Homestead in Our Hearts
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They were desperate to begin a new life after the Civil War. It was a five-year struggle, but finally the young family of Gus and Amanda Wells have nearly reached their new home, in one of the most remote, rugged corners of the United States, Tillamook County. Surviving the last few miles on the most horrible road in the world, their trials, triumphs, and personal joy are just beginning. More
“Momma, I’m so very tired of walkin’. Will we ever find a home?” Six-year-old Carrie Wells looked up into her mother’s face, her blue eyes brimming with tears as she struggled to climb the steep, rocky rut that local people called a road. Amanda’s throat caught as she looked down into her daughter’s gaunt pale face. She answered, “We will have a home agin’, child. We will. Poppa says we’re very close. He thinks we’ll sleep at Uncle Billie and Auntie Caroline’s very, very soon.”
Carrie sighed. “I hope it’s prettier there, than it is here, Momma. I hate the color green. Everythin’ here is green. So many greens. Green moss. Green trees, with prickly green limbs. Green stuff hangin’ everywhere. Rocks even covered with green: slimey, slippery green; I hate it, Momma!
She sighed again, as she continued. “I love the sky, Momma. Clean, blue sky. Blue, flat sky. Yes, very flat. No mountains. No ups. No downs, Yellow, brown…gold…an’ flat. I ‘member our las’ spot we called home. Gold colors. Warm. Prairie grass. Dry oak leaves, rustlin’ on the trees. No sticky-leaf green trees, bristling and poking you, suckin’ away the sunshine a’fore it hits your skin. Momma, that’s home. I miss it.”
Amanda thought about which home Carrie might remember best. Over these past five years, their journey west had become a sojourn. One place, then another and another. Each, a heartbreak, tough times over and over again.
They were desperate to begin a new life after the tragedies and losses experienced during the Civil War.
After a five-year struggle to complete their journey, the Wells family will make a new home in one of the most remote, rugged corners of the United States: Tillamook County.