A fictional story by Junior Johnson
After a wonderful meal of meat pies and tamales at the Gallien Boarding House and Restaurant, the Johnson and Lodrigue boys decided to have a few drinks at the White Elephant Bar which was operated by an old friend of theirs, Wall Brooks. The White Elephant was a popular watering hole in Cloutierville and was where many of the farmers in the area met to unwind after a hard day’s work in the fields.
Abslom and Levy had a proposition for Rita and they retired to the Boarding House living room to discuss what was on their minds. Satisfied that the plans for Captain John Winston would be successful, Levy now wanted to discuss his oldest daughter’s future and that of his two grandchildren Aiden and Dylan. Since Rita was the widow of his son Daniel, Abslom had a vested interest in her future and that of his grandchildren as well.
They proposed that Rita sell or lease her property in Mississippi. Perhaps Reverend Cryer could be of assistance with this. With the income that she would be receiving from the Railroad Company, her financial needs for she and the boys would be secure.
Levy and Abslom owned vast acreage on CoCo Bed and they were prepared to build a comfortable home for her family. The boys were at an age where an education was vital for them, and with Wallace and Flo Van Sickle running a top notch school on the Plantation, this would be assured.
As Rita Johnson listened to what Her Father and Father-In-Law was proposing she was very intrigued. She wanted the best for her boys and this would be a great opportunity for them. They had their cousins Pete and Noah who would be wonderful companions for them. She would be home with her Mom, Dad, and sisters. There was also the opportunity for Aiden to fulfill the dream of his Father by purchasing a herd of cattle with proceeds from the railroad money. Abslom told her there would be ample land for a nice herd of cattle, and Aiden would have the help from workers on his and Levy’s workforce.
The boys were spellbound as they listened to what their Grandfathers told their Mother, and hoped she would accept their offer. As Rita looked over at her boys she could see the sparkle in their eyes and saw that they seemed really happy for the first time since their Father’s death. There was no question as to what her answer would be.
As they retired to their rooms for the night there was joy and excitement for all and great expectations for what the future held for Daniel Johnson’s family.
Over at the White Elephant Bar, John Wesley, his boys Dempsey and Harvis, along with Tony and John Levy were enjoying a much needed bit of recreation after what they all had been through the past few days…