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About The frontier. (O'Neill City, Holt County, Neb.) 1880-1965 | View Entire Issue (Dec. 17, 1953)
Prairieland Talk . . .
Arbuckle’s Coffee and 5-cent Salt
By ROMAINE SAUNDERS. Retired. Former Frontier Editor
LINCOLN—The pioneer out on ii grassgrown
homestead moved the grass with a five-foot Buck
eye mower, raked it into bunches, hauled the
bunches to a stack in a wagon rack Before day
light on a frosty morning he would hitch a team
to a load of hay that had been loaded the day
before and pull out for town 20 miles away. Ar
riving in town he pulled up at
the DeYarman livery and feed
barn and sold the hay which he
forked into the mow by hand
with a pitchfork.
What did he get for all this?
About what a guy today
would charge for unloading the
hay—$1.50. He could buy a bar
of soap for the wife at home, a
five cent bag of salt, a package
of Arbuckle’s coffee, two bits_
worth of sugar, a 65 cent bag
of flour and a plug of JT. After Romaine
feeding his team, eating a dime Sau«de”
lunch of crackers and cheese he pulled ou
home late in the afternoon, and got m about
midnight. An early day homesteader said at one
time he had to make a trip to town that would
require him being away from home °yer'mfJ ’
That night his wife gave birth to a baby un
attended except what the children could help.
And baby and mother made it alright.
No one wants conditions today such as these
that have been mentioned, but maybe we need
to recapture the courage and self-reliance that
made it possible for the pioneers to lay the
foundation of the empire of Holt that this gen
eration enjoys as a heritage.
• • •
Out of sunshine and shadow, out of storm
and calm, from the freedom and inspiration of
open prairieland and the guiding hand of the ln
finte Holt county has a citizen it may well pause
for a moment and honor. Now at 102, living in
quiet security at Stuart, this old lady is marching
down the second century. You had the story from
The Frontier’s vivid writer and we’re carried back
to the flush of active life when there was a town
in the northwest corner of the county that sup
ported a newspaper, the Dustin Dispatch, a jour
nalistic venture of a brother of Prairieland Talk
er The town was named for the family by the
name of Dustin, and out of the inspiration and
enthusiasm of Mrs. Dustin there were activi
ties that mellowed the vicissitudes of pioneer
life and promoted community welfare. Mrs. Dust
in’s name survives in picturesque Dustin pre
cinct. . , . ... .
Mrs. Axtell, now in the serene period of life s
approaching sunset, doubtless cherishes memories
of the long ago from which The Frontier’s writer
at Stuart can draw some fascinating pictures.
And down at Amelia in the Barnett home is
another aged lady whose life’s highway approach
es a full century. Others in the county have trod
the pathway for more than four score and 10
years. * * *
Of the 10,291 persons who visited the State
Historical society’s new building the first month
• it was opened to the public, it remained for a
country school kid to say the cheering word and
pay the supreme compliment to those responsible
for it all. A group of school children from an
outstate country district was brought to Lincoln
by the group’s teacher and taken to see the so
ciety’s building and the large collection of relics
of the past of historical interest. The teacher ex
plained to their guide they could not stay long
as the children were hungry and she would have
to take them to lunch. A little boy, fascinated
with the wonders of the Indian gallery and the
period rooms, exclaimed, “I’d rather look at this
than eat lunch!”
♦ * *
Candidates for the legislature have stepped
into the picture as of the date of writing in two
sandhills districts, the 35th district composed of
Custer, Loup and Garfield counties, and the 40th
district, composed of Sheridan, Cherry and
Brown. R. E. Blixt of Arnold, an attorney, will
seek the nomination in the 35th, and Don Ravens
croft of Merriman tries for the nomination in the
You can never tell what a kid in knee panxs
will do when he gets into long breeches. StiU
wearing knee pants, he sat with me in a boat on
a lake in Cherry county as we hauled m ring
perch as fast as we could bait the hooks. Today
that lad grown, Lee Rankin, stood before the
highest court of the land and made judges and
lawyers sit up and listen. Mr. Rankin, now as
sistant attorney general, represents the govern
ment in a dispute over separate schools for Ne
groes and whites. The justice department con
tends that excluding anyone from a public school
on account of race or color is unconstitutional
and in violation of the 14th amendment. The
southern states have the problem of Negro and
white children together in schools. Maybe they
should be allowed to settle it. They probably will
eventually. Lee has asked no advice from his old
fisherman friend who favors separate schools
where conditions make such arrangements ad
* « *
The old man was receiving no little atten
tion on the anniversary of the day he was born
into a troubled world, but the big thrill came
when his 6-year-old granddaughter came to him
and said, "Grandpa, can I give you a birthday
\ • * *
Making out on an income of the 1930’s with
the outgo of the ’50’s involves some close calcu
lations. . . Pestered by an unwelcome guest? Eat
a raw onion. . . Plan the thing, make a begin
ning, keep at it, here a little, there a little, go at
it again—done! . . If you know of a neglected
little child to whom you can give something,
two will have a merry Christmas. . . Yesterday
TV exhibited the “outstanding” guys of the year.
