Hopkins County Folk Lore
The Preaching ClanBy Contributing Editor, Carolyn Buntin Eveland
To understand the citizens of early Kentucky and Hopkins County of long ago and even until the nineteen fifties and sixties, we must convert to a thinking mode of black and white in terms of religion. They believed what they were taught and followed the words of the ministers without question. It was just simpler that way.
In terms of church affiliation, it was not what one thought privately, it was how well one lived up to the expectations and rules of their religious denominations. Usually no clarifications were asked of the minister or lay persons. If you didn't agree with what was being preached you simply moved to another church more to your liking. However, in those days, a stink was hardly ever made and one succumbed at least outwardly to the appearances of one's religious doctrines.
Let us take a family that for many years produced sons and daughters for the ministry in Hopkins County. They roamed far and wide through small communities preaching for whatever church would take them in.
The men were a handsome lot. They were spiffy dressers and often it was said that one could slice a ham from the crease in their pants. Every hair had to be in place, after shave and hair tonic were tediously applied and shoes were polished to a fine sheen whenever they took to the pulpit. The women dressed modestly with hair piled in shinning curls atop their heads and doused themselves profusely with perfume and mouthwash in attempts to hide the smell of the forbidden cigarettes they smoked. While most Christians believed smoking was a sin, none of the siblings did. However, church leaders dictated the habit as sinful, they bowed to the teachings of their church, at least outwardly while they worked privately to rid themselves of the evil habit of smoking cigarettes.
Now most of these young men and woman were barely able to read but for some reason could quote miles of scripture faultlessly and seemingly read the Bible without any effort. Without exception, all loved the limelight of fame and recognition.
They came from a rough and ready family who would fight at the drop of a hat, with each other or anyone else for that matter, except for the weeks they had religion.
The oldest son was called Pete, although Vern Wayne was his first and middle names. Now Pete was the ringleader of his many younger brothers and sisters and was always in a world of trouble. He drank whiskey like a fish, brawled just because he could, and could be found at any night of the week at a local bootlegger's indulging in his favorite pass time, drinking and arguing the Bible.
As the drinks were downed in rapid succession, he assumed the stance and posture of a true preachin' man. With a drink in one hand, standing in the center of the floor, he preached the gospel to the captive audience of fellow drunks. The one sin he could not be guilty of he told them, was lying. When St. Peter met him at the Pearly Gates he would be judged an honest man. Pete unabashedly condemned himself for the sinning and fornicating he had done but stood tall in the belief that he was a good man for having admitted it.
One night, as the story goes, one of his equally inebriated friends started calling him Preacher Pete because of his endless lectures on the Bible. Well, good old Pete began to think that maybe this was his true calling. Perhaps this was the reason he had never been able to hold a job, he wasn't supposed to after all. If the Lord wanted him to preach the gospel, then preach the gospel he would!
With true sincerity Pete fell upon his knees and gave in to his calling. Soon he was appearing in little country churches all over Hopkins County; his crisp new Bible clutched beneath his elbow. He also traveled to different parts of Kentucky and Tennessee giving his testimony to any that would listen. No more did he drink, fight, steal, or curse. Pete was a changed man I'm telling you, although the forbidden pack of Camels lay unmentioned, hidden inside the glove compartment of his beat up old Chevrolet.
It only took Pete a few weeks to announce his calling to the church community and he was accepted with open arms. This was a prize catch, don't you see. Most people knew Pete's reputation and to see a person of this sinful magnitude drawn into the fold was just to good to be true. He was a guest preacher soon after that in many little white clapboard churches scattered about the county and the flocks gathered to hear Pete give the devil a black eye.
Pete preached with fury and fire, pounding the pulpit and working up a fine sweat. He told and retold from the podium of his wrestling adventures with the devil when that monster had possessed him with the whiskey demon. He did not leave anything out and looking back, that might be one of the reasons he drew such a crowd.
He conducted crusades upon his own family with enthusiasm and fervor, bringing his own parents to their knees in humble repentance. He fought, argued, and blasted his many siblings until they all succumbed to the teachings of the Bible and started attending church too.
Pete himself has been baptized in Henry Moor's pond. Grass munching cows stood idly by perking their ears as Pete emerged shoutin' to high heaven. Pete shouted, the congregation shouted, the baptizing minister shouted and the cows stampeded.
