What could help the three teenaged sons of Reginald and Margaret Tillotson sons to grow up? Nothing better than going from Omaha, Neb., where Tillotson Construction Company was located, to Flagler, Colo., to build the annex to a grain elevator in 1953.
Charles, 18, Tim, 16, and Mike, 13, drove across the Great Plains in a new Ford, towing the trailer that would serve as their home and the job office.
Having started for the company as an assistant carpenter when he was 12, Charles was already quite skilled in elevator construction techniques.
But how did they fare for themselves? For instance, what did they eat during their weeks on the job?
“Regarding what we ate, I really don’t remember but it was probably beans and wieners,” Charles recalls. “We also ate at the local cafe in Flagler. That was when Tim and I weren’t screaming over to Elitches Park Outdoor pavilion in Denver (some 120 miles to the west) to squeeze in a night of dancing and return at daybreak to assume our work shift–no sleep of course. I think we left Mike alone in Flagler to fend for himself.
Mike spent many hours in the trailer, serving as timekeeper and reading hot rod magazines when he could.
- Taking it from the top at Tillotson Construction’s annex in Flagler, Colorado (ourgrandfathersgrainelevators.com)
- How we know Tillotson Construction built the Burlington, Colorado, grain elevator (ourgrandfathersgrainelevators.com)
Wow… at 18 years of age and the leader! Amazing… And poor ol’ Mike! But to do that now would land a set of parents in jail. My how things change. We have too many laws nowadays.
[…] Go West, young men, to Flagler, Colorado, and build a grain elevator! (ourgrandfathersgrainelevators.com) […]