Autobiography, Section 2 --- Life Story, Long Version

the life of Joe Mills

Hello this is Joe Mills wrighting. I was born in a little village in Nottinghamshire, England in a village named West Leake, in the year of 1871, my Father died when I was 4 years old and left Mother with eleven of us children 7 boys and 4 girls, ther was one girl younger than me the rest of us was older, us 4 youngest ones Mother had to earn a living for us at a wash tub washing clothes day after day to make a liveing for us 4 and herself Just like a slave, but the elder 7 was working out, earning ther liveing but when I was Nine, Mother hired me out on a farm to make my own liveing first year I worked for Mr Barker next year for Mr Heath next year for Mr Alex Crawford untill I was 16. in the mean time he took me to the London show to help take care of a bunch of shire houses at the all England horse show, that was his main business raising horses, he used to ship horses to Ontario Canada so he got my 2 brothers Herbert and Edwin to come over with them they came over with the horses and they liked it here so I asked Mr Crawford if I could take the next shipment he agreed and he sent me over with 12 stallions and 4 mares about 2 years after my Bros came over, we had a rough passage 8 days stormey rough seas then we got in amongst the sea full of Ice bergs that was in the fore part of Juley when the bergs gets into the atlantic ocean the captain went onto the bridge of the ship and staid there untill we got into the clear water clear from Ice bergs his daughter waited on him 3 days and nights all the time he stayed on the bridge well we landed at quebeck on the 10th of Juley 1889. unloaded the horses put them in the barn for 2 days rest, then we loaded them to Port Credit a town on the south side of Lake Ontario the next move we had to lead them about 6 miles to the little village named Spring Field, about 20 miles west of Toronto. ther was 2 men there that sold the horses on commission man named Armsby and Chapman. when I landed I had one English pound or sovering worth about 4 dollars and 82 cts & didnt know a soul onley the horses but I helped to raise them, after they was sold I went to Toronto, and got a job workeing for a man named John haten[?] a market gardner he had apples cabage and nearley all kinds of vegetables. I tok the job of delivering them to the cumesters untill spring Bro Herbert was at Topeka Kansas he wrote and told me if I would come there he had a job for me working for E Bennett x Son so I went ther too. Bennett imperted a hundred from a 100 to 125 stillions a year they sent me with horses to the Kansas state fair then to the county fairs. I came in contack with a farmer name J B Sims he wanted to heire me to work on his farm for 16 dollars a month so I went and worked 2 months for Sims by that time I got word from y Bro Herb he said that if I would come there he could get me a job at 20 dollars a month so I told Mr Sims about it, I told him, I was going to quit he wouldnt have been any more surpriesed if I had of struck him with a club. so he says whats the trouble Joe I said nothing then I told him that my Bro had a job for me in Iowa, were he is so that we could be together again at 20 a month so Mr Sims says that I will gieve you 20 a month as long as you want to stay with me and work for me, but I want you to keep it to yourself there was 2 other fellows workeing for Mr Sims at that time he says you are worth more to me than these other fellows. them at 16 and me at 20 but I was anxious to get to be with my Dear Brother again so I went were he was. he had a job working for another horse importer named Sexton Comstack nad Merrey at Lost Nation Iowa a little town. I worked for the company a while then Murrey had a herd of read polled cattle Murray was one of the horse import companey, he had a 40 acre farm where he kept his cattle. so I hired out to him to take care of his cattle his Mother lieved on the farm and kept house a verrey nice old Ladey the Morrey and familey he was a lawyer they lieved in Maquoketa Ia onley a couple of miles from the farm the first thing I knew it was the Iowa state fair so we load the cattle then he sent me with them to take care of them at the Des Moines Iowa state fair and to all the county faires then after a while he sold the cattle then his partner another lawyer by the name of Murray and Far x Far had a herd of red poles, so when Murrey sold out his partner wanted me to take care of his hurd which I did. Mr Far sent me to a lot more fairs to take care of his cattle I worked at the faires till they was all don in the fall. he had a farm a few miles north of Maquoketa Iowa about 4 miles, were he wintered the cattle so I stayed on the farm all winter he had 80 cords of wood which I hauled to Maquoketa and 100 tons of hay which I hauled to Maq during the winter between chores. hi sold the cattle and my job was done. but at that time Mr Robinson came along buyeing feeding cattle for feeding purpose Robinson a butcher in Davenport Iowa. he had a large ranch at McCausland Ia. several 100 acres so I hired out to him. some times he would bring in as maney as 6 car loads at one time. I had to do the feeding till they was ready for market, he depended on cattle for his meat market in Davenport then he would ship the balance of them to other market. then I fell in Love with a girl and was married to her. I rented farms near Lost Nation Ia. I had a chance to buy 2 farms for 60 dollars an acre but Bro Herbert wouldnt sign up with me so I got discouraged. I knew and worked for a fellow by name of Van Sickle he got a farm between Warren and Argile Minn so I corresponded with him so I went there and got 160 acre farm there too. but at that time that part was wheated to death I had a poor crop and wheat was onley 60 cents a busschell. I would of had to mortgage everey thing to of liveid on that winter, so I rented a 200 acer farm in arround Hartley Ia where we lieved in 5 years we raised 2 thousand dollars allso a carload of extra cattle then the banker from Hartley came around sayeing that he had a hoption on farms in and around Spring Valley so I went Wife and I to Spring Valley for a week lookeing for a place to sute me. we fineley found the 80 acres which we bot for 70 dollars an acre there was a small barn on it but it was not big enough so I remodddled it and made it larger. I also built a grain carey pump house machiene shead hen house and spent 3 thousand dollars remodling the house allso a hog house 20 x 40 feet, then we fenced it all around with 32 mesh woven wire and cross fenced it. the the arthritis got the best of me so I had to give up then my Wife got arthritis dropsey gang green that finished her. we moved our furniture to Violas in Kansas City were she passed away in 1944. then I went first to one then to another between the 8 children then to this home. [Nursing home in Stewartvill, MN] when my money was goneI applied to the old age pension of which I am on now. but I feel more sicure now than I ever did in my 89 years. I was allways wanting to get a home of our own of which we did but prices of liveing went up so heigh that 12 thousand bucks didnt last long if prices had of staid down were they was while we was makeing it and paying for our home our money would of lasted us as long as we lieved. but now since I am on old age pension I have nothing to worrey about if I need a Dr he comes and takes care of me they toock me to Rochest hospitall a while ago for X ray examination then 2 years ago last xmas, I was in the Worrall hospital for a month they paid for all of that too. I had a terrable itch, now I am feeling better and I feel like a million air they bring my meales up to me baith me once a week shamve me twice a weeke wait on me for aney thing that I need and all I dread now is the thot of being kidnapped ah, ah. I am afraid of that not for money but my good looks blar blar.