Carolyn Gay Taft Farm Letters - Transcribed letters from 1939

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Carolyn Gay Taft Farm Letters - Transcribed letters from 1939


Old Mission Peninsula (Mich.)
Crops and climate


Carolyn Gay Taft (1873-1952), was the owner of a small cherry farm on Old Mission Peninsula in the early 1900’s. While she spent her summers on the Peninsula, her primary job as a teacher at the Illinois
State School for the Deaf required hired hands to run the farm in her absence. These farmers, and their families, lived on the farm and sent frequent written reports to Ms. Taft. Most letters are written by the
farmer’s wives, and provide a record of both
agricultural and social history.


Ralph Kitchen, Joseph Kitchen, Essie Kitchen, Max Gilmore, Hazel Gilmore


Collection donated to Peninsula Community Library by the surviving members of the Taft family.


Peninsula Community Library




Mary T Morgan


This document is protected by copyright law. Contact the Peninsula Community Library for permission to reproduce, display, or transmit this document.










LHC 010


Traverse City, Peninsula Township, Grand Traverse County, Michigan

PDF Text


[January 17, 1939]
to Miss Taft
We enjoyed your letter and the paper come in handy. [is] I was all out. we only go to town twice a Month one get out.
We have a little skif of snow again. Max is cutting up some wood. Max went to town hall to one of there cherry meeting. and only got a good cold out of it
the Hall was so cold. There going to take 1/8 cent out of grower's for advertising. was the main. talk. of course Mr. Ball

ing held floor most of time. which make
one bail.
The electric [man] was around seeing how much juice you were going to use. I told might use quite a lot if we got a chance
to use it. They have fired the engineer so might get some place [know] He wanted to wire a lot of counrty that wouldn't
be a paying game.
Ronald had a letter from Alberta. He has been home sick with a cold. All the animals are well. Ronald got this lone
ranger pen from Gertrude Crampton for xmas and it writes pretty good.
There isn't much new's around.
I. understand Essie Kitchen fell twice and hurt her self quite Much. I suppose she so round she roll's. ha ha.
There a new home being build on [pensulin] street again. by bay side. that will soon be full in there. So you will only see the bay inbetween the houses.
the bay inbetween the houses.
I am making the other set of arm [?] back decorating for my chair. like set on my davenport
I guess that all I can think of
Max and Hazel

[February 14, 1939]
To Miss Taft
We had a bad storm we havent been out with car for four days. So terribe icey,
a cold wind. There haveing a time in T.C. about advertising cherrys. Mr. Roger's was elected president for it in Grand Rapids on Lansing. Ever one was mad that he was. So no-body signed up to spend 1/8 of cent for advertising
Mr. Roger was wondering why. So Mr. Spruit told them No-body like Roger's for one thing. sending a clipping from Grand Rapids press that might be of interest
you. Mr Hooper said Mr Roger seem to know what was going on at the town Hall
meeting the farmers have been haveing. Everone thinks Mr. Frank. Phelps has keep Mr Rogers informed of meetings. Max say he can't see why you won't have a good drive way. Since put clay on last fall. with a packing down. We havent
been any where this winter either. I havent been to a show since LuBelle was here. Thay keep wanting use to come to card partys. all time So we at last give in a went. We have went to two and you'llsee by paper where I intertained once.
We had three table's of five hundred. Were buy four prized one don't want have
[?]only once. Thay. have a big skating rink at Ogdensburg school. Max and Ronald are skating quite a lot. Ronald is just learning, and Max is just getting back in practice again. that just. picked up some old clamp skates. I guess must go and tend my sunday dinner. of making dumplings.
Max & Hazel

To Miss Taft
Are weather has been plenty cold and stormy., Max started after Ronald at school and could not get out. with the car, and is still blowing hard and snowing.
I am invited to a stork shower for Mrs Robert Helfrich (Edith Berry) and was to one for Mrs Henry Kitchen last week. There coming to thick, ever week. I feel like what I heard will Marshall said to his wife. I can't cloth all the babys in the country. Max say he wouldn't be surprised we had a new milch cow in morning- Daisy isn't doing very good she only milk about 4 quarts a day. she has a touchy appicate, she won't eat [oil] of meal at all. Max has been trying get her to eat clear bran. and she won't touch that. I suppose she think there oil of meal in it.
Mrs. Lardie is still among living. that say it kind looks if Mrs Mills will
be first to go. she looks bad. I suppose its a terrible care.
Thay live on front street. But I havent visited (over) yet. Thay say it a terrible sight to see Mrs Lardie. so helpless. Mrs Sanford went to see her and she said she was just on her mind for day's.
There some talk that the packing co won't run this year. Thay had a big meeting for different people. that had big orchards Mr Spruit, & Mr Hooper attended.
It look rather doughtful if they will get electricity. Still working on it.
I am making a lace scarf for My buffet I don't know if I'll get it done this year or not.
Max is working on some of tools geting them ready for spring. There isn't much
new ever one pretty quiet it so cold and stormy. So I must close and here Major Bowles
Max & Hazel & Sonny.

