We have Caring Folk along the wild Klamath River!

Happy Camps Log High School

Carmynne Neimoyer was celebrating something soon to come right here in Happy Camp! It’s just two weeks until the Elementary School hosts the SCAL end of the season basketball tournament and cheerleading competition. This tournament will bring seven schools to our little town.
Enthusiasm is growing and last minute stuff is coming together Thank you to all those that are sponsoring our kids. There will be fliers coming out for information on how the entire community can help to support our kids and their athletic program. While it is being hosted by the Elementary School it will be held at the high school, 234 Indian Creek Road on February 15th and 16th.
That’s the wonderful thing about Happy Camp, and the communities along the beautiful wild Klamath River! Our Klamath Neighbors really pitch in to help those who have something to tackle that is larger than they can accomplish successfully alone.
Stop and think of anything really positive that has come about in our community and it is likely that it wasn’t one person who did it all. Surely, one person may have had the vision, seen the need, and had a passionate desire to fulfill that need. But alone, we start in a small way and when others catch the vision, great things are accomplished.
If one image portrayed the best in Happy Camp me than any other, it used to be the Log High School. It was Gorham Humphries, with a number of daughters and a son, who had a vision for a Happy Camp High School.
The students traditionally had to go and board at far distances if they wanted to continue their education beyond Elementary. Some when to Riverside, some boarded in Mount Shasta, but high school wasn’t available here. That seems strange today, when even basic college courses can be taken through Internet or Videoconferencing with College of the Siskiyous. And the distance to College of the Siskiyou’s has been shrunk to only a couple of hours, in good weather. Back in the 20’s the road had finally come through to Happy Camp so it wasn’t a few days to get to Yreka or Weed, but it still was quite a drive!
Grants weren’t the answer to all needs back then. The Siskiyou County Educational sources couldn’t help Happy Camp with a high school, and the Elementary School needed the spare room that had been used temporarily for that purpose. So Humphreys began working to enlist assistance on this huge project. The land was donated, the trees were donated, and the labor for almost all of the work was donated by members of the community. When the volunteer labor became scarcer or lapsed, the ladies had a big potluck picnic to get the effort a boost and give the classrooms ready to begin school that fall. I’ve written years ago about all the community effort that went into that great accomplishment, but there’s not room here for all the names and memories at the moment.
The Fire Hall was built by the Grange members. The River Park was the vision of Larry Wright, Tom and Doug Lemon who visualized a beautiful park, where others saw only a dump and blackberries! The Grange and other members of the community got busy and made the beautiful site we have today.
So perhaps it is understandable, when the Klamath –Siskiyou Art Center window is broken. that’s sad. The natural solution is to organize the Neighborhood Watch program–people work together with the goal to stopping burglary, drug and alcohol abuse and other criminal activity in our own home community?
The Happy Camp Neighborhood Watch meets the second Monday of each month. Lately it has been held at the Partner’s Deli and Arcade at 5:30 and next Monday is the day. We are grateful for those who volunteer and there will be election as new officers are needed next Monday.
More than sixty people came to the first meeting of a group to stop drug and alcohol abuse in our community, and we need more ideas and solutions that can only come with input from the community. A meeting with Sheriff Lopey is planned for spring; but in the meantime, please consider what you can do to stem the rising tide of crime in our community.

Spread the Love; NO Bullying

Stop Bullying

Happy Camp High School Basketball Homecoming

The big event at Happy Camp High School is Homecoming. Big Valley will be here in Happy Camp for a game on Friday at 5 p.m.. the High School will celebrate all week. You may have seen students running around in pjs yesterday. Today is a day to wear black, Wednesday is Dad Day and Thursday is Cape day. Friday all out loyal Happy Camp Indians will wear Blue and Gold and cheer on the home team at the game.


Keith Deltano is coming to present a program for the Happy Camp High School, February 5th. The topic is bullying and mental health matters. The students program will be during the normal School Day on Tuesday. However, parents are invited to have a discussion with Deltano on bullying at noon next Tuesday at the Penthouse at the High School.Learn more at www.dontbullyonline.com

“Nothing Beats Togetherness,” Dr. Grover Sterling

I have a Dream

There was a great radio program on Martin Luther King, Jr’s legacy on the Public Square over the weekend.

