I love this picture of my ancestors. The gentleman on the left is my great-grandfather, George Craig. Next to him are Missouri Holverson, and Ed Holverson. They were his mother and father-in-laws, making them my great- great- grandparents.
The picture states that this is their sheep camp at the Hot Springs, in Bruneau, ID.
Sometimes we take it for granted how hard things were back then. I am struck by the primitive corrals, and make-shift table and chairs. I’m not struck by the table itself which looks like a slab of wood sitting of blocks of wood, but by how nice Gran made it look. This was not their home. They had a very nice house in Bruneau which is still standing today. This was the sheep camp, where they summer pastured their sheep.
Gran was obviously their camp cook, and she made it feel as homey as she could. She had it set with a tablecloth, and there were manners at her table. I can see hats were removed and the one man holding the frying pan for her as she served. Can’t tell for sure what the meal is, but I believe I see homemade bread and home canned jelly. I also see another canning jar on the table that was probably some kind of fruit. They had a pretty large orchard.
I was talking to my dad on the phone about this picture. I was curious about the “look out” stand in front of the corrals. Dad said the sheep camp was used as a place where several different ranches gathered to sheer their sheep before they turned out to summer pasture. The stand was probably used to locate where different herds were stationed as they came into the area.
Also if you can enlarge this picture a little you can see a large wheel behind the table in front of the corrals. This was a stone sharpening tool used to sharpen the sheep shears.
I have watched, modern-day sheep shearers with their electric shears and it is back-breaking work. I can ony imagine how hard it was with the old shears, that look similar to hand-held grass clippers. We have two old pair of sheep shears. One belonged to my Grandfather Otis Wells, and the other to Herb Russell Sr., my husbands’ grandfather.
If any family members or Bruneau friends would happen to know who the two gentlemen on the right and the child is, please respond on this post. I would appreciate it.