Even though my nephew Mark is an eighteen-year-old young man now, we still laugh over this incident that happened when he was about three years old.
Mark was visiting his grandparents for a few days. He had never been exposed to an outhouse, the closest thing that resembled one were the fish houses his uncles and grandfather used for ice fishing. My brother, Mark, and I went to visit some relatives who still did not have indoor plumbing.
Upon our arrival, Gertrude treated us to watermelon. It didn’t take too long before Mark, very politely, asked to use the bathroom. Gertrude took Mark out the door and “down the path” to the outhouse. When they returned, Gertrude was laughing so much it took some time before she could relate what happened. When Mark got into the outhouse, he looked around and said to Gertrude, “This is a nice bathroom BUT it sure would make a good FISH HOUSE!”
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.