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Friday, September 27, 2013

LISTER’S HOLLOW Chapter 5



Wild Hogs
courtesy photobucket.com
 
This one year we had our crops in and everything was coming up good when we had an invasion of wild hogs.  

I’m not sure where they came from but they were roaming wherever they wanted to go.

They would eat almost everything and what they didn’t eat they would root up or stomp down.

We could see this was going to be a big problem, so we got all the people in the Hollow together and decided to have a weekly hunt to try to save our crops.  If it kept going like it was them hogs were going to starve us out.

On the first Saturday we met in groups and along with our dogs the hunt started.  The first day we learned a lot about the hogs.  
 
The boars would attack you and could kill you with their tusks.  They would do the same to the dogs so it was necessary to stay close on the dogs which were hard to do.

Finally we had to keep the dogs on a leash.  The hogs were fast and hard to hit and even if you hit them they were hard to kill.  The first hunt all told we bagged 35 of them and each week we planned to kill even more.  
 
After killing a mother we tried to catch as many of the piglets as possible to raise up for meat.  

The larger piglets were good for roasting and to eat after a hard days hunting or working.  Finally we got the upper hand and saved our crops.  

We either killed them off or they migrated over the hill to bother the people who lived over there.  
 
We never got rid of all of them for we still would find one for some fresh meat every few weeks.  As they played out we went back to raising our tame hogs cause we had to have some smoked meat and lard.

What started out as a plague turned out to be a blessing while it lasted.     

Risen and Lucy had another child, a little boy and they were proud of him. And for the next three years they added another one each year.  Then she left off bearing.

They made out pretty well with good crops and all of the stuff you would expect a farmer to have.  Stuff like cows, pigs, chickens and some horses. They also had an orchard and bee hives.  
       
As the kids grew, they had certain chores to do.  At first it was helping their mother and as they grew they were doing the milking and taking care of the stock.  Lucy started their education early so that when they started to school they were able to do third and fourth grade work.  

Lucy was smarter than the teacher and when the boys helped bring in the crops she would have them wash up eat, and then she would help them to keep up with their studies.  

She never discussed it with Risen but she had in mind a college education for all of their kids.  Each year the kids helped Risen with the farm work and had skipped a grade or three by the time they graduated from high school.

Risen thought he would have a full time hands on the place as they finished high school so he could take it a little easier, but Lucy prevailed and they all worked their way through college.

All Risen could do for them was have a place for them to come home to when they had some time off from school. When they came home they did very little work for they were engrossed in their class studies.

The time came when the eldest graduated and the youngest started as a freshman.  
 
From there on each year another one got their degree.  Risen couldn’t see any use for it because plowing was still plowing and the degree wouldn’t make that any easier.  

As they graduated they headed to the big city just like Uncle Sam did and he helped them get a good position with more money each year than Risen could make in five years.  With the boys gone Risen figured he and Lucy didn’t need to plant as much of everything.  

He hired a young man to do some of the hard work and another one to help cut the wood for cooking and the winter heating stove.  Marshall had to take over the home place for his dad and mom were not able to do much of anything anymore.

Risen figured that in about five years he would sell out and move into the nearby small town for farming was getting harder every year.   
 
To be Continued
 

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