Dr. Sterling Glover who was a coworker with Martin Luther King, and has now also passed away, recorded words were shared. “Nothing Beats Togetherness.”

We sometimes think of King as an activist, a political person, but the fact was that he was just a preacher, a pastor, who peacefully fought for civil rights.
Part of his “I have a Dream” speech says, I have a dream that my four little children (Well) will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day down …little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted , every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain , and the crooked places will be made straight , and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the South with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith (Yes) we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.
This will be the day, this will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning: “My country, ‘tis of thee sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring!”
And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring

I have a Dream

Another quote from him, which seems more appropriate now than ever!

Dr. King said, “Someone must take place of nonalignment so he can look objectively at both parties and be the conscience of both, not the servant or master of either.”

River Readers Book Club Begins “Letitia, She’s Iron, Stone and Beautiful Flower!

Happy Camp Author, Barbara Ann Black’s book about her mother, Letitia!!

BY Judy Bushy
The Book that the River Readers will be reading January eighth is the new book, Letitia; She’s Iron, Stone, and Beautiful Flower. This wonderful story of Colorado Homesteading 1916 to 1950 is by Barbara Ann Black (Brown) by Naturegraph in Happy Camp. The cover is a painting by Navajo artist, Chester Kahn, as well as illustrations. He drew pictures while tending sheep as a boy. Barbara also herded sheep as a child; it seems particularly fitting!

We are certainly grateful for many who inspired Barbara to write about her mother’s life and persistently kept after her, with persuasion and encouragement! It was a great eye opener to hear so many aspects of ranch life in Colorado when Barbara was a child.

Homestead cabins didn’t have running water or bathrooms, and electricity wasn’t brought there for many years. She writes of the independence of her mother and sisters, and even in today’s modern feminism climate, it is hard to imagine three sisters setting out to homestead vast acres as a ranch. Heading for California to make their stake and returning to the homestead in the Great Depression are challenges they met. There was time they had to start over from scratch and flat broke.

Today’s children would feel definitely deprived if they had to do chores, feed or water animals, collect eggs, etc, saddle the horse and rider ten miles to school! Barbara did that daily for some years and felt bad if she was tardy! They didn’t have television, iphones many of the things we take for granted today either. There were many things about sheep raising, and then they went to cattle, branding calves, finding the cattle that strayed off, chickens, turkeys and other ranch life. One doesn’t think of Prairie Dogs as a threat, although the grasshopper army was and then came dust bowl years. It isn’t all rattlesnakes, storms and hail. You’ll meet horses Barbara has ridden and trained at a very early age, and natural phenomena of the Colorado ranch. Vignettes of her Dad and mother and then the appendix of sayings, recipes and neighbors to their ranch in Colorado conclude the story.

It is a heartwarming story of ranch life that you will enjoy and feel grateful for conveniences that they never dreamed of! You will see why May 17th is an annual time to celebrate with chocolate cake for Letitia. WE read the Prologue when we begin the book, with more reading as well as discussion through the days.. I’m grateful that Barbara shared the book, and her heartfelt memories of her mother with us. My copy has already been borrowed by a couple of others interested in the story. Everyone is welcome to the River Reader’s on Tuesday at 11 at the Marble Mountain Gift Co.

Marble Mountain Gift Co had sold out of the book at the book signing for Barbara Ann Black’s 90th birthday but she has more no for $14.00.

Christmas Comes to Happy Camp

Happy Camp christmas Tree Lit December 8th

Judy Bushy
Two weeks until Christmas! There is so much happening along the beautiful wild Klamath River! It may yet be the darkest part of the year, but it is also a time of bright lights, tinselly decorating and cheer! These days when it is the most needed, is the time when we celebrate joy!
Holiday Arts Fair
Saturday was a very busy day in Happy Camp. Early in the morning vendors and cooks gathered at the Happy Camp Elementary School to prepare. And prepare they did. They served a delicious pancake breakfast to make one’s tummy happy. Then the wonderful arts and craftspeople of our community, which has so many talented people, were sharing their handiwork. What a wonderful opportunity to buy gifts for friends and family!
As Connie Rasmussen said, “A big shout out to Amber and crew who did a fantastic job with the Holiday Fair. The food was awesome! The vendors were great, and it was so much fun!
Other’s agreed that it is great to shop local, and the vendors overflowed the multipurpose room and expanded some into the hallway of the Elementary School. It is certainly true that it is nice to see lots of awesome gift possibilities, all handcrafted by our local community.
Amber also had appreciative message, “Thank You to all who came out and made the event so wonderful. I cannot take all the credit. My sisters Iris & Para and my man, Cody, were also behind the scenes making everything happen. We enjoyed doing this so much that we are already planning for next year. And I won’t let you forget about it LOL Merry Christmas.”
Later Saturday evening, when it really did get dark, the Christmas Lights parade started at the Kingfisher Market and went the whole block or two west on Highway 96 to the Forest Service office parking lot. Who should show up there, but Santa Claus!

