From the 1800s to the present, the anecdotes in this diverse collection both entertain and educate. Written with clear and distinct voices, the narratives share "top gun" tales from World War I and II and the Korean War, tell of Old West ranch experiences, and report on a one-of-kind journey in the late 1800s with 900 sheep from New Mexico to Alaska's gold fields.
Compiled from a variety of writers by Jeanne Wilkins Wilde, author of Lavinia, the selections provide a unique glimpse into both the past and the present. Many of the writers have since passed away, but through Tell Me About ... their stories live on.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.74(d)|
About the Author
Read an Excerpt
Tell Me About ...A Collection of Memoirs
By Jeanne Wilkins Wilde
iUniverse, Inc.Copyright © 2009 Jeanne Wilkins Wilde
All right reserved.
Chapter OneDIARY OF SI DAWSON
April 19, 1898 - August 28, 1898
Near the end of the nineteenth century, the Dawson family of New Mexico decided to take meat on the hoof, in the form of some 900 sheep to the gold fields of the Klondike in Alaska. Fresh meat was hard to come by for the miners, and they were willing to pay premium prices for the animals. Gus, Si and Manley are three of the Dawson brothers (and cousins of mine) who led the expedition. Si Dawson recorded the odyssey in the following copy of his diary.
April 19, 1898, TUESDAY AT CATSKILL.
We stopped at Hicks Camp on the Caliente and ate a lunch which we had with us. We arrived here at 5:00 PM and put horses in William Butler's corral and fed them baled straw. It rained a little this afternoon and it has been cloudy all day. We cooked supper in Dick Butler's cabin. We have twenty-one head of horses with us, which we intend to take to the Klondike, named as follows: Dutch, Ephriam, Brown Dick, Dime, Bootjack, Utah, Ingeniero, Pomp, Rufus, Lemon, Rip, Billy XO, Roan Joe, Peacock, Fistle, Reese, Tige, Button, Popgun, Yellow Buck LT and Sintosch. Charles Scott is with us and is going to take thewagon and team back to the ranch. We have Brick and Loon hitched to the wagon.
APRIL 20, 1898 WEDNESDAY AT TRINIDAD.
We arrived here at 4:30 PM and put the horses in the Atcheson Topeka and Santa Fe stockyards. Albert Green came to us (from the ranch) at the head of Longs Canyon this morning just after we left Catskill, with a note from Pa saying Gus had wired for us to wait until he wired us.
APRIL 23, 1898 SATURDAY AT GRAND JUNCTION, COLORADO.
We arrived here at 9:30 AM and unloaded and fed the horses. We expect to leave here at 11:30 tonight. It was quite cold as we came over the Tennessee Pass last night. There was about six inches of snow, but here it is sultry and hot. Our horses look all right but seem to be tired. Jack Rhodes, Sam Lincoln and Jeff England passed us here this AM. They missed their train in Pueblo and didn't leave there until 10:55 last night. We will go over the Rio Grande Northern Railroad from here. I wrote to Lucy today.
APRIL 24, 1898 SUNDAY NEAR SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH.
We have had a good run so far, but we shall not stop to feed until we get to Pocatello, Idaho. We are now in the Salt Lake valley, and it is a beautiful country. We expect to get to Salt Lake City at 11:30 PM where we will change railroads and go over the Oregon Shortline. I have a hard cold and am taking some gromoquinine. It has been a nice day with the exception of wind. Manley and I sat on the caboose and shot at prairie dogs with Winchesters all day.
APRIL 25, 1898 MONDAY AT POCATELLO, IDAHO
We arrived here at 2:30 PM and unloaded and fed the horses. We then ate dinner and then slept all afternoon. We are at the Pocatello House. We got to Salt Lake at 12:00 midnight and left there at 1:30 last night. Our horses are standing the trip all right. It is awfully hot weather here. We expect to leave here at 7:30 PM. I wired Gus that we're here and would leave tomorrow. Manley and I are tired and sleepy as we did not get much sleep or rest on the train.
APRIL 26, 1898 TUESDAY AT POCATELLO, IDAHO.
Manley and I slept most of the day. We went down to the stockyards and attended to our horses twice today. We expect to leave here about 9:00 PM. The wind has been blowing hard from the west all day. I wrote to Lucy this morning. This seems to be a dry and barren country.
APRIL 27, 1898 WEDNESDAY ON THE TRAIN AT HUNTINGTON, OREGON.
