Our Home Town: Mott, North Dakota - Family community, Growing up, Drug use

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As part of KCCM's Our Home Town series, this program is a sound portrait of Mott, North Dakota. Highlights discussion on family and growing up in small town. There is also a segment regarding drug use. About Our Home Town series: KCCM Radio in Moorhead, in conjunction with the North Dakota Committee for the Humanities and Public Issues, produced a series of twenty-six half-hour programs that documented attitudes and character of life in five North Dakota communities (Strasburg, Belcourt, Mayville, Mott, and Dunn Center). The programs were produced as sound portraits with free-flowing sounds, voices and music, all indigenous.

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it has a lot to offer and security I think of you can feel very secure about your own physical being and about your own family are the changes aren't real violent as you find in the heavily populated places you can You have opportunities that are somewhat limited but if you push you can do anything you want on this Malta Community Ed hardmeyer mayor of one of the many residents you will hear is a talk about our hometown. This program is one of a series of sound portraits of small towns produced by Minnesota Public Radio Station k c c m with financial assistance from the North Dakota committee for the Humanities and public issues on today's program. You'll hear about the importance of the family relationships and what it's like to grow up in mott. The interview where is John gets the quickest word? I think it was just Freedom you kind of tend to like if you want to walk in other people's property or you for your hunting or whether you're what you're doing and you just have one more freedom than you do in a big city. Mini vs. Do when you do go to a big city don't like the congestion. The people that noise is some of the things that advantages that there are and living in a small town and some of the things that are considered disadvantages has probably aren't that interested in those things many times. Will you find something from the city? What do you do for entertainment Larger Than A Feeling you'd be bored. There's nothing to do. Well enjoy the nature more possibly Hunting Fishing hiking bicycling if you want to go for a walk at 11 tonight to check your coat on you going to go for a walk. Where are you talk to someone from the city or you wouldn't dare do that? You never think of such a thing you want to do something to do it. You have a lot of manual vanson. Everybody really gets riled up for me. So I think I think we pretty well think the whole town thinks we're one big Community. How old is community come about? What's it made up of the thing? People that that don't mind seeing each other on the street that didn't you know, say hello every now and then and everybody is like one big family and that makes a community. You don't have the pressure that you doing. The large town is very relaxed out here and people care more about each other than the fact that I can get out of here and I by due on somebody around I can still There aren't able to yet. I think the fact that you know, your neighbors, you know their problems you help them. You can try and help some and here, you know the whole town you may not know them well, but you know who they are and if there's a problem you can help them. I think it's the spirit of caring more than anything in a small town, you know, if you've got a problem, you know, you're not alone there's others in the community you can turn to and it will help you you feel free to just drop in you don't call and say well are you available can we come over types that you just drop in our next door neighbor may drop it all hours of the day and night she can't sleep 2 in the morning. She sees our life lived. She may come over and see what's going on. It's just a spirit of closeness. He knows everybody else's business to Oh, sometimes it may get under your skin a little bit. Do you know but do what they want to do but one but when it comes to people's feelings when they're working with people that I think they're not as independent as I think they are something if something catastrophe or a a family has a capacity not I'm not talking about a major. Cashman family the people flock to the support that are just even Vaguely Familiar with if it's almost unbelievable sometimes what you see Well, it was a hair just here recently that woman died here which was a sudden thing. And she was young and vigorous type person. I nurse tan and I didn't know them that well, but I know that people talk the support of this family who knew very little about that because you have to get the so you got to get scrap in or something farmers are all the neighbors all combined together just to help you. Maybe it'll take a day or two whatever the case may be and they all I think is Kent from the long history that goes back to their fathers and their fathers fathers and I think it's just a trait that's just come up to the years because you can't live by yourself. I'm up. I'm a weekend for myself. I have a small farm. Three quarters and I found it on weekends and I have problems sometimes to get my work done cuz where they won't cooperate and lied to all I got to say cheyo Robert to can you help me or whoever the kids maybe sometimes they say Yeah in sometime to say no, but you you find somebody's going to help you and you at some time or another they ball help me and I help you. Go back to Pioneer Days as