Thunder Butte

October 03, 2005

More Strange Occurrences

One of the things I never understood was the accidents that my mother had at that ranch [the "XL," or "7A-" as it was known when leased from R. L. Foster, Jr.].

One time, we had just come home from town. It was just getting dark. We, my mother and I, entered the house where she found the box of matches. She reached toward the lamp, a kerosene lamp, on a high shelf, and before she touched the lamp, the globe (chimney) exploded into many pieces. Both of her arms were cut severely by the flying glass. I was right beside my mother and not a piece of the glass touched me.

Another time, I was right by my mother’s side when she walked past a large mirror, which hung in the living room. This was a heavy plate glass mirror. It shattered into what seemed like thousands of pieces and very seriously cut my mother’s arms and face. Again, not a piece of the glass touched me.

My mother was always afraid at night when we lived on that place. It was a fearful place in the darkness. The forest of trees along the creek and the canyons caused the darkness to be more intense. You could never see at night.

In the summer, our front door was always open for ventilation and the screen door was secured by a hook on the inside of the door. When someone wanted to come in from the outside, they would hit the screen door with the palm of their hand and the hook would fly up and out, allowing the screen door to open.

One night, my mother and I were alone, and my father and brothers were out on the range or working cattle. We had just gone to bed, the lights were out, and it was pitch black in and out of the house. Suddenly, we heard a loud slap on the screen door. We flew out of bed, my mother finding matches and lighting the oil lamp. We went into the front room to find the screen door swinging wide open. My mother secured the door again and tied the hook with a string and we went back to bed where we slept very little for the rest of that night. No one ever knew who or what slapped our door open that night.

--John Crowley
Mike Crowley Monday, October 03, 2005


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