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The speaker is a 78-year-old White man with a grade school education from Ontonagon, Michigan; he was recorded in 1967.
0:55-3:45


County: Ontonagon
State: MI

Commentary:
On Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, Ontonagon is less than fifty miles from Wisconsin. The town started life with mining, but when the promise of copper didn't hold true the inhabitants turned to lumbering, milling, and shipping. The town continues to slowly lose population; it is now around 1,700. Much of the surrounding area is national forest, although there is a bit of farming. The speaker has been a logger, a fisherman, and a farmer.
Inf: And in all my life, even if I came home late, early, storming, or sunshine, she always met me with a smile. She was a college girl. She went to Carleton College. When we was married she knew nothing about cooking whatever. Her whole life'd been spent on playing the piano and an expert on a typewriter, and shorthand.

Well, as years went by, I was doing a little job of logging. I have something that has struck me quite forceable for the last few years. I used to play poker. And I used to go down in the bunk house and play with the lumberjacks, of my own crew. And one night, it was storming pretty bad, and it was some, about two or two-thirty in the morning. We folded up, and I went up to the office to find the office all lit up, and nice and warm. Two babies, ten months apart in their age, was in the bed. And I said to my wife, "Why girl, why didn't you go to bed?"

"Well, I wanted the office to be warm when you came home."

And I said to her, "Did you know that I was playing poker?"

"Yes, I did."

"How's it come that you never said anything about it?" Well, and I looked over, and she was darning my socks. And the office was nice and warm. I said, "Listen, you haven't any hell to give me?"

"Oh, absolutely not."

"I'll tell you one thing. I'll never play another damn card for money as long as I live." And I never have.

She was a college girl, and she married a lumberjack.


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