No Salvation Army lass or welfare worker, nor
the busy little housewife who finds time to run
in and give a burdened neighbor a lift appeared
cn the screen. . . A Wisconsin editor has it fig
ured out this way: You know a man is successful
when newspapers start quoting him on subjects
he knows nothing about. . . Alcohol preserves
some things but not your good name. . . Women
have entered every field of human endeavor, sa
cred or secular, but have not yet served as pall
* * *
Has it come to that, imported “experts” sent
in to tell Holt county patriots what their earthly
accumulations are worth! Fortunate for these
gentlemen that there has been a turn over ’-n
the population picture or they would be high
tailing out of the country to escape the wrath of
Colonel Doyle and some others. It’s a pretty ket
tle of fish when communities can no longer de
termine property values. Should a special session
of the legislature materialize, State Sen. Frank
Nelson would immortalize his legislative career
by putting through a measure somehow hooked
up with the road program providing that his
colleagues responsible for the idea be required to
pay the bills of the experts. Or still better—ditch
the whole works and return to the old way of
reaping the tax harvest.
* * *
I don't know what Slate Sen. Frank Nelson
may think about this talk of an extra session
of the legislature, but no doubt most of the
members of the legislature thought they had
enough during the regular session. The law
makers of the long ago were regulating the
railroads; now it is just roads.
* * *
Joseph Olemeir of Stubble, la., came to Holt
couty in 1901 and in December that year bought
a ranch a 1,100 acres in Holt Creek precinct, A.
B. Newell of O’Neill being the selling agent. Mr.
Newell reported his land sales for that year to
taled 20,000 acres. The 11 hundred acres in Holt
Creek brought $10,500. A young man by the name
of Snell while driving up from Chambers a De
cember day that year had one foot so badly fro
zen that Doctor Gilligan found it necessary to
amputate, taking off the foot at the ankle. The
Frontier had a suggestion that year to the effect
that if you did not want to patronize the Standard
Oil company you could use elbow grease.
Editorial . . .
‘ Yes, Virginia... ’
New York, N.Y.
September 8. 1897
Editor, The New York Sun
I am 8-years-old. Some of my little friends
say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says. "If you
see it in the Sun it's so." Please tell me the
truth—is there a Santa Claus?
(Editor’s note: It was only September, and
1897’s Christmas was three months in the fu
ture. But Virginia O’Hanlon’s concern was
with an important problem, that to her, knew
no season. That was why she wrote her letter
to the New York Sun.
(The answer to Virginia’s question, writ
ten in a moment of deep spiritual insight by
Francis B. Church, stands even today as a
testament expressing two thousand years of
faith. It has been reprinted once again by The
Frontier because we believe it always will de
serve to be read again.)
“Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They
have been affected by the skepticism of a skep
* tical age—they do not believe except what they
see—they think that nothing can be which is not
comprehensible by their little minds.
All minds. Virginia, whether they be
men's or children's, are little.
“In this great universe of ours, man is a mere
insect, an ant, in his intellect as compared with
the boundless world about him, as measured by
the intelligence capable of grasping the whole
truth and knowledge.
“Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus.
“He exists as certainly as love and generosity
and devotion exist, and you know that they
abound and give to your life its highest beauty
and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if
there were no Santa Claus! It would be as dreary
as if there were no Virginias. There would be no
childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to
ynakp tolerable this existence. We should have
no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The
eternal light with which childhood fills the world
would be extinguished.
"Not believe in Santa Claus! You might
• as well not believe in fairies!
“You might get your papa to hire men to
watch in all the chimneys on Christmas eve to
catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see
Santa Claus coming down, what would that
prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no
sign that there is no Santa Claus—the most real
things in the world are those neither children nor
men can see.
“Did you ever see fairies dancing on the
lawn? Of course not, but that is no proof that
they are not there—nobody can conceive or imag
ine all the wonders that are unseen and unsee
able in the world.
“You tear apart the baby’s rattle and see
what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil
covering the unseen world which not the strong
est man, or even the united strength of all the
strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart.
Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push
aside the curtain and view and picture the super
nal beauty and glory beyond.
"It is real—ah, Virginia, in all this world
there is nothing else as real and abiding.
