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MAXWELL, Daniel Livingston (1917)

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Life Story of Daniel Livingston Maxwell, March 17, 1917-July 26, 1999 as related to his daughter

Early Life

In 1924 my Uncle Dan Harrocks Livingston went broke and we moved up to Grass Creek. Mom took me and Art in 1922 on the train and Pop met us when we got off the train. He drove out to the ranch in a model T Ford sedan, it was quite a trip 57 miles, there was a pretty steep place where we had to turn around and back up the grade. We stopped at Lang’s on the way out and talked to them a little bit and then went on and finished the trip.

I started school at the age of six years at the Harrison School in North Fork, Elko County, Nevada. The school was a log cabin, 14.5 by 18.5 feet. I had three windows and a door. Some of my friends at the elementary school were Fred Laing, Arthur Maxwell, my brother, Margaret Maxwell, my sister, and Myrtle Bellinger and one year there were three Indian brothers (Lee, Willie and Archie McKinney). My favorite teachers were Margaret Sullivan and Amy H. Parker. I attended the Harrison School until the end of the tenth grade. We had as many as three in the school and never more than six. I was the only one in my grade. Fred was the only one in his and Art and Myrtle were the only ones in his and Margaret was the only one in her grade. The teacher had a bell she would ring to call us in to school.

One of the best things I remember about school was going sleigh riding at lunch and recesses on the hill behind the school. We would bring our own skis and sleighs to school, it was a great place. I rode horseback, in a sleigh, in a wagon and when I got big enough, 13, I drove the family car to school. We used to set up a trap line in the fall after school for badgers and weasels, mink, and muskrats. We would skin them and send them to a furriers and I saved up over $600 which I invested in a silver mine, Silver King Western, which was in Park City, Utah. I lost all but $90.00.

What would you say that your mom and dad taught you that were important. I would say being honest and telling the truth. My dad had integrity and did a good job at whatever he did. I know he had some trouble with people rustling the cattle. They would change the brand from PX on the left to hip and X on the left shoulder. Then he put a waddle on the jaw and an earmark in the ear to identify the cattle better and this cut down on the rustling of the cattle. There was one neighbor, Bud Truitt, had a brand FK and he used to run the PX and make it look like FK. Then we put the X on it so he couldn’t do it anymore.

Life On The Ranch

One dayy, Art, Fred and I were on lunch hour and we went across the north fork of the Humboldt River on the lower field of the Kearns Ranch and we saw a coyote over in Bellingers ranch and got off our horses and crawled quite a distance and got pretty close to the coyote and we got together and decided I should fire the first shot and I shot and knocked the coyote down and killed it. We were on our bellies and so we got a pretty good aim, I was about 15 at the time. We took him home and skinned him and we were an hour late getting back to school. I got as much as $15.00 for a skin once.

We were on the Kearns Ranch from 1922 and I left in 1940. I went to high school at East High in 1933 to 1935 when I graduated. Then I went up to the U and graduated in 1940.

What would you say that your mom and dad taught you that was important. I would say being honest and telling the truth. My dad had integrity and did a good job at whatever he did. I know he had some trouble with people rustling the cattle. They would change the brand from PX on the left to hip and X on the left shoulder. Then he put a waddle on the jaw and an earmark in the ear to identify the cattle better and this cut down on the rustling of the cattle. There was one neighbor, Bud Truitt, had a brand FK and he used to run the PX and make it look like FK. Then we put the X on it so he couldn’t do it anymore.

I used to work 6 days a week and rest on Sunday if we could. Once in a while you had to do something. But we always had to milk the cows or cook the meals. We had about 16 men on the hay crew. There were about four men the rest of the year.

