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Front Page » August 19, 2003 » Opinion » Harriet's World
Published 4,938 days ago

Harriet's World

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Back in the early 1920s, when Castle Dale's Main Street was a dirt road and all roads leading into Castle Dale were dirt. The George Brandon home was sitting in the space where Zion's Bank is now and the jail was next door on the east side where the field is now, and the saloon was down the street. There were four Brandon boys, Earl, Hugh, Harry and Clyde. Clyde was the youngest, he was my Dad. This story is about him.

Clyde had friends he used to play with and pal around with. Among them was Delon Olsen, Marvin Wood, George Olsen, and the Jewkes', Cox's, Fox's and the Peacock's. Since Clyde and his brothers mined the coal mine up Straight Canyon owned by their father. Clyde was well able to have access to black powder kegs. One of his jobs as a young boy was to lift and store these kegs for the mine. Whenever the boys wanted to make a lot of noise or get into trouble or celebrate they turned to the black powder and sometimes sticks of dynamite. They were often very curious. Dad knew how to carefully take of the plug holding the black powder. He would then take out little portion of powder off of the top of the keg without anyone ever knowing it was gone. He would replace the plug and no one was ever the wiser. Whenever they got in a new shipment of powder he would do this. Put it into a jar and then save it. He would collect enough from the kegs to make a really good flash. Then a stick of dynamite placed strategically in the dirt with a trail of black powder, light the powder and run,. Boom! Lots of noise.

At the far end of town, I'm not sure which end, they were doing some road work and laying down a great big old pipe. You know, the kind you can almost stand up in. Well, Dad and Delon and some other of his friends got curious about the kind of noise that the big old pipe might make if a stick of dynamite were set off in it. So, late one night they set out to find out. Need I say more? Using the black powder that Dad had collected and deciding that maybe they needed more than one stick of dynamite because it was a big pipe, they proceeded to do their dastardly deed. They had no idea what they were about to cause. They placed the dynamite at one end of the pipe and ran the black powder through the pipe, out the other end, leaving a trail as long as they dared. This would give them plenty of time to run home hopefully before their parents discovered they were gone. My Dad was the closest. He just lived down the street. The stage was set, the powder lit and the culprits were on the run. The Boom was so loud it almost knocked them off their feet and every window on main street was blown out. Of course everybody who could hear anything was awakened and ran to see what had happened. Apparently it scared the boys pretty bad and they each resolved to never do that again. When the sheriff came a callin' the only thing that saved my Dad from being a suspect was that he had shimmied up the cherry tree to his bedroom, jumped into his bed with the covers pulled up around him. His big brother Hugh had come into the room just after Clyde got into the bed. Hugh was able to tell the sheriff that Clyde had nothing to do with the incident because he had been in bed. All boys made it safely home. The sheriff never was able to solve the crime. Not one of those boys ever told what had happened until they were grown or out of town. About 20 years ago, one of the sons of one of the boys said that they had looked it up in the books at the jail house and that it was still on the books as an unsolved crime. Well, it isn't any more and that's my world. Until next time, "Thank goodness we are not responsible for the crimes of our parents."

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August 19, 2003
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