Saturday, April 30, 2016

My Boots

We hadn't been back to Nebraska long before I felt it necessary to have this pair of Western Boots. I put the most mileage on them during the 2-3 years that Elaine and I belonged to a Square Dance Club back in the mid-'80's. I also wore them to some of the SCS Lincoln Retiree's social events. I don't recall ever wearing them to work though it may have been appropriate while working on the "Sandhills Study". I pulled the box they came in, down off the closet shelf this morning and haven't had them on during the past several years. We are planning to have a garage sale in early June and they may be on it. It was a rainy day so we spent most of the morning working with shoes and things from closets. I also pulled my old "work boots" and "snow boots" out of another closet. The two pair have seen a lot more use than the Western ones. I used the snow boots only once this past winter cleaning off the driveway. 
 We didn't have very much snow so they didn't get much use recently . I have no recollection of when I last wore the work boots. They are Red Wings of very high quality. They were very important to me during the years we had the farm and I wore them while doing any heavy yard work. They are all size 13 and in excellent shape. I also pulled out an additional dozen or so other pairs of more "dressy" shoes. Times have changed, and I now wear SAS shoes to Church and while singing with the Kitones. I don't even wear my "wing tips" anymore. SAS shoes are more comfortable and hold up very well.

Friday, April 29, 2016

National Parks

We have several books on National Parks, but this is one of our favorites. It lists the current 58 National Parks by 7 Regions and  tells a bit about each one within its 432 pages. The Ken Burns, PBS series this week has stimulated a lot of interest in the parks. We have visited a number of the parks but often did it in connection with another destination. Though I kept my daily Journal through most of these visits, it will take some research to put a specific number on those that we have "visited". During the early years of the Franklin Roosevelt administration, National Parks Superintendent Horace Albright, encouraged the President to issue Executive orders transferring National Battlefields, Historic sites, Memorials, Monuments, Historic Shrines, etc. to the National Park Service.
During the summer of 1952 we drove our Motor Home, trailed the VW Beetle, and took Carolyn and Julie along on a trip to Yellowstone NP. Our side trips included leaving the Motor Home at Ft. Robinson and driving the VW up to Mt. Rushmore and on to Yellowstone. After camping near Fishing Bridge, we toured the park for a few days with the VW. The Girls bought me the 104 page Passport booklet that provided descriptions of parks, memorials, etc and space for a "date stamp" of the place. We used the Passport on many of our later trips and wished we would have had it from the beginning of our traveling. I hope to utilize the information and pictures that we have and write a story of our travels and visits to National Parks.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

My Parents Courtship

Mother's Irish "spunk" shows here soon after she and Dad were married back in 1920. Though they went through some pretty hard times, she never really "lost it" during her 90+ years. She confided in some of us about how she and Dad met. It was at a Dance in Garland  where that had both attended along with siblings. Dad lived 4 miles north of Garland and Mother 4 miles south of the Folly Theater where the dance was held. Grandpa Walker was a very "stern" father and most protective of his oldest daughter. He had learned that "Florence" was being brought home by a "stranger" when her brothe's name, etc. She knew his first name was Tony but couldn't remember the last name. She knew it was a Czech name so she told her Dad that it was "Tony Clopeck". I don't know when the "truth came out" but it worked out real well.
She and Dad were married by a Justice of the Peace in Lincoln after a rather short courtship. Dad didn't always drive his Model T to visit her but told of his riding horse "single footing" the whole 8 miles back home. My sister, Vivian was born 3 years after the folks were married, and I came along for a 5th wedding present when Mother was 25. Dad's parents had both come over from Czechoslovakia and Mother's maternal Grandparents from Ireland. Her father was of German, English and Scottish background. Few of the 1st generation Czech married outside the nationality so their getting together was considered a "mixed marriage" in those days.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Azaleas and Conservation of Natural Resources

