Video: Whitcher Place (house and barn), Hidden Timber, S.D., c. early 1960s (video credit: Bill Furrey)
1953 April 6th Monday
Was cloudy and damp, sun just peeped through at times. Dan came up when we [were] eating breakfast and said that he would give cattle hay this a.m., look at cows to calve and fix fence, so Will and I went to Winner in our Mercury Car and got groceries, some print & plain Percale to finish a block quilt top I am making. Left 3 dresses and my summer coat at Dry Cleaning south [of] Winner Plumbing and can get it this week-end. We got home at 4 p.m. Saw Mr. & Mrs. Wm Chauncey, Sr. They live 13 mi. s.W. Winner on Lawrence Drey Place. Lawrence Klein & wife live at their Old Place Down River and Mrs. Drey lives in Sioux Falls, S.D. She was out to Roy’s for awhile back. Henry Sells and wife in town. Will visited with Mr. and guess all their boys are away, Gerald in Germany, Howard in Army in States, Donald at School at Lincoln, Gerry Dean in first year at Mission High. Never saw Betty nor Calvin. I cut out blocks from new goods.
1953 April 7th Tuesday
Some snow and Rainy. Men gave cattle hay and looked at cattle and pulled some fence East [of] Old South line of Bull Pen and South [of] our Road out to Klein field. They used the Ford Tractor to pull out of ground these posts. These days all the new news is that relatives of Sitting Bull, 3 Granddaughters of his from Wounded Knee, S.D. in Shannon CO. and a few other Indians of Mobridge, S.D., want his bones moved to 5 mi. west [of] Mobridge and the Sculptor of Crazy Horse who works a carving out of Stone images of Noted folks will carve Sitting Bull Monument. I cannot spell his name. Never see Betty as Dan brings milk, for he and Will drink malts. I mix my own in bowl.
1953 April 8th Wednesday
Still rainy and chilly but not all the time, just in short showers, but men gave cattle hay and looked at them and not so many each 4 to 6 but have to watch them just the same. I am finishing the print & white black quilt top this day and play some solitaire and get eats and read. Will & I played some Canasta as [it is] rainy outside. Dan comes for eggs but no Betty nor Calvin. Will laid down in p.m. as he feels not so good.
1953 April 9th Thursday
Sun shone part time but getting warmer. I got eats, played solitaire, started mending that is piled up. Men gave cattle hay, looked at cows and fixed some fence North Wagner Land. Betty no come up. Will was down and said Calvin has new Toy from Coles Sunday.
1953 April 10th Friday
Some clouds but South wind enough to dry clothes. Will put out on line this a.m. and he got them in late p.m. as scattered clouds passed, sun bright so they dried nicely. I played solitaire and got eats. Men gave cattle hay and measured Place west [of] Trees west of house to plant 4 to 5 acres more, so Will went in Mercury to Mission through Hills North [of] Thomas’s, ordered from Soil Conservationist. Dan fixed at fence at Bull Pen. Will got staples, heat bulbs. Had dinner at Mission. Our supper bass fish and potatoes, a sauce of chili for spaghetti.
1953 April 11th Saturday
Some clouds and chilly north wind but no moisture here. Snow fell to 7 inches west Nebraska, So. Dak. and in N. Dak. Men gave cattle hay and Dan worked at fence between us & Dan’s south line, also up My Creek. Will looked [at] cows, had dinner and Stanley Whiting came to take alfalfa to McKee’s to fan. Mr. helped Will & Stanley fan this alfalfa and it looks nice. They had a lunch at McKee’s for Betty & Patsy are cooks. Mrs. called Tuesday to Hasting, Nebr. where her brother, wife & daughter [were] hurt in auto wreck and 5 yr. old son killed. Harley Davis, her brother, broken back and and other places. Jim Hawk was at McKees so he and Bus to South [of] Paulsons to 18 to O’Kreek to see if any news of above folks, as Judy is there. Karen Hawk is with McKee girls as dad at O’Kreek and she helps with work. They have to travel South [of] their Place to McKees and then some way around Paulsons to 18 to get out from muddy roads. men took 8 sacks alfalfa to fan and Stanley 75 lbs to sow and return when he raises seed this fall. Wales went to Mission this eve and Thomas & Athel took Doris, David & Jimmie to Stanleys for the night. Will & Stanley met LeMoyne and Family going out through hills.
