Pilgrim Jim's Treasure Field
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. Matthew 6:21 KJV


My Mother, Stella Mae Butler, was born on Christmas Eve, 1895, in Greenbrier, Bollinger County, Missouri. Greenbrier is in Southeast Missouri, on the north edge of the Bootheel District and the northwest edge of an area that some people called, SwampEast Missouri. Mom was a daughter of Philip Washington Butler and Elvira Ellen Brendel. I remember her telling me about a small, amusing incident that happened when she was a little girl. I could always tell when Mom remembered something that she thought was funny because I could see the hint of a smile or grin on her face and a glint in her eyes. One summer her Father and Mother took the family from Bollinger County to a place in Arkansas, to pick cotton. They traveled by covered wagon and stopped at night, along the road, at whatever place was convenient. I don't remember how many days it took them to get to their destination but I believe it was over a week. Sometimes a family could make some fairly decent wages picking cotton when the whole family worked. When the cotton picking season was almost over, my Grandfather sold the team and covered wagon because he could get a good price for them at that time. He purchased tickets for the family to ride on a train on the way back home to Greenbrier, Missouri. Railroads and trains in Southeast Missouri, were something new for the family, back in the early 1900s, and they were excited about the trip back home.

My mother recalled that she and one of her younger sisters were sitting together on the train car as the train started and slowly began to pick up speed. All the kids were accustomed to riding in a wagon, pulled by either horses or mules at walking speed and sometimes trotting. As the train picked up speed and the kids could see the trees going by, Mom said that her younger sister's eyes were wide as she said, "Ohhhhhh, these horses sure can trot awful fast!"

Jim Clark

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