Summer of ’97

Note:  This is a story written by Raymond Martin Ware about some of his relatives.  It was sent to me along with most of his family history research.  His ancestor was Joseph Iverson Ware.

Summer of’97
I think it was the summer of 1997, on our trip to WV, that we decided to stop off in KY to see a distant cousin of mine in Taggart County. One of Uncle Ike Ware’s several daughters.
I had never met this lady, but knew her address from letters from other relatives. I needed to find the community of Bear Wallow, and then 1253 Goat Creek Run.
We got direction from the campground operator and set about to locate our destination. A toss of a coin and a raw guess would have served as well as for directions.
Eventually we did find Goat Creek Run, a left off the main road, up a one lane dirt trail and looking for a house number.
A mile or so we came upon a house and asked a lady there in the front yard, plucking a chicken, as to the location of the Cody residence. I knew we were in trouble when she asked if we were looking for Luke Cody or Duke Cody. When I mentioned “Dorothy” she told us to go another half mile or so up the road. After making a complimentary comment on the finesse of her chicken plucking, we went on our way.
Before long we came upon the proper mail box number and there in the front yard, hoeing her garden, was Dorothy, aka “Dotey” Cody. A rather lean figure of delicate features and a bonnet covering a shock of mostly grey hair.
Sitting in a rocker on the porch was a man of large proportions, dictating hoeing instructions to Dotey, who most likely, had more time on a hoe handle than the gentleman giving instructions.
As it turns out, the man on the porch was either Luke or Duke Cody.
You see, as it develops out, Luke and Duke were identical twins. Cousin Dotey married one or the other and could never figure out which one was her man.
She said it didn’t really matter since they were identical anyway.
Besides, all the kids look like their father which ever was the sire. After digesting the family situation it came that I should use the bathroom. Asking the direction thereto, I was advised that the outhouse wasn’t finished and that I should “go behind the barn, watch out for the goat. He don’t take kindly to strangers.” Having survived that without harm, I returned to the yard more confused than ever.
After making my confusion apparent to Dotey, all was explained in good fashion.
One Luke/Duke was married to Dotey. The other Duke/Luke lived over the mountain a ways with his no doubt confused spouse. Now, as for the unfinished outhouse. A bad storm came over this past spring, I was told, and lightning hit the outhouse and set the woods afire. The resulting fire also resulted in the destruction of Luke/Duke’s still which was hidden in the woods.
Since Duke/Luke’s first priority was the still, the “necessary” has to wait. Just as soon as the still is back working Luke/Duke promises to get right on the outhouse, according to Dotey.
Not wanting to confront the goat behind the barn, we said our goodbyes and headed back to the campground.
Now, whenever a storm comes, I wonder if Dotey Cody ever figured out which man she really married, Luke or Duke Cody. Did the outhouse ever get rebuilt? Is the still in operation?
I suppose I’ll never know!
Check it out.
1253 Goat Creek Run Bear Wallow, KY 3/5/10


Summer of ’97 — 2 Comments

  1. Oh, Raymond! Thank you for sharing this priceless, wonderful piece of family history. This is the kind of family lore that will be cherished forever – I laughed so hard my sides hurt. You really should think about sending this to Reader’s Digest or something. It is delightful!
    Judy Ware

  2. There’s nothing quite like the frosty seat of an outhouse on a cold winter morning and finding out that there are only shiny pages left in the Sears & Roebuck Catalog….

    C. Wayne Ware
    Cedar Falls, IA

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