Part of a series of interviews done by the Imnaha School Kids in 1987.
Interviewer: Breeze Wanaise
Q. What is your name?
A. Bonneita Lewis
Q. How long have you lived in this area?
A. Practically all my life. Not right here all the time, but in Wallowa County all my life.
Q. Did you come here with your family?
Q. How long has your family lived here?
A. I guess all their lives too.
Q. What do you like about living here?
A. I like the country, the people and the climate. Just everything.
Q. How many people lived here when you first came?
A. I just don’t know. When I first came to Imnaha, the first place I remember being was down at Corral Creek at the Corral Creek ranch. My folks worked there. I was two years old, so I don’t remember the people too well. There were quite a few people down there. I never got up this way until I was ready to start school, then we moved up and I went to school at Rimrock.
Q. Where was the Rimrock School?
A. Right there were Jess Crader has his garden.
Q. What was life like then?
A. Same as it is now, us kids just had fun.
Q. What was farming like?
A. Much like now, except done by horses and there were more little fields to raise hay.
Q. What kind of equipment was used?
A. It was all old-fashioned and pulled with a team.
Q. What changes have taken place since then?
A. Everything has changed. We have cars, electricity, school buses, it’s altogether different.
Q. How did these changes affect you?
A. We just had to get used to them, some of them were really nice.
Q. Which changes affected you the most?
A. I think our roads for one thing and getting electricity.
Q. What changes do you think will come to this community in the near future?
A. I just don’t know.
Q. What was the school like when you first went?
A. It was school. We didn’t have all the activities you have now. We just learned reading, writing and arithmetic. It was a one room school at Rimrock. We had one teacher. The teacher would read to us and we would sing a few songs. Then when we got to color posters and things like that, that was really a big day.
Q. How did you get to school?
A. I walked. Sometimes I rode on horseback. We lived on the Coe or Jacobs place, probably two and a half miles.
Q. What subjects did you study in school?
A. Reading, writing, arithmetic and spelling.
Q. Where did your family get its food?
A. We raised most of it.
Q. What did you do for fun when you were little?
A. I just played. Rode stick horses and played games.
Q. Did you chase Bud Maxwell on your horse and kiss him when you caught him?
A. Oh, yes. He gave us a rough time. He threw rocks. We loved to tease Bud because he was smaller than we were. Big kids always like to tease smaller ones.