Grandpa, I have two, love them. I didn’t get as much time with them as I would have loved too. Spent more time with my mom’s dad than my father’s dad, but that is my story and this is someone else’s story. SO I tell my mother’s dads story first. He was born in Kansas, died in California. That is not too remarkable I guess. He did move to California on horseback, that I imagine is a bit rare these days, in fact it might not even be possible. Although I guess it could be done if you were willing to ride on roads, not as pleasant as the open countryside. Anyways, when he was a teenager his mother passed away. His father wanted a change, so Grandpa, his brother and father put what they had on their horses and left. Not sure if they were set on California or just set on somewhere different. Of course ridding a horse is not the same as a plane, so they didn’t have enough food with them for the trip when they left, they needed to find it in route. As in finding squirrels and rabbits and such. I imagine they found some flour and oil, butter and milk along the way which meant they needed to have money or stuff to trade. They didn’t have much money or stuff to trade so they traded their time and effort. Somethings never change, just the work, wage scale and location. They did a lot of farm and ranch work, because that’s what they knew. And when you ride up the the job site on a horse and the horse is healthy and you say you just rode 100’s or 1,000’s of miles to get here, and the horse is still healthy, we that is a pretty reference. I am quite sure if I did the same thing even with a support car following me full of canned horse food or whatever it is they eat, my horse and I would not be a convincing resume to present to a potential ranch employer. I do like ranch dressing though, my grandpa did too.
Anyways it took a few years to get to California, finely they he settled in Dixon, a tiny town near Davis in the Sacramento valley. I did a lot of different jobs. He was a air-raid warden during the war. Owned a ice cream fountain, parlor. He was a Cow Polk in a slaughter house, he actually was the person who “poked” the cows. As in poked them on the head with a 20 pound sledge hammer for the last time in their life. He loved to travel( by car too) all his life. He collected rocks and post cards from all over the Western united states. Married the postmaster in Dixon, had 3 kids. Then after she passed away he drove to upstate new York to to visit an old friend of my grandma and him, back when they were 2 young couples. She was widowed so they go married when he was 80+years old. He had a ball cruising the countryside there on a snowmobile until they moved back to Dixon.