David E. Steiner

Retired USAF, Teacher, Dad, Grandfather, Curmudgeon

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To My Grandson

 

I became a grandfather a few weeks ago. Richard Conlin Steiner was born on September 25th and he will become part of the fourth generation of our family to have memories of these our mountains.

As usual, we had the obligatory pictures taken, including grandfather and grandson. The event prompted me to once again think about my own grandfather, who went through the same process. As usual in such cases, the first grandson is memorialized with a number of photographs and the second is nowhere to be found. So it is that the grandchild seen in pictures with Edward is Henry-York, my older brother.

Edward was 66 years old when his first grandchild was born, and being from 19th century Europe, a male heir made him very happy. Edward had two sons, one of whom died in his teens, so a grandson named for the lost son was, at least for the moment, proof the family name would survive.

Edward died in 1956, and so I never had the chance to find out how he felt about being a grandfather. Richard Conlin will know how I felt.

What I feel is a certain ambivalence; it’s nice to know that another generation will come to know this place, so there is a sense of continuity. On the other hand, it’s a reminder that my time here is limited. The pictures of me and my grandson will fade, as Edward’s have, and family incidents will become folklore.

Edward wrote 22 books, some of them in his little cabin called The Study, but most of them reveal little about his own life, and nothing at all about his relationship with the Tahosa Valley property. Richard will know more about how his grandfather felt about  this place. I hope he will come to love it as I have.

In many ways it’s a different place than it was in 1932, when my brother was born; the pictures show a place with few homes and many fewer trees. It was more wild, and more isolated. Still, Edward managed to share those aspects, along with the peace and communion with nature with numberless friends and his family. That tradition continues. The passing years have seen new generations of friends and family, and they have seen the wildness replaced by the trappings of domesticity and the wildness diminished by the inexorable advances of American technology.

But the mountains abide, and will appear to Richard’s eyes as they did to Edward’s and mine. I hope that sight will inspire in him as much faith in the future as it inspired in my grandfather and me.

 

 

Columns

© 1985 – 2003, David E. Steiner

Allenspark Wind Columns:

Introduction

Why Allenspark?

Going Riding [August, 1985]

Electricity

Used Cars

Peace and Quiet [1986]

Liberals & Conservatives

Going to the Movies

The Screened Porch

The Beginning of The Season

The Weather

The Hilltop Guild Bazaar

The End of The Season

The Gift of Time

The Beavers

Addresses [1987]

Hiking

Watching the Trees Grow

Postal Rates

Changes in Estes Park

Square Dancing at the Pow Wow

Back to the Hilltop Guild Bazaar

The Solstices

Bird Feeders

Elevators

The Estes Park Hardware Store [1988]

Visitors

Limousine Service

A Memorial Service

A Hummingbird

Garbage

A Hiking Trip

The Estes Park Public Library

Wild Life

Riparian Rights [1989]

Weather

Fences

Commuting

Mountain Friendliness

A Motorcycle Trip

Satellite Television

“Weaving Mountain Memories”

Hotel Rates in the Old Days

The Price of Propane [1990]

The Front Range Almanac

June

Modes of Transportation

Miller Moths

My 50th Column

Modern Conveniences

Rock Climbing

On the Death of Otto Walter, Postmaster

Otto’s Memorial Service

A Big Owl Pot-Luck Dinner

A Whine About Telephone Service [1991]

After the Persian Gulf War

Some Changes in the WIND

The Trip to the Mountains

The Mountains in the Summer

Visitors

Of Dogs, Music, and Children

Muhlenburg County

To My Grandson

The Sale of Longs Peak Inn

World War II  [1992]

Murphy’s Law and the Computer

The South St. Vrain Canyon

“Whiteout”

The Hazards of Volunteering

Crime in Our Valley

Infestations

On the Death of Charles Eagle Plume

Can We All Get Along?

A Partridge in a Pear Tree

Lost Horizon [1993]

Walking

Rumors About a Visit by the Pope

Progress?

More About Fences

Woodpeckers

The Visit of Pope John Paul II

Forest Fires

The New Sewage System

The Snow Pool

The Good Old Days [1994]

The WIND’s 20th Anniversary

The Bunce School

The Shooting Gallery

The Estes Park Museum

Our Government

U.S. West Takes a Hit

The Year of the Hummingbirds

A New “Yield” Sign

Growth in Allenspark

Private Telephones?

The Salvation Army

Creation Science [1995]

Devolutionizing Big Government

Risks

Airports

Fort D.A. Russell

Domestic Terrorism

Old and New

Barney Graves

Life in the Wilderness

What’s In a Name?

Arthur C. Clarke

 

The Estes Park Trail-Gazette Columns:

July 1983

Carpentry

Estes Cone

Johnny Grant

Observations in Estes Park

The Bath House

Waving

The Sutherland’s Ice House

How Old is Charles Eagle Plume?

Dogs

Christmas Trees

Tree Murder

Mountain Driving

Garbage

Mail Boxes

More About Mail Boxes

“Are you related to ....?”

Spring

An Accident

The Wild Cat

A July Reunion

A Visit to Baldpate Inn

Opening Cabins

Summer

The Times, They Have Changed

Death and Transfiguration

The Population Explosion

The March of Time

Faith-Based Social Services

Looking for Pitch

Recent Writings I

Recent Writings II

Recent Writings III

Recent Writings IV

Recent Writings V

Recent Writings VI

 

 

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