Herr is helping me with a project right now to clear out the attic, and reunite me with some of my cool stuff that I haven't seen since we moved here. He's bringing down a box or two a night and I have all the next day to sort it and decide what to keep, donate, or throw away. In last night's box, among the crappy poetry I wrote as a teenager, the awesome drawings my sister did, and the series of Cyberrad Comics (which I didn't even remember), I found this:( Big picture here... )
It's hard to read, so I'll fill you in on the specs. This is a Purchaser Class license, issued in the City of Sherwood, County of Washington, State of Oregon, by the US Department of the Interior, Bureau of Mines, to a man named Floyd L Goughnour, enabling him to purchase explosives for the company that employed him at the time. The date of issue isn't filled out by hand, it's rubber-stamped: Feb. 1 1919
Floyd Goughnour was a friend of my father. I only met him a couple of times. On one of those occasions, he gave us a gallon jar of guppies which, over the years, became a swarm of rapidly breeding fish that resulted in my mom chucking the whole thing. But we loved them while they lasted. I remember that back then, Floyd had a huge, dusty, scary house that fascinated me in a way that only houses built before 1930 can. But by the last time we tried to visit him, around 1992, he was supposed to be in a small house in Grand Ronde. But he wasn't. A neighbor told us he'd been sent to a nursing home in Sheridan, and my dad wouldn't go there. He hated nursing homes with a fearful hate that was almost prescient.
Today I went Googling to see if there was any trace of this man, whom we called "the old bachelor" when I was a kid, because he'd never married or had children. All I was able to find was the Social Security Death record that says he died in Sheridan OR on May 4, 1995. His birthdate was January 15, 1897, which means he was not quite 22 when he was issued this explosives purchasing license.
I have no idea why this document is in my family. I found it in my dad's things when he died in 1997. Now I'm replicating it here, and telling you everything I know about the man (he also had a scrotal hernia and had to wear freaking HUGE pants), because this is probably the only online record that will ever exist. Hopefully Google will pick it up. Because he lived, he was a good friend, and that matters.