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Left: Ike Bonny, in foreground, above “Bonny’s Hole,” where the first three generations of women pictured small stand near the shack he built, in 1921. Inset: The Bonny family, in 1927, in front of the second house they built after settling in the Gold Creek area

“Meadowood”) to what they called the Coons’ place.

Sixteen 1920s miles

bought one of these “stump ranches” and on March 13, 1919, in the midst of a spring snowstorm, he and Floa and four kids got off the train in Sandpoint. It was their 10th anniversary. They rented a house for a brief time in Sandpoint, while Ike built the shack in “the hole.” In a letter to her sister Pearl back in Kansas, Floa wrote, “It has been raining all day, just coming down slow and the ground is covered with snow, but it is melting day and night.” A few days later, Ike wrote to his mother Laura that they all had the flu. Sound familiar? Maybe like 2016?

As often happened – and still does – in the westward migration of Americans, parents followed the children. Isaac Sr. and Laura, both in their late 50s, arrived in 1921; in time for Laura to be in the picture taken in Bonny’s Hole. From “the Hole,” the Bonnys later moved to the end of what was then Rosholt’s Road (now renamed

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One of the children who got off the train with Ike and Floa was Pearl, named for her aunt back in Kansas. The brief stay in town before moving on to Gold Creek might have been as much as she saw of the “big city” for a few years. If she wasn’t a country girl already, she soon became one. “Sixteen 1920s miles were a lot longer than 16 miles now,” said Janice Wood Schoonover. Janice, born in 1963, is the great-great granddaughter of Laura Bonny. She and her husband Roley own that place up the road from Bonny’s Hole, now the Western Pleasure Ranch. Western Pleasure grew out of the original Wood’s V-X ranch in the 1990s. “We started doing trail rides in 1991 and built the lodge in 1996.” Janice and Roley’s daughter Danielle, born in 1988, is the sixth generation. She and husband Landon Otis have a house just south of Western Pleasure overlooking Gold Creek, and the best fishing, according to Danielle. Their daughter Emily Joy, vintage 2009, is the seventh generation.

The keystone generation In the middle of all these is Virginia Hoffine Wood. Virginia is the keystone generation, number four of seven, and a country girl from the beginning. Her mother was Pearl, that 9-year-old who got off the train in 1919. When Pearl grew up, she married a Gold Creek boy, Paul Hoffine, a grandfather Janice remembers well. “I was always comfortable around him. He was a fiddle player, which probably has something to do with thinking it was important for my kids to play the fiddle.” Janice knew her grandfather, but she never knew her grandmother Pearl.


5/12/16 11:01 AM

Sandpoint Magazine Summer 2016  

In this Issue: Dog Town, Idaho How people and their dogs have created Sandpoint’s copious canine culture Plus ‘Peaking’ Our Interest - Peak...

Sandpoint Magazine Summer 2016  

In this Issue: Dog Town, Idaho How people and their dogs have created Sandpoint’s copious canine culture Plus ‘Peaking’ Our Interest - Peak...