space
space
Peshtigo Times
space
space
space
Perspectives
* Country Cousin
space
space
Sports Shorts
* WIAA Board Takes Action on Winter Sports / Pitch Counts
* WFSCA N.E. All-District Softball Team Announced
* Wishigan Baseball
* Legion Baseball
* Marinette Legion's Marathon Weekend Ends in Breakdown

space
Peshtigo Fire
space
e-Edition
Now Available
For more information
click here
dot
THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
space
dot
space

Tales from the old-timer

Chickens

By Jane Thibodeau Martin,

daughter of the Old-Timer




**********

Many years ago most families kept a few chickens for eggs and meat. The huge commercial egg factories we have now didn’t exist, and people didn’t go to the store frequently, so having some laying hens was a sensible idea. You see this concept hotly debated in big cities now, especially more liberal ones, as some people like to have a couple urban chickens to clean their flower gardens of bugs, provide truly fresh eggs, and some entertainment to the city dwellers. There’s been controversial regulatory efforts concerning having livestock in the city at all, chicken density, required chicken housing, and noise control, but many people keep their city chickens regardless of the rules, and most neighbors probably don’t complain. Chickens make noise, sure, but not like urban traffic, loud music and high density housing.

When I was growing up we went through a decade or so of having small flocks of chickens. We had an existing coop on the farmstead we occupied, so we had 20 or so chickens and it was great fun to go collect the eggs every day. Our hens weren’t always confined and they were really sneaky about hiding their eggs in the asparagus patch, or other places. They are domesticated animals, but their wild ancestors come through at times, and this predator-avoidance behavior led to real life Easter Egg hunts. Because our flock was small, each chicken got a name, and this led to some somber chicken dinners as the kids would contemplate eating George or Henry.

The most interesting chicken we had was a big, self-assured Barred Rock hen named Barbara. She was quite bright for a bird, and would trail us around the yard knowing the stalking might lead to some food. One day when we were having a cookout, she hopped into a frying pan on top the grating over the fire and ate a couple raw hamburgers up in a twinkling, then hopped out, apparently none the worse for the heat.

We also had interesting battles with the local predator population. After all, we are not at all the only animal that enjoys eating chicken, and there were epic battles with hawks, skunks and other chicken-loving visitors.

I currently live next to a man who has free range chickens. I love the fact that these chickens enjoy a truly luxurious life compared to the pitiful battery hens, confined in their tiny cages. But the lure of loose chickens draws predators, lots of them, and a regrettable slaughter of raptors and carnivores in defense of the chickens, who are, after all, only doing what nature intended them to do. My sympathy lies with them, so when I find yet another large patch of feathers in my field, I say nothing. I figure it would be cheaper for him to get some fencing than constantly replace the chickens, and hope sooner or later he will do so.

One very severe winter night, my parents were concerned the chickens would freeze, so my Dad put a small bullet stove that burned oil into their coop. Somehow it malfunctioned during the night, causing a thick black cloud of smoke to fill the coop. The chickens we a sad-sounding flock in the morning, covered with soot and coughing. They were all brought into the basement of the house to recover, which they did. Early farmers did share their dwelling with livestock at times, and we kids thought having basement chickens was a lot of fun, until the chickens were relocated back outside and the basement, a filthy mess, had to be cleaned and bleached.

I’ve often thought with nostalgia about the entertaining antics of the chickens, and it has crossed my mind to get a few hens myself. But I know I’d never bring myself to be able to butcher any of them, and decide to content myself with a few memories. For now.


Recent stories, opinions and photos

Issue Date Department Headline
06-29-2016Obituaries
Harold A. Towle

06-29-2016Obituaries
Peter Schussler

06-29-2016Obituaries
Donald Schuchart, Jr.

06-29-2016Obituaries
Marvin R. School

06-29-2016Obituaries
George F. Sager

06-29-2016Obituaries
Ione I. Richardson 

06-29-2016Obituaries
Donald A. Payne

06-29-2016Obituaries
Annabelle M. Pawlowski

06-29-2016Obituaries
Hildegarde Patz

06-29-2016Obituaries
Margaret V. Myers

06-29-2016Obituaries
Raymond P. Kess

06-29-2016Obituaries
Joan N. Hummel

06-29-2016Obituaries
Milo Huempfner

06-29-2016Obituaries
Duane F. Harris

06-29-2016Obituaries
Donna M. Doberstein

06-29-2016Obituaries
Phyllis Craney

06-29-2016Obituaries
James Carnitz

06-29-2016Obituaries
Milton L. Brock

06-29-2016Obituaries
John A. Bowers

06-29-2016Obituaries
Bettymae A. Bitters

06-29-2016Obituaries
Donald L. Bergeson

06-29-2016Community - Wausaukee
Ages 10, Younger Softball Schedule

06-29-2016Community - Wausaukee
Registration Open for Northland Camp, Dunbar

06-29-2016Community - Wausaukee
Goodman Fire Department 50th Year Party On July 1st

