Monday, May 27, 2013

Amanuensis Monday--Elsie Crocker’s Manuscript, Part 18: Fireworks and Cotton Candy

To read this project from the beginning, click here.

If only I could have divided this manuscript up in a way that this installment would fall near the Fourth of July!  It tells about fireworks and the Fourth of July, circuses, and some other miscellaneous things.

On the Fourth of July, we would have some fireworks. Mostly firecrackers and some sparklers. The boys liked the “Devil on the Walk”. These I hated. They were small and sort of round which you held in your hand. The boys would through them on a hard surface, like a sidewalk, they made a loud noise and spattered pieces all over. They liked to get in back of you and then through one back of you. We would jump a mile. The boys would laugh but it hurt if some of the pieces hit your legs, it would burn.

The boys had some fire crackers that didn’t have any wicks. They put these into the ground, up right then preced to light them. Then they would go off. I had some without wicks, I thought I’d do the same thing, it looked easy enough. Well, I planted it in the ground, lit my match, no responds. I waited a bit and nothing happened, so I ran into the house to get another match. Instead of lighting the match I knealed doun and blew on the firecracker, it went off right in my face and eyes. I ran into the house and my mother said “I never had any use for fire crackers anyway.” I ran into my bed room and had a good cry I new my dad would scold me. I could hear her saying Just wait until your dad gets. I can’t remember what my dad said but I did injure my eye. The doctors tell me I had a injury on that eye and the crying I did was the best thing I could have done. Don’t do what the other fellow does, be careful of the fire works.

Dad used to sole our shoes when we were young. He had a shoe tree and three or four awls to fit all our sizes of shoes. We would leave our shoes in fron of our bedroom door at night when we went to bed, the next morning the shoes were mended, soled and cleaned. Dad was proud of polished shoes, I think by being in the ppolice force made him notce them more.

It was quit a day when the circus came to town, probably once a year. All the neighbors turned out on this day, and of course we also went It was going to be a big day, we’d get up early to get our chores done. We would pack a lunch, cheese and crackers, bread and bologna and fruit. Of course we got dressed in our best, when we were all fixed to go, we left in our wagon, drawn by our horses. We planed on spending the day there, seeing all the people we knew.

The circus was housed in a big round tent. Along with this cicus was a carnival, here we would walk around looking around to see what we could buy with our few pennies. We would save all year to buy one thing. Dad would buy us each a square brick of pink popcorn with a pretty fan on top of the corn. We ate it during the performance. The tent was very hot, we had lemonade to drink, just one for each of us. Money was scarce but we had always had a lot of food and a lot of love and a fine house, we were happy. We really appreciated the little extras.

We also some pink cotton candy which Dad thought a waste of good money. He said “You put it in your mouth then its gone.” What have you got. Dad couldn’t eat sweets so he couldn’t appreciate the sweet taste. Pullin off the cotton candy off was fun. We loved seeing the animals perform. Wishing we could teach our animals to do tricks.

On the farm the boys found three rims off the wheels. The wooden wheels, were, two rims wide the other rim narrow. They decided to use them to make a make believe car. The boys used a long lath for the handle and a short lath nailed to one end of the long lath. This was used to start the car. You stood this rim right up, then put one end of the small lath insede of the rim, close to the edge, twist it around on the rim. It would start if lucky. You would run behind this rim guiding with the small part of the lath. To stop this car, use the little lath part, one end next to the rim, holding on to the rim. This will stop it.

I made the mistake by leaving my car (which was called a Dodge car) My car was the narrow rim. It was so much harder to keep up. I left his Dodge in front of the pump house, well Dad nearly fell over it: the boys were very quick to tell him it was mine. He grabbed me and started to spank me with the handle of my car. I told him not to break my Dodge car. He stopped and sort of grinned. At this time didn’t realize he didn’t know what my Dodge car was. I think he thought it was my bottom. This is the only spanking I can remember. He usually scolded which was far worse.
I believe that the story about the “Dodge car” must have been one of Elsie’s favorites, for she told it to me several times.

I know that there was something behind the passing comment that “Dad couldn’t eat sweets so he couldn’t appreciate the sweet taste.” I don’t know the full story, but I have heard comments from other family members about his aversion to sweets.

This is clearly the end of one section of the manuscript, as it ends mid-page and the next page begins with a title.

To continue with the next installment of Elsie's manuscript, click here

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