101 Stories

with which I follow the road of the Family for a Century

46. A Last Visit With Uncle John Speer.

When the eldest of Andrew J. Speer's sons were young men, Uncle Roy was killed by a bad horse. Uncle John was never contented to stay about home after that, soon going west to the great new state of Kansas. Thither with him went also my father (Nathan Speer). I visited in 1930 a man in Ames, Kansas, who went to the first school in the Ames District and when I asked him who the teacher was, he said, "Why Nathan Speer, but I haven't heard of him for over 40 years."

Uncle John visited our home once when I was in College and then later in our home when we lived in Corydon.

Grandpa came back to Iowa and married, but Uncle John stayed there at Clyde and Hollis, Kansas, where he married Millie Wolfang and their family was born there in Cloud Co. near Concordia. Thence Uncle John moved to near Guthrie Oklahoma, for a time near Uncle James Moore and later back to Graham Co. Kansas. In June 1929 I visited him there. His son, John E., came to Norton to get me at the train. When we came to the farm home Uncle John was on the porch awaiting me. He had lost his sight and his natural powers were fitful. But I had a fine old-fashioned visit with him. Strangely enough I was, two months later, in Kays Kansas, 75 miles away and called them by long distance phone. My cousin Jesse Speer, whom I have never seen, answered the phone. He told me his father was near death. Next day he passed away, two weeks before he would have been 80 years. In 1951 I visited Aunt Millie again as she lay on her dying bed in Bell Memorial Hospital in Kansas City, Kansas. John E., Rosa, Minta all have visited us in Greeley. Let me, please, not lose track of this fine family of Speers. We shall have another story of them.

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