CLINTON DEE PETERSON
Colaborador: toooldtohunt Created: 1 year ago Updated: 1 year ago
I was born May 4th, 1920 at Loa, Wayne County, Utah. I was born in a log home that set on the block where Leonard Taylor now has a home. I came into the world on a cold windy day shortly after my twin brother Clifton Vee at 5:30 p.m.
Cliff and I were the 7th children of Joseph Christian Peterson and Margaret Rebecca Rees. My Dad was born in Waynesboro, Mississippi, July 8, 1888 and died August 5, 1961. My mother was born in Bicknell, Utah, April 13, 1889 and died June 30, 1963. My parents were married in the Salt lake Temple October 13, 1907.
My Brothers and sisters are:
Jane- born October 9 1908 (Jane died at birth)
Margaret Caroline - born April 19, 1910
Elva - born March 25, 1912
Iris - born July 18, 1913
Joseph Clyde - born April 16, 1916
Clarence Brigham - born Jan 11, 1918
Clifton Vee & Clinton Dee (twins) - born May 4, 1920
Thomas - born May 20, 1922 (born dead)
Quincy LaVon - born Nov 27, 1923
Baby Boy - born Jan 3, 1926 (born dead)
Nina Bell - born Dec 26, 1929
My parents had twelve children and lost five, which would have been hard to bear, however, we had a happy home. My parents were always good and kind to us children and I have many happy memories of growing up.
According to my sisters, Margaret and Elva, Cliff and I were such cute babies that they became our second moms. Margaret became my second Mom and Elva took care of Cliff. I think we must have been a handful because we got into a lot of trouble. What one couldn't think up to do, the other one could.
When Cliff and I were 2 years old we moved over on "Gravy Bench" and homesteaded the farm where we grew up. My folks moved a house from town on skids and pulled it with horses. It was one big room with room for the cook stove, table,cupboard, chairs and also a couple of beds. We thought we lived in a mansion. Later Dad built a kitchen on the south side of the house and three bedrooms on the east.
Margaret told me that when we moved to the farm, Cliff and I were just learning to walk. I learned to walk first and I would keep showing Cliff how to do it. I would try to help him get up on his feet and when I finally succeeded we would both laugh as we tried to walk together.
Cliff had a tendency to hold his breath until he would turn blue. Several times they thought he was dead. The doctor said he wouldn't die holding his breath but he would turn blue and stiff, then white and go limp and weak and wouldn't be able to move for a few minutes. So the family always gave cliff his own way so he would't hold his breath. Margaret and I worried a lot about Cliff and was always trying to take care of him. We had a very close relationship and did everything together. Even when one got sick the other would sympathize with him and get sick also. Even as adult we were very close and spent a lot of time together.
We always had plenty to eat. We raised a garden and Dad raised pigs. We had a smokehouse and made the best ham and bacon. Mom made cheese and butter and we always had plenty of good cold milk which we kept in the well. Mom knew how to make cottage cheese and we made lot of homemade ice cream. Dad would cut ice in the winter and put it in the cellar and cover it with sawdust so we could have ice cream almost all summer. Mom was a good cook and we had lots of homemade bread. Dad like to cook and he would cook us up meat and fried potatoes. Sometimes he would break eggs in it just before it was done. I thought it was a meal fit for a king.
Dad was a wonderful musician. He was playing or singing most of the time he was at home. We always had music in our home and as a child I loved listening to home. Dad played in an orchestra for as long as I can remember. I loved going to the dances with Mom and Sad and listening to their music.
Our summers were spent herding sheep in the hills around the farm and herding cows along the canal and lanes. To pass the time during the day we would build little pole fences and shed our of willow branches and make extensive irrigation ditches and furrows for our play fields. We also made whistles out of willow branches and blew on them to our hears content while the cows grazed to their hears content. One of the old cows would let us ride her. She wore a bell so we would know where the cows were at all times. (As if they ever got out of our sight.) In the evening we would crawl upon the back of "old black bawldy" and would follow the cows home. We raised hay and wheat on the farm. It took the second crop of hay to feed the work horse and first crop of hay to feed the cows and sheep. We would take the wheat to the grist mill up the creek and make it in to flour. We raised hogs and butchered five or six each fall which would last us through the winter. We would salt them down and smoke them in our smoke house. We sold lambs and calves for our income.
We all went to school in Lyman, about a mile and half from the farm. We either walked or rode horses which we tied to the fence behind the school while we were in class. One morning as we went to school Clyde and Quincy were on one horse and Cliff and I were on old Beansa. We called her Beansa because she was always so gassy. As we got close to the school we could tell the bell had already rung and all the kids were lined up ready to march into the school. We were hurrying down the street and turned the corner around the wood pile to go into the school yard when our horse slipped on a patch of ice under the snow and down she went. Luckily we weren't hurt and we jumped up and ram over to get in line so we could march into the school. Poor old Beensa got up and shook herself and them walked down to the fence to her usual place and waited for Clyde to tie her up. She was a great old horse.