06-29-2016Community - Wausaukee
Athelstane Firemen's Picnic, Parade July 9

06-29-2016Community - Crivitz
Town to Build Salt, Sand Shed

06-29-2016Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Harvest Fest Sept. 24

06-29-2016Community - Crivitz
Ice Cream Social at Crivitz Church

06-29-2016Community - Crivitz
Twin Bridge Water Ski Show, Fireworks on July 2

06-29-2016Community - Coleman
Brazeau Fire Department Free Smoke Alarm Contest

06-29-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Classes ൳-'60 Joint Reunion July 17th

06-29-2016Community - Coleman
$83,858 Changes In Coleman School Budget, Not $3,276,642

06-29-2016Community - Coleman
147 Cars Registered at Pound Show June 25

06-29-2016Sports
WIAA Board Takes Action on Winter Sports / Pitch Counts

06-29-2016Sports
WFSCA N.E. All-District Softball Team Announced

06-29-2016Sports
Wishigan Baseball

06-29-2016Sports
Legion Baseball

06-29-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

06-29-2016Perspectives
From our readers

06-29-2016Perspectives
From My Window

06-29-2016Front Page
County Board Calls For Plan To Cut Borrowing

06-29-2016Front Page
Young and Old Alike Enjoy Breakfast on Farm

06-29-2016Front Page
Crivitz School Partners With Wausaukee for OT

06-29-2016Front Page
Mary Robertson's "Wayfarer" Book Signing at Marinette

06-29-2016Front Page
Oconto County Holds Hour-Long Closed Meet

06-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Legion Post 66 Meeting is June 25

06-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Weight Limits Remain on Several Town Roads

06-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Athelstane Board Gives Approval for Licenses

06-22-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee to Host Huge July 4th Event

06-22-2016Community - Crivitz
JC PowerSports U-Haul Partner

06-22-2016Community - Crivitz
Crivitz School Given 2 State DPI Awards

06-22-2016Community - Crivitz
Digger Memorial Bike Run on June 25 at The Hawk

06-22-2016Community - Coleman
Fundraiser at Living Waters

06-22-2016Community - Coleman
Select Kushavas Family of Month

06-22-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman Classes ൳-'60 Joint Reunion July 17th

06-22-2016Community - Coleman
13th Annual Village Pound Fire Department Picnic a Huge Success

06-22-2016Obituaries
Jerome H. Peterson

06-22-2016Obituaries
Richard D. McDonald

06-22-2016Obituaries
Lois M. Krenn

06-22-2016Obituaries
Allen R. Jorgensen

06-22-2016Obituaries
Allan Diercks

06-22-2016Obituaries
Jerry A. Cornell

06-22-2016Obituaries
Lewis A. Cook

06-22-2016Obituaries
Reva M. Chevalier

06-22-2016Obituaries
Jeron E. Tebo

06-22-2016Obituaries
William Tappen

06-22-2016Obituaries
Phyllis D. Strohl

06-22-2016Obituaries
Heidi L. Shields

06-22-2016Obituaries
Michael D. Rasmussen

06-22-2016Obituaries
Lorraine G. Geurts

06-22-2016Obituaries
Ronald B. Garrigan

06-22-2016Obituaries
Gwendolyn J. Dohr

06-22-2016Obituaries
Margaret Decker

06-22-2016Obituaries
Charles O. Bergold, Jr.

06-22-2016Obituaries
Raymond L. Anderson Sr.

06-22-2016Sports
Marinette Legion's Marathon Weekend Ends in Breakdown

06-22-2016Sports
Five Marines Named to All-NEC Softball

06-22-2016Sports
M&O ALL CONFERENCE

06-22-2016Sports
M&O All-Conference

06-22-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

06-22-2016Perspectives
From our readers

06-22-2016Perspectives
From My Window

06-22-2016Front Page
Honest Crivitz Boys Return Purse, $3,000

06-22-2016Front Page
Executive Committee OKs Tour, Argues County Borrowing Policy

06-22-2016Front Page
Dairy Breakfast June 26 On Fendryk Brothers Farm

06-22-2016Front Page
County, Town Agree on Payment for Mercury Spill

06-22-2016Front Page
Deputies Shoot Fitchburg Man After Making Threats

06-22-2016Front Page
New Marinette Kohl's Store Set To Open This October

06-15-2016Community - Coleman
Coleman School Board, Committees Meet June 20

06-15-2016Community - Coleman
Village of Pound Has Openings for Car Show

06-15-2016Community - Coleman
PTO Says Shoe Drive Big Success

06-15-2016Community - Coleman
Dedicate Memorial to Late Don Block

06-15-2016Community - Wausaukee
Post 66 Hosts County Legion

06-15-2016Community - Wausaukee
Seek Items for Altrusa House

06-15-2016Front Page
ACCIDENT SCENE

06-15-2016Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Legion Holds Gun Show

