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Transcript of interview with Evelyn Miller McDonald by Maylene C. Cabatingan, February 26 & 27, 1980






On February 26, and 27, 1980, Maylene C. Cabatingan interviewed Evelyn Miller McDonald (born 1905 in Alderson, West Virginia) about her life in Las Vegas, Nevada. Also present during the interview is Maylene’s step-father (name unknown) who occasionally participates in the conversation. At the time of the interview, McDonald had lived in Nevada for over seventy-two years and described early Las Vegas as a small-town railroad community with few amenities. McDonald discusses her occupational history, and how her father started the first car garage in Las Vegas. She goes on to talk about the impact of the Great Depression on Las Vegas and how Hoover Dam’s construction reduced the severity of the financial depression in comparison to other cities. She then recites the hotels that were built and the appeal that Vegas had to tourists and divorcees. McDonald later discusses how prostitution was accepted by the community, and recalls a story about how local businessmen rallied together to ensure that a minister would preach the funeral for a young woman who had died, despite being a prostitute. McDonald concludes her interview with a brief discussion of her goals in life and her pride in her daughters.

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McDonald, Evelyn Miller Interview, 1980 February 26 & 27. OH-01251. [Transcript.] Oral History Research Center, Special Collections & Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald i An Interview with Evelyn Miller McDonald An Oral History Conducted by Maylene C. Cabatingan Ralph Roske Oral History Project on Early Las Vegas Special Collections and Archives Oral History Research Center University Libraries University of Nevada, Las Vegas UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald ii © Ralph Roske Oral History Project on Early Las Vegas University of Nevada, Las Vegas, 2018 UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald iii The Oral History Research Center (OHRC) was formally established by the Board of Regents of the University of Nevada System in September 2003 as an entity of the UNLV University Libraries’ Special Collections Division. The OHRC conducts oral interviews with individuals who are selected for their ability to provide first-hand observations on a variety of historical topics in Las Vegas and Southern Nevada. The OHRC is also home to legacy oral history interviews conducted prior to its establishment including many conducted by UNLV History Professor Ralph Roske and his students. This legacy interview transcript received minimal editing, such as the elimination of fragments, false starts, and repetitions in order to enhance the reader's understanding of the material. All measures have been taken to preserve the style and language of the narrator. The interviewee/narrator was not involved in the editing process. UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald iv Abstract On February 26, and 27, 1980, Maylene C. Cabatingan interviewed Evelyn Miller McDonald (born 1905 in Alderson, West Virginia) about her life in Las Vegas, Nevada. Also present during the interview is Maylene’s step-father (name unknown) who occasionally participates in the conversation. At the time of the interview, McDonald had lived in Nevada for over seventy-two years and described early Las Vegas as a small-town railroad community with few amenities. McDonald discusses her occupational history, and how her father started the first car garage in Las Vegas. She goes on to talk about the impact of the Great Depression on Las Vegas and how Hoover Dam’s construction reduced the severity of the financial depression in comparison to other cities. She then recites the hotels that were built and the appeal that Vegas had to tourists and divorcees. McDonald later discusses how prostitution was accepted by the community, and recalls a story about how local businessmen rallied together to ensure that a minister would preach the funeral for a young woman who had died, despite being a prostitute. McDonald concludes her interview with a brief discussion of her goals in life and her pride in her daughters. UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 1 UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 2 UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 3 UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 4 (Audio begins in the middle of conversation)—and my mother is Louis Blake Miller, and my father is Lawrence Miller. My husband’s name was Archie McDonald. My daughter, Patricia McDonald, and my younger daughter Sally McDonald. (Audio cuts off and returns in the middle of conversation)—in Virginia. Okay. So I start then with my grandfather? Mm-hmm. My grandfather