shaped as a V and there are 3 aircraft in a section, and 6 in a flight.  Wick and I flew in the same flight and even the same section after we were split up.  These 2 Vic sections were flying, one slightly higher and ahead of the other,  just a matter of 6 feet lower and the nose of the following aircraft just under the leader's tail.  Wick was flying in what we call 'No. 3' position and I was in No. 1. as I am now the Squadron Leaders 2nd pilot.  During the attacks we were all pretty badly shot up, unfortunately because the enemy aircraft carried cannons and machine guns against our machine guns and stayed mostly out of range but they still got a good peppering and one was set afire.

The petrol tanks in Wick's wings were badly punctured and the flames from the engine exhaust set them alight and he broke formation, but as the fabric of his right hand wing had been badly burnt he could only turn toward us, and if he'd done that and gone under us he'd have run into fellows following us on our underside.  His machine was badly damaged and still afire and there was little or no control in it and he couldn't help but swerve under us, and so in doing so he made use of his only controlling surface left and brought his craft around sharply in an effort t avoid colliding with the following aircraft and he succeeded but he missed them by such a small margin that some of their surfaces were charred by the spraying petrol.

A gallant deed by a man who was liked by all in our Squadron and one who is missed by us all and especially me as we've been together such a long time and done everything together.  There is one ray of hope, and I don't want to lay this falsely but the pilot who was with Wick at the time, they believe was picked up and taken prisoner.  At least, the Germans have since issued a statement that Pilot Officer Wardaw had been picked up.  There is no P.O. Wardaw in the service and only one P/O Wardlaw and he was with Wick.  These names of prisoners don't come through easily and so Wick just might be safe in Germany now.

I suppose you already know that Wick was commended for his bravery in his actions during that crash he was in at Marham during night flying, by the Air Officer commanding the R.A.F.  I have forgotten his name but I suppose you already know about that anyway.

I am addressing this to you, Mr.  Wickenkamp, because I fell I'd rather have you read it first and if you consider that it is alright for Mrs. Wickenkamp to read it as she might like to know first hand details, then I'll feel I've at least done one service for a fellow who was a real friend and pal of mine.

I must close now but not without first hoping everything goes well with you at home.  As Mrs. Wickenkamp has said in one of here letters to me -- this is from your other boy in the R.A.F. and I do hope to hear from you any time and I remain.

Yours Sincerely,

Doug W. Morris

Saturday, April 18, 2015

World War II Letters Home April 18, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                            62 Abington Road
                                                                                            Cumnor, Oxford
                                                                                            England
                                                                                             18 - 4- 40

Dear Mrs. Wickenkamp:

Although we have not met, I feel as though I know you, having so much in common through Estelles.  I find it so difficult to express my sympathy in words,  as your grief must be infinitely greater than mine.

We had made such wonderful plans for the future.  He was looking forward to the time when he could return home, and I could meet the mother he talked about.  Man proposes but God disposes, and all these things were not to be,

Through our sorrow we can feel proud, we who loved him, as he died a hero.  In his uncontrolled machine,  he swerved to avoid the other friendly air crafts, thereby saving 12 other of his comrades' lives.  And we know he died happily, as it was his wish (if he was to die) to die fighting for his country.

I wish you could See my engagement ring, it is a lovely diamond solitaire, set in platinum, with 2 diamonds on each side.

My mother and father send their greetings and sympathy, as they too had looked forward to the time when they could call him son, although he had been treated as one for the past 12 months.  I trust you are feeling better by now. Do try and write me soon, as i am so anxious to hear from you.  However all this appears on paper, my heart is with you, and I am thinking of you all the time.



Yours in Deepest Sympathy

Renee Astell

Monday, April 13, 2015

World War II Letters Home April 10, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                         Royal Air Force Station
                                                                                         Marham
                                                                                         King's Lynn, Norfolk
                                                                                         April 10, 1940

Dear Mr. and Mrs. Wickenkamp:

It is with the deepest regret that I have to write to you of your son who was reported missing and believed killed as a result of an engagement with the enemy on Sunday 7th April.  In this engagement a formation of our aircraft, including the one in which your son was Captain, was attacked by some of the latest enemy fighters.  ME 110s, while on duty over the North Sea.  The enemy's attack was a very determined one and in spite of the magnificent steadiness shown by all our crews in meeting it the aircraft in which you son was flying was shot down and crashed into the sea.  The rest of our machines were too high to see what became of the crew but I am afraid that they were killed instantly.  In the course of the engagement we are fairly certain that our men accounted for one of the enemy.

You will be hearing officially later regarding the disposal of your son's things, and you will of course be told immediately should anything definite be hard regarding him.  I did however want to write personally to express the deep sympathy we all feel with you in this heavy blow.  We shall all miss a very gallant comrade who had particularly endeared himself to us by his bravery in rescuing 2 airmen from burning in an accident in which he was involved earlier in the year.


