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The John Brown "Grub" Hudson Story
An excerpt from the Genealogy of the John Brown "Grub" Hudson Family
by Mirl C. Hudson

The Story of My Life
An autobiography by Mirl C. Hudson
    Part 1
    Part 2
    Part 3
    Part 4

The Story of My Life by Mirl C. Hudson (Part 3)

Mirl and GerryPhoto: Mirl Hudson with my dad, Gerry Hudson, and his dog.

In the fall of 1917 my dad and mother desided to have a sail and move to Southern Caifornia, my two oldest brothers had moved there and setteled in Rivera. We had the sale. My sister and her family desided to go with us. We all left Crane Missouri by the Missouri Pacific, changed trains at Carthage for Kansas City, arriving in Kansas City at 9.40 PM, with a 11 hour layover. We slep on cots in the Union Depot. My sister Had prepaired a larg basket of food including thirt een fride checkins. We ate most of it in the first night. I remember being so many solders traveling, War had broken out between the United States and Germany. In fact the Aurora National Guards was on the train from Aurora to Nevade Missouri. We boarded the Santa Fe at about 9.45 am the next morning for California. The trains them days did not have air condition or dining car service. They had cole burning engine, and stopped for water and cole several times a day. They stopped three times a day for brakfast, lunch, and dinner. We travilled the southern rout, through Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California. 6 days on the road. I can remember some of the towns we went through. Wichita Kansas, Amarillo Texas, Clovis New Mexico, Gallup New Mexico, Holbrook, Winslow, Flagstaff, Williams, and Kingman Arizona, Needles, Barstow, San Bernardino California, Arriving at Rivera at 9 o,clock PM.

Rivera was then a little town about 10 miles east of Los Angeles. I was tired but excited. I remember waring knee paints with long stokings, I was 16 years old. We stayed with my oldest brother, and the next morning I went up town and saw some boys about my age sitting on the side walk I went over and sat down beside them and pulled out a twist of tobacco and took a big chew, the boys looked at each other, and one of them ask me what I was shooing and I said Spit Quick or puke. And they named me SPIT QUICK and I had that name the rest of the time I lived in Rivera. I got a job working on the Burk ranch within a week making $3.00 per day, workingg in the walnuts. I realy thought that was big money. We had just moved into a house on what is known now as Slouson ave. This was the first house I had ever lived in that had electric lights and inside tolit. After the walnut season was over I got a job working for a man by the name of Collings, at $3.50 per day as gardener. It was while working for him I baught my first bycicle. My father got a job on the Hadley Ranch. This was a 400 acre walnut and orange ranch with a house furniced. I finley went to work on this ranch for 4 dollers per day. We got paied every saterday in Gold. I remember buying Liberty bonds. The war was still ragin and the fall of 1918, we desided to move back to Missouri, so we packed up and boarded a train , I rember we had quite alot of Gold with us, 3 or 4 hundred dollers after buying our tickets. We traviled four or five days and landed in Crane about three PM and got someone to take us to granpa Hudsons. I thought it was the lonsomeist place I had ever been. I could har the cows mooing and the katydid making their lonesome noise. Anyway we filney ended up back where we started from on the old Farnham place. I was eighteen on the 29th of October and the War ended on the 11 of November. We all had the flu that fall. We stayed there that winter and in the fall of 1919 we moved back to Southern California, this time we moved into a house on Los Angeles street in the city of Montebello. I went to work driving a Fordson tractor on a racnh for Auther Stone, $4.00 per day 9 hours, 6 days a week. I worked there for a month or two, and then went to work for Charley Porter land scaping on double drive in Arcadia. After working ther a while, I then got a job on the Williams ranch driving a team of horses in a orange and lemon orchard. It was while working on this ranch that we baught a 1917 model T- Ford and I started stepping out with differant Girls. They were (I will only name the first names) Helen, Opel, Nelly, Martha, Adelade, Allic, Blanch, Edna to mention a few. My dad and I went to work for the Indestral Fuel and Supply Company, as Engineers in a Compressure Plant. 12 her shifts.