an example and you take a where they live 10 miles apart. They were really depending on each other for help all over the great distance was great. And the did I think I think that our thinking is wrong in this respect. I think that the farther you are part the closer you become In the closer you live together the farther apart you really are. I think if I would have been brought up in a bigger city. I probably would have been more into the introverted than what I am now. Cuz I'm one that does not have the self-confidence and I think a bigger town would not have helped me in that score where small town people know that you're still unsure of yourself in the ready to help you just like here the other day. We had a death of a 41 year old woman. They only moved here must have been five years. They've been here for years and everybody was just shocked at we are all friends over and it really status, you know, send us for a loop. But if this would have happened in a town like Bismarck, maybe only a handful of people would have showed up for the funeral this way here. It was just about the whole town plus her town of writer had come down for the funeral and them You know who your friends are here to? I'm just supposed to go to the funeral. Asurion Gene Johnson Plumbing America called me about 8. What I'm good at making I just wonder if they got a big setup up there that are not. I don't think I want it. You probably didn't get ahold of me. Yeah, he could you call me for do they have Lyft in the community? All was in there so far was just a little at the hospital. Do I have it? I didn't see it and I didn't notice. professional The only way you can get you to church family. Church of going to be ready for this afternoon in real bad shape. One of the other came up he can't he's pretty good to you. What's coming to Atlanta last night to pay for classes they figured? Anytime you have any type of a tragedy or a death in the family is are always amazed. I was just at a family last night who is a lost one of their close friends and family and they are just amazed at the whole town react just don't realize what the concern or how everybody is concerned about their lost their not insensitive to the needs of others by any means I could picture myself living in a big city in and you made no effort to know anyone who cares. Nobody knows you're nobody knows your problems. Unless you belong to a church or belong to group that knows he can share your problem. And I think this is a very healthy thing. I think man has to have people that love him and care for him or if he is going to function like you should do a lot of Gossip gets passed around 2, but mostly know people are concerned and they want to find out what's going on in most times. I'll do the best. I can to help if it's really needed because there's no privacy how everybody always knows what I'm up to and everybody's always talking about my business. Does that happen a lot? Because I didn't ruin cuz it's so small that everybody thinks they know everything about everyone else. Especially if it's something like about someone I know and I know the facts and I'm hearing all these stories to the contrary, you know, it can really bad because you know, somebody could come in from out of town and they're going to get the totally wrong impression of me or something like that. But usually it's not too bad because while you get used to it and you don't believe half of what you hear and you can pick out things here and there might be true. No, that's not too bad. You can keep your private life to yourself no matter if you're in a small town or not. If you don't want anything, I'll keep your mouth. Shut don't do anything that there's going to be taken notice. I mean, it's no different than a big time when it comes to privacy. You have to be a little thick skin. If you're thin skin don't move into a small town because people will say things about you. That you are bound to hear because it's a small town and they will hurt if you're sensitive at all. You can be very badly hurt in the small town just because of the fact that you're bound to hear these remarks that are made about you. Even though they're absolutely untrue. Which approach all the more reason why you're hurt as soon as you could hear talk, you were either the hearing gossip or you're talking about it and tell if someone is an automobile accident to this afternoon by three everyone in town knows it. And like Mike says it someone runs away with your wife. It's going to be, my business being everybody's business and you can make some Total Wine a little better up here because I made that we don't have curtains on Windows. Even babysitters come in there. I think they're afraid to stay up here because of no curtains, but it makes you feel more more secure. I think we'll shower I can see how I kind of like to know who's over to my neighbors or what they're doing or not that it's any of my business but it is just a sort of a big big family, you know and what we just like it. It's easy to let your kids go and play and not not worried that when they get to be 7 8 9 10 they can walk downtown alone and go to a movie in the evening with your friends and not be. Not have to wait to be picked up and go with her pan. It's just it's an easy way of life. Hey, can I ask you something? How come you like to live in mine? What's a good about small towns to know your way around pretty good? Do all day anyway. What else well, I wouldn't summertime. would you rather live somewhere besides my why what's wrong with my what did you have in