My father's great grandfather was Judge D'arcy Boulton. He was a United Empire Loyalist who settled in Toronto in 1802. When the war of 1812 broke out he was wounded and captured by the French and imprisoned at Verdun until 1814. Note
He had a large family. His oldest son was D'arcy Boulton who built the Grange in Toronto in 1807. His youngest son, born 1806, attended Oxford and became Rev. Wm. Boulton. He married Frances Carew, daughter of Capt. Henry Carew, who was the father of 12 children.
Rev. Wm. Boulton died of typhoid fever in Toronto at the age of 28, leaving 4 children. The eldest was William Somerville Boulton who became a civil engineer and contracted the construction of the railroad between Windsor & Toronto in Ontario.
He married Caroline Howarth Graham in 1854 and had a son & 2 daughters. In 1858 he returned to England where he negotiated for additional railroad construction. Returning to Canada, his ship struck the rocks at Pt. Sable, Nova Scotia and sank with the loss of all 300 souls aboard. Many years later, on his deathbed, the lighthouse keeper of the Pt. Sable light admitted that he had failed to light the light that night because he was drunk.
William Somerville Boulton was 28 years of age, the same as his father when he died. His wife, my grandmother, was Caroline Graham, the granddaughter of General Sir Samuel Graham, governor of Stirling Castle. His wife was Jane Graham. Note
After my grandfather died, his son, my father, was sent to England for his education.
(Ed. note: The chronology of the following account is wrong. Graham Boulton homesteaded in 1879 in Manitoba near Beaconsfield, which was in southern Manitoba close to the Pembina River and the Pembina Hills. You can read more about this period of Graham Boulton's life in Aunt Fanny's Autobiography and Beaconsfield to Russell )
He returned to Toronto and after various activities he decided to go west and become a farmer. In March 17, 1879 he arrived in Winnipeg, Manitoba. There was a great land boom at that time. They were selling worthless lots miles from the town, sometimes even under water. People bought without even seeing the land, just as I have seen happen from time to time all my life. Dad got together an outfit for homesteading and started west. There was no railroad across Canada at that time so it was necessary to go through the U.S. to Minnesota then north to Winnipeg. From there he went northwest to Russell, a town on the western edge of Manitoba and well north of the U.S. border. There were other hardy pioneers who went there also. Homesteads were staked out and the hard work of a pioneer started. The following year his younger sister, Fanny, then about 18, came out to be his housekeeper. She had real pioneering spirit also and her account of the experiences of homesteading with my father is described in her diary which was published by her grandson, Dr. John Willis of Hong Kong, more than 50 years later.
My father was a man of great perseverance, very intelligent and of an enquiring mind. He read a great deal and was not prone to accept the written word without analyzing and challenging it. In 1888 he married my mother Elizabeth Gill, who was one of 13 children. Note
Her father Henry Gill had been a gentleman farmer in England. In 1869 he sold his purebred cattle, farm, house, furniture and all accessories. I have the itemized printed copy of every item offered at the auction. After that my grandfather came to Canada with his family. They eventually settled in Manitoba where my grandfather and his sons put up a sawmill, grist mill and general store in a tiny settlement called Assessippi on the Shell River.
The reason that my grandfather Gill settled in Assessippi was because it was a very old center where North-South and East-West trails intersected. For generations fur traders had passed thru here. A steel bridge had been built across the river. It had been reported that the railroad would pass thru here, which was the reason my grandfather settled there and went into business.
Unfortunately the railroad chose a different route which left my grandfather isolated. He stayed on for a number of years but since there was no future there he and the family of 3 girls and 2 boys all now grown up moved away to a new town named Roblin which was on the new railroad. They opened another store, took up some farm land and started over. There were great disadvantages in that country. The winters were sometimes as cold as 60° below zero.
During Dad's 18 years in Manitoba he became well acquainted with many of the native Indians. He told me of discussions with a prominent Indian Chief. The chief told Dad that at times they showed honor to a piece of wood which they called "Metik". The reason for this was that wood represented to them fuel for warmth and for cooking their food. It also was of great value in making weapons such as bows, arrows and spears. They also took shelter in the wood. They built boats of it and cabins.
Therefore wood was the important and valuable thing which they had. They honored and respected it and gave thanks to the great father for providing it.
The old chief went on to say "The White Man's priest comes to us and tells us it is very wicked to honor and bow to the piece of wood which is so good to us. He tells us we should honor and bow to another piece of wood which he has formed into the shape of a cross. I do not understand why our wood is very bad and his wood is good."
My Dad went hunting one day and had no luck. After a time he ran across an Indian camp. He knew some of the Indians and joined them. They had a big fire going for roasting meat. He supposed they had shot a moose. The Indians invited him to help himself to some roasted meat. This he did and found it very good. Presently when he found time to talk he said as a question, "Bigshiki" (meaning moose). They answered "No, Ox". Dad then remembered that a week or so before one of the farmers had had an ox die of some disease. He had hitched a team to the carcass and dragged it out into the brushy woods. The Indians had found it there and proceeded to have a feast.
Dad told us another story about the old Indian custom of killing a parent who had become so old and feeble that he could no longer be of any help to himself, and the burden of carrying about such a helpless person was impossible. The story is told that a certain Indian had a father who was quite old but still quite able to take care of himself and was not a real burden upon his son. However the son was a lazy good for nothing and did not want to be bothered with his old father. He therefore killed him with an axe. The tribe did not approve of this and renamed this man "Badaxe". I have read that the far north Eskimos sometimes when desperate for food and having one or more ancient parents dependent on them suggest that the parent step outside in the blizzard where they are very soon out of their troubles.
The summers were beautiful but very short. It was often late in spring before grain could be planted and often an early fall brought rains which ruined the crops or even freezing weather which completely ruined the grain before it had ripened.
One summer Dad had prospects of a magnificent crop of oats and in anticipation he built a fine large barn. In celebration of the event friends and neighbors were invited for miles around to a barn dance. That very night while everyone was having a grand time, it froze hard completely destroying the crop. Dad said that the following spring he sold the straw for more than the entire oat crop.
One fine winter day my mother and her sister Lucy decided to go on a shopping trip from Assessippi to Russell. She had the team, Neddie & George, hitched up and with three of us older children. The distance was about ten miles. During the day the weather began to get bad, a snow storm and blizzard were coming up. When the storm began Dad was certain that Mother would not try to return home as she had plenty of friends to stay with in Russell. Mother felt she should get home and thought she could beat the storm. They started but as it got later the blizzard got worse & worse until nothing could be seen but blinding snow. They had warm heavy fur robes and blankets and bundled us children up. The storm got so bad that they could see nothing and had to let the horses go as they pleased. They thought they were lost and would freeze to death when suddenly the horses made a sharp turn from the direction they were going. In a few minutes they came to a house. They called and a man came out with a lantern. He rushed them all into his house, then put the horses into the barn, after which he returned built up a big fire and warmed and fed the cold travellers. They stayed all night and in the morning when the storm had passed mother and Aunt Lucy and the children went on home to Assessippi, much to my father's astonishment, who was sure they would not have started home in the storm.
