My Father and Mother came to Oklahoma in 1889, from the small town of Cummingsvilie, near Atchison, Kansas. They came in three covered wagons, with five of their twelve children. Nora died very young. They were too late for the first run in the Indian Territory, so they camped on their daughter, and son in law's place, not far from Stillwater, Okla. I was just a baby and don't know, but it seems it was two years before the second run---so Dad farmed and worked for other people until the time for the next run. The daughter's name was Effie and she was married to Ike Graham. Effie was born Dec.17, 1863 and died May 7, 1895. They had two sons, Warren and Howard.
The place he got in the second run was not so good, as all of the best land had already been taken. He and the boys built a dug out first of all, where we lived while they were building the log cabin. The boys slept in the covered wagon. The cabin was built on the South end of the place, near a stream of water. This stream supplied us with all of the water needs for our family.
We raised good cotton the first year. I was only five years old at the time, and had started school On my way home from school one day, I noticed the pretty flowers and thought they were very pretty, so I gathered my pinafore (which I wore to school) full of the pretty flowers. I thought my Dad would be very proud of me, but when he saw them he said, "'Those flowers are what are going to make us some money!" So I learned that day the difference between cotton blooms and flowers!
We kids, my four brothers and I, started to school in a little one room, log schoolhouse. that had one great big door. One day we had a lot of excitement when a man came by chasing a cow with his dogs. The poor scared cow van right in through the open school house door. Talk about kids scattering! I'm sure it took the teacher a long time to get everyone calmed down enough to continue with their studies!
I was about fourteen years old when we got a new school house. It was nice. This was where we not only attended school, but was also the Community Meeting Place. We had our Sunday School and Church here, which was our biggest recreation. There were Sunday School Picnics, and always we had a great big dinner on the last day of school. As long as we lived there, my Dad was the superintendent of the Sunday School.
On the old home placed. Dad put out apple trees, plums, peaches. Gooseberries and a big Grape vineyard. I think what it would be worth now. We gave away what Mother didn't can". People didn't have money, then.
My brothers learned to play instruments. One played the violin. One the guitar and one the mandolin so they played for all of the dances and anywhere they needed entertainment, so when I was about fourteen, I would get to go with then. Had fun too!
We had lots of friends. I worked away from home, supported myself very well. Nannie (my older sister) lived in Sapulpa, so I would go down there and work. Mother had Ola and Della late in life, so they were still at home.
My brother, Jim, came home from Kansas in 1896 and fell in love with one of the prettiest girls in the country. Her name was Bessie Colson He married her, which was against her father's wishes, for she kept house for her father and brothers. They lived on part of the old home place for awhile. Bessie died when their daughter, Leone, was nine months old, so we kept her in our home until she was nine years old. Jim married again to another pretty girl, Mary Clover. They had one daughter, Dorothy.
Tolbert married Jessie Sires. They had two daughters. Gladys and Lovey. Both died young.
John never came to Oklahoma to live. He married Bertha Swenson and moved to Holly, Colorado, where they lived the rest of their lives. Their children were: Lucy, Alice, Leona, James and John.
George married ElIa Dawson. They had two boys; George and Basil. George was killed by a train at the age of 38.
Jerry married Margaret Vantine. They had one boy, Jack. Margret died when Jack was about three years old, so Jack lived with Mother and Dad for awhile.
(At one time, several years before my Mom, Josie, died, I asked her why Raymond's last name was Adkins, and this is what she told me) Mom said that Nannie had married a man and they lived several miles from grandpa and grandma's. The man was evidently very mean to Nannie. Mom said she remembered the day that she went with Grandpa to get Nannie and bring her home. They, of course, went in the wagon. Anyhow, Raymond was born in 1895, when Nannie was about 21 years old. Grandpa and Grandma Adkins took care of them, especially Raymond, for many years.
Nannie marred Bob Rootand moved to Sapulpa. I stayed with them and worked as a telephone operator in the Young Building there. I met Charley on one of those trips. In fact, my friend and I were going to a dance and my friends aunt told us that Charley Barnett was going to be there and for us to not dance with him! Well, he was such a good dancer, that of course I danced with hi Charlie's (friend?) ran to my friend's aunt and told her that I had danced with Charley and she was very angry. In fact, my friend went back home the next day!!! I never did know what she had against Charley, other than the fact that he was good looking and a good dancer!!!
Raymond married Lucille Bruin. Raymond and I were always awfully close. They had one daughter, Bonnie Jean Adkins. She married Wayne Smart, and they had one son, Butch Raymond Wayne.
