Ranch Women Survive in Difficult Circumstances

Date: 

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Author: 

Alice Mullaly

Episode: 

3 398

The Brown girls, Jennie, Mary and Emogene, were born in Oregon in the 1860s.  They grew up shifting summer and winter between the family’s two properties, spending winters on a gold claim on Sterling Creek out of Jacksonville, and summers on a large cattle ranch east of Eagle Point.

Each of the girls married a local rancher and remained neighbors as adults.

Jennie had seven children, and kept house for her husband and ranch hands, carded and spun wool, kept a garden, fed orphaned livestock, educated her children, and did other things in-between.  By 1910 Mary and Emogene were widows with young children. They had the same responsibilities as their sister besides managing their ranches.

Emogene and her three boys developed a purebred Hereford cattle herd.  This required careful record keeping.  Money was always tight.  Unlike her father, Emogene didn’t have access to a jar of gold dust from his mine when expenses came up.

What all the Brown women had was determination, nearby family support, and a culture where neighbors looked after one another. They succeeded in difficult circumstances.

Source: Edwards, Patsy C. Heritage Ranch Family--2017: The Charley Brothers; Floyd, Claus and Leland Charley. The Jackson County Stockmen's Association & The Jackson County Cattlewomen, 1917,pp. 9-11 and 18-20.

URL: 

Select for Ashland Tidings: 

No