When I was in HS and was able to drive, you could take your gun to school in your vehicle so that after school you could head straight out for some after school hunting.
When I first started college and was rooming in a dorm my Freshman year, you could keep a gun in your room, as long as they were told about it, so that you could go hunting when you had free time.
Try doing that nowadays!
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When I was a kid, I was driving a truck or pulling a hay rack before I had a bicycle of my own. I suppose one could count the hand me down bike that many of the kids within 6 or 8 miles learned how to ride on, but that is a different story. We didn't shoot a lot when I was a kid, but when we did go shooting, it usually meant fresh meat.
Shot my first 'real' critter - an antelope - when I was about eight. Took the shot from a hay stack with a .220 Swift, and two hours later, my BIL came to check on where I was. He asked how come I was still dragging a critter that wieghed more than I did, looked closer and asked how come I hadn't gutted it out yet. Funny... Ma trusted me to go out with a .220 Swift, but she didn't trust me to go out with a "hunting" knife.
When I was a kid, and times got really tough, we would have "camel's milk", as Ma called it - a mixture of real milk and powdered milk. Further into wintertime, before calves were ready for market, and money was even more scarce, it was straight powdered milk. When money was tight, we would eat snake, prairie dog, crows, pigeons - - whatever wasn't livestock. We ate plenty of foul things, but we never went hungry. I remember the party line telephone too. I remember one of the Cousins needed help moving a herd to a lease pasture, and thinking that it would be a easy job. We started mid-morning on a Saturday, which was a mistake. We should have started EARLY that Saturday. We ended up closing the gate on the least pasture about 11:00PM the following Sunday, soaking wet from an early April rain storm that somehow managed to turn to snow, and ended up being a blizzard. Quite a few of us ended up with a cold. That was also the first time I ever heard my Pop use profanity. Needless to say, it was aimed squarely at our cousin.
After we moved to town, Pop had a job and money wasn't so much of an issue, but we still didn't get to go shooting just for the fun of it. I remember the first time I shot a handgun - a .22LR High Standard Sport King - our Uncle was back for a visit and his eyes lit up when he saw what he called the "Hush Puppy" - he had come back from Vietnam, and come back west to decompress for a few weeks. I think I was 12 or 13 at the time. I don't remember how much .22 shells cost, but I knew they were passed out from the box 5 or 10 at a time, with every kid getting the same number of shells. Shooting order went from oldest to youngest, and I was always last. By the time I got to shoot, all the close in, easy shots were gone. I think it helped me figure out ranges better, and I am sure it helped me to learn good field craft.
Some parts of being a kid were pretty tough, and are better left as "the good ol' days", but I still remember them and the older I get, the more I appreciate them. The kids nowadays, have it easier, but certainly not better than I did.
Growing up in Hawaii, we had no guns in the house. When we moved to Oregon two years ago, I bought my first firearm. Boy, I wish I'd started earlier.
Funny how, as a kid, we watched black and white TV and were thrilled when we got a color set. Now, I spend a lot of time watching black and white movies on my flat screen color TV. And, my friends and I used to walk everywhere. I didn't have a bike till I was in high school. Now, I walk to try to stay in shape.
I remember buying guns at the hardware store. Paperwork, what paperwork? My grandpa gave me one 22 short round at a time. If I brought back something worth eating, I got another round. If not I had to do work above and beyond my chores to get another round. I was treed by a pack of wild dogs once; I'd already shot my one round so I sat in that tree until my grandpa and uncle decided to come find me. I got to take ten rounds with me after that. I was rich! I don't know what the real difference is, but we just didn't have any problems caused by everybody having access to guns. No drive-by shootings, no mass killings, not even a lot of armed robberies and muggings. I guess we just weren't smart enough to know that we couldn't be trusted with such dangerous items as firearms.
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Was raised on a 160 acre dirt farm in south central Missouri, the middle of 5 children, having both an older brother and sister and a younger brother and sister. Went to a one room country school. Each row of seats was a grade, exception being first and second were in one row (all three kids). I was the 1st grader, and when no one moved into the school district during the summer, was "advanced to third grade with the other two kids, cutting out the second grade. You could "check out" books for grades ahead of you and listen to classes, but could not participate. I was reading third grade books in late first grade, working 2nd grade math problems as well as the 2nd graders.
