The Book - Bart Beck

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About Bart Beck

Introduction

I think that it is about time that I wrote down some of the things that I remember having happened during my lifetime. This is being started in 1985 and I will be 75 years old this fall. That has given me, at this point, about 70 years, through what has surely been the most progressive years in American history, to observe and take part in some of those changes.

I have no intention of trying to write this in chronological order, rather, I will write things just as I think of them and if it is possible for me to insert them where they belong, I will do so ,if not, you will have to arrange the continuity to suit yourself, because by this time, you have surely concluded that I am not a writer. I cannot start every paragraph with "I remember" so I may just start out with a statement, because you will know that what I am about to say, is something that I remember.

It may seem silly and presumptuous to some people that I would want to do such a thing, but here is my reasoning; I now think back to the time that I was twenty years old and how gratifying it would have been if I could have, at that time, read the story that my great grandfather should have written, when he was the age that I am now. Surely our most accurate history comes from observations and not from research which is, quite often, flavored with imagination. Perhaps no one, other than myself, will ever read this, but I will have had the fun of bringing back memories of some of the things that happened before many of you were born.

I was born October 20, 1910 on an eighty acre farm in Porter Township, Van Buren County, Michigan. That is literally correct, I was born on that farm, because in those days a child was born where it's parents lived, for the reason that there were no hospitals within horse and buggy distance. That was also before the days of tractors, combines, portable hay balers and so 80 acres was about all that one man and three horses could handle.

The farm's entire north and south width bordered on the west shore of Big Cedar Lake. There was, at that time, a navigable connection between Little and Big Cedar. A highway has since been extended between the two lakes. It was on Little Cedar Lake that my dad and Bert Streeter ran into a little trouble while hunting geese with a muzzle loading shotgun, while they were kids. I will explain all of that later.

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