Saving a Baby in Horse and Buggy Days

Back in the horse and buggy days, a baby falls into a mop bucket and nearly drowns.

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About the turn of the century, in the horse and buggy days, my mother-in-law often hitched up her team and drove to see a tenant family who lived about a half-mile away.

As she entered the house, one day, she passed a mop pail and glanced at what she thought was a mop rag hung over the rim of the pail. On second look she saw it was a toddling baby who had fallen into the water.

My mother-in-law herded her two children and the tenant mother and her brood into the buggy and started a ride of several miles to town and a doctor, driving the horses over the rutty roads as fast as they could go. She later declared she never heard anyone pray as hard as the little mother did all the way to town.

When they reached the doctor, the baby vomited, and the doctor said the bumpy ride had saved his life.

Mrs. John Jacobs
Rudd, Iowa


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.