Life on the Dry Line: Working the Land, 1902-1944

Harry Morgan Mason, Author
Harry Morgan Mason, Author Fulcrum Group $19.95 (224p) ISBN 978-1-55591-122-5
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Now in his 80s, Mason reminisces about his youth in western Kansas (``dry line'' refers to the 100th meridian). The son of a farmer, auctioneer, garage owner, and car and farm implement dealer, he witnessed and took part in the transition from horse- to machine-powered labor in the fields. He writes with colorful detail about planting, plowing, harvesting, the family's saddle and buggy horses, gargantuan meals provided for harvest crews, dust storms and trips in such early automobiles as the 1915 Regal. From an early age, Mason was fascinated by machinery; indeed, the second half of this memoir focuses on automobiles and tractors, making it a bonanza for old-car buffs but less appealing for readers with minimal interest in the techniques of cranking a car to start. Still, this is an engaging piece of Americana. (Sept.)
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