First of all, Merry Christmas to all my Dunseith friends. It has been a great year getting re-acquainted with everyone!
It is so great what you do to keep us all connected, Thank you! I am planning on the Alaska cruise I need to put my name on the list. Thanks again for all you do for us. Hope you had a great Christmas. And happy new YearCheryl Haagenson
Gary. The flurry of memories enfolding the sadness of our loss of
Vance Bailey is an extremely soothing and stimulating read. With
comments from my brother Bob Hosmer, and my beautiful cousin Colette
Hosmer adding to the lore, I am tempted to add my two bits worth.
I spoke to Wayne Bailey, Vances brother. He is one of the dozen of
us who meet at the Dunseith golf course every Tuesday when it isn’t
covered with snow. Wayne indicated that there will be a private
family celebration of Vance’s life on the 29th of December. Wayne
is going to manage another memorial service at the Dunseith cemetery
around the time of Memorial Day next year. There is a family plot
where their Mother, Dad, and baby sister are buried. I will
certainly be in attendance there.
The memories of Dunseith are still vivid at my advanced age of 77.
I didn’t graduate from Dunseith HS, but my days spent there won a few
diplomas of “Life in a Great Place”. Vance’s description of the swimming
places, the stock yard hooliganism and falling off the cliff at the gravel
pit when “shot while playing cowboys and Indians” in my case were
acurate. Mac Macue (spelling) used to have a bag of candy mints in his
pocket and Gene Fassett and I used to check out the Dakota Hotel for a
handout on our way south on main street where Emil Hack would be sitting
on the sidewalk curb, where we could stop at the Wilson barber shop right
next to the drug store where we would read comic books until Mrs Shelver
couldn”t stand it any more and tell us to leave NOW. So we could
continue south to the barbershop and watch hair cuts that Jess was giving
while Ludie, his oldest son shined shoes. Clarence Hagen used to work at
the stone garage owned by the Lake brothers, used to stand leaning against
the east side waiting for cars to get gas. Later he was at Anzio in the
Sicily/Italian campaign of WWII. We’d head by the Lamoureux garage and
see what was going on in the maintenance area where Charlie, Leo, Ovilla,
and Albert might be fixing a truck or car. Across the street, Uncle Ray
Wilson was the judge. He and Ovilla played chess by the hour, and Uncle
Ray would let us puff on his pipe probably in hopes we’d throw up. Think
about that nowadays. KC Sine would usually be good for a coke or a banana
or maybe both. Mom never understood why I usually did not have an
appetite.Willow Creek always had fascination for me. In the spring we would
catch tadpoles and minnows to save in a jar. Once we caught a
couple of garter snakes and brought them to my house just south of
the Commercial Hotel while the Grassmans still managed it. We were
feeding them some small frogs we caught at the creek, and the woman
who was taking care of me. Don, and Bob while the folks were gone,
came out to see this beautiful sight and said to get those critters
out of the yard. Later, she was taking a nap in the house and I
took a mounted rattle snake which one of my uncles gave dad. It was
in a coiled posture. I put it beside her on the bed and then went
to the kitchen and made a little noise so she would wake up. Sure
as heck she woke, screamed like a siren, and came after me with a
vengance. Sure didn’t do much more with snakes after that
The old skating rink and warming house was a favorite meeting place
whether you were skating or not. There was a pot bellied stove that
heated it up grand. As a matter of fact, my brother Don and I stopped in
there after a Sunday afternoon movie at the Althea Theater, right next to
Floyd Nelson’s barber shop. He didn’t allow kids to watch hair cuts.
Anyway Don and I stopped and Vance and Wayne were there in the warming
hut and we discussed lifes strifes.
Sunday School at the Stone Church was a must and at Christmas time
(Which is as I write this) we all were at some time in a play or
pageant. One time Dee Nelson (son of Floyd), Spencer Teal (son of
Bill and Irene who lived at the depot) and I (son of Jack and Inez
Hosmer) were THE THREE WISEMEN. I was the bearer of Myrh and still
remember the words I had to maneuver through the cotton beard we all
wore which would slip quite a bit while singing in the bathrobes which
were supposed to look like Arab garments.
The Johnson family, Mr and Mrs JJ, Bud, Bob, Warren, Roger, Chuck,
Walter, and Shirley were a family I knew well. Chuck and I were same
age, and the other guys were around and vocal so we learned alot of
good man-talk words. There Mother Carie was a beautiful and talented
citizen who lived a long life. Bob, Walter and Roger were at the
Another family I grew to know was the Ole Evans family at the mill.
Grandpa Gottbreht was still alive and Joe Evans and I ran over a
stack of newly sacked flour which was milled there. It was a mistake
because we had muddy boots on and left black tracks on those beautiful
white mounds. He shook his fist told me to get home, and he knew who
I was. Wow, I thought I’d be put in solitary, but no one ever
mentioned it again except me and Joe. We used to get in a buggy
powered by a horse called Mike and go out west across the creek to the
pastures west and north of the homestead to bring the cattle in for
milking. Then all the men including Uncle Frank, Ole, Myron, Joe, and
Rod would milk the herd. Celia Evans would operate the separator in
the milk house, by hand crank, and then it would be bottled and
delivered by Myron. The cream at the top of the bottle was divine on
breakfastfood, and the milk was delicious.
I’ll leave it here for now, and will do so with my warmest and most
serious hope for all your years to come, including the next one, to be
fulfilling, at peace, and in a grip of happiness and satisfaction. My
email in Arizona is firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you all for being
who you are and for being from where we all were at one time or
another, DUNSEITH FOREVER. Bill Hosmer
Gary. The bundle of great mail you initiated is most interesting
and poignant with our loss of a terrific historically oriented
Dunseith citizen named Vance Bailey. A distant cousin of mine, and
a long time friend.Your latest which I read today was terrific. I tried to add a few
memories and hoped that it would go to all the folks you had
addressed yours to, but it bounced at the “undisclosed recipient”.
Hopefully it did get through to you. (Bill, with such a big list I have to send out 4 mailings with each of these messages. The max is 100 names with each message)
If it did and you don’t
object, perhaps it could be forwarded to your original addressing.
If you did or did not receive my input, could you give me a short
reply letting me know? I noticed in something you sent out that
there was a way to get to all the people with one shot, but now I
cannot locate it. My computer knowledge is in the dark ages zone.
If you did not get it, I can try again because I have the complete
(and valuable)listing of all known computer addresses, thanks to
forwarding by Bob Leonard.
You have opened a beehive of good reading, and I appreciate what you
have gifted us with.
Merry Christmas Today, here in AZ. Happy New Year as well. Bill