Between 1900 and 1910, many Danish families who had transitioned through Ellis Island to Wisconsin, Iowa, and Nebraska boarded the immigrant cars for one more ride with their children, their plows, their horses, their cow, and their trunks. Their final destination was the dry land prairie country in the northeastern corner of MontanaRoosevelt County, Sheridan County, and Richland County.
These essays document historical and family events, personalities, perspectives, and strong memories. The focus may be on a place, a conversation, a news broadcast, a dead calf, a letter, a time of day, or sometimes a shot to the heart received in the middle of some childhood pursuit.
Mailboxes along the roads and old barns set back in fields overgrown with weeds often served as landmarks that told us where we were and how far we had to go. Sometimes they signaled home and the end of the road. At other times, barely visible through swirling snow, they told us we had miles to go. When I started compiling these word pictures, I realized they were like those mailboxes and old barnsstill identifying important places along the road, still signaling where I am and how far I have to go.
May this work be found to be a faithful record of heritage as it is laid alongside the writings of grandparents, parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; yes, I have a good inheritance.