Getting scammed

Continuing with Gerald Nathan Hodgson’s Northwest family narrative, with thanks to Michael Howard Hodgson:

Sometime during Dad’s growing up period, Granddad bought a forty-acre farm with Dad’s approval and assistance. Between them, they got the place paid for but Granddad’s vanity suffered — he was sure the neighbors called him a forty-acre-patch-farmer. He set his sights higher and traded the paid-for forty for an eighty. The deal might have worked out but the dealer pulled a deliberate ‘whizzer’ — he let Granddad read one contract which gave him quite a lot of time to pay off the balance and then switched papers so that the contract he signed gave him a very short deadline.

Granddad lost the place, of course, but took some pride in the fact that he beat the other guy out of the new house he had built. With the help of a neighbor, they moved the house across the road onto someone else’s land. They moved it with rollers and something called a “capstan” — a cable and pulley setup.

Afterward, Granddad accumulated enough of the world’s goods to raise a stake large enough to move out here when he decided to. He does not seem, as I have said, to have been too practical but he was not, so far as I have heard, a wastrel. That is, I have never heard of him being a heavy drinker or gambler or a chaser of women. And as for lack of energy, by the time a son is grown up, his father is almost certain to be on the physical slide downhill.



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