Dad started a hardware store, but eventually had to give it up because the farmers were his friends and he could not refuse them credit and when their crops failed they were unable to pay their bills. The same thing years later happened to my uncle Jack who also had a store which failed. When the foreigners came in, they established cut-rate stores on a cash basis only and they eventually froze out the old fashioned family credit stores.
In 1897 my father sold out his properties and moved temporarily to Assessippi where he rented a house from mother's brother-in-law Ollie Fish, who had married mother's youngest sister. At that time Dad had a vicious attack of lumbago which laid him up for a long time. During this period he spent his time studying the Bible and became convinced that the generally accepted religion of Christianity was completely different from that as taught in the Bible. From then on his life was changed. He read and studied his Bible constantly and came to the conclusion that it was his duty to convert the heathen. Although he had very little money, he decided he must go to China. He had an opportunity to buy some Bibles in Korean which used to used to interest me greatly - though of course I could not understand a word. I wish I knew what happened to those old Korean Bibles.
I remember a few incidents which impressed me strongly enough that I have never forgotten them. I was 5 years old at the time. One day my brother Carew and I were playing on a trail near the Shell River. My uncle Jack came along with his shotgun. He was following the trail down the river looking for partridges. We asked to go along with him. He agreed to take Carew but said I was too little. I felt very badly (sic) and decided to follow them but keeping out of sight. The woods got thicker and darker, and I had to stay a long way behind for fear they would look back and see me. Pretty soon I heard a wolf howl in the woods. It was a fearsome sound to a little boy. I turned tail and never stopped running until safely at home.
We had two large horses, Neddie & George, in Assessippi, and a hired man who looked after the stock and general chores. The horses went for water down a steep hill to the river below. One day Jimmy the hired man asked me if I would like to lead Neddie down to the river for a drink. I was very proud to do this and started down the trail with the huge horse behind me. At the foot of the hill was a wide gravel river bed. There was a large pool of water there, but the river was several hundred feet beyond this point. When we reached this pool of water I expected Neddie to stop and drink, instead she walked straight across. I held on and told her to stop, as I was afraid to walk thru the water. She paid no attention, walked across the pond pulling the rope out of my hand and headed for the river. I was scared she was lost and began screaming for Jimmy. He heard me, grabbed a bucket with some oats and came running down. In the meantime Neddie had drunk her fill at the river, turned back and came to me, where I took her rope just before Jimmy got there with the oats.
Sometimes we had to go to grandfather's store for groceries. One time in winter we tied our sled to Neddie's tail, sent her down the hill over the bridge to the store. We had got a sack of flour loaded onto the sled and had Neddie haul it back home by her tail.
I have another incident which as strongly impressed on my mind. I have learned that certain incidents may make such strong impressions of the mind of a child that they seem never to be forgotten. I have observed that to be true of my own children.
I refer now to a very dark night on the prairie outside of the town of Russell. Suddenly someone said "there is a big fire." Dad hitched up the horses, we all got in the wagon and started out full speed. We found a farmer's house burning down. There was little water and no fire equipment. Wagons kept coming from far away, as the fire could be seen for miles in that flat country. I can still see the blazing fire, the many horses and wagons and crowds of people helplessly watching the house burn.
We had to wait until sister Mary was born in June, 1898. Soon afterwards we were packed up - taking some furniture and mother's little organ. We set off boldly, our friends and relations not knowing that we had almost nothing but faith. It was necessary to take the R.R. from Russell to Winnipeg and then transfer to the CPR west to Vancouver, B.C. I can remember clearly that exciting night when we transferred to the main line. I have never forgotten the excitement of the trains steaming and puffing in the darkness about the railroad station. The younger children were watched by the older ones and Mother, while Dad was rushing about seeing that our luggage was transferred to the new train. We were all nervous and excited for fear that some child or some of our goods would be left behind. The journey to Vancouver was very long as I remember - but pleasant as I recall. I made friends with a beautiful young lady and took my darling tiny baby sister over to show her. I remember how proud I was of this. We arrived in Vancouver, B.C. and found a hotel to stay in. Dad was rapidly getting out of money and he had to soon make a decision. About that time Seattle was growing and becoming known as a coming city, so Dad decided to go to Seattle. We took a steam boat (the Queen) and arrived in Seattle. It looked like a very big city to us in 1898. Our first home was a couple of rented rooms in a private home of an elderly Scotch couple. They were very nice people but also very thrifty. I clearly remember that she put up preserved fruit - but due to lack of sugar or improper preserving it regularly started to sour. When this happened she made her husband eat it. As soon as he had finished one jar another started to sour. So the poor man never had a chance to eat a fresh sample.
It was necessary to find a cheaper place to live and for Dad to find a job. He would never dream of accepting help from anyone even if offered. We all had a great deal of pride. We found a tiny house on an alley behind a large house on Broadway in Seattle. At that time Broadway had a street car but no pavement of any kind. Once when baby sister Mary was just able to walk she escaped for a while and got out on the street car track. When a car came along she paid no attention - so the motor-man stopped and waved his arm and said get off the track. She cheerfully waved back & said bye-bye. So he had to get out of his car & take her off to the sidewalk.
The rent was quite small. The toilet in a small shed in the yard. Later on the city required that a regular flush toilet be installed which we thought to be a wonderful luxury.
Mother and Dad worked very hard and must have worried a lot even though they had enormous faith that God would provide which he always did. Though there were seven little children at that time and Dad started working as a laborer we never at any time went hungry or were in any manner ashamed. Dad had various jobs and later became time keeper during the construction of Broadway High School.
My brother Carew liked to go fishing where now the Ballard Locks are located. One day he and another boy were passing an old apple orchard. They decided to get a few apples. Carew climbed the tree and suddenly a woman came rushing out. The other boy took to his heels and escaped but Carew was caught.
The woman hauled him home, locked him in a room and called the police. A policeman was sent out and Carew was delivered into his hands. I don't know what sort of transportation was used but the policeman just took Carew home and informed Dad what had happened. He said he would leave it to Dad to punish Carew. I think he gave him a licking. How different from 1900 to 1972.
