Monday, October 1, 2012

Monday Musing - A Rooster Named History

This morning I am sharing a blast from the past, as no column ran in last week's paper. That was my fault, life gets in the way sometimes! Hope you enjoy!
My Gran told me many stories about her life. I enjoyed listening to her stories, and wish that I had each one recorded to play back and enjoy again. Instead I rely on my memories. Gran told me once that she had received 3 chicks as a wedding present from a friend. Keep in mind that my Gran was a bride during the depression; this was a welcome and very much appreciated gift. I find that amusing thinking about today’s bride. Knowing Gran, she would enjoy hearing about the things that happen here. I know which stories would make her laugh, and can imagine her sitting in her chair laughing at the things that occur here. Gran would enjoy the rooster stories too.
Our first flock consisted of 10 birds. There were 5 Dominickers, 3 Rhode Island Reds, and 2 Americaunas, sometimes called Easter Eggers as they lay the blue or green eggs. I wanted the Dominickers because my great grandmother had that breed. My Mama had chickens once, and they were Rhode Island Reds. I remember that they were good layers.  As for the Americaunas, well I just had to see those blue eggs for myself. Out of these 10 chicks, 3 would become roosters, 2 were Dominickers, and 1 was an Americauna. A friend told me that our choice of domincker and Rhode Island Reds were good choices, as the Dominckers were gentle, and the Reds would be good layers. She failed to tell me that the Reds could be best described as evil! She was mistaken about Dominickers, as there is nothing gentle about Dominickers, especially if that Domincker is a rooster.
No. 2
We watched these chicks grow, and found the dynamics fascinating. The Head Hen emerged, she was a Dominicker. There was an Americauna that hopped instead of walked. This gentle girl received the name Hoppy. Kevin and I knew that 3 roosters would be too many. When we talked about it, he said that he would “do something when the time came”. Fighting my urge to name everything, I simply called the roosters number 1, number 2, and number 3. Number 1, was the dominant rooster.
Number 1 was easy to pick out, he was the first one to become aggressive towards us. He hated Kevin immediately, and merely tolerated my presence, knowing that he would get his opportunity to deal with me later. Kevin wanted to take care of the problem, but I begged him to wait, a big mistake on my part, to see what will happen. The only experience that I had with roosters was a pet rooster that I had as a teenager. He had loved me, notice that the word loved, past tense, is in this sentence. This rooster changed after 2 little boys that will go unnamed, put him on top of the barn to watch him fly down.
Number 1 chose to deal with me one morning as I gathered eggs, he decided that I would not be gathering eggs anymore. He managed to get me into a corner, he was ready to attack. Being a girl, I did the only thing I knew to do, and that was to scream. Like a flash of lightning, my hero without a cape appeared, my hero was number 2. Number 2 came to my rescue, and began defending me. I told Kevin what happened, and then there were 2 roosters in the chicken yard. Number 1's new name is History.
No. 1, former No. 2, showing his scary look
The new number 1, and former number 2 was now my hero! Kevin tolerated this bird, even though neither liked the other one. The new number 1 wanted a chance to deal with Kevin without me around. Number 1 greeted me every morning, and walked with me to empty clean, and refill water buckets. Since I do not speak chicken, I have no idea what he was trying to tell me, but he made his chicken noises and kept me company when I was in the yard. Number 1 stood at Clover’s gate, waiting for me to clean and refill her water bucket, attempting to communicate with me the entire time. He kept the evil Rhode Island Red sisters away from me; our relationship was working very well. Until one morning I opened the gate, and he attacked me. I have a scar on my leg, and don’t know what happened or why he chose to attack me that morning. But I blame the evil Rhode Island Red sisters, I know that they must have told some malicious story about me, causing my hero and protector to attack. When I told Kevin what happened, he went out to the chicken yard, and then there was 1 rooster in the chicken yard. His new name is History.
 Number 3, the Americauna rooster, was now number 1, and having witnessed what happens to aggressive roosters, he knew that he had better be on his best behavior. We do not desire to pet and hold the chickens, they have a job to do, and we want them to do their job without attacking us. The third Number 1 lived with us for 2 years peacefully. Number 1 was a beautiful bird, and fathered some mixed breed chicks. One chick grew to become a rooster. We lived that way for over 2 years, and when I opened the gate one morning, he attacked my leg, fortunately for me I was wearing boots. When I told Kevin what happened, there was 1 less rooster in the chicken yard. Number 1’s story has not ended, he was re-homed , and went to a place where his services would be useful.

Hoppy and chick
Hoppy watching as her new chick poses for his glamour shots
Clover watches these stories unfold before her. She keeps watch over the chickens, and has her favorites. Clover has watched as Hoppy became broody, setting on her clutch patiently and hatching her first chick. Hoppy wanted nothing more than to be a mama. Clover watched that chick grow, and become the new number 1.
Posted by PicasaClover

Gran would have enjoyed hearing these stories, and would offer advice from her experiences in the country. She would laugh at the lessons that I have learned the hard way, and would have reminded me to take care of my wounds and keep them clean. Gran would have liked Clover, and delighted in her stories. Quite possibly she would have found herself rolling in Clover too!

Clover would be pleased to know that her legacy lives on, she is still fabulous! Hope that you enjoyed our blast from the past!


  1. Enjoyed this. My friend has chickens too. She said they won't come in out of the rain. Are your chickens like that?

    1. They give meaning to the term "bird brain"! LOL!! Thanks Nonnie!!!

  2. This was such a great story, Melanie. As usual, it cracked me up! I'm sure it has your Gran smiling, too. It's also so nice to see a picture of Clover! :)

    1. Thanks Peggy, glad that you enjoyed the story, I have the sacr to prove that it is true!! Glad that you enjoyed seeing Clover's picture!! Clover enjoyed the attention she got (and the cookies) when I took her picture!! Thanks Peggy!!

  3. I love your farm stories! They are so much like ours, it is unbelievable. Our very first chick/roo was a miniature one, and to this day I will not go in with the chickens because of this miniature beast. He was so stinking mean, even my three yard dogs played tug-a-war with him one day and didn't kill him! That was the toughest, meanest thing I have ever seen!

    1. Had a banty a couple of years ago, mean was an understatement! Roosters can give a whole new meaning to the word mean can't they?

      Thanks Teresa, glad that you enjoy the stories! The "research" can be fun, if it doens't involve mean roosters!! Thanks for visiting!!!


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