1953 April 12th Sunday
Jake and Leo Whiting Birthdays
Bright, nice day. Men looked about cows and calves and in p.m. Thomas, Athel and Jimmie came to Wales, they no home so they came here. We played pitch and men won. Jimmie played to himself. Dan & Family went to matinee at Star Theater, Mission, in p.m. and came back as Thomas’s went home late p.m. They stayed home rest of eve. We read and I played solitaire as Will not too well so no play Canasta but he read awhile and early to bed. Doris and David went with Stanley’s to Mission to show this p.m. They all, Jimmie also stayed at Stanley’s last night and Athel went for them this morning after they [would be] at 8 a.m. Mass but none so Athel brought Jimmie home and they to be home this late p.m.
1953 April 13th Monday
Bright, nice so Dan came up and said he would look at cows and calves and give cattle a stack of hay so we could go to town. We left in our Mercury before 9 a.m., got groceries, some quilting material, a lunch at West Side Cafe and saw Mr. Sells, Mr. & Mrs. Wm Chauncey, Sr., they now live 13 miles S.W. of Winner on Lawrence Drey Place, which they bought recently. They have a new pick up. We went around highway to 18 and came back that way at 1 p.m. and left Gro. etc. home, to Stanley’s and Abbotts to tell them we dehorn, brand 1.D on Heifers, castrate these not done a year ago. Abbotts’ Jersey milk cow’s steer calf was to be branded also. Men worked on Corral late p.m. and finished double gates North of Wind Mill at N.E. Wales yard. Only 2 meals for me and I never sewed any but read and solitaire for we got the mail.
1953 April 14th Tuesday
Cloudy. N.E. wind and not chilly. Men gave cattle a stack of hay, got in yearlings that were with cows in a.m. [In] p.m. W.L. and Billie Abbott came in their Buick and Stanley in his pick up, so they got busy and worked the yearling steer and heifers, branded heifers 1.D and dehorned some of these. Betty and Calvin went to get mail and stopped at Thomas’s. Pearl came in their car to get Stanley to come for a calf not to be born so he went home in a hurry and back after he pulled this calf to finish dehorning a few head. Dan, Billie, W.L. and W.J. worked them. I gave Pearl a mince pie so Stanley wouldn’t miss his lunch but he got lunch here. All went home. Betty brought mail, left Calvin in the car and he plays with everything on seat and the floor. He and Betty came up to give Stanley a cactus plant and get things out [of] deep freeze for supper. We had a sandwich of roast beef for our supper and a malt before bedtime. Mrs. Abbott isn’t out here but in town as Mrs. Anderson, sister, of Naper, Nebr., passed away last Friday.
1953 April 15th Wednesday
Snowed last night but rained first and to-day is damp and cold so Dan and Will had to get in some new calves to warm them by putting in pick up cab and heater on as the bulb he got for heater broke. Was bright and began to melt snow in p.m. but a coat of ice on ground so Will started in our car and no get anywhere, came back to Thomas’s to wait for Tom Sr. to come by but Bud came in his and said that Dick took Tom in their pick up on west road. Thomas, Larry Daywitt and Bud & Tom Sr. went. No meeting last evening and they got stuck in hills. Dick had nobby tires so he brought them home. Men gave cattle hay first this a.m. I boiled beef and when Will came back at 1 p.m. he had a lunch so I got only 2 meals. I am sewing on the finishing of block quilt with cotton flannel interlining, blue lining and tied with light blue knitting cotton. Played some solitaire and read. Never saw Betty nor Calvin this day.
1953 April 16th Thursday
Not so bad and bright so snow is gone and some wind and mud is drying. Men gave cattle hay and went to Whiting Store to mail sample of alfalfa to Brookings to have purity and germination test at Agronomy Seed Testing Laboratory and got mail, the records from Wards were only music, no songs, so waiting so long for what no get. Men have to watch cows and calves so much.
1953 April 17th Friday
Very chilly north wind but sun shone some of the time. Will & Dan fed cattle hay and Dan fixed at fence west side of New Tree Plot west of our trees west of house. Betty washed clothes to-day so no see her. I cut out 2 everyday dresses of Dark Peach Print blocks with flowers and sewed at them. Got 2 meals of fish, etc. but corn for Will’s supper.