Dad lived in Rice County, Kansas (City of Stirling) until he was 26. He was a farmhand and teamster most of his life. Later a laborer. At 26 he moved to Southern California. He was a ranch foreman and teamster in Holtville, Redlands, Riverside, Chino, and Pomona. For a time in Pomona he had a team of horses and did contract work in the groves around Pomona. He was middle class. Lived in a big two story house. Then the Great Depression happened and he ended his life in poverty. Which I shared with him. He then suffered a severe stroke (completely paralyzed on his left side). He spent the last 17 years of his life in this terrible condition.
I know very little about the 26 years Dad spent in Kansas. He did not talk to me about this time very much. H told me that he had job once on a farm where he worked six days a week for monthly pay paid in one coin. It was a $20 gold piece. Of course he got board and room.
In the 1905 Kansas census he was living with the Knowlton family in Stirling, Kansas. Listed as a hired hand. John Knowlton was a prosperous gentleman farmer. He lived in town and rode a fancy horse in the mornings out to oversee his farm. The picture below is of John and his family. Picture taken about 1905.
The sailor suit is an indication of how well Grandfather Knowlton was doing farming in Kansas. The girl on the left is my Mother, Olive Knowlton.Things went good until 1906 when Mom and Dad became with child. Stirling was a very straitlaced town and did not take well with un wed pregnancies. Mom and Dad were married and went to live with an Uncle in Elk City, Oklahoma. My oldest sister Nita was born in Elk City in February 1907.