Celebrating “Letitia” and her daughter, Barbara on Tuesday at MMGC

The picture from the book cover of “Letitiia” written by her daughter, Barbara Ann Black (Brown)

Tuesday the Book Club, now christened the River Readers, meet at eleven o’clock each Tuesday at Marble Mountain Gift Co. Tuesday is BOOK DAY in Happy Camp since the Happy Camp Branch Library is also open on Tuesday afternoon.
Special Meeting at 10 Tuesday
This week we will be meeting, and inviting you to join us, for a special book signing. The book is “hot off the press!” It is Letitia, She’s Iron, Stone and Beautiful Flowers, Colorado Homesteading 1916 to 1950 by Barbara Ann Black. Those who have read it already say that it is a truly heartwarming book!!

Barbara wrote this book about her mother, Letitia Brunia Black, born the second daughter of Allie and Franz Brunia in Olivet Iowa, May 17, 1889.

Letitia was one of five children. At home they spoke Frisisian and Dutch (which they called Holland) and by four years of age when she accompanied her sister Bertha to school, English was acquired. When she graduated from high school in 1908, she took “normal training” and passed the examination for a teacher certificate to teach at a one room rural school. After teaching, she entered nurses training in Oskaloosa, Iowa.

After excelling as a nurse for few years, she was asked to be superintendent of a new private hospital while only in her mid twenties. When friends came back from Colorado where they’d taken up homesteading claims, this appealed to Letitia and her two sisters.
It is clearly evident that Letitia was one of women’s lib forerunners, and even though her father was adamantly opposed to his three daughters homesteading, they went anyway!
The 3 N (three nurses) ranch began! Even today, I believe, people would be astounded with three single independent young ladies each taking up 320 acres, which they were able to double in 1916 to 640 acres each!
Later, Bertha wanted to no longer be partner in the stock raising and the cattle were divided in 1922. With such hard working and attractive ladies, soon Henrietta met William (Bill) Barry, married and moved with her husband.
Barbara says her father, was “one of the West’s colorful pioneers in the years before her birth.” His family was in an oxen-wagon train, which stopped for the birth of William Marion Black. He was the fourth of nine children. Then local Shoshone or Paiute made it known the wagons had to move on, except the Blacks. They stayed, built a log cabin and opened a stage coach between Boise and Silver City for sixteen years. The story of his life, his first family, and how he lost the ranch where he had been “prospered in his undertakings…until he had five thousand acres of fine ranch land” and his value of a million dollars in today’s prices, plus 5,000 head of cattle. Then Depression hit. In the new place where he started out again, he convinced Letitia, Barbara’s mother, to marry him, even though he was 58 years of age and she was 35. She had always wanted children.

One might think that they’d settle down to quiet life, but there were more adventures, heading for California for a time to “Make their Stake.” Letitia withdrew their funds to travel back to California just the day before that bank closed, what they found when they returned to the ranch, and beginning again are told. There are further accounts as Barbara and her parents worked on the ranch, raised the livestock and all the difficulties they were yet to face!
One of my favorite pieces is a poem by Letitia Black about Barbara Ann, You are the idol of my heart From all others set apart. Child of nature you are blessed With a fund of happiness In the open spaces you belong With your heart so full of song You trip along on merry feet, Scarcely taking time to eat, But I’m sure that you would stop Right in the middle of a hop, To partake, to partake’ Of a piece of chocolate cake. So Tuesday we will have chocolate cake at River Readers for Barbara’s 90th birthday! It was specially made by Leona McLaughlin.
Wish that I could tell you of the millions of things I’ve learned from Barbara’s story. You simply have to read this story of the hardworking homesteaders’ rural ranch life with all its blessings and hardships. It makes for a very heartwarming story!

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