was a senator from West Virginia, my grandmother was a writer—wrote many, many books. They’re all in the Capitol in Charleston in West Virginia. My father was a lawyer in West Virginia and a teacher in — well, he taught English at Marshall College while he was waiting to be twenty-one years old to be admitted to the bar. He had passed the examination and then they came west for my health, and then my father started the ranch. Could you tell me like, your education? Oh, just high school education. Did you graduate here in Las Vegas? Uh-huh. What school? High school, that’s all I had (Laughs.) Clark County High School. Okay, Clark County High School. Have you been—like, have you traveled to other states? Oh yes, I’ve been back and forth across the United States many times. I spent nine months in Japan, quite a long time down in South America and now just came back—my daughter now lives in San Jose in Costa Rica, so I was over there just for a month. Can you tell us your occupational history? Like, where did you work, and things like that? UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 5 Well, I mostly kept in the house. I didn’t work, except for when I was fifteen years old. I worked as a secretary for the Chamber of Commerce for Leslie Saunders. Then I worked again after my children were raised in Palo Verdes, California, as an Interior Decorator. Then I came here—when I came back here, I went to work in a jewelry store and I did that—for about ten years. About ten years? But it wasn’t the one I managed, it sounds funny, but no. I worked for Van Buren and Cox for about ten years. And then, I managed on the Strip for Enrique Salzano. Okay. Have you had any awards or honors that you have received? I’m going to get one for being the oldest campfire girl. (Laughs). (Laughs) You didn’t know they had campfire here sixty years ago. I didn’t know that either. Well, I was a campfire girl sixty years ago. Do you have—have you ever had a major illness in the family? With the family? Yes, this daughter had Polio and was completely paralyzed. But that’s the only thing we’ve ever had. Did she ever recover from that? Oh yes, she was about four and a half months old when she had it. Really? Yes, she had to be tube fed—had to put the tube up her nose and down to her stomach and fed her until she was nine months old. Were you a member of any church or any organization in this state? UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 6 In Vegas? Oh yes, I went to Methodist Sunday School because if you were—that’s all there was. If you were Protestant you went to the Methodist and if you were Catholic, they did have the Catholic one. But I had been baptized, or christened, as Presbyterian, but we didn’t have a Presbyterian church here then. What about social organizations? Well, not here. I belonged to Women’s Club and Friday Morning Club in California, but not here. Are you still a member of those organizations? No, ‘cause that was in Los Angeles and I haven’t—I’ve been back here for twenty-one years now. How long had you been a member there before you moved here? Oh, probably ten years anyway. Let’s see. Could you tell us the changes that we’ve had in Las Vegas? Like, how has the town changed? Well, in 1910—I came in 1908—in 1910 census, there was 800 people in town. So, I don’t know what the population is now, you can figure that out. Okay (Laughs) (Laughs) And of course, there were no cars, and then my—(unintelligible), my stepfather, J.D. Woodard started the first garage in town. ‘Cause there was one other car in town, and they got the Ford and Dodge agency and sold them. And in order to sell a truck, he wanted to sell a Ford pick-up truck —nobody didn’t think, couldn’t think, that they could do business with him because they were used to the horse and wagon. And the grocery store, they came around every morning and took your order, solicited it. And then they delivered it in the afternoon. So of UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 7 course, the horse just went on to the next door, and on to the next door—gate—and they didn’t see how they could use a car. So Mr. Conklin had to work for the grocery store for six months to prove that it could be done. So he solicited and delivered groceries for six months in order to start the ball rolling on having cars. And then there were also, there were no sign posts or anything, he put in all the sign posts. Oh I’ll show you, here with the truck—my mother and I in it, and see the post sticking out there? And there was one here, that said “Goldfield,” but that time, we just went up to Indian Springs and stayed all night and came back and put up a new sign-post. And it took two days of hard driving—getting up and two o’clock in the morning and driving all day and staying all night at usually, Ludlow or Amboy, and then going on in to San