Charles & Bettie Ehart

Charles Leslie Ehart and Bettie Bailey were married at Sweet Springs, Missouri, on October 22, 1899. Both Charles and Bettie were born on farms near Sweet Springs in the same year.

Shortly after their marriage, they moved to North Dakota, arriving in the spring of 1900, to homestead a farm ten miles north and a quarter mile west of Granville, in Saline Township 157, Range 79, SE 1/4 Section 15.

The Ehart's first home was a tent on a campsite on the west side of a small pot hole, ten and a half miles north of Granville. While living there, they witnessed their first prairie fire. Fortunately, they were able to plow around the camp and set a backfire, saving their belongings.

Their next home was a sod house on what was about the middle of their quarter section. They lived in the sod house for two years, except for a few months during the winter when they returned to Missouri. They survived the blizzard of March, 1902, considered to be the worst in recorded history in that part of the state.

Travel was difficult. When the Eharts wanted to go to Granville when the water was high, they had to go almost twice the usual distance. They would follow the higher ridges around to the east side of Buffalo Lodge, cross the ford between Buffalo Lodge Lake and Middle Lake, then go on into Granville from the northeast following the higher ground. When the water wasn't high, they could come in from the north, having to ford only a few fine sloughs and creeks.

In early 1903, Charles and Bettie Ehart chose a farmstead location, built a granary, and lived in that while they completed a house. By the time the cold of winter came, they were able to move into their new home, doing the finishing work over the winter.

For the next thirteen years, they farmed, planted trees, and built a new barn. In July of 1908, they adopted Orlo Livingston, whose mother had died in January of that year. They daughter, Mary Frances, was born on August 14, 1909. The Eharts raised two other children. Bettie's niece, Estella Fowler, came to live with them in 1917 after Grandma Bailey became too old to care for her. After Charles' sister and brother-in-law, Jessie and Martin Carlyle, died during a flu epidemic in 1920, the Eharts took in their infant son, Lynn, to raise.

In May of 1916, the Eharts moved into Granville, where Charles operated a garage along with his brother, Edwin Ehart. In 1928, they closed the garage, sold the property to Walter McCloskey, and the Eharts returned to their farm in Saline Township.

Charles suffered a series of strokes beginning in the fall of 1930, and spent the rest of his years confined to a wheelchair, passing away on May 2, 1938. After his death, Bettie went to live with Mary Frances and her husband, Peter Tofte. Bettie died in 1962 while living in Sidney, Montana. Both Charles and Bettie Ehart are buried in the Saline Township Cemetery north of Granville.

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