THE RAINBOW YEARS by Mabel Barbee Lee


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...were the years the author spent in an Oregon mining camp and this is a pleasant enough player-piano tune full of memories. It was in July, 1911, when the young wife arrived to join her husband, manager of the Rainbow mines, and it was hot and bare and dry. The camp itself was the usual ramshackle affair with no running water etc., but as they gradually set up their ""Hotel"" (the manager's cabin was the watering hole for wayfarers), the camp takes on some of the aspects of a minor oasis. Of course there's still Molly Burgett's ""honky-tonk""--an ""evil joint"" just down the road waiting to entice high-spirited miners but the Lees fight the good fight--a recreation hall featuring the ""Perils of Pauline,"" boxing, dances, etc. At one point they even import the ""Twirlie, Whirlie, Girlie Variety Co."" and then there are all of the big holiday celebrations designed to keep the boys at home. There are plenty of homey anecdotes like the scandal of Dottie, the cook, or the time Howe got involved in the big holdup, or the first time daughter Barbara was on skis. Mrs. Lee wrote the earlier Cripple Creek Days (1958) and And Suddenly It's Evening (1963), both memoirs written in her later years. She started to write at seventy-five.

Publisher: Doubleday