All the brothers and sisters of the clan came to be baptized by Pete himself. Two of them followed suit at Moore's pond with Pete doing the dunking while tears flowed from his eyes. One wondered if the tears were shed in humble gratitude that the cows were locked in the barn this time.
Two of the sisters were baptized in the Cumberland River where Pete was holding revival near Eddyville, Kentucky. The week of the revival was bitterly cold. The sisters realized that not another day must go by until they were washed clean of their sins. With hidden reluctance in their hearts but dutiful to the end, the members of the church donned themselves in woolen coats and pull down caps and headed for the river.
The river flowed dark and ominous on this moonless night. Empty cars of the congregation beamed powerful headlights upon the freezing scene. The little crowd then began to sing "Shall we gather at the river, the beautiful, the beautiful river". Now let it be known the river wasn't beautiful that night. Melting snow and avalanches of drizzling rain had caused the waters to swell. With powerful currents the torrents of water rushed madly downstream. On this particular night, the river seemed to be a swirling, churning ribbon of utter foreboding.
Brother Pete kicked off his shoes and waded resolutely into the icy water. All admired his unflinching gait as Pete struggled against the current stopping about waist deep. First came Hilda Faye. With reckless courage she abandoned her coat and stepped into the water. A deep intake of breath was to be heard by the now silent group on the bank. Determined, she walked to her brother with neither a word of protest nor sigh of complaint. Quickly, and for the first time too, for Brother Pete never did anything quickly where ministerin' was concerned, he raised his hand to the heavens above. "I now baptize you in the name of Jesus Christ"! Taking hold of Hilda with practiced perfection Pete calculated the depth needed for an absolute baptizin' since the mound of hair piled on top her head had to be plunged beneath the surface also; well, everyone knew the scriptures called for complete and total submersion. The holy man deftly plunged and raised her to the surface with a bellowed "Amen!"
Both Pete and his sister fought to stay upright in the current and several times almost lost their footing. You know the current had to be strong for Hilda Faye weighed a good two hundred and fifty pounds. A brave soul from the crowd waded ankle deep into the water with a warm blanket ready to wrap the shivering soul as soon as she approached him. Try as he might the good Christian man just could not force himself any deeper into the water. Thinking fast, he faked a cramp.
Now Charity Ruth was led to the water's edge. Completely opposite of all her heavyset sisters, she was very slight of build. So tall and skinny was she, the family had long ago dubbed her Olive Oyle. After touching the water with her toes, she stopped dead in her tracks whereupon her husband Carl began strongly coercing her to take the first step. Finally after several minutes of courage building stamina, she took a tiny step forward.
By now Pete had begun to suffer from the bone chilling temperatures of air and water. His whole body shook and those gathered on the shore could plainly hear the chattering of his teeth. Taking in the desperate situation, Carl looked with questioning eyes to the clouds above. Carl immediately received a direct message from God. God spoke to him instantly in a clear and precise voice. Turning to his beloved wife, he shoved her hard into the icy water. After all, he had been divinely ordered to do so.
Charity landed on her buttocks and with a loud screech, ran back to dry land where her husband caught her, dragging her back to the rim of black water.
Having had all he could tolerate of the freezing depths, Pete began the struggle against the rushing current. Slowly on legs that felt and moved like tree trunks, Pete stood knee deep in the foaming river. He could go no further.
Charity was vehemently screaming and fighting against the strong arms that threatened to throw her into the water again. Suddenly a large blur was seen in the headlights running toward Charity Ruth. It was Hilda Faye and God had spoken to her as well. With a mighty lunge her doubled fists landed in the middle of her sister's back. Instantly Charity was airborne and landed with a terrific splash, face down at her brother's knees.
Without wasting a moment, Pete fell to his knees in the swirling water. With fingers too stiff to move, one frozen arm was painfully positioned across the shoulders of the sputtering woman, the other was thrown woodenly across her bony backside. Pete fell bodily across his sister, similar to the way one submerges a log in water. Both Pete and Charity Ruth vanished beneath the surface. The crowd suspended breathing. Then slowly, Pete's head inched upwards. With strangled words barely audible to the group of onlookers, Pete pronounced his sister baptized in the name of the Lord.
Consternation and worry was buzzing through the crowd now that the excitement was over. Sudden realization suddenly dawned upon them that Brother Pete could not move. Throwing caution to the wind, or rather water, in this instance, three men waded out to retrieve him.
