Ford I. Gano History – Tape 8 Side A
So, Elizabeth, you asked in your letter, you had the one question there: why did I choose to move back to Iowa, to bring my family back here. Well, some of the reasons of course, I have touched on. But there were many negative factors about it. The house, as I had mentioned, was practically brand new. We had lived in it only two years. It was a beautiful house, not great big or anything like that, but it had four bedrooms and big bay window out facing the side of the house, into the back yard of the neighbor’s yard. But Nellie had planned it, and we were very grateful and very happy with it. Why did we want to leave that?
I mentioned the sickness that I was getting, the dizziness that was bothering me. It did not seem like to me that I was capable of taking care of business like I should at Western Milling Company. On top of that, Mr. Hayward, David E. Hayward, was his name, was having to come over from Phoenix to kind of fill in for my being unable to miss work there. He did not appreciate that. When his son came back off of his mission, he decided that maybe he’d let him learn the milling business, and the selling business of the goods that were milled, the materials that were manufactured there at Western Milling Company. So Dave Jr. went out with me at the office for perhaps 2 months, and I kind of felt that maybe that was the way the apple cart was running anyway, that eventually Dave Jr. would take over there.
On the other hand, I’d always wanted to be a farmer; I’d always wanted to get in to farming. I started out my agricultural training, my schooling, with that idea in mind. I wanted to be in agriculture. After having come through and visited in the Midwest, when we came back with our new car from South Bend, Indiana, we had seen some beautiful cornfields, bean fields, some fairly cheap land there back here in the Midwest. It was practically impossible to get into farming there in the Salt River Valley, because land was going from $2,000 to 5,000 an acre. A beginner, unless he had somebody to finance him, could just not take over and get into it right off the bat.
So, we thought about it a lot, and Nellie and I decided together, that perhaps this was the way to go. She gave up her new home, which was the first new home she had ever lived in, and she really enjoyed it there. However, she did have a health problem, and we didn’t know for sure how that was going to be taken care of back here in the Midwest. But we were trusting on the Lord that maybe things would work out in a positive fashion.
We also had to take the girls out of school. All of them but Kathy were enjoying the schools there in Mesa. They enjoyed their training, their teachers, their circumstances there were all very well. So it was really a lot of negatives attached to this.
One of the other negatives was trying to get enough money out of our new house, even though it was only 2 years old, to pay more than the equity we had in it. Now, Grandma Waddington had helped us with buying the lot our house had set on. We had built the house. We had financed it in order to get it built, constructed. But we decided that if we could make the trip back here to the Midwest, and get a suitable location, that we’d come back into the Midwest and try out farming.
There was also the alternative I had of farming one of, or all of Grandma Waddington’s farms in Nebraska. She had several hundred acres of land there in Nebraska [chuckles]. It was up in the Sand Hills, it was neither very productive, nor very expensive. And the environment, I didn’t think, was very livable, and neither did my wonderful wife Nellie. But I did go back there one summer, while I was still working at Western Milling Company, and I did put in a crop there by borrowing equipment from neighbors, and from other renters of Grandmother Waddington’s, just to see what it was all about and what it was like. Well, there was a great deal of wind all the time, the sand would blow, and I didn’t like the climate. Neither did Nellie like the climate, because she had to dust off the windows every day the time that we were there, and so on and so forth. So at the end of that one summer that I went back there just to see what I could do, I was not very much in favor of staying in Nebraska.
So we decided to head for "Ioway".
We settled up with Western Milling Company Management Company. And much to my surprise we found out that I had done well enough there at Western Milling Company to have a little equity in the company from my partnership arrangement. They in turn, although they did not have cash to pay me off, they said, "Well, would you settle for some of the equipment we have here? A tractor, a plow, some of things you might need back there?" They also had a ton-and-a-half truck that I thought could be used very well for moving. So with that arrangement, I made a settlement with Western Milling Company, and took out for the new quarters in Iowa.
Now, we could not all come at once. The two girls and I came ahead. I had been back here several times anyway, in the pick-up that I owned, and knew what the roads were like, and knew what the situation was like back here. So we decided that Nellie and her mother… In the meantime, I kind of left out here, in the meantime nanny Waddington, the relative that we’d brought over from England, had found her husband up somewhere up around Logan Utah. And figuring out that she had earned her keep (actually, it was paying for her ticket we’d bought for the steamship and the cost of her moving from England over to the United States), we decided we were about even on that, and she went up with her husband. And we were taken out on our own to come back here.