Home Page

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Grams story, Part 1

It was Kansas in the late 1800’s and there
were corn fields to tend, laundry tubs to empty,
pigs to butcher, and a baby in the chute. Always babies.


John Dodd, a stubborn Welshman, was determined to head west. Oregon? Washington? – he wasn’t sure. He just knew that the Northwest was his destiny.



As the wagon rolled across the prairie, his beautiful wife Alice, three daughters and two sons waved until their friends and extended family disappeared in the distance.


The years rolled, too, -- the twentieth century arrived.

In August 1902, another girl was born.
She weighed 7 ¼ lbs on an old farm scale in a tent in Milton, Oregon.


Her
mother
chose
the
name

Jennie,

after her great grandmother.




It was not long after that the family began to homestead on what would become the family wheat ranch in Touchet, WA.

The small house their dad built sat on the south side of a hill that sloped down to an old rambling dirt road. It lead to the bustling little town of Touchet (pronounced Two She) where the Dodd’s shopped, socialized, and sent their kids to school.




Jennie said she “didn’t really like school.”
Staying home wasn’t any easier, though.
She had her share of work to do and she always “did as I was told.”


Her father taught her to value the rights of others,
to tell the truth, and never to talk back.


She would later remember how her mother made her dresses and how much she loved her little ones.



Not long after Jennie’s ninth birthday her mother gave birth to child number nine. Mother lived only a few days and the baby boy went to live with a family in a distant town.

“I can’t remember too much,” Jennie wrote about losing her mother. “Except that I missed her terribly.”

21 comments:

coffeypot said...

The picture of you grandmother is cute, but she looks as if she is going to ask a question, like “is this good enough?” or “What’s next?”

BarnGoddess said...

what a great first part story!

I was sad when it ended so soon and saddened for your grandmother losing her mum. I lost mine at 11 so I can understand how much she must have missed her.

cant wait for MORE, soon?

DesLily said...

I am envious of anyone who knows any family history..I can find none since my mother was adopted and she divorced before I knew my dad...

Heather said...

I love getting to read a little about our history through your family's history.

East of Oregon said...

This is fantastically interesting!! Thanks so much for sharing a bit of your history - which is our country's history - all of our history.

I love history and the individual stories in it.. how we got where we are and what happened along the way.. it's all a journey.

have a great day:)

Susie said...

Pamela,
I did a doubletake when I saw this photo! Oh my goodness, it looks so much like the one of my great grandparents on their wedding day (March 6, 1891)
Loved reading this story. Life was certainly not easy in those days.
I'll have to find that picture in my archives so you can see it!!
:)

kailani said...

How sad for the family. It seems like it was very common for the women who lived a while back to have big families. My grandmother had 10 children. I can't even imagine how they did that!

James Cooper said...

Excellent post. Family history, particularly those dealing with the triumphs and adversities at the turn of the prior century, oftentimes just make for a great read.

Looking forward to more!

Biker Betty said...

It is so neat that you know your grandmother's story. Sad that she lost her mom so soon. We don't realize how lucky we are these days, with modern medicine and conveniences.

AJ said...

Oh Wow...your great grandpa had a dream to go out west and he did! LOL... I just think its fascinating how all these immigrants from all over the world came to America and sacrificed a lot for a better life. Including at times their loved ones..how poignant!

cagney said...

So many hardships in that time. They didn't know better so I wonder if they knew it was hard, or if it was just life? Such a blessing that your family wrote down their history. That is what blogging has become for me. A chance to write down history for my grandchildren's grandchildren. (If the Lord hasn't come back yet.)

Terrific Writing. Please More More more

Karmyn said...

who was the brother?

Robin said...

I wish I knew the type things you know about your family for my own...and the lovliest thing is you write is to beautifully!

ChrisB said...

It is so interesting to hear about your family thank you for sharing

Melissa said...

Your family stories are so cool Pamela.

Willowtree said...

Boy, those times sure were tough. I love these posts.

Masago said...

This is terrific!

Leann said...

thanks for sharing this story with us.life was hard back then.its hard now to in some ways.but back then the woman hard it so hard.poor kids losing their mom.

Jenny said...

Poignant and beautiful. I want more.

wolfbaby said...

How very sad that her momma died and the baby was sent away. Amazing how much you know of your family so very neat.

Anonymous said...

love those old pictures ivy