My first grade teacher was Thelma Maxfield. Helen Morrell taught 2nd and 3rd grades. (She was a teacher for along time. She even taught first grade to all of my own children.) Vaughn Sperry and Willis Willardson taught 8th grade. I attended through the eighth grade in Lyman. One school year was short and no one graduated so I attended elementary school for nine years. The high school was in Bicknell and fortunately for us they purchased a bus for all the students to ride. Before they got the bus Charles Ellett had an old truck he hauled pigs to market in. He hauled pigs on the weekend and the kids to school during the week. I only attended high school for about a half of a year and then I stayed home to help on the farm.
One time Clyde and I were taking one of the horses down to the pasture in the bottom of the field where we kept them. I was riding in front and Clyde was behind me with his feet in the old pair of army saddle bags. I got too close to the fence and cut my foot on the barb wire. I still carry the scars form that one and from the time Cliff, Quincy and I climbed upon the granary and jumped off and slid down onto a roll of barb wire and cut my leg open. The doctor was too far away so we never got stitches, therefore, I have a seven inch scar on my leg.
We didn't get to town very often because it was about three miles to Loa. We would go to visit Grandma and Grandpa Rees and do our shopping. We went in the buggy or rode horses. Grandma and Grandpa lived a block south of the church on the east side of the road. That is where our family lived until we moved over to the farm. I loved my Grandma and Grandpa Rees. Grandma always had something good for us to eat whenever we came to visit.
In 1928 the folks bought our first car. It was a STAR with cloth curtains and plastic windows. We thought it was beautiful. In 1929 they bought a new DURANT. We wondered how they could ever make a car nicer than a Durant. Oh how times have changed.
One spring the folks bought a bunch of leghorn roosters to raise for fryers. Cliff and I had gotten B.B. guns for Christmas. We went out late one evening to feed the calves their milk and one of the roosters was waling around upon the shed. I just up and shot and I surprised myself because I actually hit him right in the head. He flopped around and fell down in the corral and Dad found him dead the next morning. Sometime later for sport, we got to chasing the roosters and happened to kill another one. To keep Dad from finding out what we had done, we hung the rooster from a crack between two boards in the well fence. We told Dad that the rooster must have hung itself. Then we had a trap set under the corner of the house catch a rat. We sprinkled wheat around the trap to lure the rat into the jaws of death and of course one of the rooster found the wheat and was pecking around and set the trap off and it caught him around the head. That got rid of another one. Dad use to tell how those roosters used to commit suicide. He figured the one was trying to set the trap and had his beak down in there trying to lift the pan when his foot slipped off the jaws. The other one flew upon the fence to catch a fly and got his neck caught in a crack and hung himself, and finally in desperation one had shot himself with the B.B. gun. He said, "I guess you can't blame them, they didn't have any hens around." Dad knew what happened but he saw it as an opportunity to make a great story out of it. He and his brothers were all great story tellers. They had read "Irish Fairy Tales" when they were young and each had taken on a name of one of the character in the story. Will was Duggan, Bennett was Patsy, Ton was mike, Henry was Feelin, George was
Dina or Dune, as we called him and Dad was Gosberg. They had a lot of fun with it. Dad and his brothers were very close and they spent a lot of time together playing music and telling stories.
One day Uncle Henry thought he was pretty stout. He had a sack of bone meal upon a scaffold in the granary which was pretty heavy. It usually took two or three of them to carry a sack but Uncle Henry started bragging that he could carry one of them all by himself. He told his brothers to climb up there and roll it off onto his shoulders and let him know when it was there and he would show them he could carry it. So they climbed upon the scaffold and with a lot of effort they rolled it off the scaffold and it dropped onto Uncle Henry's shoulders. The weight of the sack pinned him to the floor. He had one leg back behind him and it broke his foot. That bone meal was heavier than he thought. They never let Uncle Henry live that one down. The brothers were constantly teasing and telling stories on each other. How they would laugh at each other.
Uncle Henry always liked to flip pigs when he got a chance. Two of them would get a pole, one on each end, then someone would chase the pigs around the hay stack and as the pigs came running they would lift the pole right under their chin and flip them on their backs. He would laugh with great amusement as those pigs landed on their backs.
Aunt rill had an unusual experience with the pigs while helping Uncle Will try to herd the old sow to a new pen. She was shaking her apron and waving at the old sow but the sow had a mind of her own and decided to break and run. As she ran, she ran between Aunt Rill's legs. Aunt Rill got the ride of her life backwards on that old sow. Her apron was over the sows eyes which made the ride all the crazier. Finally the old sow bumped into the fence and Aunt Rill fell off ending her first and last pig ride.