House was heated by wood, cut, hauled to the woodlot, cut to length, split, stacked along the fence and then carried to the house as needed. Had a large wood deposit on the back porch under a large piece of old canvas. Cooked and heat with wood. Cook stove had a large water reservoir on right end. Cold water came from a hand pump at the sink. The fruit jar full of water on the sink was to prime the pump. "Gray" water drained out to a large hole filled with course gravel and covered with about 20 inches of dirt. Outhouse (2 seater) was behind the house and was moved about every 5 years. Privy was on 2x6 skids and could be pulled from location to location by one of our mules. Small bucket of lime was in the outhouse along with two buckets of corn cobs. Later replaced with last years "monkey wards", J.C. Pennys, Sear & Roebuck mail order catalogs (censored by mom removing all the ads for womens unmentionables).
First job was at about 9 when I drove a neighbor's tractor pulling wagon loads of corn to the grain elevator, dropping a full wagon, picking up an empty one and returning to the neighbors farm. Trips were about 6 to 8 miles each way, depending on which part of the farm you were on when you hit the "blacktop". County deputy sheriff if he saw you would just wave and drive on. If observed driving on the blacktop not working your folks got a phone call on the party line. Crime described and punishment swiftly administered by parents.
Sorry, gotta run, have vet appointment for wife's dog. Will amend post later.
Rest deleted as it became too long. Sorry. Shenandoah
All our life we trade our time for money, hoping to make enough money to do what we dream of, before we run out of time.
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I spent my childhood in southern Indiana where most of the hunting I done was coon hunting with my dad. Seen alot of the United States on our trips to where ever a big coon hunt was in the mid 1960's, it was a good business for him raising walker hounds.
My first .22 was a western auto revelation with was the gun dad carried to hunt with. Sure was great back then think I started shooting when I was around 5 year old.
We also had a meat processing plant and did some deer from time to time before the USDA stepped in.
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When I was a kid, I was the remote control
No trees were harmed in the construction of this post. However a large number of electrons were indiscriminately aroused.
I posted this in February.
Times have changed for sure. I started in school in Northern Ontario Canada in 1955. The rule was that all boys (the girls did not hunt in those days) who brought a .22 to school so that they could go hunting right after school, had to leave the rifle and ammo in the principal's office and pick them up on their way out of the school. I was too young to do that in 55. By the time I got to be 15 and got a hunting licence, no guns were allowed in our schools so we had to go home before heading out to bag rabbits and grouse.
Of course in those days, houses and cars and sheds were always unlocked in Northern Ontario.
God ! I miss those days.
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"It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change." Darwin
Speak softly, but ride like hell!"
Sorry, just being facetious! Couldn't help it.
No, I think they were not better. In 1961 I was 10, so to say the world was much simpler then only means I didn't know squat about the world.
I have always been a city boy. We didn't have guns in our house, and I only knew one or two persons who did, retired military who kept a .45 around, but kids weren't supposed to know about it. Even though I live in Puerto Rico, and we were considered "the poorhouse of the Caribbean" up until the 50's, my family wasn't poor. We were considered very middle class. Heck, my father was the treasurer of a bank, and STILL I guess he only made $6,000/year in the early 60's.
The family's first new cars (yes two) were a 1964 Dodge Dart and a 1965 Triumph Herald. I don't know how much the Dart cost, but I know the Herald was $1,800.00 out the door. My parent's house, 3BR, 1 bath, concrete house on a 4,900 sq. ft. lot was all of $12,000 in 1949. We still have it (concrete is a great thing!). The neighborhood has become gentrified (location, location, location. Two blocks from the beach) and even now it's worth 350-400K. Down from 500K a few years ago. My parents sent me and my older brother to private schools, public schools being atrocious in PR. I learned English in the private school. I graduated from the (public) University of PR.
We had less toys. We were satisfied with less. Our standards of comparison were different. A car with air conditioning was a BIG deal. Now, we think of it as undrivable if the A/C doesn't work! I got a Schwinn 10 speed when I turned 11 (same time I joined the Boy Scouts) and I went everywhere on that thing, until selling it at 16 to get a Honda 50.
But, even though every time past seems better, I think not. I own my own home, in the old neighborhood, and it is twice the size as my parents, my children went to better private schools than I did, then on to prestigious stateside universities.
I'm rich that way.
I have a pile of guns and am relatively well off, with manageable debts. That makes me rich, as there is not much else I want.
The only way I'm pooerer now than then is in time. There's not enough time for all I'd like to do, whereas in the 60's hours stretched longer, we had all the time in the world!
That's the biggest difference between 16 and 60. Yeah, plus I don't worry much anymore about atom bombs anymore. the Cuban Missile Crisis, MAD, etc.
Speak softly, but ride like hell!"