06-15-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee Grade School Chess Tourney

06-15-2016Community - Crivitz
JC PowerSports U-Haul Partner

06-15-2016Community - Crivitz
Digger Memorial Bike Run on June 25 at The Hawk

06-15-2016Community - Wausaukee
Wausaukee School Board Hears Plans for School Improvements

06-15-2016Community - Crivitz
Crivitz Church Ice Cream Social

06-15-2016Obituaries
Helen Trever

06-15-2016Obituaries
Lucille M. Tessier 

06-15-2016Obituaries
William A. Ruechel

06-15-2016Obituaries
Pearl L. Rizzardi

06-15-2016Obituaries
Donald L. Reed

06-15-2016Obituaries
Eva M. Primakow

06-15-2016Obituaries
Thomas D. Neuens

06-15-2016Obituaries
Alfred R. Glish

06-15-2016Obituaries
Donna M. Dolata     

06-15-2016Obituaries
Sally A. Carlson

06-15-2016Obituaries
Jerry M. Beaudo Sr.

06-15-2016Obituaries
Ernest Banaszak

06-15-2016Obituaries
Ralph E. Zamel

06-15-2016Obituaries
Cynthia L. Zahn

06-15-2016Obituaries
Anita M. Suennen

06-15-2016Obituaries
Loretta Sturgeon

06-15-2016Front Page
Smoke Testing Planned For Peshtigo Sewers

06-15-2016Obituaries
Gerald J. Stujenske

06-15-2016Obituaries
Dorothy A. Sharpe

06-15-2016Front Page
Judge Kent Hoffmann Takes Oath of Office

06-15-2016Obituaries
Eleanor M. Seymour

06-15-2016Obituaries
Diane M. Schwaller

06-15-2016Obituaries
Richard Richards

06-15-2016Obituaries
Victoria J. Peterson

06-15-2016Front Page
Judge Morrison Appointed 8th District Chief Judge

06-15-2016Obituaries
Selma M. Peterson

06-15-2016Obituaries
Otto A. Kaatz, Jr.

06-15-2016Front Page
No Chickens For City Residents

06-15-2016Obituaries
Joyce M. Grun

06-15-2016Obituaries
Kenneth G. Gaveske

06-15-2016Obituaries
Joyce M. Frisque

06-15-2016Front Page
Peshtigo May Get After School YMCA Program

06-15-2016Obituaries
Sarah E. Erdman

06-15-2016Obituaries
Heather A. Davis

06-15-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

06-15-2016Perspectives
From our readers

06-15-2016Perspectives
From My Window

06-15-2016Sports
Marinette Starts Strong in New Division

06-15-2016Sports
WIAA State Titles Crowned in Softball

06-15-2016Sports
Proposed Conference Realignment Sends Peshtigo to Packerland

06-15-2016Sports
County To Host LMC Annual Tour

06-09-2016Sports
Few Changes to 2016-2017 Basketball Rules

06-09-2016Sports
Marine Golfers Start Strong, Finish Fifth on State Links

06-09-2016Sports
Coleman's One-Two Punch Surprises State Field

06-09-2016Sports
Coleman/Niagara Fall Short In Sectional Semis

06-09-2016Perspectives
Country Cousin

06-09-2016Perspectives
From our readers

06-09-2016Perspectives
From My Window

06-08-2016Obituaries
Jeanette R. Zorzi


space
Peshtigo Times
WEB Poll!
Should the sale of high capacity magazine assault rifles be banned?
space Yes
No
Undecided
space
TO VOTE CLICK
YES, NO or UNDECIDED

Suggest a Question
space .
space
FRONT
space
.
space
CLASSIFIEDS
space
.
space
COMMUNITY
space
.
space
GUEST BOOK
space
.
space
NEWS
space
.
space
OBITS
space
.
space
PERSPECTIVES
space
.
space
SPORTS
space
.
space
SUBSCRIBE
space
.
space
.
space
PESHTIGO FIRE
space
.
space
CUSTOM PRINTING
space
.
space
TIMES' SAVER
space
.
space
Click for Peshtigo, Wisconsin Forecast
FORECAST
space
Quick...
News or Ad Search
Enter News key words.
Enter Ad key words.



Peshtigo Times
841 Maple St
PO Box 187
Peshtigo, WI 54157
Phone: 715-582-4541
Email:
News@
PeshtigoTimes.com

space
Fax: 715-582-4662
© 2000-2016
All right reserved
space
Powered by
WEB Media
Interactive
COMMUNITY
WEB sites