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Extended Weekend

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Before we left on our vacation, we headed down to the cabin for a quick extended weekend. Due to other obligations, it was shorter than we would have liked but was still relaxing and enjoyed. Above is the Buffalo River at a point we crossed it for a short hike on the evening of our arrival. Because it was so hot and humid, all hiking was done in early morning or late evening. The following day it was lightly raining all morning and so we took a chance to go on a hike to the well known hunk of rock jutting out of the bluff wall overlooking a valley. In recent years, it has become quite popular to the point it isn't enjoyable with all the crowds of people around. We were counting on the rain and it being a weekday still, that the crowds would be thin and were rewarded by having the place all to ourselves all morning long. The last time I had been here was on my honeymoon nearly two decades ago. I had never been to this place when the clouds were low like they were on that day. I was

Kuck Family History: The One Who Went to War

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My great grandfather Victor Kuck served in World War I, the first one to do so since his grandfather John Kuck immigrated to America. I guess because at the time his father George was still fairly successful (before he lost it all 15 years later), Victor evidently took a camera with him and of all the pictures he took, 378 of them ended up in a scrapbook that is an absolute treasure. I picked out eight to share on here. Above is a picture of Victor standing outside his tent. Victor served in the 800th Aero Repair Squadron during the war and spent most of it in France. They moved around between several different camps over his year in service, mostly behind the front lines. From the looks of the pictures in the album, Victor served mostly delivering or ordering supplies as needed but occasionally made forays out to the old front lines as they shifted further to the east. The above is an old Yarnum airplane as he described it with his writing on the back. The newer planes arrived in crat

Kuck Family History: The One Who Stayed In the Midwest

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  This picture is three generations of my Kuck ancestors and something that I treasure. Seated on the left is my 3rd great grandfather and immigrant ancestor John Kuck. In his lap is my great grandfather Victor Stephen Kuck. Standing is my 2nd great grandfather George Washington Kuck and on the right seated is his wife, my 2nd great grandmother Elizabeth Cogswell Kuck. By the time this picture was taken, John, wife and five other children were probably 13 years in their graves and George's older brother Henry was in Minneapolis shortly ready to leave west for The Dalles, Oregon.  George was born 14 December 1868 in Charles City, Iowa. He was the fourth of seven children born alive, one more who died at birth. As mentioned in previous posts, a diphtheria epidemic in 1878/1879 killed five of his brother and sisters just leaving older brother Henry as the other survivor along with father John.  According to accounts, George spent his formative years helping out in his father's lea

Kuck Family History: Son of a Saddle Maker

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  Ernest Anderson Kuck, grandson to original immigrant John Kuck, first cousin to my great grandfather and thus my 1rst cousin three times removed, was born in The Dalles on 29 Jul 1896 to Henry Lincoln and Minnie Anderson Kuck. During my vacation, everywhere I went, people knew who Ernie was and most knew him personally. He was one of those larger than life characters. He only had one older brother named Harry and all sources agree, they were as different as could be. Ernie ended up being a mirror image of his father in about all regards, while Harry seemed to rebel against that mold and went his own path. As stated earlier, Harry ended up being a newspaper publisher in California where his descendants live to this day. Ernie, however, never strayed from home other than the two years he left to serve in World War I. Being a cowboy, he signed up for the cavalry unit ended up in the gunnery unit upon arrival. According to many sources, he saw quite heavy action during his time in Europe

Kuck Family History: One Went West

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Henry Lincoln Kuck After their mother and five siblings died, I don't know much about the lives of Henry who was 16 or younger brother George Kuck aged 10. I know from an article that they both worked in father John's leather shop. I know from a short biography of Henry's life that he worked in Minneapolis, Minnesota for five years before leaving for Oregon.  Sometime before the age of 25, Henry decided to head west and shows up in Portland, Oregon in 1887 according to city directory records. Most accounts state that he headed slightly east to The Dalles region in 1886 or 88. My interpretation of these overlapping figures is that he headed west, perhaps arriving in Portland in 1886 and then shortly moved on to The Dalles. Again, records show two different paths. One record, complete with a picture shows that Henry set up a saddle shop south of The Dalles in a little town called Shaniko. During my earlier trip to The Dalles, this town had been on my list of places to go if w