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Archive for October, 2011

For those growing up in the Big Sandy River valley are well aware of the impact that the then Norfolk & Western railway played in their lives.  It was not only a means of transport but also provided employment in the many small towns up and down the line.  Such towns as Fort Gay and many others relied heavily on railway employment of their citizens as a means of raising their families.  Many of you had parents who were or you were employees of the N & W, now known as the Norfolk Southern. 
 
I recall several years ago of reading of efforts to establish intermodal hauling between east coast ports and the mid-west via the Norfolk Southern by double stacking the containers.  There seemed to be some problems due to the several miles of tunnels along the railway line.  It seems that some five and one half miles of tunnels have been altered by raising the tunnel roof or lowering the railway bed.  I believe this project was begun in 2007 and completed in 2010.
 
As I recall, there was a great deal talk then of building an intermodal facility in Prichard, WV.  I read the below article in a publication last week and it appears that this is going to become a reality.  I can imagine that this could have a fair economic impact on a heavily impoverished area.  The below article is the one that I saw the last week.  Since then I have done a bit of research on intermodal shipping and found it quite interesting.  There is a lot of information available on the internet and some that is specific to this particular project.  I hope that you find the below interesting.
 
 
 
PRICHARD — Years in the planning, the rail-truck intermodal facility in Wayne
 County could see large-scale site preparation work beginning early in 2012, and construction on the facility itself could commence three years later.At a public meeting Tuesday evening near the site at the community of Prichard, officials of the West Virginia Department of Transportation gave an update on the progress of securing the environmental permits needed to begin construction.

Prichard lies on Norfolk Southern container route running from Norfolk, Va., to Columbus, Ohio, and on to Chicago. U.S. 52 at Prichard is busy with trucks supplying coal to barge docks on the Big Sandy River near Kenova, but the intermodal facility would open new transport opportunities. It would allow companies in southern West Virginia, eastern Kentucky and southern Ohio to take advantage of domestic and international shipping opportunities.

The state set aside money for the intermodal facility in Senate Bill 569, which passed in 2005.

At Tuesday’s meeting, DOT officials said all necessary permits should be in hand by late March or April. Then a contractor can haul 1.25 million cubic yards of fill to raise part of the site 10 to 20 feet to get it out of the Big Sandy flood plain.

The estimated project cost is about $30 million. The facility will have grade-separated and at-grade access roads, storage and support tracks, an office building, a maintenance building, parking and weigh-in motion scales.

Before construction can begin, five residences will have to be acquired. The project requires 100 acres, of which about 78 belongs to Norfolk Southern.

 

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Earlier, a couple of months ago, I posted information that was provided by Howard Osborne from the Wayne County geneology Society regarding the initial name of Fort Gay High School.  Originally, when it was being built, it was named Butler District High School.  Whether this name was ever officially changed to FGHS is unknown.  The name, Butler District High School,  is engraved over one of the front entrance doors.

“Jim Doc” Frazier recently sent me several copies of photos.  Include in the photos were some of my family members, but there was a copy of a publication that appears to  have been printed in 1975, celebrating the 100th. anniversary of Fort Gay.  One of the pages of the copy he sent was a picture of the Fort Gay freshman class of 1926.   Where would high school have been held at that time?  Anyone have an idea?  This is a list of the freshman class of 1926 that is pictured, which included my mother, Lyda Raines.  If anyone has an original copy of that photo, I would love to have a copy.  The class members were Milton Lycan, Frank Mckinster, Lace Frasher, Frank Raines, Dudley Billups, Thursa Bartram, Julia Easley, Ruth Workman, Myrtle Portis Frasher, Genevieve Thompson, Lucy Lynch, Luther Lycan (who was the teacher), Virginia Bailey, Jennie Borders, Margaret Frasher, Margaret Johnson, Pearl Ferguson, Lyda Raines, and Zelma Handley.

Below are two additional Wayne County News articles that Howard Osborne sent just today.  They provide additional insight into the early history of Fort Gay High School.  We are ever grateful to Howard for providing links to our past.

(WCN – 8/11/1932)  

 

 THOMPSON, LOVELY WIN NET HONORS

 

Wayne County ran away with the honors at the Marshall College Tennis Tournament again this summer when Wardy C.

Lovely, teacher in the Fort Gay Junior High School and Jack Thompson, athletic coach at Butler District High School, Fort

Gay, won the doubles championship for the summer. The Wayne county pair played two matches Thursday afternoon,

August 4, defeating Dale Henderson, Richwood, W. Va., and Clyde Alford, Ravenswood, W. Va., in the first match and

Landis Litchfield, and Charles Gillian of Huntington in the finals, with a score of 6-3; 6-2.

Wardy Lovely upset the dope in the singles tournament by defeating Jonathan Lowe, of Milton, singles champion of last

summer, by a score of 6-4; 6-3. It will be remembered that last summer the Wayne pair were the doubles champs while

Rebecca Lambert, of Wayne, was the girls singles champ.

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(WCN – 10/6/1932)

 

WORK IS RESUMED ON H. S. BUILDING

 

BY L. L. LYCAN

M. W. Zinn, contractor, resumed work on the new high school building at Fort Gay this week, and will rush the outside

work to completion within 60 days. The first story was completed last year with a special levy of 30 cents on each one

hundred dollars valuation. This year the legislature reduced expenditures of Boards to 85 percent of what they spent last

year, and as a result the Butler High School Board of Directors will be unable to complete the inside of the building for

use this year, the amount of the reduction being equal to the amount to finish the inside.

It is hoped that some money may be obtained from the Reconstruction Finance Corporation to finish the building this

year, and thereby save the amount that would be spent for rent.

The enrollment of Butler High has increased this year considerably, there being approximately 115 in Jr. High and 120 in

Senior High, making a total of 235 students.

Butler high school is a first class temporary high school, all teachers holding degrees from standard colleges, all

equipment being first class, and meeting all the requirements of the State Department of Education, except buildings or

rooms. As soon as the school is housed in its permanent quarters this temporary standing will be removed and the

school will be first class without any restrictions.

All students taking the teacher’s examination this year were permitted to substitute their high school work for grades on

their certificates.

The faculty is composed of N. E. Plymale, principal, Iliff West, R. J. Thompson, R. W. Gillette, Mrs. Madge Matthews, Mrs.

Opal Lycan.

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Now that Fall is here, there is lots of activities going on within the FGHS Alumni Association board membership.  Gary Huff, who serves on the golf committee and along with Paul Salmons handles corporate golf sponsorships for the FGHS Memorial Scholarship  is moving.  Gary has announced that he has accepted the city manager position at Piqua, Ohio.  He begins work and is moving there within the next few days.  I know all will want to join me in wishing Gary the best of the best in his new position.  Fortunately, he will remain on our board and continue to lead corporate sponsorship efforts.

FGHSAA board member Paul Artrip is currently in Texas visiting his brother Ralph.  The Artrip family has in the past and continues  to provide maximum support to the scholarship and to the board.  Ralph is having some health issues and I know all who read this will join me in praying for Ralph’s speedy recovery and Paul’s safe journey. 

Paul Salmons is probably off somewhere visiting one of his sons or perhaps camping out at the Eagle Ridge Golf Course just waiting for the sun to rise each morning so that he can practice for next years tournament.  Paul, also, was a major force in the success this years FGHS Memorial Scholarship Golf Tournament. 

I spoke with Joe Damron, our golf chairman, a few days ago.  As many know, Joe has for a while been dealing with some health issues.  Joe reports that he is feeling well and actively preparing the cabin on top of Bromley Ridge for winter.  Joe and Mary have great faith and truly believe in the healing power of our Lord God.  I know Joe appreciates all of the prayers offered up on his and Mary’s behalf.  I would only ask that all continue those and add Joe to any prayer group where you find an opportunity.

We are having our final alumni board meeting for the year 2011 on November 3, 2011.  Joe and Mary Damron are hosting it at their home on Bromley Ridge.  Lunch will be served along with that wonderful Bromley Ridge water.  The legend is that if you drink it once you will always come back.  We will be closing out the books on 2011 and begin planning the agenda for 2012.  Anyone with suggestions as to things you might like to see accomplished in 2012, just contact me through the Chronicles and I will bring it before the board. 

Speaking of moving, I just returned from a great bike trip a couple of weeks ago.  I have some beautiful pictures which I will begin posting on the Chronicles in a couple of weeks.  I did post one in an earlier  post about “Old Ruby”.  What a dog!  Scarred, tired, hungry, and lost, but still eager to hunt bear.

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“Queens Creek”.  Sounds kind of regal, doesn’t it?  But it wasn’t really.  It was and is, simply a small stream that meanders up and down a small valley, providing drainage of the hollows or “hollers” as some of us knew them back then.  It could at times be a small trickle of water in the hot, dry summer or it could become a roaring torrent after sudden and violent thunder storms that washed away foot logs, (small bridges to permit crossing the stream by foot) chicken coops, crops, or anything left in it’s path.  In the winter it provided a place for ice skating, not the kind seen in ice arenas today for hockey or figure skating, but just good old “run and put your feet down and slide as far as you could and hope you didn’t break through” ice skating.  It provided water for the live stock and water for irrigating the garden crops that grew in small gardens along the creek during the hot dry summer.  It was a place where the budding young fisherman might drop a line in a water hole and snatch out a catfish, a horny head, a sun fish or some other small insignificant species of fish.  It was a place where the kids on the farm might find a seculded waterhole to go “skinny dipping” after a hard day in the field of tending crops.  It was the place where Auxier (Bunky) Marcum and myself talked of but fortunately never attempted to build our version of a steam boat.  In  retrospect, without the creek it would have been a difficult place to live.

In thinking back and trying to remember some of the places along Queens Creek, it brings to memory many of the names but few of the reasons as to why  they acquired the name.  Some of the names were fairly obvious, names such as the barn hollow which to us was the hollow that ran up behind our barn.  This was sort of like your own GPS without batteries or screen.   But situated up barn hollow was an area called “the calf rocks”.  This was a line of low rock cliffs that were in a wooded area that we would occasionally play along.  Why were they were named “the calf rocks”, I have no idea.  As a child you just accept things you are told and never ask why.  I wish many times I had.

Each hollow along the creek had its name and was usually associated with the name of the family living there.  Such names as “the Walter Hatten” hollow, “the Ben Curnutte” hollow, “the Walter Boys” hollow, and others up and down the creek.  

There was an area on the Erie Lakin property and the Arthur Hatten property where there was an abundance of Indian artifacts, primarily objects that would have been used in hunting game.  This gave rise to the common knowledge that these would have been areas Indians would have camped and hunted game in preparation for their winter seasons food.  There was no evidence of a permanent settlement and each spring while cultivating the ground for planting, these objects would be plowed up.

On property that was a part of the old William C.L. Plymale farm, the farm where I grew up, was on the peak of a hill a formation called the “chimney rocks”.  Why were they called that?  Again I admit to having never asked and do not know.  It is important that we impart to our children, grandchildren, and others the knowledge we have of times past so that they might in the future be able to tell where a place is and the reason it is called that which it is.  Without this telling and retelling all is lost to antiquity.

Further up Queens Creek was the “school-house” hollow, so named because it was a large hollow running away from the one room school that existed there.  This one room school,  if you lived on Queens Creek, was where you received your preparation for high school, college and beyond.  In the head of this hollow was an are called the “fall rocks”  It was a shaded, damp area, that grew species of plants that were not commonly seen in many areas.  I recall there being a great many “lady slipper” flowers, so named because they were shaped as a slipper.  Although they do grow in other areas, I don’t recall ever seeing them away from the “fall rocks” area.  It seems that I remember seeing, in the area, an imprint of an ancient plant in a stone but I could be wrong about this.  I have no idea why it was called the “fall rocks”, I just accepted that it was.  I do  know it was a wonderful place for our annual school picnic.

In this area was also a site known as the “warm rocks”.  I  believe this was an area where fox hunters would gather at night to listen to their dogs run.  In talking with my brother about this, he indicated the following.  The cliffs had an oppening in which one could climb into an area that would have been warmed by and retained this warmth of the afternoon and evening sun.  I seem to recall that the story was that it had enough elevation that the lights from the Huntington Veterans Hospital could be viewed from there.  I can only remember visiting the site once in my life and that was during the daylight hours so I cannot vouch for any of the above.

At the head of Queens Creek was an area called “buckhorn”.  I believe there might have been a path across the area that provided a short cut to the town of Wayne area if one chose to walk it or ride a horse across it.  How did it get the name “buck horn”?  Again, I do not know.  I am betting Wanda Hollingsworth could answer many of these questions as to why certain place were named what they were.  Perhaps her daughter will read this and pass along some of Wanda’s knowledge. 

I remember an area located on the Ben Curnutte property near our home that we avoided.  It supposedly had a high population of Copperhead snakes.  I do believe that members of the Curnutte family that worked the soil and tended livestock in that area attested to this.  I do know that we as children avoided the area.  Just a rumor would have kept me away. 

I remember a site behind and near the Emma LaLonde property with a large cave like opening under a cliff.  I believe it was semi-enclosed with a fence and was used as on might use a cellar.  I think it had a spring inside that provided a constant supply of sulphur water.  These again are small boy memories to which I did not attach importance to back then. 

There is a family cemetery located on the top of a high hill on the old farm where I lived.  Standing on top of the hill, one can turn toward the chimney rocks that I spoke of earlier and get a wonderful echo effect.  It is almost “spooky” to shout your name and hear it very clearly returned to you.  By turning in a different direction, one can shout toward what we called the “Arthur Hatten” hill and get the same echo effect.  I don’t recall ever hearing this echo effect from two different sites while standing in one.  I am sure that somewhere it does, but if so, I have not heard it.  The “Arthur Hatten” hill is one of the higher elevations in Wayne County.  I remember Mr. Hatten having a feild high on the side of the hill that he tended each year.  If I close my eyes today, I can hear him as he plowed back and forth, calling out commands to his horse.

It is pleasent to think of these places and all of the pleasures that were experienced in growing up among them.

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Autumn, or as we always called it, Fall.  What a beautiful time of year.  I love all seasons but Fall is my  favorite.  This is the time of year that nature prepares the trees that beautify our land for winter.  With different trees having different times for providing a cacophony, that is a new word I learned, of reds, greens, yellows, oranges, and browns that we see, they seem to be trying to outdo each other.  In our area, this time occurs sometime during later October.  As I see these changes, it takes me back to my childhood on the farm on Queens Creek and many pleasant memories.

By now, most crops would have been harvested and put away for our and the livestock on the farm’s survival throughout the long, cold, winter.  Potatoes and cabbage would have been buried under a mound of dirt and straw for preservation and use after freezing began.  As I recall, they were placed on a bed of straw on the ground, then covered with a heavy layer of straw, and then covered with as much as six inches of dirt.  This kept the vegetables fresh throughout the winter.  You simply dug a small hole into the mound and removed the vegetables you needed and recovered them with dirt and straw.

Apples would have been picked and placed in a dark dry place to keep them as long as possible.  Many people treated the apples with a sulphur smoke to preserve them.  I personally did not like the flavor of sulphured apples.  I doubt that anyone does this today.  Another way of preserving them was to peel and thinly slice them and then place them in the hot sun on a clean cloth, covering them with cheese cloth to keep the flying creatures out.  Usually, we would dry them on the roof of a chicken house, taking them up each evening and placing them back the following day.  After they were properly dehydrated, they would be placed in paper flour sacks and stored for later use.  Have you ever had fried dried apple pies, or dried apple pies, or apple stack cake?  Believe me, if you haven’t, do it before you go to your rewards.  There is nothing better than a country meal with one of the above as dessert.  On motorcycle trips, our group always looks for a fried apple pie sign and when found it commands an immediate stop.  It is really hard to find fried dried apple pies, so when you do partake of them generously.

Green beans would have been picked during the summer an preserved in different manners for winter use.  They would have been canned, pickled, or made into what we called “shucked beans”.  I haven’t had shuck beans for many years, probably at least fifty of more.  Preparing the beans for “shucking” or drying was a family affair.  After stringing but not breaking, the beans would be strung on a long string with a needle and then hung behind the kitchen stove for drying.  I don’t recall the length of time it took but once properly dry, they would be placed in paper flour sacks along with black pepper and placed in storage.  The reason for the pepper was to discourage bugs from  getting in the beans.  Dehydration, the fancy term that is used today to  describe drying foods, is used as if it had just been thought of.  Farmers had for centuries used this method and just called it drying.  I think I like the old term better.  Cooking shuck beans was about like cooking a bale of straw.  I think my mother would soak them overnight and then place them along with some water and a chunk of cured pork into an iron pot, everybody had one of these back then, and cook them, it seemed, nearly all day.  If done properly, the taste was wonderful and they were very tender.  When eating them and their being unbroken, they were sometimes like picking up a fork full of hay.