Carew discovered that crabs could be caught from a railroad bridge which crossed the bay from about James St. in Seattle. We learned that to catch crabs you find an iron barrel hoop. Across this you loosely attach a piece of fish net. To this attach pieces of scrap meat. You than lower it by a rope to the bottom. After a while you pull up the net and usually have several big crabs. In a few hours we would get a half sack of fine big crabs which we took home for a feast. On one trip Carew met another boy who wanted to go crab fishing with him. He told Carew that they did not want little brother to come along. Carew, always easily influenced, told me to go home. I protested, so he then offered me a nickel if I would go back home. I accepted. Late that night Carew got home very sad, with no crabs. After I left they went to the regular fishing place, which was a draw bridge. Carew was on the draw bridge span when some workmen opened it taking him along. When he asked to get off they told him they could not close the span until the end of the day. The boy who had aced me out of the trip ate up Carew's lunch, took the crabs and went home. Mother said that was what Carew got for not taking his little brother along.
The little house in which we lived had an outside backhouse such as we always used in the country. One day a plumber came along and installed a regular water closet in the backhouse. We thought that was wonderful as we had never had one before.
We once got a rabbit which had a bunch of babies, which we planned on raising. One night a dog found them and killed them all. Not long after that our mother cat moved into the rabbit pen and had a batch of kittens. Soon afterwards the dog showed up, possibly looking for more rabbits. The cat leaped on his back clawing and screaming. The dog took off howling in pain and never returned.
About 1899 we boys were playing in the back yard with 2 neighbor girls name Ruby and Genevieve Kelly. Suddenly their mother from the front door began to scream wildly for Ruby to come. We all ran to the front and Mrs. Kelly said "look - there is an automobile." It was the first one I had ever seen as it disappeared down the street.
In March 1898 my Uncle Jack Gill joined the Klondike Gold rush. He started for Dawson with 5 companions. He kept a diary which I have, in which he described the mad excitement, the hardships, sickness and terrible disappointment of so many hundreds of man who made nothing. For each man who found gold there were hundreds who returned home with nothing. Uncle Jack was one of those. He had one chance to make a fortune but a crooked government recorder passed the information to a friend and when Uncle Jack returned to the recording office he was told that someone else had staked ahead of him - which was false.
I can remember no unhappiness of lack of anything in those days. Dad seemed to always find work of some kind to feed and clothe us. "Have no thought of the morrow, for the morrow will take care of itself", he quoted.
I don't know how our parents could have helped being discouraged in those days, but they showed no sign of it to us and always maintained an absolute faith and trust in God.
One day an important letter came announcing that my great great aunt Dorothea Carew had died in England at 90 years of age, leaving to us this sum of about $3000.00 cash.
The Carew family are very old, having a record of ancestry to before 1066. William of Carew Castle, the ruins of which still exist, was ancestor of a line of Carews extending to the present day. My father's grandmother was Frances Carew. She was daughter of Capt. Henry Carew of the British Royal Navy. He married Elizabeth Maria Fownes and they had 12 children, the first of whom was born in 1789 exactly 100 years before my eldest brother Carew was born and the last child Dorothea Carew was born in 1811 - just 102 years before my sister Alice was born. However the Carews had 12 children while we had only 11 which accounts for the difference. It seems rather remarkable that the girl born in 1811 should have been the one who rescued our large family from the treadmill of the city to a new and happier life on the little farm at Chico, Wash.
The first thing Dad said was "we will buy a farm and move to the country". After investigation we settled on a little 10 acre farm near Chico, about six or seven miles from Bremerton. It was about ½ mile from the bay and a little mountain stream ran thru the middle of the place. A very high cut bank was on one side of the stream which showed that floods could happen. The house was very old but far better than the Seattle house. There was a horse, a cow and calf also chickens. There was a large orchard of all sorts of apples, pears, plums and various berries.
In this modern day of luxury and abundance of every thing we are unable to appreciate what we have. There is no contrast. Adults and children have so much of everything that we are deprived of the joy of giving and receiving. My father was not demonstrative, but on a Christmas morning, to our surprise and delight, he presented each of us with a coin - ranging from 5¢ to 50¢ which Carew the eldest received. Mine was 25¢ and I remember how generous we thought he was especially since it was understood that the money was to be spent in any way we wished.
In about 1905 my father called me to say that someone had told him that near the town of Tracyton an old man was living on a small farm who was a survivor of the famous "Charge of The Light Brigade." In that event which took place during the Crimean war at the Battle of Balaklava in 1854. The old man was very friendly and told us his version of the great mistake. He was one of the 190 survivors of the 700 men who mistakenly charged the Russians. He had received the Victoria Cross. He was later taken back to England and awarded a pension.
Every child was given the responsibility of some chore to do. There was plenty to do - chickens to be fed - eggs to gather - cow to be brought in, fed and milked. Horse to be cared for - wood and kindling must be supplied. Of course the well was outside and water must be pumped and carried in. The girls helped Mother.
I remember feeling unhappy one hot day when Dad and four of us boys were hoeing and weeding strawberries. Pretty soon a group of boys we knew passed by on their say to go swimming. We were really sad then until Dad said "alright, boys, let's do 5 more rows and then we all go swimming. The five rows were hoed in short order and I remember that as one of the happiest swims we ever had.
Near the beach where we swam was an old abandoned apple orchard. Wandering cows had eaten the branches as high as they could reach and then they stood around for a ripe apple to fall. One day as I was on a swim I saw that a big old cow was looking up at the apples. Suddenly to my astonishment she stood up on her hind legs, grabbed a branch in her mouth and dropped to the ground, bringing a shower of apples, which brought the other cows running.
The big old cow belonged to Wm. Chico, an Indian from whom I rented the horse later on. Dad made an offer to Mr. Chico for this cow and bought it. We wanted to fatten her up a little and butcher her. It was my job to take her about a mile to a pasture. It was a long walk so one day I climbed up on Nellie's back and from then on she was my horse.
She got pretty fat and finally Dad butchered her. To our great astonishment and sorrow we found a large unborn calf. We had no idea when or where she could have been bred. We had known her for a long time and never knew of her ever having a calf.
On another occasion in the orchard two women came for a swim. In those days they wore ankle length dresses and petticoats. These ladies had no bathing suits, so they went into some bushes and took off their clothes except a blouse and petticoat, which was very full. When they went into the water the petticoat kept floating to the top all around them. They kept trying to push it down to hide their bare legs which of course were under water. I thought this all very amusing.
After their swim was over they saw all the beautiful apples which the cows could not reach. They had changed clothes in the bushes and now took the petticoats, wrung them out and dried them a little and then proceeded to pick apples which they put in their petticoats after tying the waist together. They then stated off, each with a petticoat of apples over her shoulder. Although this happened 70 years ago, I still can see the entire procedure in my minds eye.
