Thursday, March 14, 2013

Lion of Milkes Grove Township


My grandparent's moved into Porter's farmhouse back in the 1920’s when they first moved to Illinois. I have a written story how they arrived at the Herscher train station and were taken out to the Porter place in a buggy and when I find it I will post it. The big old house where they lived is long gone. He farmed for the Porters on their ½ section of 320 acres and Aunts Dorothy and Dora said how the family remained friends with the Porters and would visit them socially over the years.  Harlan Porter, his wife Pearl, son Bill, and daughter Bobbyetta lived there. The kids never married and stayed on the farm. Tex, the lion, a horse, and all of the Porters are buried there and it has a new gated area around the small cemetery, I have pictures of it from 2009 and will post them too. Bobbyetta was born 10 Apr 1925 and died 22 Aug 2000. Aunt Edith told me how she and Mom had attended her wake and then Bill’s wake later that year. She worked at the local diner where he ate lunch quite often and they continued the friendship. Aunt Velma told me that she remembers Grandpa taking his kids over to see the lion. She said they had to be very quiet. Aunt Tevis said she never moved when she was there as she was scared of it! Granddad Akers farmed just a few miles SE and he knew them too. I've heard about that lion all of my life. Uncle Welty and his family lived one mile east of Porters back then. Mom and some of her sisters were with me in 2009 at the location of the house built for the original lion to take pictures but it had been torn down just 2 or 3 days prior to our trip there. I ran across this newsreel movie and wanted to share it.  Click on the blue British Pathe...... I could write a slim book on this subject.

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