Sod and Stubble: The Story of a Kansas Homestead

By John Ise | Go to book overview

CHAPTER X
The New House, and a Trip Back Home

W HEN Henry had hauled another load of wheat and two loads of corn to Russell l, he had a large wallet of greenbacks, which he hid in a cranny in the cabin wall until they should decide how to spend it -- there was no bank near.

There were many hours of planning for the use of this money, and many schemes were brought up as Rosie and Henry talked over the dinner dishes. Henry needed another team, to break more of his grass land. Frank and Sam were getting old, and now moved more slowly each year. Rosie approved the idea of another team, but she also saw that, with two babies growing into childhood -- and perhaps others would follow -- the little one-room cabin would soon be crowded. Indeed it was already crowded, a fearful congestion of boxes, firewood, dishes, tubs, pots, buckets, pans, kettles, garden and carpenter tools, flower plants, garden seeds, nails, patent medicines, sacks and cans of flour, corn meal and other foods, carefully treasured newspapers, calendars, pictures cut from advertisements, Sunday clothes and baby clothes.

Rosie did her best. She kept everything as neat as anyone could, but there was no way of keeping all this stuff in a fifteen by eighteen room without crowding, and without some disorder. The big bed occupied a fair share of the floor space, and the baby bed covered half as much more. Several sacks of flour took one corner, the wash pan, a bucket of water and a towel another, the stove a third, and the opening of the door spoiled the only remaining corner. There was left a space of perhaps eight by ten feet which had to serve for cooking, washing and ironing, dining, entertainment of visitors, and for the post-

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