We left Pocatello last evening at about 9:30 and arrived here about 7:00 PM. We are going on to Baker City, Oregon before we feed the horses. There is a man on the same train with us who has nine cars of cattle for a packing house at Portland. He loaded them at a little switch up the road this PM. There is also a man on the train who has a car of fine cattle from Iowa. He lives in Baker City. This has been a warm day. We all had supper here at a restaurant.
APRIL 28, 1898 THURSDAY AT BAKER CITY, OREGON.
Manley and I slept most all day. We are stopping at a hotel and restaurant combined. We expect to leave here about 10:00 tonight. This is a nice town of about 4,500 inhabitants. This has been a warm day with some wind from the west and south. I wrote to Lucy this PM.
APRIL 29, 1898 FRIDAY ON THE TRAIN AT THE DALLES, OREGON.
We have had a slow run today through a dusty, or rather sandy, country, and the weather has been hot with a stiff breeze blowing from the southwest all afternoon. We arrived here about 10:00 PM and got supper but we are going on to Portland before feeding. We expect to get there tomorrow AM. We are just leaving here at 11:00 AM. We changed cabooses here.
APRIL 30, 1898 SATURDAY AT PORTLAND, OREGON.
We arrive here at 7:30 AM and unloaded and fed and are just leaving here for Seattle at 9:30 PM. Our horses are looking good and seem strong. We had some trouble here with the railroad company about freight. Manley finally paid them the freight here $250.00, and they gave us another car. We are going over the Northern Pacific Railroad from here to Seattle. We came over the Denver and Rio Grande and Oregon Shortline and O.R. & N. This has been a warm, still day. I went out to the racetrack where soldiers were camped this PM. I wrote to Lucy.
MAY 1, 1898 SUNDAY AT SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.
We arrived here at 2:00 PM and found Gus and Jack Rhodes waiting for us at the stockyards. This has been a nice day. Our horses are in nice condition. We did not get any dinner or breakfast until we arrived here. We stopped about an hour and a half at Tacoma, but there was no place near the depot where we could eat, and we expected to leave every minute. Sam Lincoln is working here in a livery stable at $2.00 a day. I found three letters here from Lucy, and I wrote to her this evening.
MAY 2, 1898 MONDAY AT SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.
Today we bought our hardware, etc. We met Mr. Henry Roberds today and he seemed glad to see us and took us down on the boat he is going north on and showed us his outfit. He is going to Kotzebue and his boat is named Bering Sea. I wrote to Lucy today. Mrs. Lacy and daughter Lucy are living here so Gus says. This has been a nice day. We were down and looked at the Japanese merchant vessel named Yamaguchi Maru.
MAY 3, 1898 TUESDAY AT SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.
Today we began shoeing the horses and shod five head I think. Manley and Jeff England did most of the shoeing. Sam Lincoln is still working in the livery stable or rather a transfer stable. Gus has bought six goats (Angora) and has a boy taking care of them here. Jack Rhodes and Jeff have two vacant rooms rented up town, and I sleep with Jeff in his camp bed. Manley sleeps with Gus at the Hotel Stevens. It has been very warm today. We have decided to go down the Yukon River with Mr. Fearon and his party instead of over Dalton Trail. I read a letter from Lucy and answered same.
MAY 4, 1898 WEDNESDAY AT SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.
We shod the horses again today and now have fifteen head of them shod. It has been very warm today. It is pretty hard to get shoes here that are small enough for our horses. Manley went out to Ellensburg this afternoon to stay until time to bring in the sheep. Our boat, Columbia, is anchored out in the bay but has not begun to load yet.
MAY 5, 1898 THURSDAY AT SEATTLE.
We have now shod all the horses except two, Roan Joe and Reese, and we expect to sell one of them as we have one horse too many. We have engaged room on board the vessel for only 20 head. Today has been cloudy and cool and a breeze from the west. We have had very little trouble in shoeing the horses. Gus, Jack Rhodes and Jeff went up and got six goats and took them down and put them in with the horses at the stockyards.
MAY 6, 1898 FRIDAY AT SEATTLE.
I tried to sell Reese today and had Jeff lead him up to the horse market, but I was only offered $10.00 for him. However some parties offered to trade other horses for him but would not give me what I wanted for him. Today has been nice and warm. Our boat is now anchored at the lumber dock where she is to have pens and stalls put in for the horses and sheep. Our horse, Dutch, is sick, and Jeff and I went down and gave him some soda but it didn't seem to relieve him. I wrote to Lucy.
