LOUIS CLIFFORD MANCILL HISTORY POST #8

DADDY WAS GOOD AT REPAIRING OR PUTTING IN NEW PUMPS OR DRIVING PIPE IN THE GROUND SOMETIMES AS DEEP AS NINETY FEET TO HIT GOOD SAND WITH GOOD WATER. WE WOULD START THE HOLE WITH A TWO INCH GROUND DRILL TO GET THROUGH THE CLAY TO SOFT SAND. WE WOULD DRILL SOMETIMES THIRTY FEET DEEP BEFORE WE COULD START DRIVING. WE WOULD MAKE A FRAME LIKE A TEE-PEE OUT OF THREE LOGS POLES ABOUT TWELVE FEET HIGH WITH A PULLEY AT THE TOP WITH A ROPE THROUGH THE PULLEY AND DOWN TO A DRIVER WE MADE OUT OF A BLACK GUM LOG TWELVE INCHES AROUND AND THREE  FOOT LONG. WE PUT A ROD IN ONE END SIX FEET LONG TO GO INSIDE THE PIPE WE WERE DRIVING. BY PULLING THE ROPE TO LIFT THE DRIVER UP AND THEN DROPPING IT DOWN ON THE PIPE IT WOULD DRIVE THE PIPE FOR THE PUMP DOWN. THE FIRST FIVE FEET WAS THE POINT WITH SCREEN ON IT. WE WOULD PUT SOAP ON THE SCREEN POINT TO HELP IT GO THROUGH HARD CLAY OR STONE BEFORE HITTING SAND AND WATER. IT WAS TOO BAD WHEN THE PIPE BROKE OFF, THEN WE MOVED AND STARTED OVER. WE SOMETIMES PULLED OLD PUMPS AND REPLACED THE POINTS ON THEM BECAUSE THE SCREEN ON THE OLD ONES WOULD LET SAND THROUGH IT. 

DADDY GOT A JOB IN MOBILE, ALABAMA AND DROVE THE CAR TO AND FROM MOBILE EACH DAY. I DON’T REMEMBER BUT I THINK THE JOB WAS AT A SHIPYARD FIRST, THEN AT THE ANN STREET HOUSING PROJECT DOING CARPENTER WORK, BUILDING HOMES. I DID THE WORK AT THE FARM WHILE HE WORKED IN MOBILE. I KNOW WE WERE STILL AT THE FARM AFTER THE WAR STARTED BECAUSE FLOYD CAME ON LEAVE WITH HIS NAVY UNIFORM ON. A LOT OF THINGS HAPPENS AROUND THAT TIME AND I MAY GET ONE THING AHEAD OF THE OTHER. I WAS NOT EIGHTEEN YET BUT WENT TO WORK WITH DADDY WHILE WE WERE STILL ON THE FARM. I REMEMBER RIDING TO AND FROM MOBILE WITH HIM AND WORKING AS A CARPENTERS HELPER WITH HIM IN THE SAME HOUSING PROJECT WHERE HE WORKED. I WAS DRIVING NAILS IN SUB FLOORING. ANOTHER BOY AND I WOULD DRIVE A 50 POUND KEG OF EIGHT PENNY NAILS A DAY. THE MAN WE WORKED FOR WAS IMPRESSED.

English: Montage of sights in Mobile, Alabama.
English: Montage of sights in Mobile, Alabama. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

IN 1942 DADDY SOLD THE FARM AND WE MOVED TO MOBILE IN A HOUSE WE RENTED ON LEMON STREET, THEN TO ONE ON CAULDRON AND QUAIL AND THEN TO A HOUSE IN THE PROJECT WHERE WE HAD WORKED ON SOME OF THE HOUSES TOGETHER. THEN DADDY BOUGHT A HOUSE ON ARLINGTON STREET. WE WERE SAD WHEN WE LEFT THE FARM BECAUSE IT WAS A LIFE WE WOULD NEVER GO BACK TO AGAIN. IT WAS LIKE,  “GONE WITH THE WIND”.

English: Aerial view of the port and city of M...
English: Aerial view of the port and city of Mobile, Alabama, USA. The view is from the harbor on Mobile Bay to the northwest over the central area of the city. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I DON’T KNOW ABOUT THE JOBS WHILE WE WERE IN MOBILE. DADDY GOT A JOB AT BROOKLEY FIELD AIR FORCE BASE DOING CARPENTER WORK. HE FOUND OUT ABOUT A SCHOOL FOR AIRCRAFT MECHANIC TO WORK ON ENGINES FOR AIRPLANES JUST OUTSIDE BROOKLEY FIELD AIR FORCE BASE IN MOBILE. AFTER I GRADUATED FROM THE SCHOOL I WENT TO WORK IN THE ENGINE SHOP INSIDE THE BASE, REBUILDING ENGINES. THEN OUT ON THE FLIGHT LINES TO WORK ON THE ONES IN AIRPLANES THAT THEY HAD TROUBLE WITH. WHILE I WAS THERE I KNOCKED SMALL BUMP OFF OF MY RIGHT THUMB AND GOT LEAD POISON IN IT FROM THE HIGH TEST GASOLINE. IT CAUSED KNOTS TO COME UP IN A VEIN ALL THE WAY UP MY ARM. THEY DOCTORED AND LANCED THE KNOTS AND PUT SULPHUR SALVE ON IT AND GAVE ME A LOT OF SHOTS TO STOP THE POISON. THEY FINALLY DID STOP IT BUT SAID IF THEY DIDN’T I MIGHT LOSE MY ARM. NOT LONG AFTER THAT THEY LAID ME OFF AND I WENT TO WORK ON THE FARM FOR MY SISTER AND HUSBAND.

WHEN I TURNED 18 YEARS OLD I HAD TO REGISTER FOR THE DRAFT AND SERVICE AND WAS DEFERRED BECAUSE I WAS WORKING ON THE FARM. ANNIE LEE, MY SISTER HAD MARRIED A MAN BY THE NAME OF HARLOW SHERRITTS. THEY LIVED ON A FARM ABOUT A HALF MILE FROM OUR FARM THAT WAS PARTLY OWNED BY HARLOW AND HIS FATHER AND THEY NEEDED SOMEONE TO WORK AND DRIVE A TRACTOR FOR THEM. I WENT TO WORK FOR THEM FOR 20 DOLLARS A WEEK WITH ROOM AND BOARD. I ENJOYED GOING BACK TO THE FARM BECAUSE I WAS BACK AROUND NEIGHBORS AND THE AREA I GREW UP IN AND GOING BACK TO THE OLD SWIMMING HOLE. I LEARNED TO PLAY THE GUITAR WHILE I WAS THERE WITH AN ERNEST TUBB SONG BOOK. 

Sgt Louis Clifford Cliff Mancill

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