Chronicler: Marguerite Calzacorta

Elko, NV

6/15/86

Subject: Elko hotels

 

Side 1

00:01- About Marg. mother, what they wanted for their daughters (business). Marg. felt that mother just wanted her to marry well and have children to carry on the family lineage. She kept sheep books and helped the herders with their immigration/going back to Spain. Gretchen's uncle always talking about Marguerite and how much she helped him. The young women working in the hotels would end up getting married quickly. What her uncle does in Spain.

 

05:28- Marg. feels that Basques are very patriotic. Are so because they feel like the opportunities offered them here were more than in other countries. Marg.'s uncle. Her uncle left Spain young, became a sheepherder (didn't like it though). Then, became a trader and went into hotel business. Was in Idaho as a sheepherder, then came to Nevada. Possibly his first hotel business was the Amistad in Elko, maybe before her parents were in the Amistad. Her parents poss. bought the Amistad from him, then bought a house on Idaho Street. Her father was always in sheep, in Winnemucca and all around Nevada. He also used to drive a 20-mule team to and from North Fork. They said he was a very strong man. What it was like for mom and kids, father would be away for months at a time, especially in the winter. Location of the Amistad. Other people, cut out.

 

13:54- How it was for her mother dealing with dad being gone all the time. Much friendly support, would sometimes go to parties in the Star or Telescope. Her father was not a real sociable type all the time. He was a homebody and somewhat of a loner. Often, Marg. felt that whites looked down on and ostracized the Basques, a "pecking order". She resented being called Mexicans, etc. because she spoke Spanish. How school was for Marg., after the first year things got better for her. How things are different for Basques then as opposed to Mexicans now. At home, the girls spoke English to each other and to her father. Spoke Spanish to mama, Basque to grandma. The layout of Elko historically. More about her uncle, how amicable he was and gregarious. Selzo had quite a bit to do with the hotels.

 

23:00- Mother came because of her sister and brother in Elko, father came on his own volition. He left home at 9 years old to go to another farm to work and never went home. He was around 15/16 when he came to the US. He went to Winnemucca, to be with his brothers but they died of Spanish Influenza. Her mother didn't come through Ellis Island, she was just visiting and stayed. About old ways, funerals etc. Mother demanded getting married again before she died (didn't have a priest to oversee the marriage when they got married the first time). The marriage, about the priest, etc. Where her father met her mother. Where her parents were married the first time, by whom.

 

Side 2

00:15- Marg. the keeper of family history. The pictures they took of the little kids, how tall grandma, mother was. About some families in Elko. A story about some guy getting his mustache burned off. Nicknames of people, a Spanish/Basque tradition. More nicknames. About more other people.

 

07:41- The Star, its owners and proprietors. A writeup of the Star in a the Free Press. The Amistad, tore down and built another place. When Marg.'s house burned, her family lived in the Elko Hotel for 3 months. The hotel was owned by Italians, catered to railroaders not herders. About the area, what businesses were close by. About Selzo (her uncle), how she got to know him. More about her aunt, uncle and what they did for a living. More about the Elko Hotel. Weren't many parties after a certain amount of time. More about other people. About a family of boys who were just horrible. Gretch.'s mother would go play marbles.

 

22:00- The Puccinelli family after the Elko Hotel. Marg.'s family, aunts and uncles on her mother's side. Her brother Candido who went to Argentina; came back to Elko. After Elko, went to California (Dos Palmas). Never had any children. About her mother's wishes about marrying; mostly marrying catholic was more important than marrying Basques. Gretch's mom, aunt Anna. About William Douglas visiting with the Basques. About some of the scholars and what they wrote about the sheepherders. About her mother's surgery (obstruction of the bowel), etc. Stayed in the hospital for 6 months. Ended 31:20