Bob Black and five or six other members enrolled in the first group, for which I was leader. It was a new project called "Native Crafts," and we pledged our heads, hearts, hands and health to better living at the start of each full club meeting.
Henry and Dixie Forsee - now deceased - were great community leaders at Harg 50 years ago! The three Forsee children were in the Harg club. Henry was knowledgeable about homing pigeons, having often set them off on races of more than 100 miles and then hurried to beat his birds back to their nests at the Forsee farm. Memories are kindled, with many encounters similar to the ones of these past few weeks.
Last week a man somewhat younger than I grabbed me and hugged me tight for a long time, in public! Years ago he and I had "set the ball rolling" for acquiring the gift of more than 70 acres of woodlands as a park for young people. It’s called The Pinnacles, and it’s free to all who love and will take care of the countryside. Drive about 10 miles north on Highway 63 and watch for a small sign on your right.
One Harg Hustlers exhibit declared, "Your Spare Wheel May Prevent a Drowning." We proved that by floating a heavy, aired-up wheel in a big tub of water at the county fair. It got our message across to a few thousand nonbelievers - and earned a blue ribbon for the Harg Hustlers at the county fair.
A few weeks ago Nancy took me 10 miles north to Hallsville to autograph books that are being sold at the new gift and craft shop there. It’s owned and operated by Sally and Susan, sisters whom I first knew as "the Reisch girls" at Olivet Church when they were grade-school age. They have a newly built art-gift-book shop that has, as one man put it, "transformed the village of Hallsville!" Their large new shop is well stocked with local art and unusual imported items from the far corners of the world. They were in my Native Crafts project in 4H, and one activity was to locate and dig sassafras roots in early March. They dug the roots out of cold mud - see a snapshot in "My First 84 Years," Page 71. Fellows took the muddy roots to my swimming pool, scrubbed them till clean and gave final scrubbings in my kitchen. They cut and bundled the sassafras roots for tea into short, usable lengths and were off to market.
They sold all of their roots to the first grocer they visited!
Our Harg Hustlers 4-H Club has been important for more than half a century; we parents learned along with the members. Individuals chose from an endless list of activities that fit their interests. Competing spurred their interests, and the rewards, disappointments and friendships are remembered for their life times.
Remembering those learning days in our elder years, we leaders take pride in the successes of all of those youngsters in our 4-H Clubs.