While we were happy to return to Nebraska after 18 years in Virginia, we missed the Azaleas and Rhododendron that we had learned to love. We were able to get this "Hardy Azalea" a few years ago and have it on the north side of the backyard fence. While it's no match for the 20 or so that we had in our backyard in Virginia, it is a good reminder of them. We are in a severe thunder storm warning area this evening with tornado warnings being issued for nearby areas. We have had some rain and are hearing thunder outside. We are watching "Big Burn; American Experience" on NET as we wait for the continuation of Ken Burns PBS series on the "National Parks". The "Burn" program tells much of the story of the founding of the U.S. Forest Service.
Gifford Pinchot is recognized as a leader in the establishment of the Agency along with President Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir. One of the early leaders of the Forest Rangers was William Greeley. His son Arthur, was Associate Chief of the Forest Service during the early years that Elaine worked for the Agency in Washington, D.C. and had frequent contact with him. Tomorrow, April 27 is the 81st anniversary of the establishment of the Soil Conservation Service by H.H.Bennett and Franklin D. Roosevelt. While the Forest Service is some 35 years older, the two Agencies have long been recognized as "sister conservation agencies".

Monday, April 25, 2016

Yellowstone NP in 1946

As we watch the first episode of the "National Parks" this evening, it seemed appropriate to reflect on my first visit to the Black Hills, Mt. Rushmore and Yellowstone NP. It was during the summer of 1946 when 4 of us farm boys borrowed my sisters 1930 Model A Ford and made the trip. We slept in a tent, bought gas in South Dakota at 6 gallons for $1.00 and stopped at the Wall Drug Store.
We were fascinated with Mt. Rushmore and remembered having read about it in our "Current Developments" while in HS. While we were greatly impressed with the natural features of Yellowstone NP,  we cut our visit short since gasoline was $0.25/gallon, food and camp sites were expensive in our judgment. While I took some pictures, these shown were purchased. I'm not sure the one of the geyser is actually of Old Faithful. I do remember that we pulled up to a parking area at the base of the geyser and waited along with no more than 25 people for it's display. Ten years later, we were back to the park and couldn't believe the large number of tourist and the distance they were kept back from the geyser's base.  We have been back to Yellowstone several times and bought a Passport years ago that covered our entry fee. One of our Motor Home trips there with Carolyn and Julie enabled us to witness a minor earthquake. We have a Passport Booklet in which we have collected stamps and dates of our visit to NP's. I may have to write a story on all our Park visits after listening to the TV series on National Parks.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Flowers and Flowerday Iron Kettle

We have owned our home here in Seward since 1981. The Iris shown are a continuation of a planting that was here when we bought the place. We have done a lot of digging, dividing and replanting from the original source but this is part of it. Likewise the Euonymus growing against the house was here when we moved in. Elaine reminds me that she has pulled a lot of blue grass that tends to invade the iris. This has been a major problem as we  established a bed of iris in the back yard. I know there are chemicals that will kill the grass but I don't know the effect on iris. 
The Episcapol Church had their plant sale this afternoon. We got up for it and Elaine planted these four Geraniums in the old Flowerday iron butcher kettle, when we got home. Elaine doesn't know when her family my have aquired the kettle but  remembers it was always being there as a little girl growing up. We inherited it when her folks had their farm sale back in 1956. I drilled 3 or 4 holes in the bottom of it to keep the soil "alive" but put plugs in them at one time when Carolyn wanted to do some cooking in it for a party out at the farm. We used poles and chains to hold the kettle up off the ground as shown in this picture of Elaine and the kids soon after we got it. The old kettle not only holds Beautiful Flowers but it also holds many Happy Memories.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

Kovar Estate Auction

I went down to the Helen Kovar Estate Auction this morning. It was in the Seward County 4-H building and conducted by Schweitzers. I had #144 which means a large crowd in that venue. Helen and her brother Joe lived together out on the farm NE of Garland where they were raised. Helen taught school for a number of years and moved into Seward following Joe's death a few years ago. Joe graduated from Garland HS where he won a letter playing basketball. He served in the Army during the Korean War and farmed until retirement. The auction was most interesting.
Joe and Helen were the only children in the Frank Kovar family. Their farm had been in the family for many years, and it was apparent that they were able to obtain many items and took good care of things. There were many old "Germantown" items which went back before WWI. The Newspaper pictured is a 1959 centennial edition of the Lincoln paper. There were 3 Teacher record books from the early '50's for the Blackwood Country School. They included the students attendance records, grades and notes on their progress. There were others that went back to the early '20's with much of the same information. I don't know the official disposition of such records but it seems unusual to see them on a public auction. There were many other items that typically get "weeded out" and thrown away in most families but were kept and brought a good price.

