Found Lost Cows

17-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Saturday, July 6, 1912:  Ruth and I hunted our cows for a change this afternoon, and found them at last after hours search safe in a neighbor’s barnyard.

Recent photo of a neighbor’s farm

Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Whew, how in the world did the cows wonder so far afield (no pun intended) that they were lost for several hours?

I bet that Grandma and her sister Ruth were really relieved when they found them. I wonder which sister was supposed to be watching them.  (See previous posts about the need to watch the cows to ensure that they stayed in the pasture and didn’t wonder off—see, for example, June 22 and May 18).

It sounds like the Muffly’s had nice neighbors (or at least neighbors who didn’t want stray cows wondering around their corn and wheat fields destroying their crops).

15 thoughts on “Found Lost Cows

  1. I am glad they found them safe and sound. Sounds like those cows had minds of their own. I don’t usually think of them as wanderers, but I continue to receive an education from your blog …..

  2. I grew up on a farm–with the same kind of wandering cows. Fixing fences was a common job because cows are so big they can just knock down fences or tip it over and keep going. All they have to do is lean on it. That’s why most cow fences have a “hot wire” now that gives them a zap if they get close (to knock it down). It sounds mean to have the hot wire, but otherwise they’d be out soon. Since the cows were neatly in the neighbor’s barnyard, my guess is they were in the corn or hay field and the neighbor moved them to the barnyard where they could do less damage–plus not end up bloating.

    1. In the days before electricity on farms, I guess that the barbed wire fences must not have kept the cows in very well.

      I think you’re right that the neighbor probably put them in his barnyard to reduce the damage to his crops.

    1. Even though Grandma tended to focus on the problems that she had with the cows in her diary entries–cows are very nice animals. I think it sort of similar to how a person can get annoyed when their dog runs away or chews a shoe–yet they still like the dog.

      1. I doubt if the good points of her daily doing with the cows warrented a diary entry. Probably just an accepted part of life that she didn’t even think to comment :)

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