My mom was a hard worker. She was cooking most of the time putting on real good meals. She liked to fish she used to go down into the field with a can of worms and a fishing pole and away she’d go. She got a lot of fish. We used to eat fish a lot of times. My mom used to whistle. We didn’t go to church very often because it was 57 miles away and took two hours to get there. I was baptized about the first time I got into church, I was about 9 years old, and Art got baptized the same day. My dad talked some about his mission. He served mostly in North Carolina. I have a picture of him without 6 or 7 other missionaries. The son of one of the missionaries was out to my house last year and he had the same picture. His name was Thomas. His mission started in 1913 and finished in `94. He came to Salt Lake and they were married in the temple. They moved out to Echo on the Weber River and lived on the Ranch my uncle Dan owned.

My mom went to Salt Lake to have a hysterectomy and about 10 days after surgery she was getting up out of bed to walk around a little bit and she had a pulmonary embolism and they put her under an oxygen tent for quite a while and then on the 18th of April she had a coronary occlusion and that took her. We were with her when she died. Pop used to go down to O’Carrols in Northfork to play cards which was about 5 miles from the ranch. He met Stell and she married Pop.

One time I had a sickle, (mower knife) and I was ready to go home for the end of the day. I put the tractor in high gear and pulled down on the throttle and away we went. The sickle got caught in the wheel of the tractor and ripped it through me and cut me pretty bad in the side here about 2 and a half 3 inches long and about ¼ inch deep. If that had gone sideways on me boy I would have been there all by myself. I threw the cycle away and just drove the tractor home. After that I made a box to put the mower knives in so I didn’t have to carry them anymore. I was about 16 years old at the time, I think I went to a dance that night. It was pretty sore for a while.

College and Marriage

My brother Art enlisted in the Air Force, he was going to be drafted and didn’t have an exemption so he enlisted. He wanted to be a pilot. I went to see him. He washed out as a pilot and decided he wanted to be a navigator and went off to the war that way. I was working at Consolidated Aircraft from 1940-1942 in San Diego. Then I transferred to Fort Worth Sep 7 1942. I took a scientific course in High Scholl and engineering classes in College. Calculus was the downfall. I had a teacher, Dean Gibson, he wanted all the problems in corrected that weren’t correct. If you turned one in that wasn’t corrected then he would send it back to you and you had to do it again until it was correct. I had a big pile of them that got returned. So Jimmy Anderson and I went and talked to the Dean and we decided that it would be better that we got dropped and take up calculus the next year. I was at the U for 5 years, the last year was a lot easier because I didn’t have to sign up for so many classes.

Mom was taking a drafting course to get a job in San Diego. I was there as an instructor for a class of graduate engineers to indoctrinate them. I think I taught Dorothy’s class once and she was in it. I think she also worked in the office as a secretary some too. We dated two or three times before she left for San Diego. We went out to dinner a couple of times, later we used to go dancing.

While I was on the ranch I enjoyed trapping wild animals and skinning them and getting them ready for market. That is how I made money. I had over $600.00 in the bank. I used to shoot coyotes with a deer rifle. I ran a trap line before the snow came and got coyotes and badgers. Sometimes we trapped mink and muskrats and weasels. I would skin them out, make a stretcher and put the hide inside out and let it dry and get the fat off of them and turn them inside out and they were ready to go. I sold them to fur dealers in Salt Lake.

Aunt Margaret had breast cancer and needed help so my Mom came into Salt Lake to help her. Helen Livingston was my grandfathers’ wife. Art was my Dad’s father. He used to come out to the Ranch in Nevada to work with Pop. He sharpened the cycle knives and took care of them. I don’t remember much about my grandmother, Welthea Maxwell, we did go to Peoa to visit them. My grandmother Livingston lived 57 South 7th East, at one time it was a green elephant they said. They had a tea room there after they died then tore it down and it was a parking lot.

