It’s such a pleasure to look back through the newspaper clippings my great-grandmother preserved.  I have an old article written about that house on the “Floyd to Melrose” highway.  Long gone now, it was in the crumbling stages when I was growing up, and the fraternities from Eastern would go paint their symbols on the walls.

This old article tells of the owner, Ernest Zacek, who started living there in 1934.  He “made his living the hard way – by building fences, pulling broomcorn and shearing sheep.  He recalls that he earned $150 in cash that year, but managed to survive on rabbits and determination.”

It goes on to tell how he drilled three wells with a man-powered drop augur and the help of his friend Mack Toliver.  They swapped work, usually made 5 to 10 feet of hole a day, and struck water with all three.

I never knew Mr. Zacek, but the other man was “Uncle Mack”… my great uncle through marriage.  My goodness, what hard working people came before us!

Many of us took a rest from our labor yesterday to celebrate the economic contribution of workers in our great land.  Those Roosevelt County pioneers made incredible contributions.  I hold them in great esteem.


5 Responses to “Laborers”

  1. Marcea Clive says:

    Love the old homes and buildings. Neat story.

  2. Sharon says:

    I loved that old house, by the time Tom and I married school kids were embellishing it with their names, finally it began to fall and at last completely gone, UGH, I hate it when old places are gone and the water…lovely reminder of how things used to be.

  3. Kim Mann says:

    I remember that crumbling, old house. It was always such a great landmark.

  4. Christina Turner says:

    My grandaddy used to tell me of digging post holes and having to wait a day for the water that had bubbled up to go back down before they could continue digging and set the posts! This was around 1905 when his parents had homesteaded in Portales.

  5. Sandy says:

    That would be a wonderful way to dig post holes!
    I sure do love to picture those early pioneers building this community.

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