He had to be drug to the shore for his extremities were numb and frozen. Pete was barely breathing. Hurriedly coats and blankets appeared out of nowhere while Pete's wife rubbed his frozen hands. The group began to fall as one upon their knees. All were praying with pleading voices to save this man of God who had all but given his life for the kingdom of God.
In minutes, he began to breathe a little better. He smiled, as much as frozen lips would allow , as slow awareness began to dawn on him that more than ever he was in the limelight again.
All this time and unaware to the praying group on the bank, Charity had been fighting the tremendous current, which by now had drug her into deep water. Carl looked toward the river finally realizing that his wife was no where in sight. With hands in pockets, he leisurely strolled to the river's edge. Finally, he called her name loudly. With lightning speed, flashlights were aiding headlights as the river was scanned for Charity Ruth.
It only took a few moments to locate her. She was swiftly being whisked downstream by the strong undercurrent, which pulled her under again and again. The poor woman's rail-thin arms frantically flailed against the inky water. Helplessly, Charity fought the beast that was rapidly taking her remaining strength. Her life flashed before her and just before she went down for the last count, she knew she would go to heaven a baptized woman. Fading insight also told her she was to be a heroine long remembered. Now, she thought, someone from the shore needs to witness my demise. For sure, her valiant death would make the newspapers and of course, specific details would be most important.
Before anyone could dive in to save her, Pete turned his head towards the river, weakly attempting to raise himself up on one elbow. Held upright by a grizzled old grandmother, Pete desperately sought the form of his sister who was going down for the last count. It was clear that no one could save her now without losing his own life in the effort. In an instant, he saw her. Pete feebly raised himself to a sitting position. The people held their breaths while waiting for Pete to cry out to God, and plead for the life of his sister. The spellbound group bowed their heads for the coming benediction. With a voice so strong, it carried above the current and the whistling wind like a great roar of thunder, Pete yelled, "For heaven's sake, stand up fool! The water's only waist deep"!
The incident made Brother Pete a famous man in these parts. He was hailed for his dedication to the duties of his office, although he was a self-appointed preacher. No one could point an accusing finger at this mighty messenger of the Lord ever again. Pete enjoyed his newfound fame immensely but covered it well. With humble words and downcast eyes, he presented himself to his followers as a true servant of Christian piety.
That is the way it all began. Five brothers came to preach the gospel, play the piano, and sing holy hymns with tears streaming down their faces. The sisters wrote religious songs and sang solo in every church and chapel from one end of the county and state to the other. Often traveling together with other siblings, children, and cousins, churchgoers were amazed as the caravan of family vehicles pulled into a parking lot. The members of the family often took up half the seats in the church. The newfound closeness of the clan and their obvious support of each other and their Lord struck deep chords of tenderness within the congregations they visited. It was a wonderful thing to behold!
Now there was only one problem, all the men soon became preachers too and none of them agreed with Pete on certain meanings of the scriptures. Not only did they not agree with Pete, they seldom agreed with each other. Each comment from the pulpit by one of them was viewed as a private slur by his siblings sitting in the congregation. Sisters sided with one brother and then another, finally reaching their own conclusions and agreeing with none of them. Mother and father were soon drawn into the religious battles of the children and had no trouble choosing sides. Father chose the son that came closest to his own convictions, which changed with almost every sermon. Mother warned them all that they were endangering the fires of hell if the fighting didn't stop.
In little less than a year, the sons and daughters were taking their problems to preachers of the churches they attended. Soon half the county found themselves taking sides in the holy war, defending or denouncing this or that teaching from their own pulpits. In one church, the members who opposed each other actually sat on opposite sides of the room.
In no time at all one brother after another found his own little empty church building, abandoned store or rented house. There he was to be the shepherd of his own flock, leading them forward into salvation and the TRUE word of God as only he could tell it.
Old upright pianos were hauled in if one wasn't already there. Yellowed hymn books with crackling pages were donated from other churches or bought for piddling sums of money. Most of the old churches still held wooden pews, which made seating the congregation quite handy. Where no pews were to be found, metal chairs rented from funeral homes, or bought at the local hardware store sufficed.
Still the brothers and sisters fought over their divine beliefs each time they met. The neutral ground, if there was one, was the home of the mother and father. While the sons and daughters of Vern and Martha battled for the "right ways" of the Lord, they might as well do it over a bowl of beans and cornbread on Sunday afternoon.