To go any further in school I would have had to go to Elko or somewhere else and we decided I should go to East High School in Salt Lake and live with my mothers sister, Margaret Livingston. She had never married and several of her nephews and nieces lived with her while they went to school. She was a peach, she was a first grade school teacher at Liberty School until she retired. She died of cancer in March of 1945. I played football both years that I went to East High School. I only went to church one time when I was a teacher and the boys there were so rowdy that I decided if that was what church was like I didn't need it. I played C team as Junior in 1933 and on the A team in 1934. One of my teachers was Mary Alice Kyle who was my homeroom teacher. My coach was McKinley Oswald. Waldo Osmond was my English teacher. Dan Baker was my physics teacher, he was a good guy. Lee Simmons was one of my coaches, Bob was another coach. I decided to go to the University of Utah. I worked on the ranch in the summertime to earn money and my folks helped when I ran out of money. I had the folks car the last year or so of school. Art and Margaret came to live with Aunt Margaret also. I lived with Aunt Margaret for seven years.

I joined an engineering fraternity, Theta Tau, while I was in college. I also joined a social fraternity, Phi Delta Pheta. I skied a lot and I also enjoyed deer hunting. I graduated in 1940 and went to work for two months in Elko, Nevada for Nevada Equipment Company as a salesman. I then left for Salt Lake in August and had my wisdom teeth chiseled out. I went to San Diego on August 21, 1940 to work as an engineer for Consolidated Aircraft.

I was a loftsman and I lived on the 4400 block of Florida Street and rented a room with Sandy McMaster at the Norlies. We moved from there to Wilhites’ home on 4607 Maryland and stayed there until I moved to Fort Worth in 1942. While I was in San Diego I enjoyed sailing and bought a sailboat, I also surfed and played tennis

I transferred to Fort Worth, Texas and worked as a stress analyst. I lived at 1613 Western Avenue and Tom Billings had gone on ahead of me and took my things with him and had found us a place to live. I worked there until May of 1943 and took a leave of absence and went to Denver, Colorado and taught E.S.M.W.T. (Engineering, Science, Management and War Training) of graduate engineers. I taught this until December of 1943. I lived at 1142 Washington at the Hamilton’s. Several of us boarded there and got our meals there too. I also taught, one time, a drafting class which Dorothy Henderson just happened to be a member of the class and she worked in the office. I started dating her and got to know her and she and two other girls were to catch a train in the Denver Depot and I helped them get on the train and I asked the conductor to hold the train because one of her friends was late getting to the train and he held the train until she came. I kissed her goodbye and she left for San Diego. This was in June of 1943.

Dorothy and her friends went to San Diego to work as draftsmen for Consolidated Aircraft. I wrote her a couple of letters and proposed in a letter and she wrote back yes. She came back to Denver in September and we were married on the 24th of September, 1943. We were married in Greeley, Colorado in the Methodist Church, where her parents were members. We had a reception at the church afterwards. My best man was Clarence McCabe and Dorothy’s maid of honor was Daryl Ramsey.

We went to Estes Park for our overnight honeymoon. Pop and Stell had come for the wedding so we came back to Denver to visit with them. We lived in Denver at 1200 Pennsylvania and then in December we rode down to Fort Worth, Texas with Garcia in his Buick. We had some of our things shipped by truck. We moved into the Park View Apartments in Fort Worth. They were new apartments which had just been completed. We both worked for Consolidated Aircraft. Dorothy earned about $100.00 a month. I had several raises since I had gone to work for them. I made templates for the B24, I also worked on the B32, the PBY two engine flying boat which was used for bringing in supplies, the BP2Y which was a big four engine flying boat. I also worked on the structure of the B36 and was the liaison for the group.

Our Family

Dorothy got pregnant about November and was carrying twins but lost them when she was about 5 months pregnant on March 7, 1944. They were little girls. She got pregnant again and Dana was born September 28, 1945 in the Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth, Texas. Then Margie was born 23 February 1947 at the same hospital and Gary was born Oct 19, 1951 at the same hospital. Gary was four months old when I got sick. I had been to the Doctor several times but they couldn’t find out what was wrong.

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