Friday, August 27, 2010

On The Way To School

1952?  I believe so.  This is the view from the house, facing east and the sunrise and the old church.  Can anyone name that car?  What does Ann have in her box?  Kittens?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Pages from Grandpa Wasden's Yellowstone National Park Journal

I realized, as Dwight and I were talking about putting together more of our treasures, I probably had never shared with you some of the pages from Grandpa Wasden's Yellowstone N.P journal. I have transcribed the complete journal and will be sending out copies "soon". Just to make this a part of the record, I thought you might enjoy seeing his handwriting. See if it is legible when you click on the pages.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Digitizing and Preserving Our Family Archives

Watching the flow of information and photos this past year on Penrose Mornings, and looking through the boxes of stuff I have, have prompted me to have an inspiration which would involve putting everyone else to work except me.  We each have photos, papers, documents, journals, bits and pieces, keepsake dishes and pieces of furniture, inlaid pictures, and other memorabilia.  When we pass on, so to speak, no guarantee exists that much or any of this material will be preserved in a way that will mean anything to anyone.  With the opportunity to digitize and make a digital museum and library of what we have, we can give future generations an opportunity to connect with their past.  I've only talked to Liz and Ann about this project thus far. My phone went dead so haven't yet talked to everyone.  Apologies.

What we have come up with is that we need to categorize the stuff we have: letters, journals, writings, artifacts like dishes and pieces of furniture, pictures, and whatever else.  Ann suggest we have several categories: the first category would be the materials of most immediate interest to family.  The second category would be historical material like the writings of Uncle David about the Penrose Canal, Garland, and other such memorabilia.  These writings will vanish when the current generation goes, likely, and yet so much information of historical value is contained in them that we need to save it.  Third category would be other materials such as Grandpa Wasden's journals.

We would need to establish minimal quality control requirements for scanning in terms of dpi resolution and similar standards.  Ann suggests that the minimal output should be CDs of the material each of us has and that these be made available to others.  From there, people could print whatever they wanted to print.  Some material, like Uncle David's writings, should be made available to the Park County Historical Society and the Wyoming State Historical Library.  Liz has volunteered under my direction to contact the Wasden family and see what the proper thing to do is about these valuable writings.

For now, these suggestions are only the beginning.  We need to discuss all of the possibilities open to us.  We earnestly solicit ideas from any of our readers who have undertaken or thought about undertaking compilation of a family historical archive that goes beyond photos and family tree documents.  Now, I am going to rest because it gives me a headache thinking about all of the work that everyone else is going to do.  But I think we could make a contribution to our descendants and to ourselves by systematically preserving our heritage and our legacy.  I think this is what we are supposed to do.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

The "Teacherage" Where Mom Stayed at Valley School

Think: Long, lonely, cold nights; Correspondence courses; Lessons.

Farm Journal 1933

My friend lent me her family keepsake: copies of the Farm Journal.  I had a delightful time reading articles (one on how to remove whiteheads, another how to make a mustard plaster, etc.) and finding familiar items in ads that had been in our humble life. 
I'm sure that Dad and Mom would have loved to trade in their old separator......but not necessarily get a new one.
Who cannot remember the rough Lava Soap?  Maybe if I had used it more?????

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

When We Graduated in 1953

Velna and I were married December 22 1953 in the Salt Lake Temple.  Velna had a job and therefore could make payments on her engagement ring.  Plus she saved up enough to pay for the baby she was carrying here to be born in Bozeman MT that November while I took it easy studying for a master's degree in agricultural economics 18 hours a day.  How could we have known on this rare summer day in Laramie Wyoming?

Velna Graduates from the University of Wyoming in 1968

Nineteen Sixty Eight. Fifteen years after I graduated from the University of Wyoming. Velna receives her bachelor's degree in elementary education with honors from the University of Wyoming after taking courses at Penn State, Colorado State, U of Wyoming, and working while I piled up two Master's degrees and a Ph.D. and she accumulated four of her five children.  Talk about perseverance.  Mother received her bachelor's degree in 1957, I think, after years of correspondence courses, summer school, late night study and course completion after the milking was done and while she existed by herself in a lonely teacherage at Valley in South Fork above Cody for a long winter.  We do persevere, don't we?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

U of Wyo Graduation 1953

May 1953.  Four years of struggle. I was 20 years old, acquired a wife and a college degree.  I cleaned every building on the UW campus during my four years, some times holding down three or four part-time jobs.  Went to work at the Half-Acre gym at 11:00 p.m. after intramurals, then 12 blocks down town to the phone company and then back to my room on 12th st. by 2:00 a.m., then up for class.  I was chewed out many times for nodding off in class.  Notwithstanding, it didn't seem like a big deal.  I received no help, but always felt I could survive another week, another month.  I loved school.  Mother wrote to me every week for four years. Sometimes her pen drifted off the page when she fell asleep when writing.  She earned the degree every bit as much as I did. It was always sad that Dad had to stay home with the cows. Velna made my accomplishment possible in many ways.  She was 16 when I went to Laramie, 19 when we married.  She was the bright light that saved me. Along with her mother's cooking.  We never really worried whether we could make it.  We left for the University of Michigan three years later with a three year old, a two-week old, no job, no money, no place to stay.  And we were bold enough to think we could make it.  So we finished nearly eight years of college without borrowing a cent.  I just think it was the Wasden and Blood family mettle, absorbed in the genes and never mentioned openly.  You just did what you had to do and then figured out the next step.  And then you did it.  Now I am just simply lazy.  But I really find it hard to believe that Velna and I were so naive that we thought we could do what we did. We had many guardian angels along the way.  I don't know how I got so distracted posting this photo, taken by the west door of the LDS Institute, our home away from home for dozens of poor Mormon kids just like me who figured out how to get through college and went on to become physicians, dentists, professors, teachers, scientists, ranchers, and mothers.  We were a mutual support group, finding each other jobs, bolstering each other up when needed, and we became a tightly knit family. We all survived.  I never intended to be so wordy, but I might as well go ahead and post it. 

Monday, August 9, 2010

Graduation from the University of Wyoming Janitor Crew 1953

Beehive Girls Camp 1953

These pictures are backwards in sequence....on the way home from camp, Leona Banks, Deanna Sedwick and I posed on the sandrock outside of Cowley, Wyoming.  Church friends were rare, but oh so valued.

Nola Christopherson and LuRue Stevens took us Girls Camp the summer of 1953.  Whitey Hopkin drove us and our gear to this camp at Tensleep.  It was a sacrifice for all of them, just so we could have a week together in the wild.  The other girl on the right is Donna Roper.  The walk to our dorm was steep.  I have so many memories of this, the first time I was ever away from home.