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Making Camp Ends Quickly Because of Snake Den

Author Photo
By Capper's Staff | Aug 3, 2011

We left our homestead in South Dakota and traveled by covered wagon south through
the Gap and the Badlands. I shall never forget
the Buttes and the tall sword-sharp grass. And I’ll never forget the snake den.

There were no roads in those days and often not even a
trail. I remember my mother cautioning Father to have more than enough water,
for it was easy to get lost in that country.

While we were making camp one
afternoon late, our faithful dog pranced around, quite uneasy, and kept
sniffing at the ground. Mother told Father we’d better move on and find another
camping spot. My father was a bit angered at this because he thought he had
picked an ideal spot.

“Just look at that dog and how strange she is acting. There’s
something wrong with this place!” said Mother.

In a matter of seconds, our
faithful dog was killing rattlesnakes in rapid succession. My father lost no
time in hitching up and getting out of there!

Mrs. Herbert A. Shinn

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
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.

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