Bernardino. But then the next night, then we could get cleaned up. The roads were dusty, dusty, you know, it was just cloudy dust. And of course, Sedans, they were just open cars, so we stayed all night in San Bernardino and then we got all washed and bathed and dressed going into Los Angeles, which was only about another hour’s drive. So that was—then of course, there was the train. Of course, there was no other car—well often you wouldn’t see a car the whole time, another car—and if your car broke down, the high way went pretty well parallel to the railroad. So if your car broke down, and you hiked over to the railroad, and waited— Wave—Just wave your arms— Wave for the engineer, and he would stop and bring you on in. Oh, did you have a problem with gas? Like, to run your car? Well, there was the gas. The little places were sixty miles apart—it was sixty miles to each place. And that was all, you were out of luck if anything happened in-between. But you could get gas. It’s not that much, like the prices of gas today? Oh! UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 8 How would you compare the prices? Well, I think probably just about like everything else, the only time I remember anything being said about the price of gasoline was twenty-three cents a gallon. But at that same time, up in the—Muddy Valley, we called it— Moapa, Logandale, I don’t know which one of those, I just know it was up in the Valley, that they did hold the truth up sometimes for a dollar a gallon at that time. And of course, there was nothing else they could do but get it. But I think the price was around twenty-three cents. Normally its twenty-three cents. What about during the Depression? Well you see, Vegas didn’t have much of a Depression because they started to build the Dam about that time. And of course, we were just—people just, you know, sleeping on courthouse lawn and sleeping all over, and people were begging people to rent rooms, you know in their homes. And my mother had—and many of them had two people sleeping in one room—two (unintelligible). You know, and they were glad to do it. And my mother had a coach that made a bed in the dining room that they just would beg her and beg her to rent. Oh, it was awful hard. But there was no Depression because in J.C. Penny store, would be so busy on Friday and Saturday night that they would have fireman out in front and just let so many people in at a time and they would just have to close the doors, and the people would have to wait until everyone came out so that they could come in. So that was during the Depression. But it didn’t effect too much in your family? It doesn’t really affect like that or people—that they had to quit their job, they don’t have any money to spend—? No, my husband had a garage—well, at the—we were in Los Angeles—I’m talking about here, ‘cause my mother was here—but we were in Los Angeles and when the banks closed, this — UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 9 was when this little girl was in the hospital with Polio, and my husband’s wages were cut from seventy-five a week to twenty-five dollars a week. And she was costing us more than that a day in the hospital. So he got —he started his own garage. So many garages were going broke, but he started one. You see on low- overhead. The others went broke because they already had so much overhead. And they didn’t seem to know how to cut down. So he and another fellow went together and started one—so we came through it fine. We didn’t have money to throw away because the bank closed with our money in it, and building a loan, we couldn’t get it out. What about the stores on the Strip during the Depression, were they closed, or—? There wasn’t any Strip, honey. (Laughs.) There wasn’t any Strip? (Laughs.) That was just ranches and things out that way. During the Depression, there was nothing on the strip? No. (Stepfather enters the conversation) Do you want to tell her about—? So there’s just a ranch, and horses, and everything like that? Yes, and highway. Okay, when did they start building these hotels and everything like that? Let’s see, the Old Rancho was the first one and I think that was 1942. No, it must’ve been around 1940 and the Last Frontier was built just as the war started. They had already worked on the Last Frontier when they froze all the materials—so, it was the most beautiful thing, that old Last Frontier because it was built with our Native flagstone, so that wasn’t stopped and you could get it. So it was built with the native flagstone and with just, great, big, old rough beams. They just UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 10 went up and got—‘cause you couldn’t buy finished lumber—they wouldn’t allow them to use it for something like that. Could you remember, what was the first major hotel that was ever built here? The Old Rancho. The Old Rancho? The Old Rancho. Where was that located? Well, there isn’t anything on there now—it’d burnt down and it was right across from the Sahara. You can see that vacant place there, and that’s where the Old Rancho was. Then the next one was the Last Frontier, and the next one— I think was the Flamingo, and that was farther up, right where it is now. And then the Thunderbird was the next one from then on. (Laughs.) I forget, there was the Sands, it was open the fifteenth—no, first of December the Sahara was opened. Nineteen—? 