                                                                                                  Yours Very Sincerely,

                                                                                                  Wing Commander

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Obituary Sunday - Estelles Wickenkamp


Grandson of Casperites Killed In Patrol Duty Over North Sea

Capt. Estelles Wickenkamp, 27, Dies When Bomber Is Shot Down

Mr. and Mrs. Andrew Wickenkamp received word yesterday of the death in action on April 7th of their grandson, Captain Estelles Wickenkamp, aged 27, while on patrol duty with the British Royal air force over the North Sea.

The British government reported to this parents, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Wickenkamp of Stenen, Sask., that Captain Wickenkamp was leading an eight-plane patrol in a scouting flight near the Ornkey Islands.  Two of the planes were shot down by enemy pursuit ships, one of them the Wellington bomber in which Wickenkamp was directing operations.  All of the seven men instantly killed.  No trace has been found of the plane or its occupants.

Captain Wickenkamp was born in Nebraska, but his parents moved to Saskatchewan about 15 years ago.

Besides his grandparents, other relatives living in Casper include two uncles H. F. and W. G Wickenkamp; an aunt, Mrs. Alma Sehnert West; and six cousins.

World War II Letters Home April 9, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                              Royal Air Force Station
                                                                                              Marham
                                                                                              King's Lynn, Norfolk
                                                                                              April 9, 1940

Dear Mr. Wickenkamp:

By now you will have been informed from Air Ministry that your son was reported "missing, believed killed while engaged in air operations."  he died 'somewhere' in the grey North Sea at approximately 3:45 p.m. on the 7th of April.

I am writing to send you our deepest sympathy in the lose of your son.  He had been serving at Marham since the end of November last and had proved himself to be of a type which we call ill afford to lose.  I think you can rest assured that he was liked and popular in the Officers' Mess and with the Airmen of his squadron.

Some little time ago, through fault of his own, he was involved in a serious crash at night which resulted in the complete wreckage of the aircraft and its bursting into flames.  Although himself dazed by the crash, he assisted another member of the crew who was temporarily stunned to safety out of the burning wreckage.  Then most gallantly went back to extricate another of the crew who was stunned.  On going back he became entangled by his parachute harness and while clearing himself he received burns but was able to rescue the last of the crew who where then all saved without serious injury.  At the time it was our privilege to report this very gallant act to my Group Headquarters for official recognition.

His effects will be dealt with according to war service procedure by a Committee of Adjustment.  They will communicate with yourself, direct, in due course.  If you have any special wishes, or there is anything that I could do, will you please inform me?

Although the loss of many brave lives is inevitable in war, one might find comfort in the thought that their sacrifice may not be in vain and will not pass forgotten.  At least they are spared the further beastliness of the vile war which has been thrust upon us.

There are many at Marham who have come from Canada in the service of our Empire and I, myself came not very far from where you are - having been born at Qu'Appelle.  We also have representation from all the other Dominions as well as from all the home countries, and the men lived as such a happy family that your Estelles' death will be felt acutely by everyone.

You have the satisfaction of knowing that he has died on duty, leaving a clean and enviable record and will not be forgotten among us.


                                                                                    Yours Sincerely,
                                                                                 
                                                                                    (Herbert) Keith
                                                                                    Group Captain

Saturday, April 11, 2015

World War II Letters Home April 8, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

CANADIAN NATIONAL TELEGRAM


London PO via
Regina, Sask.
April 8, 1940
F. H. Wickenkamp
Stenen, Sask.

From under Secretary of State Ministry.  Immediate regret to inform you that your son, Pilot Officer Estelles Arthur Wickenkamp is reported as missing and believed to have lost his life as the result of air operation on 7th April, 1940.  Letter follows.  Any further information will be immediately communicated to you.

                                                                                                No. Sig. 219P

Saturday, April 4, 2015

On This Day - April 4, 1907

On This Day, April 4, 1907, my grandmother, Florence Sybil Koch was born in Billings, Yellowstone, Montana.  She was the daughter of  Charles Edward Koch and Anna Sybilla Steingruber. Flo grew up in Billings and in 1925 the family went to Casper, Natrona, Wyoming where she attended high school. After graduating high school she went to college in Laramie, Wyoming. She was a teacher in Casper, Wyoming. She married William George "Bill" Wickenkamp in 1930 and in 1934 she had a daughter,my mother, Jerry Lynn Wickenkamp.  In the 1941, the family relocated to Lincoln, Placer county, California and in 1951 they moved to Valley, Stevens county, Washington.

Happy Birthday Grandma Flo, I love you and I miss you.

I love this picture, Grandma Flo and a wicked sense of humor, she loved to play practical jokes on people.

