Hot Enough for You?

     It's averaging over 100 here in Texas. Do you remember how it was before most homes had air conditioning?

     We'd sit on the porch, fanning ourselves, sipping iced tea or lemonade to keep cool. Cool being a relative term. It wasn't cool by todays standards but it did prevent heat stroke.

    Almost no home constructed in the last 30 years includes a porch suitable for inviting neighbors over to sit in the shade during the hottest part of the day.

     Most kids today have never seen a screen porch. Do you remember trying to get to sleep on a hot muggy night. As kids, we lay there telling stories; wearing just enough to not be naked. Using a wet wash cloth or even wet sheets in an effort to get cool enough to sleep.

You don't have to tell me about the "Good Ol' Days!"

    Don't remind me of a hot outhouse with buzzing wasps, spiders, splinters and an odor that made you want to keep the door open.

I love porcelain and running water!

     Sequoyah in the 1950s, was a modern facility compared to most of rural Oklahoma. For some of us, Sequoyah was our first experience living with indoor plumbing, electric lights and a laundry where we didn't have to haul water, scrub our clothes by hand and hang them on a line to dry.

     Many of us came from homes deep in the woods. Carried water from a spring or creek for drinking, cooking and a bath in a wash tub about once a week. We cut fire wood for heat and cooking. Used coal oil (kerosene) lamps for light and lived off the land as much as possible. A milk cow, chickens and a hog pen were vital parts of our lives before Sequoyah.

      Us old folks love to tell the youngsters how good they have it compared to the old days, but if the truth were spoken, none of us would really like to go back to the old days except for an occasional weekend at the lake. Even then, it's only a reminder of the way it once was. We now have campers, ice chests, bottled water and still sneak off for quick meal at the closest fast food restaurant if we don't feel like cooking.

    As long as you're sitting at your computer with the thermostat turned way down, tell me what you remember about the "Good Ol' Days." Don't be bashful, just write it the way it was. Grammar and spelling can be fixed so don't let that stop you.

Stay cool,

Charles Cochran
Seq~ Class of 1960

Fannae Homer Shields Remembers . . .

     The simple life...had more interaction with friends and time to share....few cars and techology toys, phones and for sure no computers in every home....LOL

This is a neat concept...and I pulled a few pictures to recall a few thoughts for you:

    My youngest memories are from living in South Dakota with a creek running in the back of our house, where we children would go to play. Our 'outhouse' was the only one with a built in mother was afraid at night to go there, so my father ran wires from the house to the outhouse and put in a pull chain light for her.   LOL

    After my short time on Wheelock and Sequoyah campus' my mother then divorced and remarried, joined the three of us children and settled in Hugo.  We lived in a converted older house apartment while our new house was being build.

      The new 2 bedroom, 1 bath house had a window fan that took up the whole frame of the window in the dinning area.....during the summer it saved us from the heat as we would open windows of the house and the fan pulled the air all through the house with a breeze plus my younger sister made a dirt place [play] house outside under the fan which kept the area cool and the house shade made it just right for her dolls and friends to enjoy.   We enjoyed the big shade trees located in the wooded area behind the house too.

    Our house in the late 40s had plumbing and inside running water.  I recall Saturdays having to get up early to start the family weekly washing using a wringer washer . . . once I thought I may have broken my arm when it got caught in the rollers and took my arm through up to my shoulder . . . when I yelled, my mother came and removed the catch to seperate the two rolls and I pulled my arm out . . . a couple of bruses was all I suffered . . . my mother was a nurse . . . so, after checking my arm she told me to finish the wash . . . LOL . . . which included hanging them all out on the line in the back yard to dry.

    When the cool of the evening came, the folks often sat out front and neighbors often joined them with ice tea or cool water to visit while we children often played a game with a ball throw over the house and then ran around the other side to hit someone on the other side of the house [Annie! ~ Over!] . . . or, we may start a flag football game in the back yard if there where enough for two teams . . . other times we moved our game of softball a little further into the lot behind our house and enjoyed that until it was too dark to see the ball.  Climbing the trees and playing among the shade trees further back was always a good time too.

