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My mother kept all of her property and money separate from the clutches of my father in their marriage. She had told me outright that my father had forced her to marry him, and his intent was her wealth. She claimed he raped her, and the result was me. I don't know what the true story was.

She had me very late in life, at age 48, and she apologized to me, occasionally, for saddling me with such 'an elderly mother'. I didn't know any different at the time, so I was always confused by this.

My mother, unlike my social climbing father, came from wealthy people. She was part owner -with her siblings- of a large ranch, she had serious stock and bank holdings, and...she owned the house at 1636 First Street, in Baker City, Oregon.

The house sat directly across from the 12 story clock tower and government buildng, which housed both the fire department, and the police department (it also once had a children's library and the kindergarten I went to at one time). The one time we had a fire, in the upstairs, the fire department was there in seconds. They just had to pull out of their garage, and stop. The police just walked across the street to check things out.

The house could defy city zoning regulations because it was so old...130 years. It had stood there since the days of the Oregon trail.

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