Grandma Flo was a great cook and a marvelous baker.  She always had a freezer full of treats when we would visit. She also won many a blue ribbon at fairs for her baked goods. You say you don't like fruitcake, well you never had her fruitcake!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Travel Tuesday - American Legion Nonstop Goodwill Tour


Spokane Daily Chronicle April 3, 1930

Autos and Planes to Greet Legion Car Tomorrow
By Grant Ware
ROSEBERG, Ore., April 3, 12:12 p.m. - Crossed two ranges of mountains last night and smooth road looks good.  Picked up Carroll Byrd, formerly of Spokane, last night at Williams and carried him to Willows.  Pulling into Roseberg and will clear Portland around 8 p.m.
 ---------
    Spokane's nonstop drivers, in southern Oregon at noon today, are expected in Spokane on schedule time at 2 o'clock to tomorrow.
    Warren W. Greenberg, vice commander of the American legion, today completed plans for a big parade at 2 o'clock tomorrow in honor of Grant Ware and Frank Smith, pilots of  the American legion nonstop car on the Spokane-Canada-Mexico tour.
    Shrieking sirens, roaring airplane motors information flight and cheering crowds will welcome the nonstop duo.  The parade will be headed by motorcycle officers.
Flyers Take Hand
   Spokane's military formation flying team, Major C.V. Haynes, Captain L.C. Sherman and Lieutenant Laurie Heral, will "pick up" the care somewhere along the Inland Empire highway and escort it to town.
    "The boys will drive direct to legion headquarters in the Dessert hotel because that is where the tour started, and we do not want to run the risk of failure by having the car stopped as a result of excitement after the boys have returned home." said Mr. Greenberg.  "As soon as the legion office has been passed the parade will start."
   Phil Hinkley of Riegel Brothers, donors of the car, announced the motor will be kept running in front of legion headquarters after the parade until 6 o'clock.
Meet at Third and Maple
   "People joining in the parade should meet the boys at Third and Maple," said Mr. Greenberg, "but they should exercise every precaution against stopping the car."
     Parade to form on Third, west to Maple, and will proceed east on Third to Post, north on Post to First to Cedar, north on Cedar to Sprague, east on Sprague to Bernard, north  on Bernard to Riverside, west on Riverside to Monroe, north on Monroe to Main to Bernard, south on Bernard to First, west on First to Post, and south on Post to legion headquarters.

PLAN BIG PARADE
   Included in the official escort will be the wife and mother of Mr. Ware. Mrs. Smith, Mr and Mrs Henry Rising, Mr Greenberg , Dr S E Rosenthal, Commissioner Ralph Hendricks, B J Hebert, vice president of the Chamber of Commerce;  Attorney Edward W Robertson, A G Tucker, Colonel Joseph K Partello and Charles Fancher Jr.

By Grant Ware
WILLOWS, Cal., April 2, 11:53 p.m.  - Made one of the finest refueling's at Fresno this morning we have made to date.  Two traffic officers rode interference for ourselves and convoy.  Also made a first oil change, although it was not  necessary; but we wanted to practice and decided not to take any chances.
   Picked up an old school friend at Fresno  and carried him for 10 miles.   He and Mrs Frank McCullough an John Stark were in the front row watching their Spokane boys operate.
    Were picked up at Lodi, by Victor H Myers, commnader of that post. On way down we turned down invitation to do through Lodi, but at his request we spent the time today,  although slightly behind schedule.  Upon parting company we were given a splendid box of rations  including fried chicken, with  the compliments of the post.
    At Sacramento we made another successful refuel and cleared town on time.  Will be out of California about 4 a.m. Car running great and both feeling fine.  Another  day of perfect weather.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

On This Day - March 14, 1899


On This Day....March 14, 1899, my grandmother was born in Winona, Minnesota. She was named Edith Viola Dahl. She always went by Viola. Her parents were August and Anbertina (Olstad) Dahl. Viola had an older sister, Lillian, and a younger sister, Ruth.  Viola, along with her sisters, grew up in Winona. She graduated from Winona High School in 1916 and later attended Winona State Normal School where she graduated in 1919. Her sisters stayed in Minnesota where they would get married and raise their families, but Viola had an adventurous spirit. With her teaching credentials in hand she headed West,  I was told that she wanted to see some mountains. She settled in Spokane, Washington, where she would get a job teaching. Even though she did not know how to drive, that did not stop her from buying a car. I am assuming that she bought the car from Riegel Bros. Dodge, because the young man that worked in the parts department talk her to drive. It driving lessons must have gone well, because on May 9, 1926, she married that young man. His name was Frank P. Smith. 

Happy Birthday Grandma! I love you and I miss you!


Saturday, February 28, 2015

World War II Letters Home February 28, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                          R.A.F. Marham
                                                                                         February 28, 1940

Dear Folks:

I don't remember exactly when I wrote last but I suppose it have been over a week ago.  How is everything going on the farm?  I'll bet you are all patiently waiting for Spring to come.  Well, that's where I am ahead of you as it is already here.  At least the weather is, although the leaves haven't come out yet.

