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James Howard Russell

This story was written by the hand of James Buchannan Russell on the Letterhead of the business he founded in Yreka and handed down to his son Claude Hovey Russell.  JB was 92 years old when he wrote of what his father had told him many years before.  JH had died 50 years before this was written
J.B. Russell & Son
MEMORIALS
424 SOUTH BROADWAY
YREKA, CALIFORNIA

Dec 1st 1946

My Father James Howard Russell told me of His Earley Life: "Mother Died when I was about 6 weaks old. Father about one year later. His Brother's Wife took care of me for about 7 or 8 yrs. Then my two Sisters Hortense and Mable who never married took me. and some 10 yrs later they sold a horse to a man living about 40 miles away.  Put me on the horse to take it to him. told me not to trot or runn the horse. gave me an old quilt and bridal and to bring them back.  It was an awfull cold  Windy Day. I had to walk to keep warm as I had a very thin coat.  It was almost dark when I went to a house to ask how far it was to the place. I was told I had passed by it.  He lived off the road about a mile up the first lain I come to  I got there after Dark.  The man was mad told a niger Boy to show me and to sleep in the Hay mow.  I had no Supper and had to use old Quilt to cover with.   They called me Earley for Breckfast. and started me Home.  It was awfull fogey and i could not tell the way I came.  Ant Mable gave me about 1.00 in small money.  To get on Boat come home I walked a long time It seamed before I saw a Boat Then a man said come on & help load this Wood Then I had to run get my Bridle & Quilt nearley missed getting on.  I had supper and he told me when to sleep.  next morning  I piled wood near the man that burned It Then had Breakfast.  They all left the Boat.  I followed but lost sight of man.  Wandered around all Day and I asked where Hortense and Mable Lived No one Knowed  Late in after noon I saw a sigh in a Window Saying Wanted a Boy to Learn the Trade  I knocked on the Door no Body answered.  Then a man come out and asked What you Want. told Him the Window had Wanted a Boy  He opened Door told me to go to that man.  I told Him Wanted a Boy. Yes he asked my name.  Where I lived I told Him with Hortense & Mable.  Then I told him How I got Here  He Said a Runaway.  I did not know what that was.  I asked for a Place to go out.  When I came back He Put me up a Lader in a room with corn husks to Sleep on and Went out Locked Room.  Next morning He come and because I was Laying Down Called me a sleepy Head.  Gave me an apple & Bisquite.  The First I had after leaving Boat.  Then showed me How to Rub Tootstones.  After Dinner i got another apple and two Piases Bread with Butter on Them.  but no Supper I workded untill Dark.  Went Back to Bead.  Next morning I got Baked Pottato 2 Biskits cut mild and Was ask again Wher I Lived I told Store over again to 2 other men.  Then They asked me to Sign a Paper that i would Work 5 yrs to Learn Trade.  and that He John Beard to Pay me Wages & Keep me.  I stayed about 6 yrs.  Then McDonald got a Job Building a Stone Bridge and Wanted me to help.  Later we set up a Stone Shop
Then the 49 Gold Rush, Landed at Feather River Then we got pack Train come to Yreka Fall 51 - Here we are packing  Met your mother and Brought Her in 1856 when you 2 months old -
 

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Last updated by William P. Russell onSunday, 10-Feb-2008 11:39:18 MST