a bigger town? Give me one. shopping beer starting in for stomach ulcer to Bismarck to Dickinson Sunrise better Big Town boat riding in a Big Town like what in the Dorian gold miniature golfing in? Here it is Saturday in the nice summer, whether you can see a bunch of kids down to the river fishing there entertaining themselves. There's no other space is space that they don't have to pay a play on a rooftop or in the streets or be into some kind of an organized regimented prepared entertainment. I think that a lot of kids leave small towns now because is not the activities going on where they get to be with other people at much you like if there's a concert going on in Bismarck or something. They can take off of their they can go to the shopping isn't even done as much in a small town anymore. They go out of town because things are less expensive or there's a wider variety. So small town is more or less just a place to live now and then you said a branch out from there for whatever you want to do. You think it would be easier in a city to be yourself. If you want to be your it's trying to be different. Where is in a city, you know, you take that same 50 you multiply please get a couple of people that are along with you and you wouldn't be so totally alone in your different feelings like another place. You have the more opportunities for it and like you don't have here. It might be true, but I don't feel slighted. I think I've gained more by being in a in a small town than I would have lost because with the transportation everything you can get to see what you want to see really if you want to see it bad now and so it's not really that much of a drawback knows everyone else and there is a pressure on young people to conform to the values of the community and it's different if it's difficult for them to to shun this off or two. 2 to escape detection and therefore I think maybe that that the values have a heartache better. You might say what kind of drugs are available. Well marijuana's about the easiest going to get the college kids are bringing that in LSD is another one that they're able to get. I haven't heard lately about LSD. Marijuana. I think is the greatest one pushed so far. I don't think we really have much trouble with heroin or you know the hard drugs. But them how many kids would you say in the community use marijuana and you got up in high school essay over half of them are on it right now. But there are they sneaky low characters. I can go into the bowling alley my folks were in the bowling alley and I can go into the women's bathroom and you can smell that they have been smoking it in there and with the traffic going in and out. It's very hard to pinpoint which ones you know have done it and we know that it is definitely college kids. Bring them in they have laid for him and everything but both kids are too smart. They could just can't get rid of it too easily. Are there been cases even a nine-year-old kid on the you know marijuana in that then it scares a person I have been with kids that are stoned out of their mind. They come to the school that way in of the trouble with her, you know little town is there fraid to say it's here, but you can tell it is finally or just took a you know, he's got 14 x coming well and we had two kids picked up this past weekend ones on a $1,400 Bond and is still sitting in jail with possession of speed and one had a $400 bond with possession of marijuana. And they have a list of the people that are going to crack down on all they need is to find the time. We have possession and all I would just like to help in any way I could because it's just saw a filling, you know, all these people doing something so fake and yet they say I'm you know, I mean no fake person about me but they just don't realize that they're doing and the parents won't say anything about it. They just let it slip by and that's why it's built up to such a problem in high school. I used drugs percentage, but over 50% Yes, because like I can look in our senior class and it's just bad. There's what 44 West night. I couldn't, you know name off 15 without any problem now and that's sad drive down the street, you know when they'll have in there and they don't even get stopped or anything. It just seems like they don't the community and care just as long as he keeps away from them, you know, it's okay, but if they're not doing anything for I've talked to a few people and drug problem in my do you think there is I think there's a problem. I don't know if it's a more of a problem than any place else cuz I can't compare it to anything. I know some of the kids are probably nice North it but to me at whether it's a problem or not. I don't know any more than say drinking was 10 years ago. I'd say it probably no worse than that. I think there's probably quite a few of them tried it. I don't know how many are really actually, you know using as regular anymore than alcohol. Or smoking race car. How's the town reacted to it? Even though they might think it is, you know about the guy I just put it in the back of their mind that it isn't that's but I think I know when the last one especially there's been a lot more people talk to me about it and then concerned and wondering what they should do when So I think they're starting to realize that maybe there is a problem and maybe something must be done about it. Is a lot of young people here why they coming back? That's one of the reasons. What are you guys doing around here that you can go out of town? You want to see a person really good. You can do what