WILLIAM JOHN GREET
1869 – 1958
THE EIGHTH IN A SERIES OF WEEKLY FEATURE STORIES WRITTEN BY J. CAMERON SHUSTER FOR THE LOCAL NEWS FORUM OVER RADIO STATION K.W.O.R. IN WORLAND, WYOMING. May 3, 1952.
THE LASTING PARTNERSHIP
Life was dull in Wyoming half a hundred years ago, Mr. and Mrs. Will Greet of Worland agreed on their 58th wedding anniversary, while reminiscing about their early life as "sage brushers"; but somehow, in this day, a two weeks honeymoon trip by wagon from Rock Springs to the Nowood Country, being run over by a load of hay, riding horseback across the Big Horn Mountains in snow drifts six to ten feet deep, defying the elements; and working in a gold mine where ore was valued at five thousand dollars a ton, seems tolerably exciting.
With few exceptions, the Will Greets have been married longer than any other couple in the state, and on April 25th, they were honored with an "Open House" at the home of their brother and sister-in-law, in honor of this anniversary. On that day, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Greet were the hosts to a large group of relatives and friends who came to pay respects and offer felicitations to the pioneer residents of the colorful Nowood country.
stories begin or end with the honeymoon, but the story of the Greets must
necessarily begin with their birth in staid old
Will Greet is 83
years old, and his wife is not quite 79. Both are of British ancestry, and
William Greet is
a son of the late George Greet, who died in 1903 at Ten Sleep, and the late
Elizabeth Ann Reed, who with her husband and family homesteaded at the mouth of
Spring Creek, on the
He was born in
born in Trimdon,
Will Greet likes to tell a joke, and his favorite one is the reason why his wife married him. He says it was because he had a good voice and had taken up singing in the church choir, and used the ring of his fine voice to charm the wiley Miss Lewis right into her wedding ring. The wedding was an occasion for a community celebration and after the rice and old shoes were tossed, they loaded their wagon and left for their honeymoon.
In the meantime, the young husband's parents had settled on their Nowood homestead, and the young newlyweds went to join them. That honeymoon trip in a wagon, took two weeks, with night camps along the trail, sleeping on the ground, and cooking wild game over a camp fire.
They say it was dull and unexciting, but somehow it sounds most romantic in view of the fact that time has altered conditions so much that it is now only a matter of hours for an automobile trip from Rock Springs to Ten Sleep.
Thermopolis was a fair sized place then, but there was no Worland, and Ten Sleep boasted a Post Office and another building where church services were held. A Mr. Austin ran the Ten Sleep Post Office, the Greets said. After reaching the home at the mouth of Spring Creek, Will and Lizzie Greet took up their part of the Nowood community life and entered into the spirit of the day. "People were more friendly then," Mrs. Greet said, "and folks had time to bother about others."
Days of hard work were compensated for by long horseback rides among the red hills and shadowy canyons of the area, and intervals of anxiety brought about by misfortune and illness, were overshadowed by family gatherings and community parties and dances.
The bride soon won for herself a reputation as a horse woman, and yet, today, when meeting old friends, she is sometimes reminded of the picture she made riding a spirited horse at break neck speed, through the neighborhood.
hauled by wagon from
period occurred when Will was run over by a load of hay, and as he says,
practically every bone in his body was broken. His wife nursed him through his
convalescence, but later, when the doctor insisted that Lizzie take her husband
to a less rugged location, they moved to Red Lodge,
While in Red
Lodge, they became members of the Masonic Order, and the Order of the Eastern
Star. Will now carries an honorary membership in the Star in the West Lodge of
which he has been a member for more than forty years. They joined the Odd
Fellows and Rebeccas in
In I925 they
During their long
years together, the Greets have seen much and have done much. Mining was Will's
chief interest, while Lizzie's avocation was home making. Her spare time, like
that of many pioneer women, was spent at needlework, and she can point with
pride to the lovely items of drawn work, eyelet and carnation embroidery and
crochet that modern wives just don't have time for. Members of her family, and
friends who have been fortunate enough to receive gifts of her hand work,
treasure them as heirlooms of a past that has gone as surely as the buffalo and
the Indian of the
The house where the Will Greets live is a home, indeed, reflecting the hospitality and friendliness of its occupants. Although it is located in Worland the front windows offer a pictorial view of the snow capped Big Horns, where years ago, they lived the hearty life of Wyoming Pioneers.
To Mr. and Mrs. Greet we offer greetings, but we find it easier to express our sentiment in verse:
"Fifty-eight years is a long time married,
But it's fifty eight years, you say?
But to you, with their hosts of memories
It must seem but only a day.
A day with sunshine and shadows,
A day with showers and rain,
A day that has been a life time together
Where joy overbalances pain.
It's eight years over half a hundred
And we wish you many years more
Than the thousands of days spent together
That make up your Golden score.
You have lived your life together
And walked closely along the way.
May you spend the rest in happiness, and find
Pleasure along the way.
Early Ten Sleep Man's Rites Held, Obituary, Northern Wyoming
WORLAND, Wo. --- Funeral services for William J. Greet, 89, pioneer resident of the Ten Sleep area were held at the Ten Sleep Methodist Church with the Rev. R. F. Goff, pastor of the Worland Methodist Church, Paul Curtis of Worland, elder of the LDS (Seventh Day Adventist Church, Fred Drake), and the Rev. Oyer Morgan, pastor of the Ten Sleep Methodist Church officiating.
A quartette composed of Mrs. Roy Shriver, Mrs. Dave Egbert, Mrs. Tom Bader and Mrs. S. Hauber sang "Rock of Ages," "Face to Face" and "The Old Rugged Cross." Mrs. Frank Davis accompanied them.
Pallbearers were four nephews, George, James, Neil and John Greet, Clyde Harvard, all of Ten Sleep and Willard Applegate of Worland. Burial was in the Ten Sleep cemetery.
He was born Jan. 9, 18699 at St. Germans,
During the winters he went to
Survivors are a daughter, Mrs. Minnnie Parent of