One Sunday evening, Pete and Artie, one of the younger brothers of the group, had been going head to head for much of the afternoon. Pete said to be a true preacher in good standing with God and the church, a man could not have been divorced. Pete was rather smug about his beliefs for he was the only one of the huge family that had stayed married to his original spouse. Artie disagreed and noted that while he had been married twice and was now single, his previous marriages had occurred before he came under the grace and forgiveness of God, therefore his calling to preach was true and undeniable.
As the brothers sat on the wooden front porch, coffee cups in hand, their words traveled loud and clear through the open windows of next door neighbors. In no time at all, the word was passed that the boys were "lockin' horns agin over the Word of the God".
As time was just a few minutes away from the beginning of Sunday night worship, the boys made ready to leave. Just then, Vern pulled slowly into the driveway. Now Vern had been a good and humble servant since his conversion some months before. Slowly, he disengaged himself from the car seat, a bottle of Wild Turkey protruding from his front shirt pocket, and wobbled up the steps to the porch. Vern was leg slappin' drunk!
Both brothers immediately began brow beating their father for his condition. Vern sat very quietly in his cane bottomed wooden chair taking a little sip every once in awhile. He offered no defense and seemed to be in a daze. It was still light outside and some say the only visible sign that Vern was even alive was a little shudder of the shoulders each time he took a drink.
Soon a few of the neighboring siblings appeared and quickly took sides either for or against the old man. Martha appeared on the porch and conscious now more than ever of her good standing as a Christian began to yell at her husband, "The wages of sin are death Old Man. I reckin yer about to split it wide open"! Charity Ruth came defensively to her mother's side, draping her arms around the stooped old woman. She continued the barrage against poor old Vern. The baby girl of the family, Hilda Faye, always her daddy's little girl, stood tall and stout next to her father pronouncing that he evidently had developed a nervous breakdown from all the family fighting right there on his own doorstep. The two sisters were by now nose to nose, screaming insults right and left. Pete and Artie had somehow become allies and were screaming at two of the other brothers in close proximity of each other's faces. The fight for or against their father was now forgotten as consuming anger took the form of screaming accusations and postulations.
Suddenly old Vern stood up, knocking the chair to the porch. Pointing an unsteady hand while hitching up his baggy pants with the other, he addressed his formerly obedient wife. "Shut up with yer cacklin' ye old bag o' bones and git yerself back in that house"! Artie, Pete, and Charity turned on their father as one. During all the name calling and fist shaking that was going on now, Vern solemnly held up his hand for attention. "I jest got one thing to say" he announced after all was quiet which took considerable time let me tell you. Looking at Pete he said in an even tone, "Yer a self righteous, know it all hard hearted cub, yer hat's too little for that big head of yorn and Artie, you is jest a common adulterer. Charity, now yer jest spoilin' fer a fight since your husband took up wid that Christian County floozie. Why don't you jump over that fence right there and take ker of your own troubles in yer own back yard!" Vern was really fired up now and hurled his voice towards his family with slurred speech. "I couldda had a litter of hogs and they wouldn't give me as much trouble as the pack of ye have. Now git off'n my property ever last one of ye"!
Then Hilda Faye clutched her father closer and whispered something in his ear. At this action, Charity gave Hilda Faye a knuckle sandwich to the left eye. Then Mother slapped Hilda Faye too. Hilda Faye in turned punched a brother who was laughing at the ridiculous scene. The fight was on!
Pete snatched the bottle of Wild Turkey from his father's shirt pocket throwing it across the yard. Vern then tackled his oldest son with a head butt to the gut, which belied his drunken condition. Off the porch they fell, rolling and pounding each other with a vengeance. Brothers Jimmy Don and Artie commenced pulling son and father apart where upon Vern socked Artie in the nose. Blood spurted from his nose so what could Artie do but punch him back. Whereupon Hilda Faye took aim, nose dived off the porch like a Kamikaze pilot landing on Artie's back with fists a flyin'. This maneuver seemed to be a favorite of Hilda Faye's, for it was the one she had previously used at the baptizing of her sister. Thank God, for all those wrestling matches she watched on her tiny black and white television each Saturday morning!