you want. Wow. Everybody knows that really in good. But sometimes it is. Is there future everything for you know? Saint who after finishes best 10 years of his life in college, you said he got through college by in late from work and working his way and going some quarters and staying out and working and when he graduated and he went up and down the streets and Martin talk to all the businessmen. And he came home and he said facetiously well, I guess they're just there are no job openings for a drama major. Well, this is true, you know, and of course they all know they know that they were just absolutely are no jobs are they probably probably are taking the wrong courses. We have one son, who is a is going to art school and he's taking pain Commercial Art and Fine Arts this year and a girl in Jamestown college and she's going to Germany to study of language and and operant music over there during the internment and this some type of thing and they will never feel that they could come back to mop to to make a living because it would be nothing here. We've lost a lot of our young people. Our families are much smaller. Our businesses are not keeping up with the change because they're having a hell of a time on competition. We're struggling more for a living then we had to It's not easy come anymore wishing to be on the way up. We have more young people now come back and they are getting active which if you don't have you can like the small-town off the mat. It's one of the things we have lost in a small-time important is the family in this area. To me. It's very important. I grew up in a big family. I had 9 kids. And man, I wouldn't trade the family for anything in the world. It's it's really special. I know a lot of the kids abused, you know, they will. You know something won't respect their family while they've got it. They it's just too short to know the way it is and they ruin it while they've got the family, but I think generally it's very important. Like the kills our clan that's what they call us nuts for brothers that live in our area. We're just really close and your cousins first and second and we wouldn't have it any other way like we have killed a reunions every now and then and there's just millions of people that come and we're spread out all over the United States. No, California texts, Delaware, but you know, we're still just cause could be around rural area that has a lot of farms because that's who runs the pharmacy families and in town. You've got the businesses which is not everybody all the family helps in the business. We're in the big city. The kid might want a job in a damn go to a different job in the girls. Stay home or babysit or something like that. So there's more Unity I think in a roll area as far as working is concerned we're talking about what it means to live on a farm that your grandfather. I settled that your father worked on and that you grew up on in a house that your grandfather built many years ago. What does it mean t? I think it was summed up just beautifully one day a lady said to me when we were on a trip. We've lived in 26 different places since we've been married. And we can't go back and find one of them because they've been renovated speaking of the metropolitan area. To me, this is something I hope our children will learn to appreciate is the fact that this house has had Austin's and Austin's and Austin's in it. And for me, like I said to you earlier my kitchen table sets with the old coal stove set. I never saw anything like this done. I used to sit and listen to his grandmother tell about knitting two socks in the gloves for her children. I never saw anything like this done. And I think this is these are roots that are fast feeding in our nation. And I think it's great if we can just keep it alive. I don't mean pray on a drink like that. But every time I come over that Hill like I told you I get kind of a lump in my throat when I look at this house to think of this house standing empty and being described. It would be Unthinkable. I don't think it would be necessary for us to say that we had to have this house or this farm for our family to have roots. Rolling, I have always felt that he and I and our children were our family and that sounds very self-centered. But we feel that that's the the first importance of first priority, but the fact that it is in this area. Where as you said earlier his family when I moved back here, I was a stranger and I moved into an area where it was very apparent to me that the Austin people have done such-and-such. They've had a certain place in the community was very with a good feeling to know that I was one of them. I also had something that I had to kind of live up to 2 and it was it to me that was satisfied myself. I was very pleased to have this place to work in two and to add my name to the list cuz I'm own special way. Martin North Dakota population 1368 this program is titled our hometown and it's one of a series of programs Exploring Life in small towns produced by Minnesota Public Radio Station kccm the funds provided by the North Dakota committee for the Humanities and public issues producers of the series are John ydstie Dennis Hamilton and Dosey meringue for a cassette copy of this program contact kccm, Concordia College, Moorhead, Minnesota 56560.

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Digitization made possible by the State of Minnesota Legacy Amendment’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, approved by voters in 2008.

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