I Remember When Series - 1900 O. M. Fitzjarrald, Draymen,
Shared by Don Harvey
Around 1900 O. M. Fitzjarrald, Draymen, Elk City, Kansas - This is your life, Ora Fitzjarrald
by R. R. (Rollie) Painter, (the kid who rode the dray just for pasttime)
"ALL ABOARD"!! - Old Jerk-Water just whistled at the crossing. Let's go to the Missouri Pacific depot. And we hopped onto "Fitz" dray and go to the Mo.P. to see the train come in. There we help Ora, or better known as "Fitz", load up the local freight and start to town where we will be with him on deliveries to the different business houses. We stop at Wright's Drug Store to unload some freight, but must wait on Mart Osborn and his water wagon, until he fills up the water barrell inside the store, carrying one bucket (sometimes two) at a time. By the way, that was the "city water works" in those days, a large tank wagon pulled by a team of horses. After Mart has pulled out, Ora drives up and we unload several boxes of drugs, three barrels of whiskey and several cases of bottled beer. Then onto other stores to unload their shipment of cargo. But, Ora, remember you have a car load of crockery to unload tomorrow for Clark Bros., and you probably will need some help, so I imagine brother Dell, (Olie Olson, that is) will give you a hand in unloading. So after the forenoon of short hauls, piano moving, etc., you take time out for dinner and feed your team.
Well, here we are back up town again, "there's the two O'clock freight (Santa Fe) whistling for town, let's go! The team hits a steady trot, we pass over Duck Creek Bridge, go through "Duck Town", and you back up to the depot platform; the trainman break the seal of the local freight car, the conductor climbs in with his record of shipments, and the breakman start carrying out the many different items and calling same and to who.... something like this:
C. H Kerr - 1 case cigars; J. A. Brown Mercantile - 1 case dry goods; Ben Clark-1 bag o' beans, 1 bag java; Baker Furniture-1 bed stead, knocked down; J. H. Meyer - 1 sack plow repairs; Elk City Sun - 1 bundle ready print, 1 can news ink; R. R. Shaffer - 1 bundle knock-down egg cases; Charles Barnes - 3 sacks blacksmith coal; etc. It goes n and on, until the platform is piled high with freight. The next thing, Ora, is to load up your dray and start for town. You deliver and get unloaded and expect to take a breather, when you get a hurry-up call from the flour mill to pick up a load of flour and corn meal, bran and feed, for some of the stores.
It's been the usual big day for you Ora, so I'll go help you unhitch and feed the horses and bed them down. There you are, that's all for the day, except you hurry on home, I imagine Ollie has a good hot supper waiting for you, so good night and God bless you Ora. Your friend R. R. "Rollie" Painter
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