Near this orchard was a large field of very good land. Dad arranged to rent the land from Wm. Chico, the Indian owner. We plowed and planted a big area of rutabagas. The ground was rich and the crop excellent. There was no loose stock there, but a lot of very good pasture. Dad sent me off each day with 3 cows to graze. It was my job to keep them out of the rutabagas. It was warm lazy weather. When the cows came near the turnips I soon taught them to stay away. I make myself a shady place among some bushes, took books to read until time to bring the cows home. I think I mentioned before that old Nellie was my riding cow. Once I fell asleep and when I awoke the cows were all in the garden having eaten their way well into the rutabagas. They were guilty when I started to yell and run after them.
Our little horse's name was Tinker. We drove him with a light wagon to gather supplies, fruit, vegetables, etc. He would trot if urged a lot, but his trot was not much faster than a walk. One day I was driving him thru the woods. Clare was my passenger. He was about 5 or 6 years old. He stood up at the front of the wagon which was about a foot high. Suddenly with no warning Tinker came to a dead stop. Clare of course fell forward over the rail and landed on the ground against Tinker's hind legs, just as Tinker passed some horse manure which fell all over Clare, who was furious. I had to laugh, which did not help, as I dragged him back into the wagon.
On another occasion on a very cold freezing December night, there was a low clam tide. I told Clare to come clam digging with me, he to pick up the clams. As I dug it got a little icy and Clare began to cry with freezing fingers. I told him to be tough because we had to fill the bucket. When we got home and told our story, Mother was very angry that I should treat her little boy so badly.
Winter came with its long steady rains - day and night. The little stream running across the farm became a raging torrent. The main force of it became concentrated on the bank above which the barn and chicken house were located. As the water rose it became more violent and soon began to undermine the bank about 12 feet high. From time to time great sections of bank would crash down into the current with a boom. Soon it had carved away up to the corner of the chicken house. We all got to work carrying the chickens away to a safer place. The rain stopped and the flood began to lower and that was the last flood we had. For years the corner of the chicken house hung out over the high bank.
About 1903 after getting settled in our house on the farm near Chico, we went to the local school with the rest of the children within a radius of several miles. The school consisted of one very large room with a big wood stove in the center. There were about 25 pupils ranging from first grade to 8th. One teacher handled the entire school. I don't remember if she had 8 classes or not, but she had her hands full in any case. I think we learned a little from all the other classes which were constantly reciting. After the first year my father who was an educated man decided that he wanted his children to receive a better education, so he decided to keep us home and teach us himself. We had school at home every morning and worked on the farm afternoons. In time word got out that none of us were going to school. One day a committee of three men called on my father. They said they were the school board and wanted to know why our children were not going to school. Dad explained that he did not consider the public school adequate to give us a proper education. I'm quite sure that Dad had a far better education than those men. He explained to them the problems of one teacher to handle eight grades, and since he wanted his children to have as good an educations as possible, he had decided to teach us himself. He then called upon each of us to read, write or spell according to their age. My assignment was to draw freehand on a blackboard a map of the United States with every state included and named. He had taught me to do this by dividing the U.S. into 4 quarters and filling the states in. We must have made a favorable impression because they left and we heard no more. Later on Dad hired teachers from Seattle, during summer as well as winter. They lived with us and apparently enjoyed themselves. One was elderly and we thought crabby - but the other was young and beautiful. One day when the older lady was teaching, some stray cows broke into our garden. When we saw this through the window we all rushed outside with great shouts and drove the cows off. We returned to school right away to a most indignant teacher who even complained to Dad about our lack of discipline. He calmed her down and explained that we had only done a necessary thing. Upon another occasion Dad hired a young Japanese college student as a helper. His main object was to improve his English which he did - since we were all taught to speak very grammatically. We learned later this young man became a man of importance in Japan. He had a fine personality and we all liked him.
In the fall salmon started up the creek from the bay to spawn. Sometimes if the rains were late, the salmon had trouble getting up the rapids. Their entire backs would be out of the water and they swam furiously to reach the next deep pool. This was our harvest time. The blacksmith made large hooks which we fastened to the end of a pole. With this we hooked the salmon as they went up stream.
We had a dog which learned to catch salmon. He learned that they would often flop back and forth on the beach until they got away. He learned then how to bite them in the head to kill them dead.
We caught lots of beautiful salmon which we cleaned and smoked or kippered like the Indians did. The smokehouse was going all the time. Salmon always die after they spawn. We gathered these dead ones up by hundreds and buried them in pits for fertilizer next spring. Digging up the fish and spreading it in the garden was a very smelly job but the vegetables we grew were wonderful.
After spawning season was over we collected the dead fish by threading thru the gills a long rope. By then the eyes were usually eaten by seagulls. The fins and tails would be shredded and discolored. I once had collected about 300 of these old fish to be made into chicken feed or fertilizer. They were in a pond by the stream. An Indian came up looking for salmon. He went on up the stream but soon came back with only a few fish. He saw my great string of salmon and asked me how much I would take for all of them. I said they were not very good fish, but he said they would be fine smoked. We settled on a price of about 1¢ per salmon and he happily floated them down the stream to his dugout on the bay.
Moses Seattle was the nephew of Chief Seattle after whom the city was named. Moses was a dwarf. His body and head were of normal man size but his legs and arms were quite short. Moses and some other Indians came to our town one day and asked if they could buy strawberries from us and pick them. We made a deal and they all went to work. The price was agreed as so much per quart. We were surprised when they filled their containers with berries which were first hulled and then squashed and packed in solidly. In that way they got quite a lot more berries. We admired their cleverness and were amused. It reminded my father of a time when he contracted to saw, split and pile cordwood for a scotchman. After Dad had piled up the wood the man got up on the pile with a sledge hammer and beat the pieces down as tightly as possible and then he split some wood into small pieces and drove them into any small openings which remained. Dad said it was surprising how much extra wood the old man gained in that way.
Moses Seattle was an interesting man who had many friends. He enjoyed drinking and he had apparently no great difficulty in finding liquor or friends. One day he and a white man named Crane got pretty intoxicated and started to paddle somewhere in the dugout canoe. They got into a swift tidal current in the narrows between Bremerton and Silverdale. The canoe turned over. Crane was drowned but Moses though drunk floated ashore since he had a large torso but very short legs. Some time later Moses was on a very drunken party near the beach with a group of Indian friends. They got into a serious quarrel about something which no one later remembered. His friends in their drunken rage picked up Moses and threw him on the bonfire on the beach. When he was later dragged off he was horribly burned. His stomach was burned out exposing his intestines. He was taken to the Navy Hospital at the Bremerton Navy Yard, where he died. He became conscious shortly before he died, and his last words were "we had a glorious time." I should estimate that this occurred in 1904 or 1905. Chief Seattle had a daughter whose name was Angeline. I often saw her sitting on the sidewalk of First Ave. about Yesler Way, surrounded by her beautiful Indian baskets which she was offering for sale.