Friday, April 22, 2016

Earth Day 2016

While it may not have any sanctions for non compliance, the Climate Change agreement signed today in Paris by over 150 countries, is a significant achievement on this Earth Day.  As a minimum, it is a symbolic triumph for a landmark deal that once seemed unlikely but now appears on track to enter into force, years ahead of schedule. U.N. officials say the signing ceremony will set a record for international diplomacy. While Elaine and I have been involved is some interesting activities on this day over the years, our events today were pretty routine. We did mow part of the lawn and added the clippings to the compost pile. Our "daily chores" include sorting our newspapers, magazines, plastic containers, tin and aluminum cans, etc. for going to the recycle center. We turn off lights when they are not needed, minimize our water usage, as well as our gas consumption. For us, all of these "conservation practices" are routine and practical, but if the designation of one day a year where they can be emphasized helps encourage sustainability, we are pleased that Gaylor Nelson was instrumental is getting it established some years ago.

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Jack on his Horse

Jack has his Rocking Horse trained to where it gives him a pretty exciting ride. He likes to show his Mother and Grandmother how he can ride it through a fast gallop. Having him at our house for 2-3 hours; twice a week really gives us an opportunity to observe how much he learns from week to week. He is now to the stage of assigning names to people after having said "bye" and waving for some time. His ability to comprehend what is being said is remarkable. We haven't been able to keep up with our dandelion digging because of the 2 1/2 inches of rain we received during the past few days.
When I was leaving to go to coffee this morning, I saw that one had gone to seed in our front yard. As soon as I got home, Jack and I went out and were able to capture the seed head in our bucket. When he helps me dig them, he likes to throw them out into the street or driveway. He continues to develop his ability to throw a ball. (In fact he sometimes throws things that he shouldn't but he understands what discipline is all about.) Having Jack around helps temper the daily news. The two big stories today were the death of Prince at age 57 and Queen Elizabeth's 90th birthday. While I was never a big Elvis Presley fan, I could relate favorably to much of his music. I must plead total ignorance to Prince's music. My relationship with Queen Elizabeth is much closer going back to Current Readers in High School. I remember the day she was crowned and hearing part of it on a car radio while working for SCS in Seward Co.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Family Connections

Our Internet connection and land line telephone were down much of yesterday. They did come back up during the evening after we had called Windstream to report the problem during the morning. This morning a service technician came to check on it and installed a new DSL modem. We visited during the process of the installation and found that he is the youngest son of Art and Margaret and lives on the farm out in the Bohemian Alps where his Dad grew up. I grew up just a half mile south of his place, and we were close friends over the years. This picture was taken in 1953 of the Garland Baseball Town Team. Art is at the right end of the front row. Art's brother Adolph is sitting next to him, then Whitey and I'm next followed by Les and Darrell. That was the same year that Art and I played with Seward in the Cornhusker League.While they are not very visible, Art's wife and Elaine are setting up in the bleachers behind the team. Being the youngest of Art and Margaret's family, Rick wasn't born yet at the time this picture was taken. It's a real treat to have a repair technician come to provide a service and also be able to renew old family connections.

Monday, April 18, 2016

New Organization in the County

Jonathan Jank, president and CEO of the Seward County Chamber & Development Partnership spoke to Kiwanis this noon. The SCCDP is a new county wide organization that combines the mission of several groups including the Seward Chamber of Commerce and Seward Area Economic Development which Jank has headed for the past 4 years. He introduced newly selected staff members including Todd Kirshenbaum as vice president and Sue McHugh as a marketing and events coordinator. Jonathan has sung with us in  Kitones for a number of years, and he brings excellent leadership and enthusiasm to the new organization. This enthusiasm shows through with the selection of Todd and Sue in key staff positions. Todd brings over 25 years of tourism,  marketing, development, and chamber experience
Todd demonstrated his sense of humor at the end of his short introductory comments when his last name was mentioned and someone asked him, "How do you spell that?" and he said, "T H A T". Sue talked about the Seward Clean Up Day that will be held this coming Saturday as well as the Lincoln Salt Dogs baseball team coming out to Seward to play a game. Our long standing First Impressions Committee which was a sub-committee of the Chamber, will be meeting with the new organization to see if and where, we may fit in. The group handed out a new "Seward County Visitors and Newcomer's Guide" that just came off the press.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Puzzles and Pie