We went on lots of hunting trips when we were growing up. It was a big part of our lives. We hunted mainly deer for meat and cougars (to keep them out of the sheep). Their hides weren't worth much but they were fun to hunt. We had hunting hounds that would occasionally get loose and go hunting on their own. At night we could hear them barking and howling from Red Canyon to the south end of Thousand Lake Mountain. They were after deer but they were hardly ever successful. Several days later they would come home hungry and sore footed and in need of a rest, but after a few days of recuperation they were ready to go again.
The 4th of July was a big day when I was a boy. We usually got to go to town and celebrate and maybe we would get 25 cents to spend. I thought that was a lot of money. I could hardly wait for the 4th to come. We played games, ran races and played ball. It was a lot of fun.
We loved to play marbles. We used to make marbles by melting records and rolling them into a little ball. I remember the first store bought marble we had. Mom bought some white marbles with red trips on them. We called them Chinese marbles. We played several marble games....round ring, square ring and stinger. We played fox and geese in the snow during the winter months and in the summer we played mumble peg, guinea and leg wrestling. We made flippers from a crotch in a tree branch and while we were herding sheep we would gather up rocks. We always came home with a pocket full. We each had a 25 pound powder box that we kept in the granary which was full of rocks so we could have ammunition winter and summer. Clyde built a big old flipper on time with extra long rubber from and old inner tube and the tongue of an old shoe for a pad. He pulled it back and let it fly but to his surprise the rock didn't come out and it swung around and hit him in the back. It didn't take long for him to cut the rubber down to size. We made stick horses and cut patches of bark off of them to make them look like a pinto pony. Sometimes we would remove the bark from the tip of our stick to give it a white foot.
I had a happy childhood. We were a very close family. Mom and Dad always seemed to take time to be with us. We would go on fishing trips. We would get in our wagon and take our camping stuff and go up to Fish Lake or up the Creek. It was such fun for us children. We didn't have motors to put on boats in those days but we could rent a boat for 25 cents and we would row and troll for fish or fish from the bank. I suppose we were luckier than some families in those days, cause on one had very much as far as money went, but we had lots of things money can't buy....love for each other a a happy family.
However we were not without tragedy. On May 21, 1926 my sister Iris died of a heart murmur at the age on 13. On August 11, 1929 on a Sunday afternoon, we went to town and Clyde and Brig went swimming with some boys from town. They went up to the fish pond by Potter's grist mill. When they finished swimming, Brigs clothes were still laying on the bank after the boys were all dressed. They began looking for him and found that he had drowned while they were getting dressed. He was only eleven years old.
When I was about twelve Dad got a guitar for his birthday and a short time later he bought a banjo and mandolin for us boys. Cliff Quincy and I learned to play with Dad. He used to take us places to perform mainly up to Fish lake. Once he took us to Salt Air and entered us in a talent show. We won Honorable mention. Dad played the fiddle on an orchestra with Nettie Brian on the piano and Dan Brain on the drums and Fred Brown playing the cornet. In the thirties the Peterson Orchestra was started with Elva and Margaret coding on the piano. Afton played the drums and Grant played the cornet. Dad played his fiddle, Cliff played the banjo and Sax, I played the guitar and Quincy played the mandolin. Sometimes Lloyd helped out with his trombone. We have had many happy hours playing together and playing for dances and family get together's. I still have the guitar. We ordered it from Sears and Roebucks for $32.00 It is all metal with a built in amplifier. The mandolin was made of wood also with a built in amplifier. Dad paid $18.00 for it and Quincy's boys have it today. The four string banjo cost $26.00 and cliff's family has it. Dad had his fiddle as long as I can remember. Dad bought me a fiddle when he went to Mississippi in the fifties. I paid him $30.00 for it. Also while he was in Mississippi he bought a headstone and placed it on his mother's grave.
In 1940 Dad left mom and married Nell and moved to Weiser, Idaho. This was devastating to my mom and also my baby sister Nina Bell who was still at home. I was 20 years old at the time so it was a little easier for me. I went up to Weiser Idaho the next summer and enrolled in NYA school and took their welding course. I stayed with Dad and Nell. Ralph and Ina were living there as well and Ralph took the course with me. After we graduated we went to Seattle in July to the Lake Washington Shipyards to work and while I was there I was called into the service.
On December 7th 1941 the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor and our country went to war. I was called into the service in December of 1942 and after taking basic training at Shepardfield, Texas, I was shipped overseas with the Army Air Corp. I served in the Motor Pool as a Vehicle Mechanic. My brother Quincy was also called into the service.