One winter evening I was walking home from Bremerton to Chico. The road was narrow and very muddy. Soon I caught up with an Indian man and woman. The woman was lying flat in the mud. Her husband said "will you please help me with my wife Julia. She's drunk and won't get up." I agreed and we each go an arm around our shoulders and heaved away. She was as limp as a rag and it was hard to get her on her feet. Her husband said "Julia, ain't you 'shamed. This nice boy is trying to help me get you home and you won't help." Julia then said "gimme a drink." Her husband said "Julia, if I give you another drink will you help get up and walk." She repeated "gimme a drink." So he gave her a drink, took one himself and offered me one which I declined with thanks. We then got her up with her arms around our shoulders. We very slowly staggered down the road in the mud and rain. Every once in a while she collapsed completely and slid to the ground. But after remonstrating with her and passing the bottle around again we slowly crept along. There was no traffic whatever on the road. When we finally reached a branch road which I was taking we parted and each went our way. He thanked me very profusely upon parting. I learned later that they did not get much farther after I left them, but spent the entire night along the road in the mud. I was quite late getting home and told my story to the great delight of my family. For years after that the expression "ain't you 'shamed, Julia?" became a byword in our home.
My mother had so much washing to do that we found a husky Indian girl to come one day a week to help. We had the standard equipment, a big tub to boil the clothes, a scrubbing board to scrub them clean and clothes lines outdoors. We were not quite as modest as my dear old aunts were. They had a clothesline in a very secluded place behind a big woodshed. There they hung their unmentionables and covered them with a sheet to dry.
Annie the Indian girl who helped Mother came to work one day and told us that she had been a pall bearer at the funeral of her grandma. There were four pallbearers and they had to go quite a distance through a brushy trail to the cemetery. She said the man in front of her let a sharp springy branch fly back and hit her in the face. She said she was awful mad and nearly dropped the coffin.
One day Dad read in the Farm Journal that rhubarb leaves make excellent greens, something like spinach. Since Dad was half Scotch and thrifty he decided to have rhubarb greens for lunch. Mother was susp9cious and agreed to cook them but said she would not eat any. All of us stuck with mother, knowing that Dad had an experimental mind. However, when lunch was ready with a big dish of stewed rhubarb leaves, Dad told Annie very persuasively how good stewed rhubarb greens were. She did not want to be impolite so she took some. That night Dad had the diarrhea all night and spent a good deal of time outside in the backhouse outdoors. The next day he was perfectly furious with the Farm Journal. Of course he did not get much sympathy from us, thought we did not dare to gloat. The next week on washday, Annie appeared as usual. The first thing we asked her was, would she like more rhubarb greens for lunch. She said "Oh, no, last week I run to backhouse all night, and got no sleep."
My brother Carew was a big husky young man. He was much the biggest of all the boys. In 1907 two men who were friends of ours asked Carew if he would like a job in the woods cutting and peeling mine props for Mexico. They had taken a contract from another man. Carew accepted the job and took me along as his helper. I was 14. It was a long journey by horse and wagon to Quilcene. We took our blankets, a camp was set up and an Indian woman engaged as cook. She was really a wonderful cook and baked the best wild blackberry pies in the world. After work some of us used to pick the blackberries. The mining props must have a top not less than 4" and a base not over 16". There was a beautiful stand of trees all about the right size. Carew was a master with an axe. He would chop a tree down and start peeling the bark off with a spud which is a chisel having a 4" blade and 3 foot handle. It was spring time and the bark peeled off very easily. My job was to cut off all the limbs and top and measure and record it. We were paid ½ ¢ per foot. We broke all records when we cut and peeled 1400 feet in ten hours, which was $7.00. I did not get any of the money myself as it went to the family.
After I passed the eighth grade Dad said "you must go to High School." We could not figure out how that could be since it was too far to walk each day, being over 15 miles round trip. One day a man and his wife whom we had met called on us. They lived in Bremerton and Mr. Wedge had a team of heavy draft horses. When Dad spoke of his wish to get me into high school, Mr. Wedge said "He can live with us and do chores and help look after the horses for his board and room." We jumped at the opportunity, and when high school started I was there. My chores consisted of feeding a few chickens, getting in wood & kindling, feeding the big horses, brushing them and cleaning their stable. I had plenty of time to study. One day Mrs. Wedge handed me a letter for my father. I went home each weekend. The letter said that they could not afford to feed me and that Mr. Wedge had not consulted her and they would have to receive a few dollars, (I forget the amount) per week for my board. When Dad read the letter, he told me to hustle up another place where I could earn my board, since with his large family he had no money for me. On Monday I returned to Bremerton and started to look for a job. I believe the first place I entered was Lempke's Bakery. After explaining I wished to work for my board and go to school, Mr. Lempke hired me. He said I could work before and after school and live in his home.
This turned out to be a good job. Each morning I was roused at 6:00, went to the bakery and started cleaning and greasing bread pans. The bakery was an old fashioned one with a huge arched brick oven. In the evening before the oven was filled up with cordwood and a fire lighted. By early morning the fire was burned down to coals. These were all scraped out, and the bread which had been rising in the night was slipped on long flat wooden blades, which were snatched out when the bread was in place. When it was baked the loaves were picked out in the same way.
A little later on I had to make coffee for men going to work in the Navy Yard. I had a big pot of coffee going and the customers got 2 doughnuts and a cup of coffee for 5¢. After school I had to make deliveries of bread, rolls, etc. to small stores or restaurants. Sometimes I had to cook doughnuts. The batter would be made and the doughnuts punched out and left to rise. My job was to fry them in the big vat of hot oil. I would drop them in, turn them over with a stick and pick them out when done. Sometimes I fried the round cores which came out of the center. These I ate myself. I am told that now, 60 years later, they are frying the cores and putting them out for sale.
One day a young man came to see me. He worked as a book keeper in the Bremerton Navy Yard and had met my sister Caroline with whom he had fallen in love. He was a quiet unassuming young man, and I should say now that a year or so later he was going to Vancouver, B.C. on a train when a robber held up the passengers demanding everyone's money. Then my friend Mr. Lee did a most unexpected thing for him. He attacked the robber who turned and shot him dead.
This young man Mr. Lee was responsible for complete change in my life. He told me that an examination was to be given to choose an apprentice draftsman in the Bureau of Yards and Docks. He advised me to take the examination and gave the necessary information. I took a day from school and won the competition for the job. I quit high school and went to work in the Navy Yard at $1.04 per day. I learned a good deal on this job. I was taught to make blueprints, using sun light blue printing equipment installed on the roof of the building.
