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Heather Gates, Ep. HG 12, Heather engaged with work and family

Updated on May 29, 2018
Homeplace Series profile image

Dr. Bill's first passion is family history. His second is a passion for creating family saga, historical fiction stories that share it.

In the stable, they discussed the job description statements

The logo of The Homeplace Saga
The logo of The Homeplace Saga

On Saturday, Diane and Heather discussed the job description statements

Late on Saturday morning, for an hour or so before a lunch break, Diane and Heather reviewed the job description statements Diane had written up based on their earlier discussions. Since Heather was involved in routine stable operations as well the trail rides operation, she was in a unique position to have insights into the wide range of stable operations. Diane noted her appreciation for Heather’s earlier input, but now she really wanted Heather to be as critical as possible of the written words to help ascertain that they accurately and completely covered what was actually being done and what actually should be done.


Heather did her best to do that. Diane asked questions, Heather replied based on her experience. Diane asked more question to clarify several points. Heather added further points for discussion. They each welcomed the lunch break that followed the fairly intense discussion of the job description statements. Diane was pleased with the results.


As they were preparing for the afternoon trail ride they would lead, together, Diane again expressed her appreciation for Heather’s input during the morning session. Heather said she was pleased to contribute and felt it was good for each of them to do it. After a bit, as they were getting the horses saddled, Diane asked Heather how the school portion of her FFA Horse Project was going. Heather replied that her instructor was very pleased with the outline she had given him. He had made some suggestions, and now Heather was fleshing out the written parts of the early planning information. Diane said she was pleased to hear it was going well.

The 1910 U.S. Census report was useful in identifying ancestors

This is a typical 1910 U.S.Census report
This is a typical 1910 U.S.Census report

On Monday, September 9, Jennifer and Heather talked about the weekend

Late Monday afternoon, Heather was back from school and going about her normal chores in the stables when Jennifer came in to check the animals as part of her normal day, as well. They soon fell into discussion of Jennifer’s weekend, which Heather insisted that she share. Jennifer noted that Karen had said the same thing during their regular Monday noon lunch together. Jennifer went on to talk about their own family history research she was able to do, along with some about Brian’s family that she had found especially interesting. Heather had never been to St. Louis, let along the Old Spaghetti Factory, so she was all ears about that part of the weekend.


Jennifer said she had looked at the 1910 census regarding Paul’s parents, and she would put that information together to show Heather. She had made some copies, and taken notes, at the time, but had not yet had the time to go back over the information. They’d get together later to talk about that.


On Tuesday afternoon, Jennifer had a folder of information for Heather on the census work she had done. She had found Brock Gates listed as a baby in the 1910 census in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. The parents were Paul and Betty Gates. There were no other children listed. He was listed as 35 years of age, born in PA, both parents born in PA. Betty was also noted as 35, born in PA, and both parents born in PA. These were Heather’s great grandparents, of course. The other good news was that she had found the parents of Inez Katz in the 1910 census, as well, in Madison, Wisconsin. Inez was also an infant, of course. The parents were George and Jane Katz, he was 34, she was 28, no other children. Both born in WI, as were both of their parents. Jennifer was able to obtain photocopies of each of those census reports for Heather. They talked about these new details. Heather said she was anxious to tell her father about this new information.

They survey the area where they hoped to place a solar panel array

Typical solar panel array set in a field
Typical solar panel array set in a field

On Tuesday evening, Paul talked with Heather about Sheila and Peter’s Mill measurements

After supper, Paul shared with Heather an update on the work he had done earlier in the day with Sheila and Peter with regard to possibly building a wind and solar array to generate electricity for the Mill, and their cottage, similar to what was being done at Peter and Sheila’s house. Heather knew they were going to be doing some hiking around the property and doing some measurements, so she was very interested in the results. Paul said they had hiked quite a bit of the area north and west of the Mill. They had discovered a ‘bald,” an open area not far away that looked like a very good location for the equipment. It was not visible from the road, because of the trees in-between, and it seemed to be close enough to the Mill to make it feasible, electricity-wise. Peter was doing some calculation based on the measurements they had taken, and would have those results, later. But, based on how similar it actually was to what they did at their place, it seemed that it should be feasible. He said he was pretty excited about the prospects.


Heather then pulled out the folder she had received from Jennifer. Paul was very surprised that Jennifer had actually been able to find both sets of his grandparents, that he knew nothing about. Paul and Heather talked about these results for quite awhile. They agreed that it was amazing that the wartime job opportunities had apparently actually brought both Brock and Inez together, one from Pennsylvania, and one from Wisconsin. They moved, whereas their parents appeared to have not moved from the home state in which they had been born. Much interesting information to ponder. And, they agreed, it also raised additional questions, as Jennifer had said that new family history information always did.


Heather said Jennifer hoped to also look at the 1920 U.S. Census information for those two communities on one of her next research trips. Brock and Inez would be ten-years-old at that time; would there be other siblings? The 1930 census would not be available until 2002, 72 years after the census year. Six years seemed like a long time, but Jennifer had said it would speed by, for sure.

[Continued in Episode HG 13]

Author’s Note

This series of stories in the life of Heather Gates, a fictional character in The Homeplace Saga series of family saga, historical fiction stories (home blog found at thehomeplaceseries dot blogspot dot com), is being created as a way to use a minor character in the early writings to expand those stories and share details omitted in those earlier writings within the original overarching themes. These newly included details may have been left out of the earlier stories through editing or they may have seemed unrelated to central themes at the time. With the expansion of the entire Saga, over the years, it has become obvious that filling in some of the gaps in the story for overall better understanding of the individuals, their families, and their interactions would be useful to The Homeplace Saga body of work in total. These episodes parallel the timeline of “The Homeplace Revisited” novel in this series.

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    • Homeplace Series profile imageAUTHOR

      William Leverne Smith 

      5 months ago from Hollister, MO

      Have that image as the back of each of my novels, background on author webpage on Facebook...sort of become the icon of the series...

      This is a generic photo image, but had one much like it across the road from the farm where I grew up!! ;-)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      5 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Better late than never, right?

      I couldn't get past the barn/stable...what a magnificent building. If I owned that I would live in part of it...no need for a house....oh, yes, enjoyed the chapter too. :)

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