I worked the night shift, and my dad worked the day shift. One night I was trying to start the engin and it was off center and kicked back and threw me aginced a concrete foundation and hurt my back, I fainted and fell on a steam line and burnt the side of my face and head pretty bad, was off a week and my dad worked both shifts. In 1920 we all desided to go back to Missouri. We sold our car and traviled by train. We had save up a pretty good nest egg, in fact we had enough money to put a down payment on the Ban Custer place after buying our tickets. Baught a team of horses and some farming tools and farmed that summer. It was a small farm of Forty acres. I steped out with several girls while living there. Goldie S, Bessy M, Opal P, Lucy G, to mention a few; I remember one night going to Horney Buck to a play, in fact I was in the play, blacked up as a negro and after the paly was over we dident have any water to to wash the black of and I took a girl home who lived down on wooley Creek about Eight or Ten miles from the horney buck school house, and by the time we got down to her house she was as black as I was. I had borrowed a friend's buggy and horse and by the time I had got back to the Bennet Hill it was getting day light and I was getting hungry, I had a big of stick candy in the buggy so just sa the sun was coming up I stopped by a cornfield and clum over the fence abd plucked of some corn and fed the horse and eat the candy before going on home.

These was the days of probation, and there was some moonshiners around. I worked for a feller one time that owned an interest in a still. He furnished the corn to make whiskey. One day I was plowing down in the field and saw my boss coming on a horse in a ded run. He said for me to go and notify the man at the still that there was some Revenuers in the comunity, so I road about five miles into the woods and tipped off the still operators.

I also worked for man by the name of Cobe Palmer, that year one doller per day and board and room. It was in the fall of the year. I gathered corn and took care of his fish traps. We had fish to eat most every day.

I also wnet out to Pittsburg Kansas and worked for my Uncle, He was a painting contractor, I helped paint several houses and drove my first gear shift car an Allen 6. I drove it back to Missouri, and Uncle John Summers sold it to little Jim Berry who then lived in Cassville, I was to deliver it to his home in Cassville. Jim did not know how to drive a car. We left the Flat Creek Post Offic one morning for Cassville and broke down in McDowell crossing the creek and had to leave the car at McDowell hitched a ride part of the way home in a buggy. I believed It was Ben Stublefield who was teaching school at Black Sheep.

I played ball that summer with the Flat Creek ball club, center field. I can still remember the lineup. Wendy Esery, Third base, Roy Hensen, shortstop, Clyde King Fir st Base, Eft en Esry, Second Base, Ise Carney left field, George Blye catcher, Ancel Sapp Rite field, I, Center field, Sid Chaney Pitchher. We played Cape Fair, Jenkins Cato, Aurora, and Springfield.

Early in the spring of 1921 I did alot of fishing, I remember one day going fishing on Flat Creek, and long about noon I became hungry and went to the Flat Creek store to get something to eat. They dident have anything but some cookies. Frank Irby owened and operated the store and Post Offic and his daughter Ruth was the only one in the store at that time. I baught some cookies from her and she smiled and said I'll bet you eat all of them. And that is the way I met my futher wife. She was only Fourteen and good looking, and the first time I ask her for a date she excepted. It was at a singing at the Carney School house, I took her home. I wen with her off and on the rest of that summer. I had no money and needed a job, so I desided to go to California and get a job and work that winter. I dont remember where I got the money for my ticket, But I went to California and went to work for the Pasadena Puente Oil Company, a stock holding Company that my oldest brother worked for as a driller, staying with my brother's at the same time. I started as a truck driver, hauling tools and mud. We were drilling a wild cat well in the Puente hills. I worked all winter for this Company Twelve Dollars per day. It dident take long for me to save up a pretty good nest egg.