Friday morning

Miss Taft.
We are haveing nice sunny days again. We had quite a snow fall this month.
Max is pruneing the little orchard Max says the sweet clover was up about 1 inch last fall.
I always thought Oakley was half asleep.
There lots of farmhouses that not satified with. report they got. with [cover]
crops & so forth. your stationary was very pretty. Never seen blue before. Its a cherrieful as the giver.
There is lots of sickness. Ronald only went to school one day last week.
My sister Mrs Tony Dahm is ordered to bed for a month. She has a poisoning of the blood. that very hard on heart. caused from streps throat.
one sister boy has pneumonia.
Surprise cow has a new heifer calf. Ronald has Christened it Lou Bell[e?].
Thay thought it was a boy for day, and he named it Pat [Puttra???], but
changes yes Mr. & Mrs Elmer Crampton have bought or bargained for her home place.
the 20 acres & building. I understand $4,500 No tools, thay are living up there. the house on the 17 acres is for rent. Thay had started to put in a bath room.
Had the stool in. waiting for the tub. to come. Mr Stevens. will be farmer
what ever he says goes, with the Crampton's Mr [???} Chase. is working the
20 acres on shares. and the 36 and 17 acres Mr Jhon Langworthy is working by the day. Mr Zang is working Meadow on crop share of corn. Thay sure have a big debt on there hand's th[is] time. But I guess that the only way a poor man get any where. were sorry we di[dn't] take the Russell place. But know use crying over spilt milk. I guess.
There an other new house going up on pensulia Street by bay. a big one. you won't be able see the bay only between house any more. Sincerely

[March 25, 1939]
Well I guess spring is here. At least the birds are. and the snow going. and it looks like rain to-day Saturday . March 25. The radio said it was raining in Chicago. Max is pruneing still. We though for a while we were going to have a lake again. The cellar been flooded all week. I guess thay. dident get very
far with there meeting at packing co. this week. just argued back and forth at
one and other.
Ronald is sick with a bad cold. The Cherrys is sure budded heavy if nothing
happens to them. There isn't much new's around even one been waiting for spring
to come. there lots of sickness in the neighbor-hood. flu.
We found out Daisy Cow had big lice. on her. Max got some powder the last time
he was to town. Bell has a swelling on her leg. Max has been Doctoring. she isent lame on it yet. Max was over to your cottage the other day. he said that it looked as if nothing had been touched he dident go in side at all.
We have one baby in hollow already th ] other one coming in April. Mrs Kitchen.
We are going to town to-day we haven been to town on Saturday for a long time
I am going to get some green vegtables so to whet my family appitate up. little
Ronald has a spell of not eating again. if he don't pick up I'll have to take
him to the Dr. He eat scarcely. anything. I guess that all the new's I can think of
Max & Family
P.S. Max has got tract of seed corn. But has[?] went to look at it yet

[April 13, 1939]
April 13,1939
To Miss Taft
Are weather is very changeable. it is snowing to-day a very wet snow. Max has been picking up brush the warm day. I think you jumped a conculisions on the daisey cow. she had cattle lice. thay are as big a the end of your little finger. several in vicinity said that there cattle had lice this winter and did know where they. came from There all gone know. Max got some lice powder. she only had 1/2 dozen. Nothing get excited about. Do you mean you don't want
any chicken's on the place this year. your Friend Mr Oakley Lardie was down here. to see about the cover crops & so on.
The cherry grower's are still fighting back and forth. There a meeting for stock holder's this week. ever one says Mr Roger will go back in. Max got 1 bushel of shelled seed corn well I can finish my letter after being sick with the flu for a week and am not well yet My ear's are giving me lots of trouble. seemed to of settled there.
Mr Will G. Tompkins is courting wife no 2. a woman he met in Florida. Mrs Cora Stevens is keeping house there and she real mad to think he would bring an other there. The packing co is have it hot & [????] thay want ever one to take the loss of there stock. The two Tompkins have 4,000 in stock and said weren't going to lose with a fight for it. We have the Easter [baley?] at our house Daisey cow gave birth to a boy calf. Easter the ground is covered with snow. and its very cold. Max has all the brush nearly burn't Ronald recieved the funny papers
thank a kot he enjoyed them he sick again I guess that all the new's
Sincerely. Max

To Miss Taft
Well I believe spring is here with ever thing to do at once. Its came out so
warm everthing is just popping I am getting up from have the flu again, I have been sick for over a week. Its a good thing I have to write because I am so hoarse I can hardly talk above a whisper. Max is thru spraying. and disc.
Sept 1 Check of $5.00
Gas. 5 gal 1.00
telegram Mr. Hortsman .30
Welding disc .40
paint Kitchen 1.79
Labor hay hauling 1.50 Mr/ Curt Gilmore
I guess this letter have to be kind of short. Mrs Henry Kitchen has a
baby. I am sorry to hear Miss Berkley isent going to be with you. Mrs Nills[?]
has Mrs Lardie boarding out at Mrs Hannah at Bates. I guess she all played out with winter work takeing care of her. Are school out May 19.
I guess that all I can think of. With my head acheing. and coughting all the time.
Hope you are well.
Max, & Family

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