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Just my cup of tea

Originally ran in the Aug. 26, 1971 edition of the Illinois Valley News

Loren (Pete) George and his wife Hazel were guests for three days of Jim and Lena Payne. The Georges are former residents of the Valley, but they have lived in Klamath Falls for some years. On their way over they stopped near Fish Lake to pick huckleberries and brought Lena a crate of the wild berries. Hazel also prepared them and put them in the freezer for Lena. Their visit brought back school day memories. Hazel (Wells) George, Lena (Tycer) Payne, and her sister Lorna (Tycer) Burns, went through grade school together at the White School. Their 8th grade teacher was Effie Morris, now Mrs. Harry Smith. There were 5 in the graduating class that year. The others were George and Paul Krauss, Paul now lives in Klamath Falls and George in Gold Hill. Hazel, Lorna, and Lena also went to high school together. At that time the high school was in Kerby and during their four years there Lincoln Savage was the principal. Loren George and Phayo Pfefferie both went to the Payne School.
The grandson of Mr. and Mrs. C.R. Wagner, David Prosser, came from Roseburg to spend a week before school starts. He is the son of their daughter Donna and Fred Prosser. David has especially enjoyed playing with the pets at grandma and grandpa’s house.
The news from Kerbyville Museum is that the south portion of the grounds has been black topped as has a part of the back for extra parking space for visitors. There were many visitors last week. Some of the countries noted in the guest book were Australia, Arabia, Phillipines, Taiwan, England and India. Many people are taking advantage of the picnic facilities in the shade of the large trees. A group of three large trailers, traveling together, stopped for a tour of the Museum. There were 27 in the group, all relatives, including about 15 children. Most of the children were very interested in the display of hat pins, which they had never seen before.
Some of “My Cup of Tea” readers have been asking for more ald Americana as it pertains to this area. This is a true story, which I do not think has often been told. When Browntown was a going community, there was still trouble with the Indians. Have you ever noticed the black hole about the level of the road where Takilma Road goes around Hogue Hill and where the Illinois River is close on the other side of the road? Have you ever wondered what the hole was or why it was there? It has recently been covered, and a good thing too, because it was dangerous. In the early days of the mining here, it was a mine tunnel and went back about 20 feet, then suddenly down for several feet, with an undercut under a rock ledge. An old miner, Jimmy Little, who lived in this area for many years, for some reason stirred up the wrath of the Indians and they tried to catch him. He ducked into this tunnel, went the length of it, then jumped down the vertical tunnel and hid under the ledge. Here came the Indians, sure that they had seen him enter the tunnel. They threw lighted torches into the bottom of the black hole but could not see Jimmy and finally concluded he was not there. While the several Indians were together they plotted a strategy to massacre the people of Browntown. They did not believe Jimmy was listening or that he understood their language. Jimmy waited for some time after they left, then crawled up out of the tunnel and went across country and warned the inhabitants of Browntown who armed themselves and were ready for the attack. The Indians took a round about path and were so surprised to find the people ready for them that they did not attack. Jimmy Little had lived in the Valley a number of years when Henry Pfefferle arrived as a young man in the 1880’s. The two were good friends and Jimmy told Henry this account a number of times, and of course, Henry told it to his children, including Phayo.