William "Bill" W. Nail 3 Nov 1889 - 27 Feb 1980
Perry V. Nail 18 Jul 1904 - 8 Jun 1979
William "Bill" W. Nail and Perry V. Nail were brothers and grandsons of one of the area's early pioneers, Mary Ann Wood. Both were bachelors, independent, stubborn, self-reliant, hardworking, and two of seven children of Charles T. Viola (Wood) Nail.
Uncle Willie was born Nov 3, 1889 at his grandmother's house on Woods Creek Road, 3 miles east of Glendale. He died 90 years later, Feb 27, 1980, in a house he built for himself in 1925, not an eighth of a mile from where he was born…still on part of the old homestead. He went to school in Glendale, walking from his Woods Creek home to school in town. Schooling was sparse in those days and he left school after part of his ninth grade and went to live with relatives in Eastern Oregon where he worked in the wheat fields.
||There he developed rheumatic fever and returned to his grandmother's home on Woods Creek. Uncle Willie was refused entry into World War I because of the rheumatic fever so he signed up for the Domestic Service Only (DSO) and spent two years in spruce camps making masts and spars for ships. (So much for his heart!) He returned to Woods Creek where he began building his own cabin - and remained for the rest of his life. The photo to the left shows the front of that cabin.|
He worked as a bucker for the Glendale Lumber Company and as an extra hand for farms in the area plus working his own 120 acres. Uncle Willie was a quiet man with a dry sense of humor. He was full of stories about his early days but usually kept still while younger brother, Perry, told HIS stories.
Uncle Perry was the youngest of the Nail family, born near Glendale on July 18, 1904. He started school in the one room school on the hill above the junction of Windy and Woods Creek roads. He got a little more schooling at Speaker near Wolf Creek where his older sister, Joyce Nail Peil, taught school. He was done with schooling at age 13 and went to work for the Glendale Lumber Company as a flume walker. His job was to walk the flume catwalk, keeping lumber flowing freely from the mill at Fernvale to the lumberyard in Glendale. He later worked in the woods and was also a trapper. Uncle Perry bought a motorcycle when he was 19 and could tell some pretty wild stories about that time in his life. He worked when and where he pleased from Glendale to Washington to Eastern Oregon until he was drafted into World War II at age 36. He spent the war years as a crew chief in a bomber wing. After the war he spent a few years back in Eastern Oregon before returning to his brother's home on Woods Creek where he remained until his death June 8, 1979. He worked as a timber faller until his retirement.
Both men were avid readers and enjoyed radio programs every evening, especially baseball games in the summer time. Uncle Perry never forgave Roosevelt for taking the Country off the gold standard and forever referred to him as "the jake-legged Roosevelt!". He was an outspoken critic of government control, the tax structure and the steady loss of citizen's freedom. (Wonder what he'd think today??) He also hated the thought of a monthly bill - and set about building a waterwheel to produce electricity for the little house. After numerous years, three or four different wheel styles and no small amount of money, he built a wheel that generated enough electricity to light a couple of 60-watt bulbs. (That last waterwheel is now on display at the Spring-Martin house.) In later years Uncle Perry succumbed to the inevitable and had electricity run to the house.
The brothers raised a big garden each year and preserved their own food. Uncle Willie was an accomplished orchardist and the apples from his trees were second to none. He always had chickens - "biddies", he called them-, which produced enough eggs to keep all the neighbors well supplied. Their only "store bought" supplies were salt, sugar, lard and tobacco and in their later years, store bought bread. Both men had a sweet tooth and thoroughly enjoyed my cakes, pies, and cookies, which were exchanged for eggs. They refused, however, my rhubarb-custard pies! Rhubarb had only one use for them- cooked plain in a saucepan and eaten without sugar - it was their "spring tonic".
After Uncle Perry's sudden death in June of 1979, Uncle Willie slowly began to just fade away. He died in February of 1980. To this day both are still thought of and greatly missed by family and the many friends who were privileged to know these two wonderful "old timers".
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Music is an old Irish tune called "Slane" named for a hill in County Meath.