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The speaker is a 70-year-old White man with a grade school education from Eagle River, Michigan; he was recorded in 1966.

County: Keweenaw
State: MI

Eagle River is on the extreme northern tip of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, jutting out into Lake Superior. White settlers were first attracted to the area in the 1840's because of the large copper and smaller silver deposits, but most of the mining activity stopped within the following thirty years. The county seat of Keweenaw County (541 square miles of land with a current population of 2,300), Eagle River is a tiny town that serves as a summer resort. This speaker lived "in the bush" outside of town; he talks of interactions with the wild population around his home.
Inf: Well, I had a handful of waste, uh, in the garage, and uh, I walked in there, monkeyed around with the cars there and I wanted to wipe my hands so walk-, walked over get this handful of waste and the waste started to move. So I just left it go and there was a squeak in it; a mouse run out and ran up a two-by-four. So I just kept quiet and watched and the mouse came down again and she made another squeak, and she eh, took the four mice at one time. She climbed the same two-by-four up, about nine feet high. Four mice at one time. The, the, the mice hung on to her breast.

She climbed up there, when she got up on the two-by-four uh, the joist, then she left three of them there and carried one acrost. And put it down into the eaves. And she, th-, went right back and picked up the other ones and carried them down into the eaves. So I thought that was pretty good. I did-, I left the nest there, or the waste. Next day I come back and I looked in there and she was back in there with her four young ones again, so I just left the, the waste there 'til she got through with her family.

FW: Was that the same mouse that you saw putting the babies out into the sun?

Inf: No, that was woodchuck.

FW: Oh, that was a woodchuck that was doing that?

Inf: That was by the house, too. I was standing in the doorway watching it.

FW: What was that uh story?

Inf: I had a, she ra-, or had her young ones under the house and, 'course she had a hole to get in there, and I didn't bother with 'em so, this day I happened to see young one out laying down in, outside of the path and I wondered how that thing got there. And I just kept quiet and the old one came out with the second one. And she laid it down where the other one was. Then she went back in and took another one out. She had three young ones there, left 'em out in the sun. And I just kept watching. But she didn't bother with 'em. She just left 'em there and went off to feed. So uh, that's all I uh kept watching and I went back in the house and when the afternoon come'the sun went down, well then she moved 'em back under the house again.

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