I personally did not like pickled beans.  As a kid, I think I called them spoiled beans.  They really had an obnoxious aroma.  In other words they stunk, but to each his own.  Other crops that would have been pickled would have been corn, beets, cabbage or kraut as it is called when pickled, cucumbers preserved several different ways, and green peppers stuffed with cabbage and then have the top sewn on and pickled.

All of the above would be placed in the cellar, a large underground room with masonry or rock walls that maintained a constant temperature throughout the winter.  Also in the cellar would be quarts and half gallon canning jars filled with, green beans, beets, blackberries, canned sausage and pork tenderloin, assorted jars of cucumbers either pickled or salted, jars of molasses, jars of corn, either pickled on the cob or cut off, pints and quarts of blackberry jam and jelly, raspberry jam or jelly, apple jelly, apple butter, peach preserves,canned peaches, and canned apples.

During all of this food preparation, the male members of the family would be out cutting a winters supply of firewood for the kitchen stove.  Coal would have already been hauled and placed in the coal house for use in the large heating stove and the fireplaces throughout the house.  There was a family named Roberts that lived near where Queens Creek road entered Big Hurricane Creek road.  They operated a small coal mine  along the road and my brother and myself on several occasions would haul wagon loads of coal for use during the winter.  I have no idea what the price of a ton of coal is today but back then I think we paid perhaps three dollars for a wagon load of coal.  I believe we hauled coal for a couple of our neighbors also.

To obtain wood for the kitchen, we simply went into the woods and selected trees of a manageable size, cut the down, and hauled them to the barn lot for cutting up.  Usually we used oak or hickory.  Untill they were all gone, we would cut dead chestnut trees for kindling.  They were easy to split and caught fire quickly, which was important on a cold winter morning and you were trying to start a fire in a cold room.  My brother and I would usually do the sawing of the wood into lengths with a two-man saw and my Dad would split it into burning sized sticks.  It would be stacked and hauled to the kitchen as needed.  At this time we would also be cutting wood to be used to heat the evaporation pan used in the making of molasses.  It was cut to longer lengths and was always hardwood in that it burned longer and hotter than other woods.

Along about the first of November and frost had begun, someone would decide that is was time for killing hogs.  I don’t remember how many we would kill but two comes to mind.  Two or three neighbors would show up to help with the chore.  The hog was shot, usually with a 22 caliber rifle and then had its throat cut and bled out.  It was then hung and dipped in a vat of boiling water, placed usually on a sled and then all of the hair scraped off with butcher knives.  It was then rehung, all of the insides removed and then placed back on the sled for cutting into hams, bacon, sausage meat, etc.  The better part of that night would be spent in grinding, seasoning, and frying the sausage patties, then placing them in glass jars and pouring hot grease from the frying over them and placing the jars in the cellar for winter consumption.  The hams and pork sides would have been placed in the smoke house, allowed to cool out and then heavily salted down with salt and perhaps a small amount of sugar in the salt.  After a time of salt curing, the meat would have been hung from the smoke house rafters and a slow fire built in a sand filled washtub using green hickory wood until the outside of the meat turned a golden brown.  After two or three days of this it would remain hanging or placed on a bench in the smoke house for use untill it ran out, perhaps in late spring or early summer.  A large ham, twenty-five pounds or larger reaches it optimum aging flavor at about twelve months into the curing process.  It may, of course, be eaten at any point prior to that.  Perhaps this will bring back memories to some of you who have had the pleasure of home cured ham or bacon along with biscuits, eggs the way you like them, your favorite style of gravy, whether brown, cream, or red-eye made with some coffee,  and some apple butter fresh out of the jar from the cellar.  If you lived back then you will remember that it was hard times during the depression of the 30’s but we were never hungry.  The hog’s head would have been processed and made into something calles “souse”.  A really nasty mess in my opinion.  I never recall eating it although my mother prepared it.  I also feel the same way about the pigs feet which were pickled.  I had seen where that hog walked and wanted no part of the feet.

Now, with all of our food prepared for the season, attention would have been paid to the livestock.  That really is a year round job.  It would have started in early spring with cleaning of barn stalls of accumulated animal manure which would have been spread on the fields as fertilizer.  Hay, such as soybeans, lespideza, clover, and oats would have been harvested over the summer and placed in the barn for winter feeding.  Corn would have been picked, shucked, and placed in the corn crib.  The fodder or remaining corn stalks would have been cut and placed in shocks in the field for carrying to the feed lot on an as needed basis.  Oats would have been cradled and tied into bundles and then placed in a hay stack around a central pole.  Stacking them in this manner provided protection from rain.  A feed room in the barn would contain large bags of various kinds of animal feed, horse, cattle, and hog to supplement the food that had been raised for them. 