I am getting the Free Press now or did I tell you that before?  I am terribly sorry to say that I never received any of your parcels nor the one from Esther.  It's too bad, I can't imagine what has happened to them.  I wrote to Harwell and they never got there so I suppose they got lost before they got to England or maybe lost over here during the Christmas rush.  If you don't mid, you might send me a small box of cookies and some home-made candy.  I'd love to have some.  I have to admit I haven't sent your parcels yet.  It seems that when I want to send it I can't find any paper or string and otherwise I don't seem to get the time to find some or else I forget it.  But I will get my batman busy this week and i am including an old pair of service trousers for Richard to wear - you will have to patch them up as I tore them on Saturday night when:

F/O Scott and I crashed over our machine.  We were just taking off for a 3 hour night trip over to the Bristol Channel but we only got to the top of a hill just off the aerodrome.  Scott happened to be flying into a row of big trees and cut the tops off 3 of them.  It didn't shake the machine any, just a dull thud.  I was standing under the astro hatch looking out.  Realizing we were going to crash I yelled to the crew "hold tight" - a few seconds later, which seemed like minutes the plane hit the ground.  Luckily we hit it quite flat, although 1 wing was going down as the end had been cut off by the trees.  The petrol has been punctured and burning before we hit the ground, but as we hit the back half of the aeroplane broke off and the remained swung around facing the direction from which we had come;  also the front turret broke off. For both of these breaks we  were very thankful as it meant 2 big holes for 7 of us to crawl out.  The instant we touched the ground, which was at 100 m.p.h. the whole machine being sprayed with petrol burst into flames.  It gave us light to see by but we had a pretty hot time.  it is funny that just before we went up I told the tail and nose gunners that they need not ride in the turrets, that they could sit on the bed and keep out of the way.

Anyhow, after our impact, I drug these 2 gunners out, the 1st one was quite alright but the 2nd fellow had temporarily paralyzed his legs and couldn't walk.  While I as pulling him out I got the snaps of my parachute harness hooked on some of the control wires, so I had to stop and knock the safety buckle loose and leave it there.  After that I was going back into our flaming cage to get the 4 men when I saw them already crawling and stumbling across the field.  I couldn't see how they could get out as I didn't know the nose had broken off.  After a few minutes the fire tender found us and half the camp guards were there but the flames were up to the sky then.

Scott and the Dental Officer who was sitting in the 2nd pilot's seat got off with a fractured nose and a gash in the forehead respectively.  The wireless operator got a cut in his eyelid, the Sergeant Observer got nothing nor did the 2 gunners suffer.  I got my hip and ribs bruised up a bit, but an x-ray revealed no breaks; also my left hand got burned a bit - I still have it bandaged.  I don't think anyone suffered any moral shaking.  On the whole I suppose we were very lucky 7 and we shall have a brand new aeroplane to fly.  A number of pictures were taken and as soon as I can get some I'll let you have them.

About 4 days before this we went over to heligoland to blow up some of Germany's largest warships but we couldn't find them at night even though they were frozen in the ice, so actually our trip was a wash-out.

I'm afraid i haven't such news to write about.  I am spending my 3 days leave with Doug and his wife here in King's Lynn.

The weather hasn't been very nice lately;  we saw the sun a couple of times in the last fortnight.  Well, I think I have nearly overdone myself writing this much,  so for a few days I  lay low.  Tell me all the local farm news when you write.

Best Wishes and Love,

Estelles

Monday, February 2, 2015

World War II Letters Home - February 2, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                          Royal Air Force
                                                                                          Marham
                                                                                          King's Lynn, Norfolk
                                                                                          February 2, 1940

Dear Folks:

I got your last letter with the stamps in it, also the one before with livestock ticket and I also received another Family Herald.  I haven't sent you any papers lately but will start again this week.  It is the Daily Mirror - all the latest scandal and cheap headline stuff - but still it does contain nearly everything worth writing about.

I have been in bed for 4 days with a slight touch of flu and a good does of tonsillitis.  I could hardly swallow, so I have had to eat soup and rice pudding, etc. and drink milk, but today I am much better and shall probably be allowed to wander around in the mess tomorrow.  In 3 days from now my section have 3 days leave - so by the time our leave is over I should be ready to fly again.

Raiders have been coming along our coast and shooting up light vessels and fishing boats so we are sending out patrols to intercept them.  We have done very little work lately as the snow is from 1 to 2 feet deep on the aerodrome.  Small machines can't take off but our big 'uns just wallow along and the big wheels splash through snow like water until they stagger off.

Last week we were doing some co-operation with a finger squadron at Wittering, near Peterboro.  We were getting practice at evasion tactics and it gave them attack practice, also showed them how easy it wasn't to bite at a big bird with lots of stings.  some of our maneuvers had them absolutely foxed - they couldn't get at us.  They (fighters) were using cine-cameras so they could study the results of their efforts but only about 1/9 of their films had any results, much to their disappointment.

the last time we went over there it started to rain and snow, all of which froze on the aircraft so we had to land and were there 3 days before we could get off again, on account of the weather.

