Kindness of Strangers Made Trip by Covered Wagon Bearable

December's cold had family asking to sleep in farm houses as they traveled by covered wagon to Missouri.

| Good Old Days

We moved in a covered wagon with a team of mules into the Ozark Mountains in Missouri when I was 11 years old. This was long before the day of good roads, and we were able to travel only about 25 miles a day over the rough, rocky, muddy roads. The hills were very steep.

When the sun went down, we began to watch for a farm where we could spend the night. Each night we found a friendly family to take us in. They had no spare rooms or beds, but they let us spread our feather beds in front of their fireplaces. The month was December, and this kindness was a real blessing.

First we built a campfire in the farm yards, and Mother cooked our supper. In each instance, the settlers would allow her to bake a large pan of biscuits in their cookstoves. Each morning Mother prepared enough food for noon so we would not have to stop and cook during the day.

Mrs. J.E. Bruce
Medora, 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. 

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