Wednesday, April 21, 2021

WLEM FM

 Overheard at Lem's:

My cousin recently visited our family plot in Kentucky and noted the same sort of thing - first, many, many children, many of whom never reached their majority, and kind an odd sense of family and communion with those who have gone before. 

28 comments:

chickelit said...

The Driftless Area in Wisconsin bears a strong physical resemblance to the hills in the Harlan video.

ndspinelli said...

I worked many med malpractice cases, often involving the death of children. I was hired by attorneys who defend docs. A very respected and elderly Madison OB/GYN was sued over the death of a child. It wasn't his fault and eventually a jury concluded that. But, I sat down w/ the doc for an interview for background info prior to trial. He was hurt by the lawsuit. He said to me, "There was a time when it was common for children to die. With technology, it has now become rare. But, sometimes children still die and it's not anyone's fault."

chickelit said...

My mother grew up poor near place called Wheat Hollow in the Driftless Area. Three of her young sisters died -- two from disease and one in fire. The three were buried near each other in unmarked graves. One the last things my mom did before she passed was to purchase head stones for each of the girls.

Dad Bones said...

It sounds like you had ancestors who died all too young in those mines, chickelit, kids who had no choice about going into them. From what little I've read on mines many adults were forced into them at the point of a gun. They won't call it slavery these days. If they did they wouldn't be able to get reparations out of you. Or me, and I have ancestors in eastern Tennessee about a hundred miles from Harlan.

Calypso Facto said...

Statista says that child mortality in the US was 462 per thousand live births in 1800, 239 / 1000 in 1900, and just 9 / 1000 in 2000. What a different world.

Where's the Driftless dividing line between "Hollows" and "Cooleys", Chick? Mining (lead) was a big industry in Wisconsin back in the 19th century too, of course.

chickelit said...

Coulees are steep ravines and valleys that drain directly into the Mississippi. They tend to flow from east to west or from north to south in Wisconsin. I believe the word stems from French. There is a very strong residual French character here as they were the first to explore and name these parts. They also controlled the river here until Napoleon sold it in 1804. The county I live in is called Trempealeau County and it got its name from "La montagne qui trempe a l'eau" which means "the mountain that soaks in the water." The French took this name from the Indians who called it that as well. Its a large hill that appears to rise from the river. It's kind of silted in now and looks more like a peninsula.

chickelit said...

My ancestors were not French but German. The French never had time to settle the country so the divide between coulee and hollow is more like hollow country bracketed by Coulee country near the river.

The Dude said...

Patty sings that song better than anyone I have ever heard.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

I had to google the "driftless area" of Wisconsin.
Southwestern part.
Is that where you live now? I always think of Spring Green.

Calypso Facto said...

"I always think of Spring Green."

Does it work like "think of England"?!?

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Yes- lie back and think of Spring Green. Frank Lloyd Wright or the House on the Rock.
If you fly out of Madison and look down out the window, the topography is interesting until you get to Prairie Du Chien.

edutcher said...

Before the 19th century, you could reasonably expect half the children in your family to die before age 5. If you were out in the boonies, that didn't change much even into the 19th century. I think it was Voltaire that wrote how he had to fight to keep from getting attached to his kids until they were old enough to have a real chance of survival.

Some families were lucky. My father's forebears had 13, 10, and 11 kids in the first 3 generations (17th century, upstate NY) here and all of them lived to adulthood.

Things were better if you lived near a town and had some bucks. If you made it to 60, you had a good chance of seeing 75. The reason the Constitution had no term limits is nobody expected many people to live much past 50 (O! For a time machine).

chickelit said...

@Can: Yes, Spring Green is Driftless as well. I passed through that town countless times growing up b/c it was on the road to my grandmother's house in Richland Center. As for Wright, he was born in Richland Center but left very early on. He did return to build a warehouse for a client named German, which to this day is called the "German Warehouse." It has a sad history though, and is in disrepair. I blogged about it here. I was just back there a couple weeks ago and noticed a sign stating that they were about halfway to their fundraising goal.

Besides Wright's own Taliesin, Spring Green is also where the terminus of many Wisconsin River canoe tours and is popular in the summer.

The Dude said...

Didn't you do a post on the German warehouse CL? For some reason I know more about that building than I should, as someone who has never been to Wisconsin.

Calypso Facto said...

I didn't know Wright was born in Richland Center for some reason. Or anything about the German warehouse. Looks like it's getting some love now, judging by Facebook pics on the restoration non-profit page.

XRay said...

So today I learned of one of the reasons for the naming of:

https://www.nps.gov/articles/washington-grand-coulee-dam.htm

It is a hell of a dam.

The Dude said...

The Missoula floods and others like it world-wide created distinctive features, such as those seen on the floor of the English Channel. Once geologists started looking they found features such as those found in the Scablands all over the place. Sounds downright scabrous!

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

So Coulee.

Thanks for the information on a Frank Lloyd Wright building I've never heard of. I hope they can repair it. Flat roofs and squatty ceiling heights - yeah. No good. but the building could be made into all sorts of thing. Coulee lofts or an animal shelter.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

I have family scattered all around WI.
DeForest, Beaverdam, Waupun, Plymouth, Hudson - to name a few.
I once worked with a gal from Black Earth. As a child, I spent some time on Lake Winnebago.

XRay said...

There must be a six degrees from Wisconsin for Lem.

chickelit said...

XRay said...
There must be a six degrees from Wisconsin for Lem.

When it gets down to 6° or below, I'm pretty sure that's when Lem separates from Wisconsin.

The Dude said...

I worked with a woman from Kenosha. I liked her accent.

ndspinelli said...

Can of Cheese has cheese in her blood.

chickelit said...

A grad school roommate of mine was from Kenosha. Rich kid. His dad worked for Snap-On tools. He allied with Chicago sports teams and loathed Wisconsin teams.

The Dude said...

I owned many cars from Kenosha. Could never afford Snap-On tools. And since I am a curmudgeon, sportsball teams from all locales may die in a fire. I mean that in the best possible way, of course.

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

Are snap on tools still a thing?
My mom was originally from Milwaukee. I can talk Wisconsin all day long.

correction: Not really on lake Winnebago - more like terrified next to the shoreline... watching for leaches.
My surrogate aunt and uncle owned a tiny tiny house (the tiniest of all!) on the shore where they would spend summer. Brighton Beach Road in Appleton. Their main home was outside of Milwaukee. Blue Mound Road. Torn down now. The ice rink nearby is named after relatives on my mother's side. It used to be a farm. All of that area used to be farms - now it's all depressing box stores.

but amazingly the little house on the shore of lake Winnebago still stands.

ndspinelli said...

Snap-On tools are a BIG thing in Madison.

The Dude said...

Carrboro, too.