A Favorite Picture

This picture is my great-grandfather Cal Drew with his dog Snoop.

He was born Carle Enrique Drew in Creston, Iowa in 1857. His siblings called him “Reek” – he soon changed his name to Cal. He married Estella Meacham in Rice County, Kansas in 1882, and they led an unusual life for Kansas farmers.

They first farmed outside of Chase. Kansas. In the winter Cal hunted and shipped many ducks from the salt marshes at Stafford, Kansas to the eastern markets. He was in charge of the Stafford Gun Club and the Salt Marsh Hunting club for some time. The picture comes from that time period, I’m sure.

In about 1904 they had a merry-go round and an arc-light movie machine and they traveled to small Kansas towns in the summer time and did shows.

Here’s a quote from a profile my aunt, Mildred Seward, wrote about Cal and Estella:

Calvin was a handsome man and his wife Estella was an excellent needlewoman and so kept him supplied with beautifully embroidered black sateen shirts, the cuffs and fronts of them being heavily embroidered. Calvin played the bones and perhaps the french harp with a small group of men who played for dances abound Chase, Kansas.

In 1912 Cal and Estella retired from farming and moved to Wichita, Kansas to a house next door to their daughter Mabel. Estella died in the flu epidemic of 1914. Cal wandered for a while, living first in Protection, Kansas and then Hutchison. He came back to live with his daughter in 1920 and died in Wichita in 1928.

A slightly longer version of this profile was written for Jan 8-14 of the 52 week project “Favorite Photo”