1952—and fifteenth of December of that same year, the Sands was opened. When those major hotels were opened were there many people here? Did they start living or staying in Las Vegas? Well, the people started coming in here after—well, of course, with the Dam. There was—that brought people and a lot of them stayed. Then, the Second World War, there were so many service men down at Nellis, that’s where really, our population grew so much. So many of those people came here for that and when they got out of service, they wanted to come back here and live. That’s really when we started to grow—I mean it grew during the Dam days, but it really started to grow big after the—now there was a hotel downtown on Fremont before the Old Rancho, but it was just, you know, it wasn’t like a resort hotel. But we did have ‘lots of movie UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 11 people and all that came to it, and that was the Apache hotel. I can’t remember, I think that was about Third and Fremont—that was when Clark Gable and all the movie stars came so much. Did you get a chance to see them? Oh yes, Clark Gable was so friendly and nice. And then after I moved here in ’58, why this, Smith’s Food King, that was the only grocery store—supermarket like, well from right downtown out. So oh, we just had all kinds of movie stars there. Between— a lot of them would do their shopping—between the two shows, and they just packed in there, you could see all of ‘em. When was gambling legalized in Nevada? Hun, you’ll have to look that up, ‘cause I’m not just sure. We had it when I came, in 1905 or 1908, it was wide open then. And one of these stories I was reading said it closed it in 1910 but I can’t believe that but there was a while it was kind of undercover. And then I can’t remember when it came back in. We just have to check those—see I was gone. See, I married and left in ’22 and although my folks were here most of that time, and I was back and forth and in touch with it, but I’m just not sure of the dates on that. You’d have to check and look. Okay. Could you tell us more about the changes Nevada has been through? Say around 1960 or 1950—the major changes—? Well, it’s just grown! (Laughs.) I don’t know what else to say, but it’s just grown and grown and grown! From a few little stores on Fremont, to all of these shopping centers and all of this, I just couldn’t tell you. And then of course, all of the cars and the trucks and the truck transportation, and then of course, when the airplane first came, that was the most exciting thing. Could you tell us about that? UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 12 (Laughs) Well, the first plane that had came was after the First World War, when they did that—you’ve heard about it—what do they call them? World War One Yennies and they’d go around to different places you know, and take people for a ride Barnstorming. And I remember that—I left in ’22—they were here in ’21, ‘cause I was just dying to go up and my mother wouldn’t let me. So then I was—after I got married when I was sixteen and in Los Angeles, why then, they were out there and my husband let me go up. And I went up and did all the — they did all the stunts with me that had been ruled out, you know: barrel roles, and inward and outward and I don’t know what all—but I just had ball. But then when we got Western Airline, I don’t know whether it’s the same Western that we have now, but Western Airline was the first one to come. Well, first we had the mail, you know, and they had to—they had a terrible time with that. But the first passenger part, I don’t know, it would’ve been in the 1930s— 1930’s— And of course, that made a big difference. Before that there was, you know, motor transportation was the train. And so, most every evening, everybody went down to watch the train come in and go out. (Laughs) And if you had lettered a mail you could take it down, and the conductor or somebody would take it and just put it right on the train and it would be in Los Angeles the next morning. When the put the planes in and, you know, airmail, if you mailed a letter out of the airport, the post office brought back into town and then send it back to the airport (Laughs) No. You couldn’t go put it on the plane. (Laughs) There was some man who was visiting here and wanted a letter to get