Grandpa visits, collects our $35-per-year rent

Published 5:57 pm Thursday, March 3, 2011

Working for the past nine years, Beauford Arledge, 84, gathered his memories into a book that only he could write, “The Stories of Green River Cove.” With permission, the Tryon Daily Bulletin is sharing excerpts from the book with our readers. If you would like to purchase a copy of “Stories of Green River Cove” and read the entire book for yourself, call Arledge’s daughter, Susan Howell, at 828-894-3724 to order a copy.
Often as I grew older, I had heard Grandpa say that the Green River began at a spring near the Transylvania County line, in the southwestern part of North Carolina.
Grandpa visited our home very often, riding on a mule with a saddle.
The Blue Ridge Power Company had bought the land along the river, and their plan was to back water over this land. Many people had sold their land and moved away. The houses and land were rented out for people to live in and farm the land. Where we lived, Dad paid 35 dollars a year rent. Grandpa had the job of looking after this land, and collecting the rent.
Grandpa visits our house
I can remember sitting on the side by the open fireplace in the corner at home. It was late fall or winter, and there was a small wooden window with a door to open. Grandpa was riding up to the window and calling. I knew who it was, so I opened the window.
He had an apple orchard on the side of the mountain, and he stopped to fill a tow sack with apples. He called them limber twigs, a firm apple that keeps well. He put the tow sack across the front of the saddle.
Grandpa needed help, as he was nearly 80. I was glad to help; apples were something special at our house.
Dad took the mule, put him in the stable, and fed him. This time Grandpa would spend the night. Since his feet would get cold, Dad went out and got a fairly large rock and placed it in the fireplace to warm. When he went to bed, Dad wrapped the rock in a tow sack and put it at the foot of the bed so he could keep his feet warm.
Grandpa dies in Dad’s truck
I remember well. On March 24, 1938, we had gone to school. Grandpa went with Mother and Dad to Tryon. The three of them were riding in the cab of the truck.
As they were leaving Tryon, before they got out of town, Grandpa complained of a pain in his chest. His head dropped and he leaned on Mother.
He died before they could get him to the hospital.

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