Jim Flake's Still

As told to Art Beal By Asa Glenn & Harold Beal about 1965.

James E. Flake (1876--1959) came to Ola in 1910. Jim Flake fiddled some for the local dances. He also made a little moonshine for the local dances. Didn't say anything about selling any shine at any time, just made it for social purposes. Well, he was careful about making shine because of prohibition. (1929--1933).

Jim lived up Gold Run Creek East of Ola until about 1944 when he moved to Emmett. Before he moved, he brought his still down to Asa Glenn. He knew Asa and Margaret liked a drink now and then, so he thought he was doing Asa a service by giving the still to him. Well, Asa was so afraid of getting caught that he put the still up in a long feed shed he had across from the community hall. One day he told Harold and I about the still being there and him being afraid to use it. Asa died not too long after that. I ask Margaret just before her first estate sale if she were going to sell the still as that was what I had come to bid on. Asa had not told her about the still. Nor had he told any of the family. So it wasn't for sale. Just before the second estate sale Margaret called me and ask if I still wanted the still. I said yes, she replied that it would be $80. I ask if she thought she could get that at auction and she got a little huffy. I paid the $80 with the intention of someday giving it to the Gem County Museum.

In all this time I have the impression that Jim Flake's family know nothing of the Still's existence or if they did it was never mentioned. Because of this, out of respect to Jim's children I have held the still until now. --Arthur Beal (2022)

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