With all of this done, it would seem that a long period of rest would have been earned.  But no, there were still the daily chores to carry out that were not seasonal.  Live stock don’t sleep in like people so that care went on both early in the morning and late in the evening.  Milking had to be done, the animals fed and cared for, fences repaired, and many other chores that go on daily the year round. 

It amazes me that each year as I see the colors of fall approaching that all of this comes to mind.  Yes, it was hard work.  Would I trade todays life style to return to it?  YOU BET! 

I hope that as you read this and see a tree with changing colors that it will arouse the pleasant memories of your life as it does me.  I, in my mind, know that God overrides unpleasant memories of long ago with the pleasant ones.  Just further proof of his existence.  He does his painting with a beautiful brush.

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OLD “RUBY”

What you see in the picture at the left is really not what it would appear to be at first glance.  It looks like there was one “heck of a battle” and the dog won.  Not true, the people lying on the ground are only sleeping and not dead.  This all took place on a motorcycle trip during the first week of october.  Let me explain.

I think you would agree that the dog pictured is one fine specimen of a Redbone hound.  One that your father would have been proud to own had you grown up on a farm in West Virginia or any part of Appalachia for that matter.  Redbone hounds are widely used and respected for hunting raccoons, bears, and mountain lions.  While an aggressive game hunter, their demeanor around humans is one of loyalty and gentleness.  They would make great family dogs except, well they just have a “doggy” smell. 

We came upon Ruby in mid-afternoon after a long day of riding mountainous, curvy roads in the Great Smoky mountains.  We were riding a small, narrow, mountainous road when we came upon a rest area.  Having ridden for some distance, the decision was made to stop for a rest, a snack, an a drink of water.  Upon pulling into the rest area, we noted that there were already two motorcycles there and the riders were gathered around this animal, Ruby.  Our first question was, “how does the dog ride your motorcycle?”  They answered that they had also pulled in to the overlook for a rest and that Ruby was already there wandering aimlessly around. 

While Ruby appeared to be a healthy Redbone specimen, she was gaunt, appearing not to  have had food for some time.  She was very tired and seemed to be a bit lame with sore feet and some loss of strength in her hind quarters.  She was wearing a collar with two phone numbers engraved on it plus a tracking device with an antennae, so she was just not a wandering stray.  While friendly, she was shy.  Probably because she was unsure of our intentions and the fact that she was lost and in unfamiliar territory.

Bikers always travel with some “junk food”.  Of course she couldn’t have chocolate so there went the food we had the most of.  We did have a quantity of lemon cookies, potato chips, and snack crackers.  She was ravenous.  She quickly wolfed down the food we had and once she saw we were her friends she adjusted to our being there, however, she constantly walked back and forth throughout the area as if searching for someone.

Ruby probably weighed about 55 or 60 pounds and her coat had several scars as if she had been injured on more than one past occasion.  This  being bear hunting season, we quickly figured that she was someone’s prize bear hunting dog and that the scars were from past encounters with the quarry she was pursuing.  

We decided to send one or our riders off to find a phone.  We were in an isolated area where there was no cell phone service.  After a time he returned and informed us that he had called the numbers that were on Ruby’s collar and had successfully reached the owners mother who lived some 15 or 20 miles distant and that she would be along shortly to get Ruby.  He was a bear hunter.

After a time, the owners mother arrived and took posession of Ruby.  I do believe that Ruby was truly glad to see her.  She indicated that her son, the owner,  had lost Ruby four days prior to that.  We asked her about the scars and she told us that Ruby was a very aggressive bear hunter and that once she made contact with a bear she simply would not give up or let it get away.  She also indicated that he had five or six other dogs out that were lost. so it seems that  these dogs hunt wide areas they do get lost occasionally, the reason for the tracker on her collar.

Al of this took 2 or 3 hours out of our ride, we felt good about having found the dog, its owner, and that perhaps we had saved her life.  Perhaps today, somewhere in the mountains of North Carolina or Tennessee, Ruby is out there practicing her favorite pastime of chasing bears and occasionally remembering the kind people on the motorcycles who befriended her in her time of need.

 

 

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