     Come Sundays was neat for us as a family as often after church we were taken out to eat before we returned to the house.   I started sewing my own clothes at the age of 6 which gave me the advantage of wearing a new dress almost every week to church then of course to school.

       The good ole days were good for me as modern equipment came along my step-father  allowed my mother to buy them and that made my house chores easier for me to complete.

    It wasn't until I went off to Chilocco to school that I became thankful for the advantage of all that my parents provide for the 5 children they raised.  I think we 5 believed we were just 'poor folks' in town . . . then I heard of the situations other students had at home then realized while we may not have had as much as some in Hugo we did have more than others!

Fannae Homer Shields  ~  attend Seq. 1st grd. 1949

Jackie Lehman Remembers . . .

     Charles, we moved from Phoenix Ariz to Seq. Voc. School in Aug 1940, I believe.  Our house in Phoenix was cooled with a swamp cooler which Daddy made and stuck in the window.  We had a whole house of our own.

     When we got to Seq.Voc. Schl. and found that the promised house was not forthcoming, we were not too happy.  But I imagine the Websters, over whom we lived in that old two story house [next to the HomeEc bldg.], were even less happy than we were with our living arrangements. 

     We five kids slept on the porch of that old house.  There was no heating or cooling for the porch except what Nature sent us.

     The rest of the house was divided into two rooms, one was the kitchen and dining room, the other was the "front room" where our parents slept.  I remember that there was one closet in the house, not very large either.

      We were at the end of the sidewalk, down from units A, B, and C.  Sometimes the boys in the buildings up from us would roll large tires down the hill.  Never hit any of us though.

     We used a kerosene stove in that old wooden house.   Thank God it never caught on fire.  We had steam heat, of course, and an ice box with ice delivery when we needed it. 

     I thought the campus was beautiful, as it was filled with trees and daffodils bloomed down the sidewalk from the little girls building to Cherokee Hall. 

I have good memories and bad ones of Sequoyah, and I dream of it constantly.

Jackie Lehman Davidson  ~  Daughter of 1940-60s Seq. Teacher, Lawrence Lehman

Alfred Berryhill Remembers . . .

     I had an uncle that had MS (multiplesclerosis) and during the summer we would put his bed out on the porch and put a fan on him.  I was just a boy and my dad, uncle and aunt were on the porch when they noticed that I was up to something.  I was told later what they said. One of them asked, Whats he up to?  The other responded, I dont know.

      We lived on the Church ground and like most Indian Churches, we had camp houses.  We used one to cook in and the other was where my uncle lived.  Since, there had been a lot of traffic between the two camp houses, a sandy trail lie between them.

        They saw me cover something up on the trail.  Our grass was in need of cutting.  They saw me lay in the grass and they said you could barely see my stomach.  Every now and  then I would raise my head and look towards the camp where we cooked.  Then they said they could see my belly moving as if something was funny.  Finally, when I looked again, I saw this cat coming.  They put two and two together and they knew I was after the cat.

     It was one of those 110 degree days and as I lay there, I could see the cat coming with his tongue out, tail down and walking at a real slow pace.  Just as it got to where I had covered a hose with sand, I blew on the hose; dust flew and the cat was scratching at air and making that sound when its mad.  I laughed my head off and so did my audience. 

Alfred Berryhill  ~  Class of 1965

Timothy Jim Remembers . . .

     I wasn't born until 1961 but I can relate to some of the things you mentioned. We lived in the country and had no running water or electricity. We had to pump water from a well and also used kerosene lanterns.

      I can still remember the stench of the "outhouse". For years I thought the JC Penney catalog was only made for outhouses.

      It wasn't until 1970 that we moved into town and experienced running water. We still didn't have AC. I didn't live in a place with AC until I went to Sequoyah.

     The good ole days. Back when we only took a bath once a week whether we needed it or not. I think we used a number nine tub for baths. The other tubs were for our feasts when we cooked our corn soup and frybread.

     Our cook stove was an old wood stove unit. My grandma preferred cooking outside during the hot season.

    Yeah, the good ole days; I don't miss the times, only the people. All my folks are all gone. I would trade what I have now to get my folks back in a minute. But they wouldn't come back. Not to this present world. Jesus is coming soon and we will all be together again.


Timothy Neil Jim    ~  Class of 1979