BioA: Carpenter, Mr./Mrs. Alford (55th - 1929)
Contact: Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon
Surnames: Carpenter, Harding
----Source: Clark County Press (Neillsville, Clark County, Wis.) March 18, 2009, Page 24 - Transcribed by Linda Cottrell-Sanders & Prepared by Dolores (Mohr) Kenyon
Carpenter, Mr./Mrs. Alford (55th Anniv. - 25 Jan. 1929)
Mr. and Mrs. Alford Carpenter, Wisconsin pioneers, celebrated their 55th wedding anniversary at their home in San Diego, California on Jan. 25th, 1929. Mr. and Mrs. Carpenter stay happy by always keeping busy, they say.
A clearing in the timber, a general store and a boarding house made up Loyal, Wisconsin in 1874.
It was in this town, nestled in the heart of the Wisconsin logging country and buried in snow that a young couple were married 55 years ago, Jan. 25. The bride, Miss Ida Ann Harding, was 19 years old. The bridegroom, Alford Carpenter, a stalwart Wisconsin logger, was 27. "There wasn’t any minister at Loyal in 1874," Mrs. Carpenter said. "There was a boarding house, Old Fife Hartford ran it. He was also justice of the peace. He was the one who married us."
"It was mighty cold, too," Mr. Carpenter put in.
"While going home the wolves howled. At night they would come up to the cabin door." When we returned home after being married, the logger friends 75 or more men gave us a great greeting. "What with the wolves howling and the men shouting you could not hear a thing."
"I met Alford in a cranberry marsh," Mrs. Carpenter said, "We high school girls used to go out and pick cranberries. Alford drove us in a cart to the marsh. At night we would go to a dance. Alford played an accordion.
Somebody else played a Jews harp and sometimes we would have a harmonica playing along. After the dance we would ride back home in an ox cart. The roads were too deep and muddy for horses.
In the winter, the couple explained, Mr. Carpenter was a teamster for the logging companies. In the spring, just before the logging drives, he would go out with the men to work as the camp cook.
The Carpenters had a 40-acre farm in the Clark County Township of Fremont. "We lived on the farm after we were married," Mrs. Carpenter said. "We raised small grains, cows, corn and potatoes. There was nothing but trees when we moved on it. The land all had to be cleared."
"We would have timber bees," Carpenter explained. "We would cut the trees and then pile them up and set them on fire, clearing the land so we could use it for farming."
"The neighbors were few and far apart. We didn’t see them often, but even then they were friendlier than they are nowadays."
The couple continued to live on their farm until eight years ago when they moved to California.
"We’re real old Badgers," Carpenter said, "Wisconsin Badgers. We were born in Wisconsin; we raised our family and educated them there. There are a lot of people in San Diego from Wisconsin, but most of them aren’t Badgers, they just spent a short time there."
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