I also practised lettering and tracing. That was a pleasant year. I gave up the bakery job, bought a second hand bicycle for $10.00 and lived at home on the farm.
At about this time we had word that my Father's sister Aunt Dora was coming out west on a trip and would visit us. She had sent word that she would arrive in Seattle on a certain day and would register in a certain hotel on First Avenue near Seneca Street. I was delighted to meet her and escort her to the freight boat which left Seattle each day at 3:00 and arrived in Chico about 7:00 P.M. I remember feeling some awe regarding this lady who really turned out to be most kind and lovable. I went to the hotel a little after 9:00 A.M. when my boat arrived. Aunt Dora was about to have her breakfast and invited me to join her. After breakfast I enquired about her luggage which I was supposed to arrange for getting to the boat for Chico. She had one good sized trunk and one small suitcase. I found an old man with a horse and cart waiting outside the hotel. I brought the two items out and asked him how much he would charge to take them up to the dock where my boat was. He said 25¢ per piece of luggage. I thought this was fair enough for the big trunk but too much for the hand bag. So I said "you can just take the trunk" and paid him 25¢. As he was about to start I said "I may as well go with your to show your where to go." So I jumped onto the seat beside him, held the bag on my knee, never putting it on the floor. He looked at me and my bag with a very strange expression and drove on. When I told the family and my aunt what I had done, they were astonished, and remembered it for years.
I had been working at the Navy Yard one year when the Lieutenant in charge of my department called me into his office. He said that someone who lived near our farm had written a letter stating that I was not a U.S. citizen and therefor not allowed to work for the U.S. military. I said that I was born in Canada and my father had not taken out citizenship papers. I explained to him that when I answered the question "Are you a citizen of the U.S.?" I had answered "I presume not because I am only 14 years old." This was actually a subterfuge on my part, but it was not an untruth. He said he was very sorry but I would have to go. According to the terms of my employment the Navy Yard I was entitled to a vacation with pay at the end of one year. It happened that I had been working there for exactly one year. I called it to their attention that I was entitled to one weeks pay for my vacation. They agreed that I was right and ordered a check to be issued to me. When I received it the amount was figured at $1.04 per day. I went back to the commanding officer and said that my terms of employment were that at the end of one year my pay would be raised to $1.51 per day, also that I was not entitled to vacation pay until after I had been there for one year, therefor if they conceded that I was entitled to the vacation, then it must necessarily be at the rate of $1.51 per day. My argument was convincing enough that a new check was ordered issued at $1.51 per day for my vacation.
After losing my job at the Navy Yard I decided to go to Seattle and look for a job in an architect's office. I went to Seattle, made a list of all architects in the telephone directory and started to call on them looking for a job. I eventually came to the firm of Somervell and Cote´. They said they were interested and would give me a job as soon as the new White Bldg. was completed. They had arranged to have very luxurious offices built in this new building.
Early in 1909 the offices were completed and I went to work at $9.00 per week, nearly double what I had earned at the Navy Yard.
My duties were making tracings, running errands and general office boy. There were a number of draftsmen and a lady bookkeeper. The entire office and workrooms were most modern. The consultation office was most elaborate with panelled ceiling, rugs, fine furniture, etc. W. Marburg Somervell was an architect, artist and a real southern gentleman from Virginia. I got to know him very well and he became one man whom I respected and honored more than any other with the exception of my father. He was a true artist and a gentleman. He was married and had a daughter, but was not close to his wife. He later divorced her and remarried after, closing up his business, becoming an officer in the army and eventually retired with his wife to Paris where he eventually died without returning home except for a visit.
He treated me as an equal and we had many long discussions. Much of it was based on what my father had taught me. Often after supper in the evenings we would meet in the drafting office where he worked on plans, details and making copperplate etchings. We talked together for hours while he worked on his etchings and drawings (he etched his own copper plates). Sometimes he would take me out to supper, always to some very high class restaurant where the food was wonderful.
I did not have a great deal of talent as an architect. After I had been with Mr. Somervell for about 2 years he said to me, "I think you should have a college education. I know Dean Roberts of the College of Mines at the U of W. I would like you to see him and discuss entering the college." He wrote me a letter to Dean Roberts which I presented. The Dean was a man whom I admired from the first. He was most friendly and said "I would very much like you to enter our college, what high school did you graduate from?" "Oh," I said, "must I go to high school before I can enter college?"
I was quite serious about this and was surprised to learn that high school was necessary before entering college. "Very well", I said, "I will go to high school and then return."
High school had already been going on for a month when I went to Broadway Hi in Seattle and applied for entrance. However I had some special plans in mind. I said to the vice principal, "I have been out of school for several years and I now wish to make up time by going thru high in 2 years. He said that is ridiculous and impossible. However I met a teacher, Inez Streeter, and told her my problem. I explained that I could take 6 subjects per semester rather that the customary four. I could take some simpler examinations for credit, by studying the subjects on the side. To enter college required 30 credits. Four semesters at 6 credits per semester would be 24 and I was sure I could pick up 6 more in 2 years. Of course I had to earn my living at the same time, as I could expect no help from my parents. They had all they could handle as it was.
My teacher friend then said it was essential to take two hours per week of Physical Education. I arranged to skip 2 classes per week in order to get physical education. These skips were from 2 different classes. So my gym classes were with 2 different groups each week.
This excellent lady went to the vice principal and laid out my entire plan. She argued that if I were willing to take on such a program they should at least give me the opportunity. He reluctantly consented to let me try it. I got on quite well and had my name on the honor roll several semesters. I had very little money, so had to live frugally. I could not afford room and board at $4.00 per week, as I had when working for Mr. Somervell.
For a while I rented a room in the basement of a hotel. This was a rather unique place. The entire basement floor of the building was divided up into a large number of tiny rooms. The ceilings were lower than the main ceiling and consisted of chicken wire mesh stretched over all the little rooms. The walls were of boards which did not reach to the floor but left a gap of 6". The floor was concrete and thus could be more easily washed. Each tiny room had a single bed, a stool, some coat hooks and one tiny electric light. The entire place was always warm. There was a general bath room and wash basins at one end.
This comfortable sleeping place cost 25¢ per night. I did not want anyone to know I slept there so I called myself Henry Graham. By renting the room a day at a time, I did not pay by the week, as I always went home to the farm every Saturday and stayed till Monday morning. Then mother packed up a supply of sandwiches, apples and other things which cut down on my restaurant bill a great deal.
Another time I rented a room which had been a bathroom, but the fixtures had been removed. This cost me $1.25 a week.
