“Dear Don and Harold. We do want to express our appreciation for the High Plains history book. “Thank you!” We are still reading and discussing History of Quay Valley. (Juanita Wallis is writing this letter.)
“The residents of Quay plan to take lunch, a snake-bite-kit and go make some history. Some Saturday after the brandings are done and before it gets too hot, we plan to visit some of the old-old squatters dwellings located east of Quay Post Office, some on, and some south and east of Beck Ranch. And Bill, my husband, and I thought that if you and your families wanted to join us, we’ll try to get together on the date. Maybe by the middle of June.
“These old places are Gholson, Rains, Rhodes, French, Fling, (French was early day squatter, and not much known about them, but the old dwelling is still pretty much in tack.) The Fling place is located east of Mesa Redondo (the Fling boys were killed by Leland Bell because Mr. Fling controlled the water).
“Now Lee Bell sold Beck Bros. the lands and even sold old Tom’s house, and Becks lived in it two years before finding out it wasn’t his. That was in 1939. But there is a lot more such as the Edwards that was killed and his wife had to move to Tucumcari, took in laundry to support herself and son after his birth.
“When Bill and I view old buildings, we always think of an article that appeared in 1964 during the drought. The editor of the Farmer-Stockman published a picture of a deserted house in a windswept field, sand blown over every thing. They offered a prize for the best 100 word description of this picture.
An Indian boy from Oklahoma wrote as follows: “Picture shows why white crazy. Cut down trees. Make too big tipi. Plow hill, wash water. Wind blow soil Grass gone, door gone, window gone. Squaw gone. Whole place gone to hell. No pig, no corn, no pony.
Indian no plow land. Keep grass. Buffalo eat grass. Indian eat buffalo. Hide make plenty big tipi. Make moccasin. All time eat. Indian no hunt job. No work, no hitch-hike, no ask relief. No build dam. No give dam. White man heap crazy.”
“That was true in 1964, but not today. I take the Cherokee Advocate, published monthly by the Cherokee Nation, Tahlequah, Okla. And it is pretty much government programmed. My Grandma Lee was enough Cherokee to get a number and some headrights there. It makes me sad to see the younger generation have to accept government aid.
“Oh Yes, we know the Stutts. They (Lillian) is kin to Lyle Greer. Anyway, if you find it convenient, we would be glad to have you join us. And again, Thanks for the book. Sincerely yours, Bill & Juanita.”
Don McAlavy is Curry County’s historian. He can be contacted at: