Correspondence between the Scott brothers regarding the selling of the mule.
Col. W. F. Scott
5433 Calhoun Ave.
|to:Mr. Walter C. Scott
Scott Hill Farm
The subject mule, Jack, from Apr 57
5433 Calhoun Ave.
3 April, 1959
A man can take but so much. There comes a time when he must raise his voice in protest.
In silence I noted a shiny spigot in the kitchen replacing the bucket of fresh water from the spring. And then there was some contraption you called a bulldozer to dig out the sassafras bushes rather than a good honest grubbing hoe - which at least gave the bushes a fighting chance. Your method of milking was almost the last straw - to see the tried and true stool replaced by blasted gadgetry that a man would be foolish to put any faith in. Then there were many other things - the corn shock giving way to this "silo" idea, a reliable barbed wire or rail fencing being taken over by a single strand of wire utilizing this city-type electrical current. But why go on? Your last act of irreverence makes all your other acts insignificant.
I refer to your ad in the classified section of the recent issue of the Messenger. We hope here it was a mistake; that by accident you included your mule and that already you have taken measures to have that portion of the ad withdrawn. Surely you realize that you already are on the verge of morally bankrupting farming by those electrical and gasoline gadgets that some slicker of a salesman has talked you into buying. The mule was the only sign of independence that you had left.
And would you consider selling this?
May this letter reach you in time to retract the ad,
Sorrowfully, but still hopefully,
Alas, but you are so right! A man can take but so much!
With the economic pinch comes the need for a man to produce more food etc., so as to be able to buy the things that seem to be required in modern society.
The farmer must borrow the capital to build up the old farm, buy modern machinery to do the work ten times as fast as the old mule.
This leaves the old mule in the role of a displaced person, accepting the trivial chore of plowing the garden and tater patch. But do you think for one minute he appreciates it! Hell! No! - He seems to think that if he is idle all but ten hours a year he should be idle the other ten! Instead of going on and doing his work as he should, he protest to the point that this morning I shot him in the ass to calm him down, then blind folded him and finally got the tater patch laid out. If I had time to plow him one day he would be O.K. - but I have not the time nor inclination.
As for keeping a zoo for mules I just can't afford it. The way I figure it, that mule cost me $100 a year upkeep and I work him 10 hours so you can figure the cost. Figuring this mule's lack of good looks, pride of an entry or hope of posterity, I am offering him to the first buyer or if a zoo wants him he is free to them. Your brother , Walter