MAY 7, 1898 SATURDAY AT SEATTLE.
Gus, Jack Rhoades, Henry Roberds and I went down yesterday and examined our boat, and today Gus and I went down and watched the carpenters work on the sheep pens and horse stalls which they are putting on the second deck, and from all appearances our stock will have lots of room. I also walked down on the logs floating in the water at the saw mill and watched some Japanese boys fishing. Today has been nice and warm. Mr. Churton came here yesterday from Victoria with a letter of introduction from Mr. Fearon to Gus. Mr. Churton is to be our tanner. Henry Roberds and I went to see the Georgia Minstrels last evening.
MAY 8, 1898 SUNDAY AT SEATTLE.
I stayed at the hotel most all day this PM. I went to Jack and Sam's room and slept about two hours. Gus and Jack went to the Methodist Church this AM, and he, Jack, and Henry Roberds and Jeff England have gone to some place this evening. The gunboat Wheeling arrived here today from Alaska. Henry Roberds and Sam Lincoln and I walked down and visited our boat Columbia this AM for a few minutes. Today has been moderately warm.
MAY 9, 1898 MONDAY AT SEATTLE.
Our boat Columbia has anchored at Arlington docks and is about ready to take on cargo. I telegraphed Lucy that we would leave here the 15th. Jack Rhodes and I went and called on Mrs. Lacy and Lucy this evening and stayed until 11:00. This has been a nice warm day. Our horses are improving every day. I am still sleeping here at the Hotel Stevens with Gus, and we all eat at the restaurants.
MAY 10, 1898 TUESDAY AT SEATTLE.
We all went down and looked at the boat Columbia. The carpenters have put in some good stalls for the horses and pens for the sheep on the second deck. There is to be one hundred head of cattle and twenty-five horses on top deck bound for Dawson City by way of Dalton Trail. I stayed at the hotel most of the day and wrote to Lucy. Jeff England sold our horse Reese to the stockyards man for $50.00, and he and Jack Rhodes shod Roan Joe. This has been a clear, warm day. Gus and Jeff England have gone to see the play called The Hired Girl.
MAY 11, 1898 WEDNESDAY AT SEATTLE.
Jeff and I went down to the stockyards this AM and put the old saddle on Rufus and Jeff rode him and carried the morrals, blankets and a few other little things up to the boys' room and put them with the outfit, and I brought up Manley's and my guns. We were all down and looked at the Columbia and met the man that is going to ship cattle and horses on her. All of our provisions are now down at the wharf. This has been a clear, warm day with a breeze from the west. I wrote to Lucy. Jack Rhodes and Jeff England, Churton and Henry Roberds have gone to see the play called The Hired Girl.
MAY 12, 1898 THURSDAY AT SEATTLE.
I stayed at the hotel most of the afternoon, and this PM. At 1:00 I was sitting in the office of the Hotel Stevens when Dave Collins walked into the barroom, and I went up to Jack Rhodes' room and got Gus. I then got a policeman and went back and had Collins arrested for jumping bond, which he is under in Colfax County, New Mexico, for killing Barney Clark. Manley arrived here at 9:00 PM from Ellensburg with the sheep, nine hundred head. Manley also brought a dog with him named Mike. This has been a nice warm day. Gus wired Marion Littrell to come to get Dave Collins.
MAY 13, 1898 FRIDAY AT SEATTLE.
Today we went down to the stockyards and looked at the sheep and saw that they had plenty of water and hay. Manley did not go up to see Dave Collins. This has been a warm day. Our sheep and horses are looking fine. We expect to begin loading stock Sunday. Hay and provisions are all on board.
MAY 14, 1898 SATURDAY AT SEATTLE.
We all went down to the stockyards this AM then came back and had Jeff England and Jeff Rhodes go and get some young onions and radishes, buttermilk, chipped beef, cold roast beef and mutton and took it up to the boys' room, and all us except Sam ate it. We did the same thing yesterday. We moved our beds, etc., onto the vessel this PM and are going to sleep there tonight. We are going to be on top of the cabin as it is cooler there. I received a long letter from Lucy and answered same.
MAY 15, 1898 SUNDAY AT SEATTLE.
We all got up at 4:00 AM and went down to breakfast and brought the sheep up, and after breakfast we loaded them on the vessel, Columbia. We had them all loaded at 8:45 AM. Then just after dinner we went to the stockyards and got the horses and began loading them at 2:00 PM and had finished at 4:00 PM. We drove the sheep on board and swung the horses on by steam power. Coffin Brothers expect to load stock tomorrow. It has been clear and warm today.