I got commended the other day on my abilities of a navigator by our squadron leader;  he said that I had quite proved myself on Hamburg episode.  so I says -er, um - "Sir, you don't mean that little jaunt, well yu' oughter send me on a long trip and I could show you sumpin'!!!".  He knows Doug and I are not so rusty at flying because when we each get in a plane and fly formation with him we just scare the pants off his crew, and they reckon, when they are that close that they can see the pilot of another machine grinning at them, that is just too dern late to jump.

Well, it looks like it's time I stopped.  Maybe I'll have some news to write about next time.

Best wishes to all of you.

Love,
Estelles

Thursday, January 22, 2015

World War II Letters Home January 22, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                                 Royal Air Force
                                                                                                 Marham
                                                                                                 King's Lynn, Norfolk
                                                                                                 January 22, 1940

Dear Esther:

I am enjoying 6 days leave at Oxford.   As Renee has gone to work this morning  I have time to try to do a little writing.  I am afraid I haven't done much lately.  I wrote home the day before yesterday and told them about my work so I won't repeat it all to you as you will be reading it anyway.

I have been out on  2 "searches" and a "Nickel raid" - which means a leaflet raid.  The searches and patrols are flights over the North Sea and Heligoland Bight.  We usually go in large formations of about 15 or 18 aircraft - they last 5 or 6 hours.  On the leaflet raid we only sent 1 aircraft from each squadron.  On our station I had the honour of being the first officer to go on our 1st raid of the nature.  We didn't meet any opposition - only got caught by searchlights a couple of times over Hamburg.  We left our base just after midnight last Saturday and got back at 7:00 o'clock Sunday just after daybreak.  I was 1st navigator and 2nd pilot and believe it or not we didn't even get lost.  Our trip was about 1,00 miles. The trip was quite comfortable as the temperature was only - 10 (degrees Celsius) usually it is about -30 (degrees Celsius); that's when you suffer a bit.  Actually the front and rear gunners have the worst part of it as they have to stay in those draughty turrets the whole time.  About half way round or at some convenient time we have hot coffee and sandwiches and that always hits a warming note.

Holland doesn't have any blackout so we would see the Dutch towns about 30 or 40 miles away.  Of course we don't fly over them at any height as they get annoyed and fire A.A. at us,  but it does make a good land mark when visibility is good.

We had a bit of snowstorm in Norfolk last week - about 4 inches of snow on the level and in places it drifted over the roads about 2 feet deep - of course I realize that it is a mere nothing  in your country, but in my country it is really frightfully, old deah!  but here around Oxford there is only a trace of snow but has been freezing quite hard.  Water pipes in the houses have frozen and burst.  I can sure appreciate a warm house after living in these English houses - they have no idea of insulation.  The walls are from a foot to 2 feet thick,  solid stone or brick and the cold goes right through them.  I thought this idea of a fireplace in each room was quite a cozy idea but it is a real necessity.

I didn't get your letter finished while I was as  Oxford - now that I am back at camp I'll do so.  Gosh, it is awful to got back to work after having 6 days leave - I hat the site of this place now.

When I got back this evening I had 2 letters from home waiting for me;  One was written on November 21 and the other on December 31 and both got here practically the same time - I think it was because the 1st one was sent to Harwell.  it has been all over the country and even to Air Ministry.  The envelope was so worn that it was half apart - a wonder the letter was still in it.  it may have been opened for censorship, if so, they might have sealed it up again.  Mom told me about the nice kitchen set you sent her for Christmas - she is very pleased with it.

I still haven't received any of the parcels Mom said were coming.  She sent them to Harwell - i don't know why, as she knew I was here at Marham.  Sending anything to a station that far back on the list just means that it will go to at least 5 or 6 different places before I eventually get it, if at all,  but they may turn up yet.  Everyone seems quite busy at home - Dad is building a big sleigh - Richard is converting the old Buick into a farm truck, when he is not making ice or cutting wood - Mom is making the chickens lay more eggs.

Doug Morris is going to get hooked up some time next month.  I don't think he has decided the exact date yet.  That will me alone so I suppose my turn is next.  Not for a while though - probably in June; anyhow, there's plenty of time to worry about that.  Renee's mother wants her to wait another year, as she will only be 19 on the last of April, but Renee says "phooey to that" so what! I'll send you a miniature photo of her next time.

I am going to try to get in some skating this winter as all the ponds and canals are frozen over and there isn't such an awful lot of snow so that people have cleared off a lot of patches.  I have done next to nothing for exercise, except a bit of walking for so long that I believe I am getting lazy.

Is there going to be a training center for the R.C.A.F near Battleford or are they mostly in the eastern part?

this is a rather disconnected letter but it is the best I can do today.  Kindly excuse the scribbling and any mistakes or omissions.

