A Page Out of the Book Cliffs
Page 17 – Ink Harris – Part 6

Well, I’ve not heard any complaints about continuing on with more copies of letters from Ink Harris of Elgin, Utah to Harry Ballard of Chichester, England, so here is another dated June 9, 1920:

Dear Old Friend,

It has bin a long time since I have written to you, but I have bin awful buisey last winter and this spring. This is the first time I have bin home for a month. We had an awful winter here and I lost about half of my cattle. The sheep eat me out right up to the ranch fence. The spring was very late and very cold. I just delivered my steers the 5th and am going back to the ranch in the morning. Don’t know how I am going to get my hay crop in as I can’t get any help. Wish you was over here and I wood put you to pitching hay for about a week. I have about 25 acres of hay in now on the Saluratis ranch and will put in all I can this fall and next spring.

Well Harry the oil boom turned out like all the rest of them has, they got a little oil in Moab but it didn’t amount to any thing, there is several companys going to drill in Salt Valley and around Moab. There is also a well being drilled just below Crescent but I haven’t got much faith in them. The big coal boom fell through in Thompsons Canyon. Thompsons is controlled by Greeks now, in fact the Greeks and French have just about taken the country. We get out and work them over with a hard twist once in a while but there is so maney it doesn’t do much good. We sure put the go in a few of them last spring, but it will be the same next winter.

Well old friend if thing don’t change in this country I don’t know how we are going to live. Everything is in an uproar and the cost of living is something awful. Sugar is 30 ct per pound and old spuds 12 ct per pound and everything else in perportion. Everything is going up but cows and you cant sell them at all. I hope there will be a chang after the election this fall but it is hard to tell.

Old Mase is still staying with McPherson. I haven’t seen him since he went up but Jim say he is all right. I hope he stays up there for it is a good home for the old fellow. I wood like to move into Colorado this summer and get me a location but I was hit so hard last winter I am afraid to try to move.

My family is all well and the girls made a good record in their school work last winter. I am going to take Ballard to the ranch with me as soon as I get my work straitened out a little. Larry is a big fat rascal and the best natured baby we ever had. Well Harry by the time you git this figgured out maby I will write again.

With best regardes to Mrs. Ballard and Bruce, I am as ever – Your Old Friend, G.A. Harris.

I’m sure enjoying copying down these century-old letters to share with you folks. The further I go with this particular Ink Harris series the more I wonder about a couple things, so as they say on TV, I’m going to use a life line and ask the audience. Actually, I have just sent an email to Ballard Harris’ son Dale Harris who lives in Cedar City and who also spends some time at Dewey on his dad’s old place. Maybe he can answer my two main questions: I’m wondering how G. A. Harris got the nickname of “Ink” and I’m also wondering just where exactly the Saluratus ranch was located specifically. If anyone has any info on these things or any good stories about any of the Harris bunch, I’d love to hear it. 435-259-9543.

ByBy AJ Rogers