I baught Ruth a Seventeen Juell Elgin Wrist wach for a graduation present When she grduated from the Eight grade. I wrote to her all the time I was in California, that winter. Now about the Company I was working fore, as long as the people baught stock, we had money to operate. We were using the standerd tool method for drilling and it was going pretty slow. Dave Ball was the prsident of the Company and he desided to put in a rotery rig inoder to make a faster headway. We were down about Seven Hundred feet and was getting a little Gas, and good oil sand. Dave baught a used portable rotary oil drilling rig from some oil Company at Santa Susana California. The rig was back in the Santa susana Mountains and the roads was pretty bad, narrow and steep. It took a pretty good truck driver to drive a truck over them. Dave Ball, the boss, hired two experince mountain truck drivers and their trucks, and I and the company truck. We all left early one morning for sana Susana to dismantle and hall the rig out of the mountains, and to Puenta. We were gone three days, stayed at the Santa Susana Hotel. It took one day to dismantle and load the rig on the trucks. The second day we started down the mountain, and I remember we come to one place in the road wehre it was real narrow, and about three thousand feet to the bottom on either side. I was behind the other two trucks and the boss told me to stand on the running board and put the truck in low gear. He said if it started to slide off for me to jump, not to try to stay with the truck. The truck I was driving was a Okey Six cilinder job. Meade in Okay Oklahoma. had romatic tires and a high bed. The other two trucks, one was a rite hand drive made in Atterbery England, the other one was a Dodge. We made it back to the main highway that day, and started back to Puente the next day, we were all day on the road back to the drilling site. It took about a week to set the rig up and get it in operation. It took Four men to operate it, I was permoted to derrick man at Fifteen dollars per day. My oldest brother was driller, Ed Morrow as the Cathead man, and a Sweed by the name of Charley, I dont remember his last name. Hw worked the backup tongs. In the mean time I had moved to puente and was staying at a hotel, that was closer to work and I baught me a bicycle to wride to work only a couple of miles to the well. In the spring of 1922 the company went broke and I desided I had enought money to go back to Missouri and get married, that is if Ruth would have me. I baughe me a good supply of close. A $65.00 suit of close, new shoes, a silk shirt, straw hat, tie socks, a supply of under wear, and a ticket to Crane Missouri. I had saved about Eight Hundred Dollers. The first thing I baught when I arrived Home was a buggy horse, and rubber tired buggy. I paid $75.00 for the horse and $90.00 for the buggy. I arrived home on a Saterday and went to Sholten to a ball game on Sunday the next day, I had barrowed my brothers horse and buggy. Had my new suit on and my silk shirt and tie. Ruth, was there and I took her home and perposed, she excepted, and we begun to make plans for our wedding. We set Nov 26 as the date to get married as she would be Fifteen on the 8th of August.

We attended a lot of Singing Conventions that summer, and we planed on going to California on our honeymoon. On sunday the 26th of November we were married at my Uncle Harry Summers home, Uncle Harry being a dicon peformed the searmony. We left for California in the middle of December 1922. We stayed with my brother about a month and then rented a house, baught some scond handed funither, and moved to our selves. The house was a four room bungelo located on So fourth street in Montebello. We paid $25.00 per month. I got a job at Simons Brick company driving a electric truck around the yards. I worked there for about three months, got layed off. then I went to work for the Montebello Feed and fuel Company driving a truck, delivering feed and moving people and other odd jobs. On May 22,1923 at 11 oclock I walked in the Gas Offic whitch had just opened that day, to pay my gas bill, and saw a sign in the window (Man wanted). I paid my bill and ask the lady about the job sign. Her name was Florench Butterfield, she said are you looking for a job, I said that I was only Working part time and was looking for a full thim job. She said let me call the man in charge, he was next door buying some grocers at the Piggly wigely market. His name was McCarterd, they called him Mack. He ask me if I could drive a truck, I said yes. He said youv got a job. He ask me when I could come to work, I said anytime. He said go home and eat dinner (lunch) and come back at One oclock. I did, and was there at one, ready to go to work. Mack told me to go out to the alley and drive the truck, (a modle "T" pickup) around to the front of the offic and back it up to the curb. We loaded a Four burner Roper Range, with oven under neith on to the truck and I drove to 150 so Spruce st. We connected the range and adjusted the burners. The customers name was Maud Lucas, and that was the first job I did for the Southern Counties Gas Company. I was called a Trouble Shooters helper, Mack was the Trouble Shooter. I started at $3.50 per day six days a week. My job was supposed to be Helper, however it was not long, I was doing most of the work. installing meters, minor adjustments to appliances, turn on's and turn offs. The main office was located in the town of Whittier, and the Montebello office was just a sub offic.