back home back to Los Angeles quick, so I mailed it out at the airport. And UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 13 that was oh, it would come back into town and then go out to the airport. So why didn’t they just put it on the plane? Well see, they’ve gotten so big that they didn’t do it that way anymore. Complications. Oh my god. So throughout the years that you have lived here—? Well, when I was in high school, when I went into high school there was fifty in the whole high school. One high school, all four grades, there was fifty in the whole high school. In the year I was a freshman, there was one graduating senior, and they had everything for her just the same. They had a, you know, baccalaureate, and a minister came and did the whole thing, and then they had senior prom, and of course, everybody in high school could go, and also, you could invite people who didn’t go to high school. You didn’t have to all go there, because there wasn’t enough. And then I don’t know I can’t remember how many at the time I graduated—I was just talking to one of the boys today—I was asking something about the fire department. But there’s very few people left (unintelligible), and like that campfire group I was in, I’m the only one left. Is that right? Yes. So, you know, there’s just not so many of us anymore. What about your teenage life? Well, we had a wonderful time. And you didn’t have to be chaperoned and taken places and watch pictures ‘cause you could walk to every place and you had to be good, because everybody in town knew you. (Laughs) Of course, you didn’t have to be watched because everybody — (Laughs) — knew what you were doing. You know, there wasn’t any trouble, and just like somebody was saying, well what about the crime and all, well, there was just very little, almost none. We had tramps, tramps that UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 14 came through on the railroad in the winter, you know, when they’d be—well, all winter long— and the best of those would come to your back door and want to do something for a meal, and that’s how, you know, you got the wood chopped while they chopped wood, she’d fix them a meal. And I remember Woody, this Warren Woodard that had the garage—and the tramps would hit the downtown, a couple of blocks off of Fremont, trying to bum a dime for a cup of coffee. So Woody would always say, ‘cause you know, he had a garage, so he wasn’t dressed up, but he wasn’t in overalls, and so they would come up to him, hitting him for some money or something, and he’d say, “This is my side, you work the other side of the street.” (Laughs) (Laughs) Well, they didn’t know (Laughs). There was almost no thievery or stealing, or anything like that. We never had a key to our house, we never locked it — because well, I don’t know, it was just like, I guess, a code of the west, that you didn’t steal. And these prospectors would have little huts or things you know, out in the mountains, and they would leave food in there and all, and they’d go off with their burros and might be gone for a long time. And they would leave cans of food in there, and if anybody came along that was stranded, or needed food, they could take what they needed, you know. Like a can of tomatoes or a can of peaches, or a can of whatever that was there. And there was—but that was alright, because if they’d been there, they’d have given it to ‘em. But they—the thievery, was, there just was very little because they didn’t mind, really. If they caught anybody stealing, it was like jumping a claim, you know—they don’t, and horse thief (unintelligible) and they didn’t mind shooting them just a bit, it was justified (Laughs). So what was the major crime, if there is — even a minor crime at that time—? Oh there may have been some, but it was so very little. We had a sheriff, Sam Gay, was the sheriff for many, many years. And you know, occasionally something would happen, but it was UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 15 very little. Now we had that Indian Keyhole that every now and then they would find somebody killed. You know, but they never did find Keyhole until they found his remains, where he had been back in a cave, and they just found a skeleton. But I remember, my step-father, because of course, the sheriff’s department didn’t have a car. And so they would rent a car from him, and he was out one time for three days and nights with the sheriff and a posse hunting Keyhole and we were just scared to death. They all came back alright, but they didn’t find Keyhole. But — and he never came around town close. It was out in the hills, and all around, but there was just very, very little— But the roads are, dusty and everything, right? Changes in the roads—? Oh, yes! How would you describe the roads before? Well— Like, if a flood came— (Laughs)—you know, if there’s a