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Milford Township and Proud of It

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as there was no feed left for them. We needed to keep the cows and the horses, (although one horse died anyway.) My Mother's father would bring grain for the chickens and potatoes and meat for us; we lived mostly on cornmeal, oatmeal, potatoes, bread and eggs. We would have chicken on Sundays or maybe some meat that mother had canned. Mother made butter, baked cakes, dressed chickens and had a few eggs to sell. The money from this she used to buy staples like flour, sugar, oatmeal and coffee.

“She made our underwear, linens for the beds and towels from feed sacks. The printed ones she used for dresses and aprons. I lost my savings for college -$600- when the Peoples State Bank closed. That does not sound like much today, but it would have paid a lot of the expenses in those days.

“There were some good times in my Senior year. We learned to do the Charleston, had another roller skating party at Lake Comar and another Nevada. We had our first Junior-Senior banquet at the Story Hotel in Nevada, The Circle Theater was host to our class to attend a movie. We had our first Senior Flunk day. We made a trip to Iowa Falls, which is a few miles from where I was born.

“Some how my Mother made it possible for me to have a great high school graduation. I don't know how my Mother did it, but she bought me a class ring, bought me my first ready made dress. She got my graduation announcements and pictures.

“Next she helped me make plans to go to college. The summer after I graduated from high school I worked in my Aunt's Restaurant and saved all the money I earned and all my graduation gifts which were mostly five and ten dollar bills. One thing I didn't do was to put it in the bank. My mother was determined I should attend college. She belonged to the Ladies Auxiliary, which was an organization for wives of World War One Veterans. She learned about a scholarship that would pay for their children's tuition after their first semester of college.

“The problem now was to get together $50 for entrance fees and $36 for first quarter tuition and money for books. We lived four miles from the college in Ames so we decided I should go there and take Home Economics and Science.

“After I completed the first quarter I qualified for the La Vern Noyles scholarship. My Mother helped me with books and I worked for my room and board in the homes of the Professors. Finally, after four years, I made it. Received BS degree from Iowa State in 1936 with a Major in Home Economics and Science.

Taught 2 years in Fernald. Home Ec, English and Physics.

Taught 3 years in Ventura. Home Ec, Biology and Chemistry

Taught 3 years in West Des Moines Vocational Home Economics

Taught 32 years in Des Moines

Received MS from Drake University in 1962

Vice Principal 12 years

Retired in 1976 and moved to California in 1982.”

Glen Sampson, `43, sends an interesting time table of his early experiences at Milford Twp School.

“I was born and raised in Milford Twp and attended School 12 years and graduated in 1943. (Started Fall `31)

“We rode to School in horse drawn busses the first three years. In the winter time we rode in a Bobsled when the snow was too deep for the school bus to travel. Otis and Argle Cole were our bus drivers, then came the Model "A" car for our bus rides; driver Gene Cook. Next came a bus body mounted on a truck chassis driven by Floyd Twedt. In my last two years of high school came the new Blue Bird Buses from some company that manufactured school busses." (The Nevada Paper reports there were six bus routes at Milford for the year 1936-'37.)

“For my senior year Supt Halverson asked me to apply for a chauffeur's license so I could drive a bus route. After returning from WWII I came back to Milford Twp and farmed and drove school bus for 7 years.”

Glen thinks the hot lunch program started in 1934 or 1935 and Milford was one of the earliest to have such a program.

He also reports that 3 teachers, Paul Madurby, Earl Lee and Florence Crouch, lived up the road (north) from the School half a mile at the Christy farm and walked to school when the weather was favorable. See page 272.

First Victim on Story Co's New Paving

W. Gammon, of near Ames, was killed on 18 Aug 1929 in an traffic incident a mile south of Ames on the new concrete portion of the Jefferson Highway (Now Highway 69). His car had stalled after dark and he was in front of the vehicle attempting to start it when the car was struck from behind by one driven by Harlan H Harper, later of Milford Twp, who lived south of Ames at the time. Investigators reported that the Gammon vehicle was without lights at the time. Neither of the Harpers was injured.

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© 2012 Mark Christian
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