Cheerio and don't work too hard.

Love,

Estelles

On This Day - January 22, 1863


On this day, January 22, 1863, Olaus Olstad was born on the old homestead at Long Coulee (Holmen), La Crosse, Wisconsin to Lars and Margaret (Gunderson) Olstad.  Olaus was the oldest child and older brother to my great grandmother, Anbertina Olstad.  Being the eldest son, he was working the farm, you might want to say he was a "Norwegian bachelor farmer" since he was not married, until at the age of 52. In 1915 he married Randine Bjerke.

Olaus as a young man



Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Travel Tuesday - American Legion Nonstop Goodwill Tour

 
Spokane Daily Chronicle
April 2, 1930

Plan Big Welcome  
When Boys Reach 
Starting Point

  Mexico yesterday opened its arms to the Spokane American legion nonstop travelers of good will in a reception reported as second only to the welcome extended to Colonel Charles A. Lindbergh.
    "Our 55-minute stay  in Mexico developed into a international good-will  tour, with Mexican officials dashing here and there taking every possible precaution  against our being stopped," Grant Ware telegraphed the Chronicle from Los Angeles at 2:13 a.m. today.
  With Mr. Ware and his driving partner, Frank Smith, refueling their way homeward, elaborate plans started here today for a rousing homecoming.  The nonstop car is scheduled to arrive at 2 p.m. Friday.
 Boys Need a Shave
It will be a shaggy pair of faces that smile a welcome to those witnessing  the downtown parade, because neither Ware nor Smith has enjoyed  a shave since leaving last Friday.
   Homecoming arrangements are being made by Warren  W. Greenberg, first vice commander  of the legion.
   An aerial escort, motorcycle officers  and a convoy of legionnaires will meet  the drivers  as they  near  Spokane.  Richard Casatt, state highway patrol officer, will pick up the nonstop car at the Oregon line, and military planes from the 41st division air services unit will swoop  down in dives  on congratulations.
Where to Meet Car
   "Spokane people desiring to meet the boys should gather at Third and Maple ," said Mr.  Greenberg.  "We are asking  every one to keep traffic cleared as we do not want the trip ruined before legion headquarters are reached at the Dessert hotel, where  the tour started."  Highway patrolmen K.G. Griffith,  Harry Hall and John Golden will meet the car on the Inland Empire highway south of Spokane  and help keep the path open.
   Included in the honor escort will be the wife and mother of Mr. Ware, Mrs. Smith, Mr. Greenberg, Dr. S.E. Rosenthal, head of the 40 and ___, Major Leonard Funk, Edward W. Robertson, past state commander of the legion; A.G. Tucker of the Richfield Oil company, Colonel Joseph K. Partello of Fort George Wright , B. H. Kizer, Chamber of Commerce president, a representative of the Chronicle and Charles Fancher Jr.

By Grant Ware
LOS ANGELES, April 2, 2:18 a.m.  Mexico we have seen you and how.  We were met at the edge of San Diego by a motorcycle escort and W.D. Russell, first vice commander of San Diego post, came aboard.   We went into the center of town and did one of those refueling acts as we had dreamed of doing in a perfectly arranged lot.  
    Then to gate No. 2 at Mexico.  We imagined that we would merely cross the border and return, getting the signed slip as our reward.  But to our surprise Billy Silver, representing the Mexican chamber  of commerce, requested  us to circle for a moment  and then prepare  for a trip to Tia  Juana and Agua Caliente.   One of the customs officers accompanied us to see that we brought no contraband.
Super-Cop Clears Way
  Assigned as motorcycle escort was Luis Ayala of Tia Juana , and let me state here and now that he is a super-motorcycle officer.  Silver was everywhere directing American and Mexican photographers and doing everything, as he stated, "for the representatives of the distinguished American legion."
   Every courtesy was extended us during our stay in Mexico and it developed into an international good will tour with Luis dashing here and there taking every possible precaution against our being stopped in his territory.  We had no thought of such a reception as was accorded us, neither of us having had a chance to shave since the start of the trip, but that meant nothing to them.  They took us as they found us and treated us as royalty.
    Photographers Swamp Them
   The thrill of this welcome trip is past words.  We  saw the famous buildings, including the Foreign club, where the photographers went to work in earnest.
    Upon leaving we were presented with several copies of the Tia Juana Herald, which carried the story of our trip in boldface of the feature spot on the first page.  The San Diego Union also carried several articles about our trip.  As we started back we were again accompanied by our motorcycle escorts.  It was a fitting end of the southern portion of our run  and made us feel that the American legion and Spokane are getting real publicity in a way that leaves pleasant feelings.
 

Sunday, January 18, 2015

World War II Letters Home January 18, 1940 - Estelles Wickenkamp

                                                                                            Royal Air Force
                                                                                            Marham
                                                                                            King's Lynn, Norfolk
                                                                                            January 18, 1940

Dear Folks:

I am on my 6 days leave now so I am writing this at Oxford.  There is hardly any snow here but up at Lynn we have about 4 inches.  We had a real snow fall and there are even snow drifts a foot deep.  That is the most snow I have seen since I've been here.