storm, and like that—? Well, now we didn’t have floods so bad as you do now. You know, most of our floods is when—come down from the mountains. Well, it’s soaked into the ground coming down. Now, with all the houses and the cement-blocked walls, and the streets and all, then it’s tunneled or funneled right down those roads, and then it gets fierce. But before it just soaked into the ground so we had few problems that way. It’s just part of the growing—so much paved and everything. Was there vegetation? Very little (Laughs). Like, what plants grow? Well, it was just off of Harden, well, you — here’s the school yard, see what it looks like (Laughs). And my house, here. There—see? There was a castor beam there, and then they grew UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 16 some grapes. And this picket fence, right across from the school—the boys would come to school on horseback or burro, and they’d tie them to these pickets over on this side. There was a vacant lot next to it. So they’d tie ‘em to the pickets and then the burro or the horse would go off with the pickets. And my grandfather would (unintelligible) because they would have to send to Los Angeles to get those pickets and (unintelligible) didn’t have any way of making of them here. So that was what happened to that—kids mostly came to school on horseback. So major transportation then was the horse, or wagon? Could you remember the first time when you’ve seen a car on the road? Well, Old Man Wisner that built the Overland Hotel, had an old Buick I think it was, but oh I guess, that would have been around 1912 or ’13 or something— That was the first car here? Yes, but it was the same when they started the garage. That was the only car in town, but they got the Ford and Dodge agency and they used to ship ‘em in, you know, a whole car load of ‘em, all knocked down, they looked like little bugs. You know they wouldn’t have the fenders, the hoods, or anything on, it was all put on after they got here. What about the way people dressed during those times? Well, they dressed just like any place else I think. Was it kind of a western style? Not particularly. (Unintelligible). Okay. But then the ladies dressed all up and, oh here, I showed you that. Now that’s the kind of truck see that he was—he had to— UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 17 What do you call this kind of truck? Just a pick-up truck. This is a pick-up truck with Ford? Ford, uh-huh. Ford Model T, right? Yes. Did your grandparents stay here before? In your —with your grandfather and your grandmother—? Well they came, we all came in 1908. All of them? Uh-huh, my grandfather, and grandmother, and father, and mother, and myself. How long did they stay here? Oh, big dad stayed for a long time. He had built the house and, see then, oh, then he went down — He and Bes went down to San Diego when I was six years old, so that would have been 1911, that they lived in San Diego. And then he lived up in Santa Barbara until he died. Your first house was built on what street? (Tape one ends) (Audio begins mid-conversation)——because I mean, that’s nothing for the tape so much, I don’t think as the slaughter house thing! Mm-hmm. This was the house that was down by the Old Ranch—by the Old Fort—and that was (unintelligible) whose father headed the slaughter house. Could you run that story again about the slaughter house? Yes, have you got it started? UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 18 Mm-hmm. Yes, well, Mr. (Unintelligible) came here before the — when they were putting the railroad through the tracks. And he had a slaughter house and leave to the construction crew that were doing the work there, and that was down at the Old Ranch, where the Mormon Fort is now. I mean, it was all the same piece of ground— You say the railroad was put in 1905 then? It was completed in 1905. That’s when they auctioned off the lots. Mm-hmm. Oh. And so though there were people here that, as I say, to put the tracks through, and before that, there were wagon trains and things that came through. And then after the railroad was here, this Mrs. Theresa Wharthon the one in that other picture—I’ve got another one of her here—had the first drug store. She came to Vegas from (unintelligible) Louisiana, and then had to take stage-coach from Vegas up to Raleigh where her husband’s drugstore was. Then when Raleigh folded, you know those mining towns would boom and bust, then a lot of people from Raleigh came here, and that’s when Mr. and Mrs. Wharthon came here and started the first drug store. Could you remember the name of the drug store? Oh, Wharthon’s Drugstore. Wharton’s Drugstore—? But it’s White Cross now. Really? Yes. Where was it located, the first store? UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 19 At First and Fremont. Okay. Yes, First and Fremont. And then