After I started to school Mr. Somervell let me keep a key to his office and drafting department in the White Bldg. It was warm and comfortable there with good lights. I did nearly all of my studying there. Sometimes if it was very late I would sleep there. A friend had given Mr. Somervell a huge bear skin from Alaska. I would lie on his davenport and lay the bear skin over me. I remember it smelled rather pungent. I could lock the doors from inside. Sometimes a janitor tried them and I suppose wondered why they could not get in. I always tidied up and left before anyone got there in the morning.
At that time I kept a record of my living expenses. For breakfast I went to a lunch counter where I could get a cup of coffee and 2 small doughnuts for 5¢. I drank the coffee slowly and when the donuts were finished I would eat 2 slices of bread, which in those days was set out at intervals along the counter. After a few days of this, the waiter, when I sat down, came over and removed the plate of bread from my reach. I was insulted and discontinued my business there. At noon I had some sandwiches which mother had provided. For supper I went to a Chinese restaurant where I got a full meal for 10¢. Once in a while but not often I blew myself to a 15¢ meal which was steak or chops instead of hash or stew. They served desert also. One day it was stewed prunes. One day just as I was finishing my prunes I found a large stewed cockroach. I pushed it aside and finished my desert.
During Christmas vacation I found a job at the Bon Marche' wrapping Christmas packages. I had as a helper a very cheerful nice looking young lady. We worked happily together. At quitting time I asked her to supper at a Chinese restaurant. She consented and we had a pleasant evening. We left the restaurant, and as we walked down the street we were passing a cheap hotel and she said, "Let's get a room here". I was very embarrassed and said, "I think I should take you home, where do you live?" Things were very cool after that. I should have turned her loose, but thought as a gentleman I should escort her home. It took nearly an hour on the streetcar. I escorted her to her door, she turned and left me without saying goodbye, and I had another hour before getting back to my room.
I got along quite well even though I had to find what work I could to supplement the money I had earned during the summer.
My father wore a beard and mustache all his life. He used to say that the white races, which he said included India, were superior and one of the marks of their superiority was the ability to grow hair on the face. Since whatever my father said was the final authority in my mind, I started to grow a mustache. It met with some hissing which I ignored. Once someone put a quarter in an envelope with the note to get a shave. Instead I got a couple of lunches. Then one noon hour, 3 or 4 big boys whom I knew slightly, seized me on the street before the school and led me to a nearby barber shop. They put me in a chair and ordered the barber to shave me. Of course he refused, but by then hundreds of students out on their lunch hour gathered around, completely blocking the street. Almost no one knew the cause of the mob scene, but the crowd continued to grow until the bell rang and all returned to school. Shortly after getting to my class the phone rang and the teacher said I was to go to the office. When there I saw the group of boys who had kidnapped me. The principal said "are these the boys who took you off to the barber shop?" I replied "I am sorry but there were so many in the crowd that I cannot identify any of them." He sent me back to my class but a short time after another boy joined me in growing a mustache. We hung together at noon hours. One noon several boys came to us in the hall and grabbed the other fellow and hauled him away where they had a razor and shaved off half of his mustache. Then they came back for me. I grabbed a small stool by a leg and said "the first one who comes near me will get his brains knocked out." They backed up a little and said "you can't do it." I replied "just try coming near." Luckily for me, they hesitated a little and I was saved by the bell. I had another session in the principal's office and he said I was responsible for too much disturbance and must now bring my lunch and stay in a room under supervision of a teacher.
I replied that I had no home, and lived in a rented room and had no way of getting a lunch. "Besides," I said, "why should I be punished for what others were doing to me." I had done nothing to cause the disturbance except that I had grown a mustache. I said there was nothing disgraceful or reprehensible about it and it did not seem to me fair that I should be punished for what others were doing. This argument seemed to carry some weight, so he finally begged me as a favor to do all in my power to avoid any further disturbances. Things cooled down and there were no further outbreaks, though I continued to wear my mustache. What a different viewpoint from that of todays schools.
In 1915 U. of W. had their first football game with U. of Cal. Before that Cal had played rugby. The S. F. world's fair was on at that time. Plans were made to get over 300 U. of W. students to go to the first ball game. Arrangements were made with the steamship company to give special service and rates of $15.00 for the round trip from Seattle to San Francisco. I asked the Dean if I could get an extra week off to see the Fair and city. He arranged this for me and gave me a letter of introduction to a friend who operated a very nice hotel in S. F. I made a loan of about $25.00 from the student union and went to the docks to take the ship to S.F. I learned that the cheap rate was standard steerage rate, and I would have to buy steerage accommodations since I was not going with the main body of students. I had no objection to this and upon going aboard was directed down into the lower hold, below sea level. There were bunks to sleep in and you took your choice.
Meals were served something like in a logging camp. The steerage passengers were a lot of good fellows of many nationalities and occupations. I stayed in the hold till the ship was well under way, then discovered that the door was not locked. Of course steerage passengers were not allowed above decks. I was dressed quite decently, wearing a neck tie and soon sneaked out of the hold and began exploring the ship. No one paid any attention to me and I was enjoying myself. Presently two very pretty girls appeared and I soon got acquainted. We promenaded all over the ship except the hold of course. When a meal bell rang, I excused myself, that I must spruce up a little in my stateroom and since all passengers had their allotted seats and eating shifts, I had no trouble hiding my identity as a steerage passenger. Our breakfast was served rather earlier than that of the passengers above our level. One morning I finished breakfast, and hurried up to see my girl friends. They were promenading about and upon seeing me, said "Oh, how lucky you are. You eat at the first table, we haven't been called yet, and what did they serve for breakfast this morning?" I answered "Oh, the usual, eggs and bacon, cereal, hot cakes, etc. - you know" which satisfied them.
There was a very nice young man whom I met. He was slightly older than me. We liked each other. Presently he met a very attractive young widow or divorcee, who knows? We three then promenaded except that at night he after a while began sleeping in her stateroom, which she had alone.
Halloween was coming and it was announced that a dance would be held and an evening luncheon. My new friend said, "why don't you join us at the dance?" I told him that I was afraid I would be recognized as a steerage passenger and be ordered out. "However", I told him, "if your girl friend will lend me some of her clothes I will dress up as a girl and go to the dance." They thought this was great, so we went to her stateroom, where she chose me an outfit. For shoes I wore a pair of slippers and over my hair she fitted a sort of boudoir cap which she had. After applying plenty of powder, rouge and lipstick, of which she had a supply as well as a generous stuffing of my bosom with odds and ends of sox, handkerchiefs and light underwear. I was soon to become the belle of the ball.
I was gently escorted by my friend and minced along with short dainty steps. Upon entering the dance hall, all eyes were turned on me, the men smiling and the women scowling. This was in 1915 and at that time any woman who dressed and acted as I did could be nothing else but a prostitute. No wonder the men smiled and the women frowned.