We had to go to Whittier once a week to get supplyes. The first trip to the main offic Mack started to interduce me to the distric Manager and I remembered him, as he was in charge of the compressur plant that I had worked at in Montebello in 1919, Industeral Fuel and Supply Company. His name was W. G. Rick. He ask me about my dad and what I was getting per day. I told him $3.50 Per day. He said that he would see that I got $4.00 from then on. So that was my first raise, after one week. I thought that was pretty good. In July 1923 We moved to a larger house on south Sixth street in Montebello and on Aug 22, 1923 a son Gerald was born to Ruth and I. I kept the Gas Company truck home at night so as to have transpertation, to take Ruth to the Hospitle. I baught Ruth a new Easy washing mechine. This was our first new appliance. We then Moved to south Fifth street in the Cook House as soon as Ruth was able to move after the birth of Gerry. It was while living here that we baught our first radio, a christle set. We could only get two stations KFI a 5000 Watt station and KAFG, the Angeles Temple. Amie Simple Mcferson, a evangelistic minister. On June the first I started reading meters in the Montebello eara. I would read meters half day and shoot trouble half day. It would take eight days to read all the meters. When our Son Gerry was about two months old, the gas Company had a picnic at one of the parks at Whittier, and I was invited to bring my wife, baby and attend. We had no way going as we had no car as yet. The boss said I could drive the Gas Company Pickup. It was a sorter Pot luck, so Ruth baked a cake and maid a salid. We wrapped up the baby hopped in the old model T pickup and tore out for Whittier, and the park. Mr Rick the Distric manager ask me when I was going to take my vacation, I said do I get a vacation? He said yes, you are intitled a weeks vacation this year. I was sure suprised. I took the vacation, but not having a car we couldent go any place.

Some time before Chrismas we moved to the Brown place on north fourth, and it was here I baught our first Gas heater. We stayed there the rest of the winter and early in the spring of 1924 we moved to south Fifth next door to some friends of ours Mrs Bucher's. While living there Ruth's Sister Mary, came to live with us. She stayed with us about seven years. We then moved to north Montebello Blvd, It was while living here that we baught our first car, a 1924 motle A Ford (side curins and all). About 1926 we took our first two weeks vacatoin away from home, I think it was at Arrow Bear Lake in the San Bernardino Mountains. We rented a cabin from a Mr Molten, and spent most of the two weeks there. Ruth, had won a mountain lot the year before and, it was near the Cabin. In 1927 I was permoted from helper to trouble shooter, and put on the Monthly payroll at $100.00 Per month. The Gas Company had built a new Office on North Fifth Street and I had my own Office in the back room. I also had a helper, a man by the name of Sket Stoddard. I worked in the office part time. I set up the first Street Fileing system in the Company.

In 1928 we traded the ford for a 1929 Chevy and baught a camping outfit and took our Vacation st Yosemite. We camped south of Bishop the first night under a big cottenwood tree near a farm house. The second night we camped on Rock Creek near Toms Place, north of Bishop. Set up the tent on the edge of rock creek a clear stream of cold snow water trickling down from the snow capped red slate mountains to the west of the camp. Before I had the tent set up our 5 year old son had caught a trout just behind the tent site. The next Morning we broke camp and headed North on Highwa 395 to mono lake. At Mono lake we left the main highway onto a gravel road, West, winding up the Tioga pass road to 9941 feet Elevation to the Tuolumine Meadows, where we camped for about a week. There were only one other family in the camp and they left the last day of August, as the little store closed the first of September, and the nights was getting cold. Our five year old son Gerry and I kept our camp supplied with fresh trout. I believe it was on the 2nd of Sepetember, we broke camp and headed for the Yosemite Valley, we trailed down a one way road into the valley. We hated to leave the Tuolumine Meadows, It was a beautyful spot. Delaney Creek ran through the camp site and there was lots of mountain trout and easy to catch.   We found a good camping place on the floor of Yosemite valley and pitched camp. The next day I desided to clime the mountain to Glacer Point 8170 feet above the floor of the valley below. I made the mastake of not taking a lunch with me, I only had a chokilt bar, and it melted in my pocket. I was on the trail about four hours, and was all tuckerd ourt when I returned to camp. We campet here for three days and then drove home by way of Bakersfield.