Elaine and I worked on puzzles this afternoon. She continued to work on the 1,000 piece, jigsaw puzzle picture of the San Francisco Bridge and Bay.  I continued to work on the puzzle of why I can't print remotely from my laptop with my printer wired to the PC Computer in the lower level. She continues to work, piece by piece, but I have given up until I get a new inspiration or help. While visiting with Jon today, he says they are planning to be out in early July, but that will be quite a while to wait. Elaine not only did the usual household chores and fixed the 3 meals for each of us today, but also baked a Cherry Pie.
This is the first one she has baked for a while and we are looking forward to even having a small piece this evening before going to bed. We took it pretty easy today after our "work day" yesterday. We went to 10:30am Church and each time we do, we are reminded of why we prefer the 8:30am service. I got in my 1-hour exercise working in the yard after lunch. This seems to be a particularly good year for dandelions in our area. I have a long handled "digger" that works very well. I also have weed killer spray but have not used it because of expected rain. We did get 0.10" this evening.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

For the Last Time

Kobe Bryant scored 60points Wednesday night in his last NBA game as his Lakers beat the Jazz. Kobe knows that after a 20 year career, he will never play another professional basketball game. Seldom do most of us know when it may be the last time to do something that we have done so many times before.  As we grow older, we begin to recognize certain things we may be doing for the last time. Elaine's Mother told us that it was the last time they would come back to visit us in Virginia  and then made 3-4 more visits. I don't remember when I played my last baseball game because I expected to play a few more games.
But this morning, Elaine and I borrowed a truck and hauled brush to the Burn Pile "For The Last Time".  It represented a collection of yard accumulation over the past couple years. We did it in two trips rather than climbing in the truck to tramp it down and put it all on one load. We laid a tarp in the bed of the truck and was able to pull it out to unload. We got along OK but needed to set down and rest as we loaded. We could have hired it done but there are some rather personal things that you have always done and hate to give it up.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Vrana Farm Auction, April 15, 1989

When April 15 is mentioned, most people think of it as the date that Income Tax Reports are due to be filed. One other major event in our lives on this date, was our Farm Auction back in 1989.  We have never questioned the decision  "to sell out" as being the right one as much as we have wondered whether we should have ever bought it. After 18 years in Washington, D.C. with a job back in Lincoln, there was an attraction to having a small farm and all the pleasures it could provide. What we didn't realize was how much time and work was required to keep it up. 
The 9 years that we had the place did provide an interesting Chapter in our lives and that of our family. My Dad may have appreciated the opportunity to get back on a tractor, trim trees, cut weeds, etc. as much as anyone. We met the challenge of growing, harvesting, and selling Certified Trailblazer Switchgrass Seed which helped meet the need for returning erodible land to Native Grass. We developed a beautiful fish pond and had a garden that produced ribbon winning produce for the County Fair.  Like other Chapters in our lives, it's well to make the most of them at the time and then move on.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Pocket Knife Collection

Carrying a picket knife was "standard procedure" while growing up as a farm boy back in the '30's,  That practice continued for many years but was curtailed  by detectors. I haven't carried a knife during the past 8-10 years but still miss one quite often. Some of the most expensive knives in my collection were given to me as gifts. This was before I started playing golf and most friends knew I liked knives. Buck and Swiss Army Knives have always been my favorites. The middle, ivory handled knife in the lower left corner of the picture, may have been Dad's because of remembering that he had one like that for as long as I can remember. Interestingly, Elaine's Dad had one similar and could be the top one of that group of 3. When you work with fellows as much as I did with these two, you get to know them pretty well, including their accessories. With 3 sons, a Son-in-law, a Grandson, a Grandson-in-law and a Great Grandson, I should be able to pass them on. I believe that Ben and Verlon may be the only ones of the group, to carry a knife. I suspect that Jack would definitely want at least one, particularily the bright red ones. He had gone home by the time I got started playing with the knives but we did spent some good time together this morning digging dandellions, polishing shoes, playing with the Chicken toy & with the pull toy.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Sisters and little Brothers