In the meantime, Vern had painfully crawled to the bottle of whiskey now lying almost beneath his car. Jimmy Don slugged Artie for hitting his pop while Cleburne commenced to lay a terrific whupping upside Pete's head. Leisurely Vern gulped a few drinks then reached beneath the front seat of the car. There he extracted a rusty old pistol.
Bam! Bam! Everyone hit the dirt clawing for cover out of thin air. Martha clutched her chest, falling headlong into a porch post. It turns out she was only hit by a low flying football tackle as Charity sought to protect her mother. Charity evidently remembered her baptizin' well; the tackle was fast and precise.
Not a sound was heard, all was deathly quiet. Looking this way and that it was finally judged that no one had been shot. Slowly, the children of Vern and Martha began to stir.
Vern had rolled under the car in hopes of escaping further punishments and there he stayed.
Shaken and emotional, gravel and dirt clinging to hair, face, and hands, the siblings quickly took stock of each other. No longer was Vitalis slicked hair in place now. Bits of twigs clung to the strands and grass stains blotched the knees of their pants. The creases were still intact however.
Piled hair now freed from the hundreds of pins used to hold it in place, stuck from their heads in wild frizzled tufts. Pinned curls still clung to the pins but hung lopsided and drooping in their faces. Of the shirt-torn women, only mother remained unscathed.
Someone must have said the first words of sanity in the aftermath of the shots. It wasn't long before hands were being shaken, sisters exchanged hugs with mother, and strong pots of coffee were brewing on the stove. Vern was oblivious to it all. He had passed out and was still sleeping peacefully beneath the shelter of his rusty old Mercury.
In short, the sisters and remaining brother who had not been present for the riot descended upon the now chagrined group with various kids and spouses in tow. Loretta, Clarindy, Allene, and Martha Jane, Jr. soon found those siblings willing to talk of the "scuffle" as it was now being termed. Amid crawling babies and scrawny toddlers, the sisters plied their way from one family member to another until they knew the entire story. At least as much as could truthfully be related.
In a moment of madness, Allene produced a pack of cigarettes from within her blouse. Pausing at each brother and sister, she doled out her sinful stash, lighting each cigarette with a Pat Boone lighter.
The one and only brother who had been absent now made his way through the crowd of nieces, nephews, in-laws and siblings, giving encouragement, a pat on the back here or there to distraught brothers, a serene smile tugging at the corners of his mouth. He became a Florence Nightingale while filling coffee cups, fetchin' his mother an "easin' pill" and kissing the cheeks of sisters. A man of godly love and good reason at last emerged from the midst of the Pilkinton family. Herbert Hoover Pilkinton took in his new status with grace and decorum.
Soon messages were sent to the brothers' respective congregations that a family emergency had arisen and church was canceled for the night. None of the clan went to services that evening and after an hour or two all except a few found their way home.
Nighttime had descended upon the little home now and Pete, Artie, and Herbert Hoover remained on the porch. Eventually Pete descended to the yard and picked up the bottle of Wild Turkey still lying near the car. Somehow, the brothers convinced themselves that taking a little nip wouldn't hurt anything just as long as a drop or two was all that was taken. They reasoned that all their nerves were shattered and they needed a little something to calm them down.
In no time the brothers were conversing in amicable and humorous tones, nerves were no longer shattered for now they were drunk as Job's turkey. As fate would have it and indeed, it was something they could not help for it had been ingrained in them since infancy, competition reared its ugly head again. Brother slammed brother with the word of Jehovah and without any qualms at all the brothers immersed themselves in a brawling free for all. Loud shouting ensued and the neighbors rushed to their windows and yards for the second time that night. Spying could be achieved better this time under the cover of darkness, so they listened to every word.
In a huff, Herbert Hoover stomped from the steps and positioned himself in the front seat of his father's car. Maybe he intended to leave or perhaps he just wanted a place to lay his throbbing head, who knows, for Pete had landed a solid blow up side his right temple with an abandoned shoe. However, there he sat while Pete and Artie remained on the steps continuing the argument.
Suddenly a voice was heard in the yard. "I told ye all that you was nothing but hypocrites and there ye are, preachers one and all, drinkin' my Wild Turkey." Pete and Artie immediately jumped up to investigate while Herbert bent from the seat to look under the car. Sure enough, there was old Vern, laying prone upon his back in the darkness.
