Saturday, November 17, 2012

Hitched to History

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 2008. All rights reserved.

It hasn't been all that many years since horses were the primary mode of transportation all across the West. They not only pulled buggies and wagons, and sleighs in the winter, but they also powered the plows and cultivators that tamed an arid land.
Les Broadie remembered well those horse-drawn days. They were as near to him as his well-weathered hands, and as much a part of his life when I met him in 1995 as they were when he was youngster in the 1920s.

After his retirement from raising draft horses and cattle, Les operated Blizzard Mountain Carriages -- a one-man outfit specializing in buying and selling horse-drawn wagons, carriages, carts and sleighs. At the time, we was one of but a handful of American horse-drawn carriage dealers still in business.

Continued at... Hitched to History.

Rural Delivery
Farm Supply
Out of the Past
Artwork: Horse-Drawn Sleigh Ride at Twilight in a Snowy Landscape by Ira Block

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Cold Hardening

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 1996. All rights reserved.

Hard frost again last night. My footsteps leave dark impressions on the ground. The breath of the cows rises in clouds as they huddle together like football players at Soldier Field on a December Sunday.
Fewer grasshoppers now, I notice. They used to scatter through the wheat stubble on my approach. Only a few stragglers remain. The rest have died or gone off to hide from winter.

The crisp night is giving way to a warm morning glow. It will be an "Indian Summer" sort of day, the kind we missed out on last year when winter dropped in early. Some of our coldest weather came in November rather than January, where it belongs.

Continued at... Cold Hardening.

Rural Delivery
Dark of Winter
The Nature Pages
Artwork: Winter Tree Line I by Ilona Wellman

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Fall Back

by Michael Hofferber. Copyright © 2008. All rights reserved.

After Daylight Saving was first enacted in the U.S. in 1917 (by the same Congress that committed a relcutant nation to World War I and Prohibition), farm organizations lobbied for and achieved its repeal in 1919, overriding a veto by President Woodrow Wilson.

After its repeal, Daylight Saving was still observed in a few states (Massachusetts, Rhode Island) and some cities (New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, and others), but there was no national effort to control the clock until President Franklin Roosevelt instituted year-round "War Time" as a conservation effort from February of 1942 to September, 1945.

Whether Daylight Saving was an effective means of conserving fuel during the war years, or at any time, has never been proven

Continued at... Fall Back.

Rural Delivery
Out of the Past
Clocks and Watches
Daylight Saving Ends
Artwork: Decoupage Art Wall Clock