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MICHIGAN FOOD & BEES

BY A. D. P. VAN BUREN

It was no slight task, in those days when log cabins were few and far between, especially when they were from three to twenty miles apart, to go the rounds through the woods, to invite the neighbors to your raising or bee. It was a weary, foot-sore tramp, and often at the lone hour of midnight the latch-string would be pulled and the occupant informed that his aid would be needed the next day, at a raising—a weary tramp. But the cheering response you got at every cabin, "I'll be there to help you, " sent you on your way rejoicing. Each settler was a minute man, and was ready at a moment's warning to yoke up his oxen, shoulder his ax, and start to assist his brother neighbor in need. At that early day people who lived twenty miles apart, lived nearer together than many people do now who live in sight of each other. There are no distances like the unsocial and unneighborly distances. I think people of that time carried out the true Scriptural idea of "loving your neighbor as yourself. " A man might have gone from "Jerusalem to Jericho" in our settlements and not have fallen among thieves; but if he had met with an accident and needed help, no one would have "passed by on the other side, " but "every settler would have acted the good Samaritan. Twenty miles to a neighbor? Yes any one of the human race, any one that needed our help, or to whom we had an opportunity of doing good was our neighbor. That is the neighbor spoken of in the tenth chapter of Luke. There was much more importance attached to Bible living, forty years ago, and less noise made about Bible believing than now. Many of the first log houses were roofed with hay or grass. Then came the period of oak shakes for roofs; then oak shingles; and finally the present whitewood and pine shingle roofs.

Michigan


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