Such a vile string of cuss words and name-calling issued from beneath the vehicle all three boys fell to the ground. This time not to pray but to pull their father from his protected post. The old man was too quick for them and kicked or rolled away from their clutches. Artie found a stick and began poking his father in attempts to prod him out.
The screams of defiance became louder and more intense. They had to get him out of there. No one stopped to think why it must be done at that exact moment. The boys were mad now as their old father was out maneuvering them at every turn.
After a loud round of name callin' Herbert Hoover lost what was left of his alcohol soaked mind. Picking up the pistol that had lain forgotten on the ground, he pounced back into the front seat, positioned himself on his knees, and began firing pell-mell through the floorboard of the car.
Vern rolled away from the shots giving Pete a chance to grab him by the leg. Artie dove through the open door of the car and knocked Herbert into the passenger window.
When the sheriff and his deputy arrived, finally called by alarmed neighbors reporting a " killin' for sertin a takin' place", the lawmen were dumbfounded by what they saw.
Pete, having drug his father partially from his hiding place, was still pulling with all his might on the one leg he had a hold on. The old man held on for dear life, wrapping his arms around the muffler. All that was visible of him were his legs. Artie and Herbert Hoover were slugging it out in the front seat of the car, dogs were barking and neighbors now stood openly in the Pilkinton yard, just in case the excitement was not over.
The sheriff and his deputy now with other officers called in, handcuffed the three brothers, and led them off to jail. The old man was allowed to stay home since the county jail wasn't equipped to handle the disabilities of an old war wound to the leg. Vern had claimed the damaged leg prevented him from climbing the many stairs where the lockup was. Neighbors chuckled at this since they had just witnessed first hand the old man's kicking abilities.
Martha stood in the doorway, the lighted room behind her silhouetting her aging frame, "Come on to bed Old Man. We've had enough excitement for one night." Shuffling off to her bedroom, she deftly inserts a dip of snuff into her toothless mouth. Shaking her head as she ambled past the windows, she was heard to say, "Five sons I got, and not a one of 'em has got the good sense God gave a goose"!
After that night, each of the brothers continued to preach for many years, between regular bouts of backslidin' and drinkin' that is.
Artie married twice more and his many children lived in every corner of the county. Several of them sang in beautiful harmony with their dad when he graced the pulpits of the Bluegrass State.
Jimmy Don lived with his third wife or his girlfriend depending on which side of the podium he was standing on at the moment.
Cleburne moved to another county and continued utilizing his compelling baritone voice. One could find Cleburne crooning about a love gone wrong in the local saloons where purple neon lights blinked on and off,or pounding out "I'll Fly Away" in small churches where lightbulbs dangled from the ceilings.
Amazingly, Herbert Hoover still lived with his second wife. Whether he was preaching at a local revival or selling beer from the trunk of his car, his serene little smile still played at the corners of his mouth, captivating one and all.
Now Pete continued to be a tortured man. In and out of church, he fought his enemies with passion. If he was ministering the word of God, the liquor demon pounded him relentlessly until he finally gave in. If he was boozing and holding service at the haunts of the counties finest bootlegger's, the power of God beckoned him back to his true calling. Pete was compelled to give up the bottle time and time again. His first and only wife soon gave in and accompanied him either to church or to the beer joints. Either place was allright with her. She really didn't care where they went, she wasn't about to sit at home.
The sisters still sang in church, giving testimony of the many blessings they had received at every opportunity. Unless, per chance, they were embroiled in fighting with other sisters and brothers, or singing backup vocals at honky-tonk bars. It really didn't matter at that point, any stage would do.
Vern was the only one of the Pilkinton clan that never drank after that day of fighting. There was just something about dodging bullets from under a car that just wouldn't let him drink again. He could be seen at one church or the other each Sunday morning, Sunday evening or Wednesday night. He always occupied the front pew of any church he attended and testimonies were long and plentiful.
How about Martha you say? Well Martha seated herself always in the middle pews. She had a new pair of false teeth and they clicked constantly as she talked and sang. Above the most fervent amens of the sermon or the loudest preaching and singing, one could always hear Martha's voice over the din, "Preach it (click click) Son! Preach it!
(Notation: The name of Pilkinton is used in a purley fictional manner and no persons by this name are associated with this story in any way.)
Copyright © 2001 by Carolyn Buntin Eveland
Nancy Trice, © 2000, 2001