later they moved—after White Cross had it, why they moved to Second and Fremont, on the south side of the street. Then they moved to Fourth Street, and that’s where it is downtown now. Oh, somebody’s got their door open, you’re not used to an apartment, probably. I had to get used to one, I was used to having a house. But—and this was Allie Lawson whose father started the telephone and the light company here. Then he, oh, just practically gave the telephone company—I mean the light company away—the power company, and kept the telephone company. And, oh was he a character. But then Allie, of course grew up and managed it, and then he died in ’58, about the time I came back— What year was the first telephone wires and electricity started? Oh, I think we had telephone by 1910 anyway, yes, because we got our phone number on the truck here, see? Phone number—? Seven, three— How come you use only two numbers? Well— People don’t have a telephone. There was only seventy-three telephones probably at that time, and you could call on the telephone and instead of asking for a number, you’d just ask for Mary, and they’d say, “Oh, well I just saw her go by, I think she’s over at Mables,” or something, so they’d call Mables, or they’d say, “I just saw her go by, she’s on her way home,” and you can get her in a little bit (Laughs). UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 20 That’s about how they used to do it, someone was always eating (unintelligible). Did you cool the house with any kind of evaporated cooler or—? Well—no, they didn’t have evaporated coolers. No, we had a lot of trees and vines, and no, we didn’t on this picture here, we haven’t gotten many. But they put those—Cottonwoods—would go real fast. You could just chop a limb off and stick it in the ground and it would grow. Mh-mm. And then we had so much water. We didn’t we’d ever run out of water, and so in the summer, the water ran, you’d have a ditch, you know, have the trees all around, and then you’d have a ditch and just the water ran all the time, ‘cause Cottonwoods do take a lot of water. And then you had sprinklers and you had vines, and the water would go in on the vines and then the wind blowin’ through it, and the dry air, would help make the house cool. And a lot of the houses had porches all four sides. And a lot of the times you would slip out, you’d have a cot, out on the porch, and sleep out there. I sleep out there now. (Laughs) (Laughs) — Because my apartment is too warm most of the time. But that was you know, how we got along. Now after we started having tourists here, I don’t know why it didn’t bother us that much, but after we started having tourists here, and of course, we used to get a lot of divorcees because they could come, you know, and get a divorce, where they didn’t have them in other states. And they weren’t used to it, and a lot of them would soak the sheet in the bathtub just to get it through it, and wrap themselves in a wet sheet, and as that dried out, it cooled you. Oh, you said that your father was a lawyer? Yes. UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 21 Did he practice law here? Yes, no. He didn’t—no, he had to farm here, the ranch. And your mother was a school teacher? Oh no, no, she wouldn’t have worked. Who was the school teacher? My father taught school while he was waiting to be twenty-one years old to be— Oh that’s right. —Practice law. He was—passed the bar examination— Mm-hmm. But he couldn’t practice ‘til he was twenty one. So he taught school at Marshall College. But my mother never worked. She never did. Well, ‘til after my step-father died, and then she worked at J.C. Penney’s. What was the store here like—J.C. Penney’s and Sears, like that? Well, we had a J.C. Penney’s came in about 19—up to that time, we just had a little bit of a store, you couldn’t get anything. So we did everything by mail order, or well, when we’d go to Los Angeles, we’d buy things. But they then—Then when J.C. Penney’s came, up to that time, we hardly had paper money here at all. We had nothing but gold and silver. Really? UNLV University Libraries Evelyn Miller McDonald 22 I remember my father giving me, to give mother, after they were divorced, why, he’d give me a silver dollar and maybe a ten dollar little piece for mother, and say that the big one was for me. I knew it wasn’t more money, but— It is now— Well, not as much as the gold (Laughs). But—So we didn’t have any pennies, we didn’t use pennies. Everything was two bits, or four bits, or six bits, or a dollar. And usually didn’t—Hardly bothered with nickels or anything, they did some. So I never had any penny candy when I was growing up, except when I’d go to California and that was so exciting (Laughs) Really? Then, when J.C. Penney’s came to town—I can’t remember—it was about 1920, yes, about 1920, J.C. Penney’s came, and the bank had