My sister Vivian, was 18 months older than me. This picture was soon after her 2nd birthday and I would have been six months. I remember of Mother saying they tied me in the chair to hold me in place. The Goat's milk that I seemed to  require, made me a "big boy". Though three generations removed, as we spend time with Jack and Sadie, they remind me so much of Vivian and I. We even look something alike but I'm willing to concede that Jack appears to be a bit smarter than what I ever demonstrated. However, I think there may be about the same spread between he and Sadie as what I was continually challenged by with Vivian. I've always rationalized that "spread" by girls maturing a bit younger than boys plus girls generally focus more on good grades in school than boys. Some also rationalize that grades received in school are only a part of the measure of intelligence that is helpful for a successful life. I did catch up  with Vivian in the 7th grade of country school after having "skipped" the 6th.
We went on through HS together with Vivian being the Valedictorian and me being in the middle of class rank. While neither of us went to college right out of HS, we each went on later to get Masters degrees. (She got hers first of course). This next picture shows Vivian teaching me how to hold on to a chair out by our washhouse here in Seward. We had electricity but no City water nor sewage utilities, but a good well just off the picture. Uncle Bert and Aunt Tillie lived on west Seward Street in a "modern" house. It was there that I learned about flushing a toilet. They never had kids so we would spend a few days with them occasionally after we moved out to the farm.

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

Happy Jack

Elaine took this picture of Jack after I had brushed his hair. He had already started his lunch and was a happy boy. This was one of his visits in which we didn't get down to the lower level to listen to a Polka record. He didn't get here until after I had gone to coffee but Elaine told of his getting on the Hobby Horse and having a good ride while I was gone. He got back on later but wanted me to sing "Pony Boy" and give him an extra "bump" on the "Whoaaa!!!!", my pony boy. His main attraction of the day was pulling a little toy around. Just as he learned to turn the Piggy Bank to make it easier to drop in coins, he also recognized that he needed to align the toy in the direction he is going to take it. He didn't always do it which would result in it upsetting. But, he knew what the problem was and would correct it. That seems to be an example of kids picking up some "common sense" from toys. 
Jack likes our house plan since he can travel out of the living room through the hall, go through the kitchen, the dining room and back to be out of our sight for a few seconds as he makes his rounds. I think he likes that "independence".  Sadie was along when Julie came to pick him up. She insisted on giving him a big hug, and they really seem to get along real well at this stage. Having had a big sister, I know the day will come  when that relationship will have some tension; but in my case, the advantages far exceeded the disadvantages.

Monday, April 11, 2016

Kiwanis Day

Pac n Sav catered a tasty Swiss Steak dinner to the Kiwanis Club of Seward this noon. Jack Swanson gave the invocation and PeeWee Schulz led the singing, concluding with "Amazing Grace". President Josh Fields recognized a guest and prospective new member and "Good News" included a report from Marv Taylor on the completion of the Flag Project. Following Committee reports Gary Herr from the Lincoln Cornhusker Club reported on the NE-IA District 22 Foundation. We  also have an International Foundation as well as our Local Club Foundation. Gary also mentioned  that he had tickets available for his Clubs Pancake/French Toast dinner on May 7. 
A Teacher from St. John's Elementary school and 4 sixth grade girls  representing the St. John K-Kids and Builders Groups, told of their project of replacing the gravel on their playground area with a poured rubber matting under an outdoor classroom or gathering area for students, parents supervising, or people getting ready to sled down the hill. It is a $70,000. project and they have already been involved in a number of fund raising projects. As I listened to the girls speak individually about this worthwhile project, I couldn't help but think that the experience they were gaining though the planning, fund raising, public speaking, etc. will probably be worth more to them in the future, than what will actually be gained by the project. This evening the Kiwanis Kitones sang for the residents of Brookdale at Heartland. There was a time when the residents were elderly people but now many of them are my old friends.

