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Hudson-PIerce: The Little Cabin in the Woods

by Minden Press-Herald

 I wake up  in the middle of the night wondering what happened to the old unpainted cabin in the woods located about two and half miles from Noel, Missouri.

It was the last house where I lived before going into an orphanage at the age of fourteen.

I wonder.

Though we only lived there for less than a year I’m captivated by that time that we lived there.

We were so poor and we only moved there  because my mother could hardly stand paying twenty-five dollars a month out of our meager income for rent. Somehow she raked up four hundred dollars to buy this  non-insulated house without indoor plumbing. We had to depend upon a cistern in the yard for our water but mother wouldn’t allow us to drink it because her mother died of typhoid fever that was known as “the germ in the water.”

Nonetheless I will always remember my mother who only stood four feet eleven inches tall, walking down that rocky road to our closest neighbor’s house, pulling a little red wagon with an old five gallon milk can to bring back the water.

With all of my mother’s disabilities one thing remained clear.  She didn’t want us to die of typhoid fever.

I also remember sitting on the top of that covered cistern while I stared into the woods, daydreaming of no telling what — maybe of what lay ahead.

Even though we went to bed hungry most every night, I am not obsessed with food, perhaps because God delivered me from that fear when I became a Christian..

I remember staring down into the woods behind our house where there was an old barn where a family of hobos lived, unknown to everyone, until the owner who sold us this place, crept upon them coming out of the barn.

The family was so pitiful.

From my understanding the parents never sent their children to school  for fear of losing them because their two older children were taken away by the courts.

Long story short I later learned that when the Jesse James movie was filmed,in Noel and that the town built a make shift log cabin for the movie and later on this  family was allowed to move into the house.

I  wonder what happened to the children.

l  have uncovered a few details too sparse to write about but one thing I know is that life can be so uneven and that we shouldn’t judge lest we find ourselves in those same predicaments.

One evening thev mother came begging at our door and my mother would somehow find a can of milk or something to give them.

There was one little room that my sister called a lean to. I decided that would be my room, although I could feel icy wind coming through the cracks.

How many nights I slept there I don’t recall but this shack will always be filled with memories.

In recent years I’ve made a journey back there to rekindle my memories which I want to keep alive and keep spinning into stories so long as I live because I know our stories have meaning and I know that God has been good to me and has pulled me through all of the tight places and for this I am forever grateful and for this peace that passes understanding.

I will pick up on this story later being the perpetual story teller that I am.

Contact Sarah at [email protected] 

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