MAY 16, 1898 MONDAY AT SEATTLE.
Coffin Brothers loaded their cattle this PM and at 8:00 PM are loading their horses. One of their horses slipped out of the sling and fell through the hatchway and broke its back, and a policeman shot him. The next (a gray mare) fell off the wharf to a boat a half a mile away where they got her out on dry land and brought her back and put her on board ship. Today has been cool and cloudy. We expect to leave here at 12:00 tonight. I wrote to Lucy this PM. Henry Roberds and party are now going with us to Dawson City.
MAY 17, 1898 TUESDAY.
We are about a hundred miles from Seattle and moving along at the rate of about five miles an hour. We left Seattle at midnight last night. We stopped about an hour this AM at Port Townsend to get clearance papers. I was a little seasick this AM just after leaving Port Townsend but am all right now. We are in the Gulf of Georgia. It has been sprinkling rain nearly all day. Henry Roberds and his two friends, Ewing and Cherry, are aboard with us and are bound for the Klondike. We are in tow of the tug, Pioneer, and she is a good one.
MAY 18, 1898 WEDNESDAY.
We are now in the north end of the Gulf of Georgia and moving along at a good gait. We saw lots of black fish today. It has been cool and cloudy and has been raining some today. Everyone on board is in good spirits and our livestock is doing fine. I wrote some to Lucy today and will continue to write each day and mail the letter to her at the first opportunity.
MAY 19, 1898 THURSDAY.
We are now in smooth water and moving along at a good gait. I saw several porpoise and shot at one but did not hit it. The channel we are in is quite narrow averaging about three-fourths of a mile in width. On either side are high mountains covered, except on top, with thick timber. The tops are covered with snow. Our stock is doing fine. I wrote some more to Lucy today. It has been raining most all day.
MAY 20, 1898 FRIDAY.
Today we crossed Dickson's Entrance, and the water was rough with a hard wind blowing from the west. Mr. Cherry and Fred Rudys were quite sick. So was our and Mr. Rudys' dogs. It has been raining nearly all day and has been cool. I wrote some more to Lucy and we saw a whale today.
MAY 21, 1898 SATURDAY.
We have been in smooth water most all day. We had a little rain this morning, but it soon got clear and warm and stayed so the balance of the day. We arrived at Mary's Island at about noon and stopped for about an hour to get clearance papers. While we were waiting there a fellow came out to us with a sack of clams which he traded to our cook for a sack of flour. I mailed my letter to Lucy.
MAY 22, 1898 SUNDAY.
We came through Wrangell Straits this afternoon and are now in Frederick Sound and in plain view of Patterson and Baird Glaciers. The water is calm and smooth as glass. Today has been clear and warm. We saw a big whale this afternoon and a small one about noon. The scenery here is beautiful. I wrote some to Lucy today. We had clam chowder for dinner and clam fritters for supper, and they were splendid
Excerpted from Tell Me About ... by Jeanne Wilkins Wilde Copyright © 2009 by Jeanne Wilkins Wilde. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
ContentsDIARY OF SI DAWSON - SUMMER OF 1898....................1
MEMORIES OF MY LIFE - 1859 to 1932 By Ella M. Anway....................39
WE - 1958 By Jeanne Wilkins Wilde....................56
THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF FREDERICK LEE - 1864 to about the middle 1930's....................58
CUSTOM POETRY - 1950 to 2009 By Jeanne Wilkins Wilde....................87
THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MAUD TERHUNE HELWIG - mid 1840's to 1925....................101
THE DAWSON RANCH, COLORADO - 1900 to 1987 By Charles M. Wilkins....................120
PROJECT MATAPALO, "THE TURTLE PROJECT" - August, 2006 By Anne Wright....................132
A LETTER FROM LEO HENRY DAWSON TO HIS MOTHER, MAY 20, 1918....................140
COLOR ME ...? - 1938 to 2009 By Jeanne Wilkins Wilde....................144
MEMORIES - 1912 to 2003 By Paul Helwig....................146
AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF EDWENA WILKINS CARY - 1905 to about the mid 1940's....................192
AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF THOMAS EMMETT DAWSON - 1924 to 1998....................231
MEMORIES OF CHUCK - 1927 to 1950's By Mary B. Wilkins....................303
IRAN, 1978 By Jeanne Wilkins Wilde....................307