Novelist Frederick F. Manfred

Recalls good Memories in Doon in the
Twenties and the Thirties

Doon is the magic place for me. It is the town of my childhood as well as my young manhood. I need only to come over the brow of the hill and a host of recollections come flooding to my mind. When I used to drive the horse and buggy to school in town I saw it often in the pink morning light so that the church steeples and the water tower

The Sign that Wouldn't stay Put

would gleam like the pink turrets of some fabled castle. I loved going to school and aslways hurried toward those pink spires. Doon is the town where we used to wait on Saturday nights for the train from the north to come in with packages from the mail order houses in the Twin Cities. It is the place where we played baseball, where we met at church on Sundays, where on still other Saturday nights I and a buddy would divide a quart of ice cream between us. Memories inexhaustible--and I shall no doubt be mining the aura and the magic of them all the rest of my life in my books.

I've skated on both the Big Rock and the Little Rock; I've swum in all the swimming holes around, including the ice-cold sandpit south of town. I've raided watermelon patches when just a lad; I've gone on long hikes, through the back country pastures and "wild lands", I've cut my name on a boulder north of town; I've gone slumming down the various lover's lanes.

I've learned such manhood as I have in the good old town; going to school on horseback when it was thirty below; picking corn on cold wet freezing mornings, scooping out the road for miles, thawing out a frozen car, pitching straw onto a rack from an old strawbutt in freezing driving snow, fixing my old tin lizzie with some bailing wire and fresh water for the radiator.

I was born on a farm near Doon and I hope to be buried in the cemetery near Doon. It's my true hometown. I've come to like my adopted home too, Luverne, but Doon I cannot escape because I spent my first years there.

Frederick Manfred


Bonnie Doon Index