Hen Shows Up at One-Room Schoolhouse

The day a hen showed up at the one-room schoolhouse.

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Back in the early thirties, I was teaching in a one-room rural schoolhouse. Like all rural schools we had two outhouses located some distance apart near the line fence. In each outhouse was a flat wooden box that held a Montgomery Wards or Sears Roebuck catalog. The papers were used for toilet paper. Rolls of toilet tissue that we use today were unknown in that area at that time. Down the dirt road a short distance and across the road lived an old bachelor. I don't remember if he farmed much or not, but he had calves, dogs, cats and chickens. In the fall and spring when the chickens were laying well, we had one old hen that came to school each day and laid an egg on the catalog in the girls' toilet. Each day a girl would bring the egg to the schoolhouse where we carefully kept it till Friday. On Friday a couple of little girls would take our week's collection of eggs to the owner's house. He always thanked them and usually had some sort of treat for them. The girls sure looked forward to taking eggs to Mr. able every Friday.

Hazel Millenbruch
Home, Kansas


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then Capper’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from Capper’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.