When the dance music started my friend and I started to dance in a very vulgar and wanton fashion. This horrified a couple of old ladies, who openly showed their disgust. They retired early. When lunch was served I had my full share, as well as considerable beer. The party was over and everyone leaving when a young man approached me and said "We have enjoyed seeing you and would like you and your friends to join a party of us at my stateroom for some more beer and music. This was really fun. We stayed up very late and watched the sister ship pass us on the way to Seattle. I think one ship was the Governor, the other had a similar name.
Upon reaching S.F. we lost track of our lady friend, but I kept track of the boy. It was necessary to see Dean Roberts friend who ran the hotel, so I found him, presented my letter of introduction and was registered at a $5.00 room, which about killed me. The next day I checked out saying I had been invited to stay with friends. Then meeting my friend again we explored the area then known as the Barbary Coast. This was much more fun and excitement than a respectable hotel up town. About the Barbary Coast were numerous extremely cheap hotel rooms at about 50¢ per night. The street which housed most of the prostitutes was called Bartlett's Alley. It was half alley - half street, with a series of doors, having very dim lighting. We would walk to a door and knock. Presently the door would open a crack. Next the chain would be unhooked and we entered. The mistress was usually a fat elderly homely woman.
As we entered a group of girls who were seated around the room, got to their feet and ogled us. They were dressed very scantily and were well powdered and rouged such as I had been on the steamer. To my astonishment some of these girls would stick their tongues out and vibrate them exactly as I had seen in snakes. It sort of fascinated me. I learned later the meaning of this. My friend and I studied each girl carefully, pretended to consult together and then shaking our heads we left to try the whorehouse next door.
This was most entertaining and we could spend the whole evening in this fashion. Upon one occasion we entered a public dance hall having a variety of girls who would dance with you for a small fee. I was attracted to one of these girls who was very young, petite and beautiful. I felt quite badly that such a beautiful girl should be in such a place, and tried to persuade her that she should not be there, but at home preparing for a better life than the one she was entering. What I said had no effect whatever, in fact she did not seem to understand what I was talking about. I felt sad that such beauty would so soon be destroyed. My friend and I spent considerable time exploring San Francisco - went to Golden Gate Park and of course a lot of time at the World's Fair. The famous Temple like building designed by the very famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright is still standing in S.F. It was originally made of plaster for the sake of economy, but was so beautiful that the original plaster was replaced by cement and the building is now a permanent monument.
After a week never to be forgotten, the 300 from the U. of W. arrived with the football team coached by Gilmore Doby who had never lost a game at U of W for 7 years, and then was fired for using language unbecoming a gentleman to the football team, when they failed to perform as he dictated.
We all went across the bay by ferry to U. of Cal. and as expected beat them 72 to 0.
However, in a later return game they nearly beat us and we only saved ourselves by a very small score in the last quarter.
They said it was overconfidence. Doby gave them plenty of hell after that. The rest of the trip was unexciting. Many of the students were disgusted because the entire steerage hold was cleaned up and turned over to the students for sleeping, with the rest of the ship free to them. (No steerage passengers were taken on that trip. The students also were served their meals with linen and service in the steerage area. Of course they got the advantage of the very low cost passage which meant little to those who had rich parents.
At U of W, our big football game was against Wash. State from Pullman. That was always held on Thanksgiving day. To celebrate the event the entire student body was supposed to turn out the night before and have the "Nightshirt Parade." Student sore masks or costumes but most did not dress up. I decided to have some fun so I called on Alice, my brother Carew's wife and asked to borrow some clothes for a costume. She made me up beautifully. I borrowed a lovely skirt of bright colors, a fancy blouse and jacket. I was able to wear her shoes. She then fastened a hair switch on my head which came over my forehead and ears. I was finished off with a most elegant wide brimmed hat well ornamented, as well as the usual eyebrow, lipstick and face makeup. After a close shave I looked elegant.
The parade started at 2nd and Pike St. and I was the center of all eyes. Incidentally I won first prize for costume, which was a photo of me in dress. I never did collect my prize. It was too hard to reconstruct.
After the parade was over the gang decided to go to a movie theatre, without paying, of course. A mob of us crowded in and sat down. However my elegant hat was blocking the view from people behind who began to complain, ordering me to take off the hat. I could not do this without exposing myself, so I got up and left.
Up the street several blocks was a near beer tavern. Prohibition had gone into effect. When I walked into the near beer tavern a waiter very politely met me and escorted me to a table where two ladies were sitting with soft drinks. They looked at me very curiously when I ordered beer, which meant near beer. I saw there would be no fun sitting with them, so I moved to a vacant table. Presently a young man sitting nearby came over and asked if he could join me. I nodded and he ordered another beer for me. He moved closer and soon was working his hand down too far. I had to stop this, but then in came a policeman to look the joint over. He said nothing and started toward the door. I jumped up, ran to him and said, "I am one of the college men, will you get me out of here." I then returned to my seat by the young man. The policeman hesitated a little as if thinking the situation over. He realized that all thought I was a woman. He then returned, took my arm and said "you haven't got the sense that God gave to geese, come along." I said "Please, officer, please!" and he led me out.
The guy who had been sitting with me had already moved away to another seat. When we got outside the man started to laugh. He said "they will be all stirred up about this, expecting a raid."
I went on to another very high toned tavern on 4th Ave. about Pike St. It was crowded but the first thing I had to do was go to the toilet. I walked into the men's and a man rushed over and said "you can't come in here, it is the men's." I said "I know that," and proceeded to pull up my skirts. There was some excitement for a minute. Then the man said "are you with a party?" I explained that I was alone, so he invited me to join his party of 3 couples. This was fun. They bought lots of near beer which had a small fraction of alcohol.
After an hour or so I had to go to the bathroom again. I asked my friend which one I should use. He dared me to go into the ladies' which I promptly did. There was a little colored girl looking after things. There were no men's urinals so I had to squat like a girl. However the stool was enclosed so the girl did not catch on. I washed my hands, let her brush me, but did not take off my hat. Upon returning to my party, they decided to go home as it was getting late. They bid me goodbye and left. A moment later two men joined me from another table. One of them said "you have cost me a dollar." We were wondering whether you were man or woman. I bet him you were a woman and when you went into the ladies toilet I gave in and paid him. Now I know you are a man. We drank more near beer, they treated. The place was closing so we left and they took me to a private club. There were locked doors and identification had to be given. The only thing that I remember about that place was the big husky man in charge of things. He had been hit in the eye, blackening it, and had a big fat blood filled leech hanging from below his eye. It was the only time I have seen a leech in action. It looked like a slug.