Monday, August 20, 2007

Sleeping with an umbrella

I met Mrs. Cornelia Adair in 1891. She and her niece and Dick Walsh and a man from Kansas came by and my sister-in-law had dinner—you call it lunch, now, but we called it dinner—for them. Mrs. Adair was nice-looking, wore a simple riding habit with divided skirt. Her niece was a tall, gangling girl. The niece rode a left-handed sidesaddle, and we thought that was the funniest thing. Guess she was left-handed, but imagine bringing that saddle all the way out here. After dinner Mrs. Adair asked if she and her niece might rest a bit and my sister-in-law showed them to the bedroom and they lay down awhile. Mrs. Adair laughed and joked about the night in the Goodnight cabin. Said she didn’t get any sleep; she was scared of rats tumbling down on her. Finally she opened her umbrella and held it over her face all night, but didn’t sleep much.
Marie Barbier Hess Interview Nov 22, 1956

Monday, August 13, 2007

Party from Friday to Sunday

Mrs. Adair would ride side saddle out with the cowboys to see what they were doing. Mrs. Adair thought a lot of her cow hands; she even set up a commissary where the cowhands and their families could purchase groceries and other dry goods. Every fourth of the July she would throw a big party in honor of them. Anyone who wanted to come could, and it lasted from Friday until Sunday night. All one could eat or drink was there at the taking.
Marie Barbier Hess Interview Nov 22, 1956

Monday, August 6, 2007

Chickens for company

The solitude and the wind were trying for a woman, and it was quite a domestic blessing when one day a cowboy rode in with three chickens in a sack. “No one can ever know how much pleasure and company they were to me,” Mrs. Goodnight once said. “They were something I could talk to; they would run to me when I called them and follow me everywhere I went. They knew me and tried to talk to me in their language. If there had been no outside danger, the loneliness would not have been bad.
Charles Goodnight Cowman and Plainsman by J. Evetts Haley