Sunday, August 7, 2016

Homesteading 101

The Homestead Act Commemorative Stamp
 Issued in Beatrice, Nebraska
 May 20, 1962

"I would rather be out on the prairie with the grass
and the birds and Pa's fiddle. Yes, even with the wolves!
I would rather be anywhere than in this muddy, cluttered,
noisy town, crowded by strange people. 
Pa, when are we going to move to 
the homestead?
Excerpt from "By The Shores Of Silver Lake"
Laura Ingalls Wilder

Pa Ingalls planting cottonwood seedlings on the
little homestead on the Dakota prairie
By The Shores Of Silver Lake
Laura Ingalls Wilder
Art work by Garth Williams

The prairie sings to me in the forenoon
 and I know in the night
 I rest easy in the prairie arms, 
on the prairie heart..  
-Carl Sandburg  .

The Cottonwood trees that  Pa (Charles Ingalls) planted
as a windbreak on his claim are still standing today.

The old homestead stands empty now,
But the shingles and clapboard hanging free,
Remember together the sad and happy moments
Of the days that use to be. 

 The Old Homestead
Joseph T. Renaldi

Old homestead and tornado shelter

"The dust and heat, the burning wind,
 reminded us of many things.
 We were talking about
 what it is like
 to spend one's childhood
 in little towns like these,
 buried in wheat and corn, 
under stimulating extremes of climate:
 burning summers when the world
 lies green and billowy beneath a brilliant sky,
 when one is fairly stifled in vegetation,
 in the color and smell of strong weeds
 and heavy harvests; 
blustery winters with little snow,
 when the whole country 
is stripped bare and gray as sheet-iron.
 We agreed that no one
 who had not grown up in a little prairie town
 could know anything about it."
"My Antonia"
Willa Cather

Homesteaders on the prairie
Parkston, South Dakota

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