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Quirks of Nature and Politics

Dave Oates, retired from Nebraska Game and Parks, spoke at the Seward Library this afternoon. Dave was involved in identifying various game for a  number of reasons. I have heard it said that he was one of the top 5 individuals in the country that were used in making identifications for law enforcement. During the last several years of his career, he preserved and retained some of the "freaks of nature" that came his way. This is an unusual deer foot that he is holding. Some of his pictures were a bit gruesome such as a calf with one eye in the middle of its head, a rabbit with 4 ears and a ring inside a fish. Some of the items were pulled out of a bucket filled with alcohol for preservation. He also showed several sets of antlers that were most unusual. His presentation drew a big crowd.
Later in the afternoon, we participated in the Seward County Republican Convention at the Civic Center. Shown here are State Senator Mark Kolterman, a Seward Native, and County Chairman, Dr. Brent Royuk. J. L. Spray, Lincoln Attorney and a National Committeeman reviewed the process used by various states in selecting delegates to the National Convention to be held in Cleveland, OH. We selected 4 delegates and an alternate, at this meeting to participate in the State Party Convention where 33 of the 36 Delegates from Nebraska will be selected. Mr. Spray and 2 other Party Officials are already slated to make up our State's delegation. It was interesting to hear of how the process "unfolds" when none of the Presidential Candidates have the necessary number of Delegate votes after the first or even the 2nd round of balloting. It appears that this Presidential election will help many of us become more familiar with the process that leads to names of the November ballot. We hadn't been to a party county convention for many years but appreciated learning more about the process.

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Busy Spring Day

I had two objectives for today. One was to get the snow blower and lawn mower switched around in the garage. The second was to get a 2 inch Ash tree cut down that was growing into a roll of wire near our composting area. The first step in switching the two machines was to back both vehicles out of the garage. They hadn't been vacuumed out all winter so that involved Elaine, extension cords, etc. I used an old wire carpet beater to knock the dust off the floor mat pads. We used the leaf blower to clean out the empty garage.
 I never put the snow blower away for the summer without running it out of gas. That involves pumping as much as possible out of the tank. Then using starter fluid to get it running and setting it out to use up the gas. Then it was ready to be put in place for the summer. The Ash tree was the next project in the back yard. After trimming some Lilac bushes, I was able to cut the tree off above the roll of wire. then was able to cut it off at the base and move out the roll with some of the tree attached, out into the open. with a certain amount of prying the wire, and again cutting the wood, I was able to get it removed. Another season it would have be all grown  in. We got our exercise for the day and enjoyed sitting and watching the Masters at Augusta.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Major John W. Cattl;e

Col Jerry Meyer and Mary hosted the Seward Magazine Club last night at the new Nebraska National Guard Museum. Col. Meyer has done an excellent job leading the effort over the last year or so in converting the Armory into a Museum. He displayed pictures, uniforms and examples of dress worn by the Afghanistan's during his two tours of duty in that country. He also told of the native food and drink and the significant differences from our American food and drink. Mary prepared a very tasty dessert that was a "take off" from some of the Afghanistan food. It was served in the Major John W. Cattle Exhibit Area at the entrance of the Museum. The Cattle family and the Cattle National Bank and Trust have sponsored the Area as a tribute to Major Cattle. It was appropriate that our group was the first to utilize the Area since his daughter and son-in-law are involved in the Club.
 Major Cattle served with valor during WWII and had the distinction of leading his command across the Ramadan Bridge over the Rhine River into Germany. He was recognized with a Bronze Star and other honors. John died some 15 years ago and his widow and family are most pleased to be able to recognize him locally in this manner. He was an excellent example of the "Greatest Generation" and came back home to lead the oldest 5 generation bank in Nebraska.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Jack and LP Records

We continued Jack's money management training this morning when I got home from coffee. It was too windy for a bird lesson but he and Elaine worked with blocks, balls, etc. while I was gone. After finishing our money  101 lesson, Jack and I went down to the lower level and listened to an Ernie Kuceria Polka record. He holds up his hands and expects me to take hold of them and swing him around a bit when the Saddle Horse Polka comes on. He also has a couple favorite trucks that  he pulls of the shelf to play with. I fixed up a "tow string" on a Fisher Price wooden tractor but it doesn't have the same appeal as the brightly colored metal ones.
I felt it appropriate to pay respect to Merle Haggard, following his death yesterday on his 79th birthday and was able to pull out this one from our files. I don't remember when we bought our last LP record other than those brought home from auctions. Back in the 60's and '70's when the kids were around, the purchase of a new record at the "Gem" store took a significant part of our entertainment budget. I believe Tim started the numbering of our records which led to this index. The tabs indicate the listing by number, artist and category. We have only 1 of Merle Haggard's and it's #274 out of several hundred. It was easy to find.