One of my favorite parts of the Douglas County Herald is the “Looking Backward” section. It seems that the people named in the 75 and 100 years ago items are as familiar as those I find in the current paper. There is usually some mention about the weather. Last week one of the items talked about how dry it was in the fall of 1963 and another item from the 1938 talked about how they had finally gotten rain after about three or four month of dryness. The temperatures had been in the 80’s which was unusual for October.
You can expect almost anything to happen in October here in this part of the state. Last Tuesday I looked out at my front flower bed and saw yellow Iris in bloom. And Thursday when I went out to pick the green tomatoes in anticipation of the frost, I also picked about a gallon of green beans. There were lots of small premature green beans about two inches long and lots of blossoms that the frost caught.
The item that really caught my eye was the October 30, 1913 account of the 11-inch snow that had surprised them in the week before. My dad, Melvin Rogers, told about that snow storm in his memoirs. His father, Arra Rogers, had loaded up the family (his wife, Anne, daughter, Marvel age 5, Melvin age 2, and their infant son, Ivan) in a horse drawn wagon that Sunday. They drove about four miles for a visit with Anne’s brother, Tom Brixey and his family, (wife, Ollie, and children, the twins, Eula and Zula, and their brother, Irwin). They had intended to return home that afternoon, but it started snowing hard, so they stayed over until Monday. Dad said that there were drifts up to two feet deep and lots of the trees had broken down, blocking the road. Anne became so chilled from the long exposure that she contracted pneumonia and died November 10. This snow that was so beautiful to some with snow resting on the green leaves changed Dad’s life so much in ways that he never forgot.