Now, more about the pinafore days. The only money we had was in the fall when we sold the cotton and Dad would go with the thrashing crew. We always had a big garden.
Mother would put up kraut in a barrel and pickles, too. We dried beans, pumpkin and corn. Talk about a hard job! Jerry, Raymond and I had to spread sheets on top of the shed room, and we would put the peaches and apples up there to dry. Took three days in the sun, so if rain came up-----boy, we did have to hurry up there and get them in the house. Then when the shower was over, up we would go, and every peach had to be turned up right. We sure were glad when this job was over. But with all the work, we had lots fun.
Dad had a man and his family come to break the ground. He had eight pairs of oxen! He also had a big plow. They had some children about our age, so we had fun in the evenings.
Now, I will tell you how we dried pumpkin. We would cut the end out, so we could clean the insides out; then cut it in round pieces about one inch wide. We would then hang it over a pole, which Dad had fixed. I can't remember how long it took to dry, but I do know it had to be brought in, if it rained. When it was dry, it was put in clean, white sacks and they put something in it to keep the bugs out. It was just like fresh pumpkin, when cooked.
Dad always raised pop corn and peanuts, so we had popcorn and roasted peanut parties in the winter. Yes, and Dad and Jim made sorghum The last batch was made into 'taffy'. Then all of the young folks in the country would come for the taffy pulling. I was most too young to join in on that, but of course I got to eat some and all of the kids had lots of fun.
When Raymond was about three years old, he walked into a mound of hot ashes, where they had cleaned out the fire place, and of course doctors were few and far apart, so what they did was to wrap his feet and legs in linseed oil and he never even had a scar!! He also broke his leg on the cellar door after that, and Dad and a school teacher set it and it was as straight as could be.
Dad raised corn. to feed his horses, milk cows and hogs. He always raised hog for meat, and we always had good meat, sausage and lard and Mother would make mince meat, too. One thing, we never went hungry. Mother made her soap, after the lard was made.
I remember one time, in particular, but several times while I was at home, outlaws would come in the middle of the night, and Mother would get up and cook them something to eat and Dad would take their horses and feed them. I was always scared, but they never did anything to any of us.
You could kill a deer most anytime you wanted one. George was the hunter and trapper in the family. I would go with him to his quail traps and sometimes he would have as many as thirty in one trap, He would pull their heads off and I would hold them for him. (I didn't like this part, at all!)
I don't know what else I can say----only that we had the best parents, or as good, as any kid ever had! Our home was a Christian home and we all respected our parents.
We moved to Sapulpa in 1913. The boys worked in the oil fields and Mother kept boarders. Ola and Della were were about grown then and on June 1,1913, Charley and I were married. June 9,1914, Mary Jo entered the world and startled us by having red hair and blue eyes!! We kept her anyway. Then Ada, Jones and Lucy were born while we lived in Sapulpa, and Naomi was born in 1927, after we had moved to Kinta, Oklahoma. I'm sure you know the rest. We had some hard times, but all in all it was and still is a good life!!
Dad split rails to fence his 160 acres, with the help of the boys. After the section lines were run, be moved the log cabin close to the road and dug a well. We didn't know it was hard times, but looking back I can't see how they did everything they did and never complained. Always thanked God for everything. I can't remember eating a meal while at home, without Dad giving Thanks.
There's no way to try and tell what Mother did. Sewing for all of us, cooking, washing and ironing, canning, making garden----every thing!
Christmas was a happy time. (Not like you celebrate now). But we kids hung our stockings up. Candy, an orange, apple and some nuts, and one toy would be in them. We always had big Christmas Trees and parties at the school at Christmas. One time I saw this doll on the tree, but knew it wouldn't be mine---but it WAS. One of the boys had bought me a doll!! One of the boys, when he was about 10 years old, got wise to Santa and let it be known to Ola, so I won't say what was in HIS socks on Christmas morning.
Money was scarce, but good times were plentifull. We walked went in wagons or buggies. Finally we had bicycles. We lived on the old place for sixteen years, then moved on a prairie place (the old Dilly Place) where we lived until moving to Sapulpa in 1913.
Now I've come from covered wagon days to airplanes. It's been an interesting age of time. Just can't imagine what my grandchildren and great grandchildren will see in the next eighty years!!
Written in longhand by Josie Adkins Barnett
Mom wrote this about 1969. She lived to see many more of the inventions, rockets, etc. She lived a full and happy life and as she said of HER folks, there just couldn't have been better parents than my Mom and Dad, Charley and Josie Barnett.
Naomi Barnett Boggs