"Since flesh can't stay, we keep the breath aloft. Since flesh can't stay, we pass the words along." --Erica Jong

Friday, October 27, 2006

EVA PEARL WOLFE ~ 15 October, 1909 - 12 March, 1992

Personal Record of Eva Pearl (Wolfe) Hatton

I was born at home in Leonard, Colorado, October 15, 1909. My nine-year-old sister Josie, and my eight-year-old brother Ray, had been sent away from the house, and my sister said they were sitting outside betting on whether I would be a girl or a boy.

I was very spoiled. My mother had to work outside most of the time, and my sister had to take care of me. I remember once when she wanted to give me a bath in the tubs that we used then, and I wouldn't sit down, and I tore her dress badly, fighting with her to keep from sitting down.

The only bad disease I had that I can remember was scarlet fever. My mother and I were quarantined in a different house from the rest of the family for quite a long time. I think this disease caused me to lose my sense of smell and taste. I can only taste sweet, sour, salty, and bitter things...not flavorings like garlic or vanilla. I can only smell things like eucalyptus oil, mentholatum, etc....not roses, honeysuckle, or skunks. My father was William Ray Wolfe, born in Nebraska someplace. His father was Silas Wolfe. His mother was Matie Elta Eldredge (or Phillips). My mother was Grace Ellen Mow. They were both good looking. My mother had red hair...also my sister and I.

We lived in sawmill camps a lot. My father had to keep track of long lines of figures, and he could add these figures up in his head almost as fast as we can use an adding machine now.

They used to have dances, and we would dress up in homemade costumes, and try to fool everyone about who they were. Once my mother and a friend dressed alike and danced once with their husbands, and then went and changed dressed and fooled everyone.

My brother worked from when he was twelve or thirteen. In the winters we moved to town. Colona was one where I went to school. I had a friend who had a teeter-totter, and we would put our legs in our sweater sleeves, and pull it on to look like pants, and really ride the teeter-totter fast and high.

I was never self-conscious until one time my brother told me I was red-headed, freckle-faced, pug-nosed, knock-kneed, and bow-legged, and I cried and cried, and from then on I was always bashful and self-conscious.

We moved to California (Randsburg) and we lived about two miles out of town in a tunnel for quite a while. I had to walk to elementary school, and I was always afraid I would meet a donkey (some were in those hills), but I never did. I graduated from eighth grade in Randsburg, California, and started to high school in Lancaster, California. I lived in a girls dormatory, and I was the youngest one there. There was one boy who liked me, and he was one who had a car, and he would come up the street, and we always knew he was coming, his car roared so. He used to come at night. Also some other boys did, and the girls would slip out to meet them. I think the others necked a little, but I wouldn't even let him hold hands. If I saw him coming down the hall at school I would turn off so I would miss him. I liked him, but I was too bashful in those days. After a while he got disgusted and got another girl...and I don't blame him (looking back). About my last two years in high school I had a great big football player for a boyfriend, and he never had a decent car.

After I graduated Glen and I were married. Lauree(his sister) and my mother went with us to Los Angeles, and we found a minister who came to our hotel and married us.
(Note* That minister turned out to be Reverend Lloyd C. Douglas, who later became famous for his many novels, some of which were made into movies, ie: The Robe, Magnificent Obsession, The Big Fisherman and many others.) We went to a show that night named "How to Hold Your Husband." At first we rented a nice house. Later we bought a little two-room house, and moved another room on it for a bedroom. Gaylen was born while we lived in this house. We didn't have washers then, and I had to washlothes on the washboard in the kitchen sink. which was made of cement. Glen worked in the mines then, and we didn't have very much money. We played for dances. We didn't have a radio, but my sister did, and we bought a speaker and hooked it up so whenever they had music we did.

After a while, they took the train out of that district, and Glen got railroad ties and built us a really nice place. His uncle helped him. It had walls as thick as the ties, and was stuccoed outside, and was cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It had two bedrooms, a front room, kitchen, shower...and a big screen porch in front. We had no inside toilet in those days. It was a little outhouse in the back, and we had a long clothesline from the house out to it. Joyce came along when Gaylen was about eleven, and he used to hang a string of diapers from the house to the toilet for me every day. This was on the desert, and our water cost us one cent a gallon.

Gaylen went all of his first eight years to school in Red Mountain, California, to the same good teacher and friend. Then je went to high school in Barstow by bus, sixty miles each way, a day. The last two years he boarded down at Barstow with some people, and after he graduated he went to college at BYU in Provo, Utah, and later to the U of U in Salt Lake.

We moved to Inyokern, California in 1944, and had a service station and general store with my brother-in-law. The general store turned out to be with Glen's father and Glen. It was wartime, and the government brought in lots of Indians, and on paydays we would cash their checks for them. There would be a long line of them. Lots of them had long hair in braids and couldn't write or speak English.

I joined the Church on November 1, 1953. I was baptised in the gym on the Naval Base at China Lake, California. I played for the Singing Mothers, and Glen's sister Lauree was chorister for years. WE had, at one time, about 26 in the group. Once we put on an entertainment for the community, and it was a big success. Almost as soon as I joined the Church they made me organist, and I was supposed to play for Stake Conference in Barstow. I had never played the organ so I had to play the piano, and I was so frightened I couldn't keep my legs from jumping and my fingers from trembling.

I worked as a telephone operator for ten years (to date), and still working at it, April 22, 1961.

*More notes: In the picture where Mama stands on the front porch of the house in Colorado, about age 9, those in the photo are her sister Josie, her dad, his half-sister Eva and her husband Louis Courier, and their little boy. Aunt Eva used to save the catalogues for Mama to cut paperdolls out of.

The Girls in the picture are, L to R, Aunt Josie, Bacopickle, Aunt Louise (Ray's wife), her mother, Aunt Eva, and Mama.

Mama's best friend Irma, died in childbirth not long after this photo was taken.

Mama worked for Joe Apple in his store for a long time. WHen Eskimo Pie ice cream bars first came out, he kept Mama in good supply. She loved Eskimo Pies! When Mr. Apple invented his E Z Tire Changer (so easy a woman could do it!) Mama was his model in the booklet-brochere that advertised it.

In the photo of mama hanging clothes in the Cool Hat, the hat I remember best was a big Mexican Sombrero, pink and yellow, with little colored balls hanging from the brim. She always wore this when she'd hang out clothes, "to keep from getting freckles" in the sun.


silverlight said...

I love your biographical-jelly- pages.
It was nice to read the history of you and you family. Also, happy to find someone who loved dolls too, like me.

Kenny said...

That was great, I enjoyed it very much

slickdpdx said...

Thanks again!

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