These are the grandchildren of the homesteaders fishing at the Creek in the 1920s. That’s the original Lone Tree “landmark” on the skyline to the right of Dad and his older sister, Harriett, and one of the buildings up on the hilltop farmyard is visible just to the left of the Lone Tree. This view is looking generally south.
The bluff line is almost completely hidden by trees. There were supposed to be plum thickets around the base of the Lone Tree, so some of the smaller trees may be wild plums. There aren’t nearly as many trees now and the stream channel has also changed substantially.
These are the great-great-great grandchildren of the homesteaders fishing at the Creek. We had both sets of kids at the Farm this past week. The two from Colorado on the left look a bit more despondent because they got nibbles, but didn’t land any fish. Note the worm can in the foreground. On the other hand, the pair from South Dakota on the right did pull in four or five shiners. So, they appear to be more alert and engaged. Dad used to say that there were “pickerel” in the Creek back when the homesteaders were fishing.
That big cottonwood tree across the Creek in these two pictures is probably an offspring of the Lone Tree and yes, those smaller trees are wild plums. There still are some trees along the bluff line to the right in both pictures. But, the channel is much wider and has fewer visible sandbars. That’s all part of the “altered hydrology” that’s been documented in southwestern Minnesota. These views are looking to the north. The site of the original Lone Tree is behind the kids and to the right of the photos.
It doesn’t really matter what year it is or which generation is exploring the Creek, there’s one fact that’s inescapable. The home that we make for our children and grandchildren in the world of Nature is the same home that our parents and grandparents made for us.