During the early part of our married life Ruth and I attended a lot of Squar dances in and around Montebello. I played the fiddle, and Ruth had lurned to play the Mandolin. I believe it was about 1927 I orginized a string Orchestra. We called our selves the Ozark Mountaineers. Three Stone Brothers, Dal Toy, Orval, Birt Pilgram, Ruth and I made up the main orchestra, and we sometimes had gess stars. Dal played the bajo, Toy the fiddle. Orval, the guitar, Birt, the Guitar and sing, Ruth the Mandolin and sing, and I the fiddle. We were sometimes a substitute for the the Beverly Hillbillies, We played over Radio KGAR Long Beach Califronia, for different Church Programs, parties and ect.

Sometime in the late Twenties, we made our first trip to Missouri, as I only had two weeks vacation, and the roads was not very good, we had to travel some nights. I believe the first trip we traveled the southern rout, through El Paso Texas, Fort Worth, Dallis Ardmore Oklahoma, Fort Smith Arkansas and on in to Missouri. We left Montebello at 5 PM after work, and drove all night on highway 80 to Yuma and Gila Bend Arizona, and 84 to Casa Grande, and on to Coolidge, Miama, Glob, Safford. It was getting daylight as we crossed the line into New Mexico. We stopped in Deaming N.M. for brakfast and drove on to El Paso Texas. We were on highway 80 again, we drove untile about 9 o'clock and I must say I was tired. We desided to hunt a cabin and sleep awhale. We saw one Pretty weell lit up and it looked nice enought, so we stopped and rented one little cottage and went to bed. Gerry soon said mom, there is something crolling on me, Ruth got up and turned on the light and turned the cover back and the bed bugs was sworming all over the bed, so we got up shook our close got in the car and took off. This was near Odessa Texas. We drove on until after midnight when we ran into a storm in a little town near Ranger Texas. I saw a building open and I drove inside, it wae a garage with one man in attendence, and it started raining, hailing and blowing. We stayed the rest of the night there. The next morning we heard there was a tornado close by; wedrove on to Ft Worth and Dallas and on to McAlester Oklahoma and found a nice motel and stayed all night. This was the first good nights sleep I had sence we left California. We left the next morning for For Smith Arkansas, the Bosten Mountains, Springdale and South west Missouri. Stayed about Five days and headed back home on Highway 66.

We made several trips to and from Missouri. The roads was getting better each time. I remember one trip we made and as we drove through Dallis Texas they had just captured a kidnapper by the name of Bailey, and had him in the dallis jail. He had kid napped a man by the name of Udall, a millionaire Oil man from Texas. We drove on to Missouri and stayed a week, and on our way back, in Oklahoma we herd on our car radio that Baley had escapped the Dallis jail. We were traveling south on Highway 77 near Ardmore Oklahoma when we were stopped by the Highway Pertrole and was advosed tp be veru careful, as Bailey had escaped the Dallis jail and was thought to be headed north. We noticed that all the cross roads was guarded by people with shot gunn's and Rifels. We desided to stop in Ardmore and eat lunch, we stopped at a little cafey down town and while we was eating lunch a news bay came in the cafey selling the Ardmore news. The headlines red Bailey captured in down town Ardmore. Was sighted by a paper boy on a bicycle who notified the police. The news boy told me when I baught a paper that they had him chaned to a post down the street, and after we finished our lunch we drove down and saw him handcuffed and changed to a hitching post on main street.

I canot remember how many trips we made to and from California, but it was several. There was one trip I remember I believe was in 1933 When I purchest a 80 acer farm just north of Halltown Missouri. All in culevation, good house and barn. I let my father and mother live there as long as I was the owner which was about three years. I paid $2600.00 for it $300.00 down and $24.00 per month. I fell behind with the interest and taxes, and just let it go for the back taxes and interest. I lost about $800.00. In about 1933 I purchase a home on Nelson Place in Montebello for $2200.00. We lived their 12 years and sold it for $8500.00. It was while living here I was operated on for appendicitis at the Cedars of Lebanon hospital in Holleywood. I was in the hospitle 13 days. This was about 1934. I returned to Sedars of Lebanon Hospital about 1936 and had my tonsels taken out. We were living hear when Our son Gerry Graduated from Montebello High school and attended Fullerton Junior Collage, that was in 1940.


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