Saturday, September 14, 2002
Steamboat Springs Dear Friends Halden,
I've already told of events up through the summer of 1936, including Frances' marriage to Elmer Dorr the Big Creek Association range rider.
Dorothy's health not good through September collapsed with pneumonia during October. Dorothy required constant around the clock nursing care. Frances helped a lot, but the strain was still more than I could handle. "Mother" Whitecotton, an old time practical nurse, Viola Stonebrink, a neighbor girl, and Blanch Janek, a registered nurse and new mail order bride of our neighbor, Joe Janek, were hired by turns to "spell me off." Without their help I'm sure we could never have made it.
Dr. Willett came to the ranch as often as three times per day to care for Dorothy with measures as extreme as "tapping" one lung through her back. Dr. said that her condition was far too frail to attempt removal to the hospital. Her condition gradually improved to the extent that we brought her home to the ranch in time for Christmas.
Dr. Willett said the best medicine for Dorothy at this stage of her convalescence would be a couple months of southern Arizona sunshine. So, Fred began shopping for an enclosed family automobile; (a long winter trip in our 1925 Dodge touring car was definitely out of the question).
In 1925, when Fred had decided to trade the 1917 Henry Wagon Model T in on something more substantial, I insisted on the touring car, as I had ridden in but a couple enclosed autos and both times had made me car sick.
Well, after buying the '25 touring car, I have ridden in a number of enclosed autos and have never been car sick again. It was still '36 when Fred began car shopping but he found a '37 Dodge enclosed sedan, which was being offered at quite a discount as it had been used as a demonstrator, and had considerable mileage behind it.
Mr. Stukey commented: "What a shame to have such fine new automobile, and not have a bridge across Elk River so that you could drive between your house and town anytime you wanted to. Why don't you buy the old Sarvis Mill from me, and use all those 36 inch beams to bridge four spans between rock filled cribs? "Elmer was already planning to take care of the ranch in our absence, he said, "I've done some bridge building with Dad Wren. I'd sure like to build this one." More later,