We have been quite busy lately and I just haven't managed to do any letter writing.  I have made quite a few trips to Brooklands, just south of London to get our aircraft petrol tanks armour plated at the Vickers Armstrong Works where they make Wellingtons.  It is very interesting going through the factory.  Everyone has a certain piece of metal and the next one fills them up with rivets - but anyhow they are sure turning them out.

the newer Wellingtons coming out now have 4 guns in each turret instead of 2 or so that gives us 12 guns per aircraft.  I brought a new plane from the works last week all by myself - contrary to Air Ministry orders as each heavy bomber is supposed to carry at least a 1st and 2nd pilot and a W/T operator.  it was a lovely job - flew perfectly.

I had a lot of fun on my way back to our camp - there were 3 of us in formation and we did all sorts of practices - rotating vic, forming echelon and vertical vic etc. - you understand but it is a process of changing formation called 'evasive action' used to make it difficult for fighters to attack us. We also did some low-flying in tight (close) formation and shot up farm houses and villages along the way.  We ran into a large flock of sea gulls and i hit 2 of them or else they hit me - anyway, I dented in the engine cowling a bit and the other hit just below the leading edge of the wing so it did no damage.  When they hit right on the leading edge they make quite a dent.

On the night of the 13th our squadron did its 1st leaflet raid with 1 aircraft and I had the honour to be included.  The Captain was Flight-Sergeant Powell and I was 2nd pilot and 1st navigator.  We left the ground 15 minutes past midnight loaded with nearly 1,500 lbs. of leaflets.  I don't know how many leaflets there were in each packet, probably about 3,000 and there were 297 pkts.  So I suppose there must have been about a million pieces of paper floating down.  If you get out your map of Europe I'll tell you where we went.

From our station we went to Lowestaft which is an exit lane, from there we made good a track of 059' which took us north of Holland about 30 miles;  from there we went east passing just south of Amrum Island and hit the German coast up on the Danish peninsula.. Then from there across country straight to Hamburg.   The ground is all covered with snow,  and although it was a cloudless night there was no moon,  we could make out islands in the sea and see woods and towns quite plainly from 15,000 feet.  Going over Hamburg we got picked up by searchlights a couple times but at 4:00 in the morning they must have been feeling dopey because we didn't get any A.A. fire. From Hamburg we flew south for 40 miles which took us 22 minutes and during which time we delivered our airmail.  I might suppose you think the leaflets fell on Hamburg - well, they didn't.  At the height we were the wind was 35 m.p.h. from east. It took the leaflets 1 hour, 35 minutes to fall and in that time they blew 56 miles west - so according to our previous calculations they should have fallen on Bremen and district.  It isn't just a matter of dropping them at random.

I have some samples of the leaflets as souvenirs and will send you one of each the next time I write as I haven't them with me. We got back to our station at 7:15 in the morning so there was enough light  for us to land without flare path.  We take coffee, sandwiches, raisins, chocolate bars and candy with us to eat on the way and it really tastes good.

the day I came back Doug went to Sandringham near Lynn to play ice-hockey with what he thought would be the local yokels, but to horror and surprise he found himself on a hockey team with the King and a bunch of Lord ups an downs.  He could hardly believe it all.  During a rest period he met the Queen and Princesses and sat on a bench for half an hour chatting with the Queen and having a cigarette with her.  he was so excited when he came home I couldn't imagine what had happened.  We have nicknamed Doug - "Kingle".

Also - still talking of Doug, he is going to get married on the 11th of February, so it looks as if I am going to be alone in the near future.  If you don't mind could you write just a short note to him and sort of wish him well.  he would be very pleased.  While I am thinking about it, I might say that the picture show newsreel the boys saw did not include me as far as I can remember.  Sorry to disappoint anyone - but it must have been 2 other guys.

I haven't our last letter with me and I don't remember whether you asked me any other questions or not.  I get the Free Press that you send and I got the Chicago Heralds.  I have a terrible time hanging on to the funnies until I read them as everyone wants them.  They don't have them in this country.  I got a card from Mrs. John Hootz and also a card and letter from Ada.  That is certainly too had about Vic.  I hope he gets mended soon.

I haven't received any of your parcels yet, but since you sent them to Harwell they are probably being forwarded in stages from there.  I hope they don't get lost anywhere.  I also got a card from Aunt Helen.  I got several pairs of socks and some cigarettes from 2 different families that Doug and I spent some summer holidays with.  Everyone is knitting for the troops these days.