“No Santa Claus! Thank God!—he lives, and
he lives forever—a thousand years from now,
Virginia, nay, ten thoustand years from now, he
will continue to make glad the heart of child
Any speaker can make his case sound pretty
good if his audience doesn’t know the facts in
volved, or does not ask the right questions, or
In the talk about farm subsidies, do not ov
erlook the fact that the federal government
spends more each year subsidizing business than
it does subsidizing farmers.
Give The Frontier for Christmas!
CARROLL W. STEWART, Editor and Publisher
Editorial 8c Business Offices: 122 South Fourth St.
Address correspondence: Box 330, O’Neill, NeLr
Established in 1880—Published Each Thursday
Entered at the postoffice in O’Neill, Holt
county, Nebraska, as second-class mail matter
under the Act of Congress of March 3, 1879. This
newspaper is a member of the Nebraska Press
Association, National Editorial Association and
the Audit Bureau of Circulations.
Terms of Subscription: In Nebraska, $2.50 per
year; elsewhere in the United States, $3 per
year; rates abroad, provided on request. All sub
scriptions are paid-in-advance.
Audited (ABC) Circulation—2,200 (Mar. 31, 1953).
Avoids Flight on
Nebraska’s Fourth district con
gressman, A. L. Miller of Kim
ball, probably owes his life to a
desire to hurry back to Wash
ington to see his wife installed as
worthy matron of her Eastern
Mr. Miller was in Madrid re
cently with a ticket in his pocket
for an airplane flight to Lisbon
two days hence, in a Spanish
airlines transport plane.
But Mr. Miller knew that if
he waited for it, he probably
would not get back in time for
Mrs. Miller’s installation.
He caught an earlier plane.
Two days later the Spanish
plane on which he orginally in
tended to travel crashed into a
mountain peak with heavy loss
Mr. Miller still has his can
celled ticket, a grim souvenir
of the trip he did not take.
Mr. and Mrs. Beryl Damkroger
of Wilber were Thursday and
Friday visitors in the home of
Mr and Mrs. J. L. McCarvilie,
jr. The Damkrogers are former
YOU ARE CORDIALLY INVITED
To Visit Onr Show Room
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 18YH
OPEN TIL 10 P.M. — AND SEE THE
PONTIAC for ’54
FREE COFFEE & DOUGHNUTS
FREE DOOR PRIZES!
★ Women s — First, Second and Third
★ Men’s — First, Second and Third
★ Women’s — First, Second and Third
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r arthest from Home — Many Others!
WM. KROTTER CO.
O’NEILL “Serving Holt County Since 1889” NEBRASKA
I ' ■
A Completely Mew EJiie
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The New -Bringing New Values in Luxury
Size and Performance Never Before Offered at the Price !
Biggest Pontiac Ever Built—214 Inches Over-All Length
Magnificent New Beauty. Inside And Out
New Custom-Styled Interiors—New Exterior Colors
Most Powerful Pontiac Ever Built
New Roadability And Driving Ease
New, Greatly Increased Cross-Country Luggage Room
Here is -the first genuine luxury car ever to be
offered in Pontiac's lou- price range!
As the biggest Pontiac ever built, the new
Star Chief brings you all the generous added
length required for peak roadability and riding
ease. And this extra length provides a long,
low, aristocratic silhouette like costly cars,
brought to even greater beauty by a brilliant
new treatment of Pontiac's exclusive Silver
Streak. Interiors are in key. Here is the
gracious, spacious look of luxury for which
motorists have paid several thousands more
than the modest cost of the new Star Chief.
Add to all this an even mightier Pontiac en
gine and you will understand why you should
not only see, but drive, this magnificent
new car soon.
See the completely new Star Chief this week
end, along with the wonderfully improved
Chieftain Series—General Motors lowest .
priced eight and famous economy six. To
gether, they prove that whatever you priie
most in a car, again in '54, dollar for dollar—
you can’t beat a Pontiac.
TO ADD TO
YOUR DRIVING PLEASURE
AND THE LONG-RANGE VALUE OF
YOUR CAR—PONTIAC OFFERS
A WIDE SELECTION OF
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provides instant response in
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B—^ - . - - - I— m
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offers finger tip steering ease
for parking and slow turning,
yet you retain safe road feel.
cools your car to th« tempera
ture you set in minutes. Eight
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New Pentiae Peerer Brake*
let you stop faster with far less
effort and foot movement. A
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New Electric Window Lilli
raise or lower front windows
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’Optional equipment and a<
New Camfen-Centrel Seat
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Oil Display Aoif* — with its Beautiful New Companion Car THE SILVER STREAK. CHIEFTAIN
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WN. KROTTER GO.
Phone 531_*_O'Neill, Nebr.
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