Rationing on bacon, ham and sugar and butter is in force now so whenever we go on leave we have to draw our ration cards. People in the services get about 50% more rations than civilians.  We get per week - meat 5 1/4 lbs. (not rationed yet); bacon and ham 14 oz., sugar 21 oz.  the rations must be adequate as no one seems to be complaining of undernourishment.  Coal was going to be rationed but they have lifted that.  Nearly everything has gone up a bit in price but not a lot,  except silk stockings - their price is about double.  Popular brands of cigarettes cost 1/1 or .27 cents for 20. Petrol is 1/10 (.44 cents) a gallon when you manage to have a coupon.

CENSORED SECTION

Well, I think I have run out of news for this time.  Nearly all the ponds, rivers and canals are frozen over so people are skating a bit.

Take good care of yourselves this winter.

Love,

Estelles

P.S. Renee sends her best regards and says she will write to you one of these days.

Friday, January 9, 2015

On This Day - January 9, 1898


On this day, January 9, 1898, my Grandpa Bill was born.  He was born William George Wickenkamp in Dorchester, Saline county, Nebraska. The seventh child of Andrew (Georg Heinrich Andreas) Wickenkamp and Elisabeth Drollner. Bill grew up in Nebraska. Between 1920 and 1930 the family moved to Casper, Natrona, Wyoming. It was in Casper where he met and married Florence Sybil Koch and my mom, Jerry Lynn Wickenkamp was born. He and his family moved to Lincoln, Placer county, California, in 1941 where they had a fruit ranch. In 1951 they moved to Jump Off (Valley), Stevens county, Washington and bought a farm. He loved to fish. On a earlier post I there is a picture of grandpa and his fish. Happy Birthday, Grandpa Bill! 


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Travel Tuesday - American Legion Nonstop Goodwill Tour

Nonstop Auto Run Past Sacramento This Morning
   Dust under the needle valve and careless automobile drivers nearly ended the border-to-border nonstop American  legion automobile drive for Grant Ware and Frank P. Smith.
    At 10 o'clock this morning the Dodge sedan was still rolling to Los Angeles, having left Lodi, Cal., at 9:25 a.m.  The week-end saw the Spokane nonstop drivers safely through the lofty heights of the Siskiyou mountains, 15 minutes ahead of schedule. Tomorrow at 12:05 p.m. the boys should be in Mexico.
   Here's what happened:
By Grant Ware
 THE DALLES, Ore. - March 29, 10:25 p.m. - Thrills and howl Colfax met us with six cars and a motorcycle and there was thrill No. 1.  As we picked them up, along came a country boy , who missed us head-on by inches while watching the excitement.   Dayton met us with the legion commander and highway patrol Luncheon was served us on the "fly," and as we neared  Walla Walla the chief of police there came alongside.  The legion colors were on his car.  A patrol of three motorcycles escorted us all over town, and gave instructions about the road.  The Walla Wall post also gave us letters to President Rubio, Will Rogers and commander of the Hollywood post of the legion. After crossing the Oregon line we soon came upon the  delegation from Milton. We traveled through dust  and heavy rainstorms much of the time, but maintained our schedule. One car whose occupants we do not know passed us three times today.  The last time was about 6 o'clock.  They pulled alongside and held out two ice cream sandwiches, which shows again that there are still a lot of mighty friendly people in this world.

Grant Wires From Lodi
LODI, Cal March  31,  9:28 a.m. - Sacramento slipped up on its convoy so we went through to Stockton. Picked up gasoline on the way.  A five car convoy met us at Redding and accompanied  us through the night.  The car is running "sweet," and we are rarin' to go.

SPOKANE DRIVERS


Another From Lodi
LODI, Cal March 31, 10 a.m. - Took on gas at the Dalles and those boys were fast!  Another thrill here when half-awake driver nearly ran over our highway patrolman, who was stopping traffic on a street  and stopped dead in front of us and not three feet away.  I shot into low gear and crawled at him to move and he moved out just in time to save a fender as we are not stopping. From there we convoyed to the Columbia River highway  and through intermittent rain to 82nd Street  in Portland.  At Oregon City we were an hour and 15 minutes ahead of schedule.  The next two hours was a crawl and we hit Salem at 4:45.  At Eugene we were convoyed through by Commander Van Svarverud and Patrolman and Howard.  At Roseburg another highway patrolman and legionnaire picked us up and took on fresh coffee.  Patrolman Nichols  and a convoy of five cars picked us up and we followed. In the middle of town a car started out between us but again no stop, although we barely touched a fender.   At Grants Pass we were met by a convoy  and we refueled. There were some 20 cars in this convoy and the refueling was the fastest yet.  At this point a speck of dust got under the needle valve and it looked like for a time as though the tour was nearing the end.  By the time we reached Yreka, however, Smith had worked this loose. We were met at the California border by a member of the Yreka post with one of the highway patrol cars.  Arrangements had been made to take the inspector aboard and he inspected our car thoroughly while moving.  This is another of the splendid  bits of cooperation  that has been shown on this entire trip.   This required considerable  work and friendly attitude on the part of the inspector and is rarely done.