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Library : Book Reviews > Gullywasher Gulch

Gullywasher Gulch
By Marianne Mitchell
Illustrated by Normand Chartier

Review by: Yvonne Gaudet


      Simply put, Ebenezer Overall is a pack rat, living in an old shack at the top of a large hill, overlooking a town named Dry Gulch. When friends visited Ebenezer there was no room to go into the shack. Ebenezer had piles upon piles of supplies: nails, beans, tools, wood and more. When Ebenezer was asked why he didn’t get rid of all the junk he told the townspeople he was saving it for a rainy day! His backyard was full of piles and piles of lumber, shingles and tarpaper. He grew beans in the warm months and dried them to put in barrels when they were ripe. Even Ebenezer’s sister asked him to remove the mess but again Ebenezer would tell her he was saving it for a rainy day!

In Ebenezer’s spare time he was known to be somewhat of a prospector, for fifty years now he hiked the mountains in search of gold. The townsfolk had an inkling that old Eb had found gold, or why would he continue to venture out. Smart Eb though didn’t say a word to the townsfolk about his riches; instead he would wait until dark, dig a small hole in the ground and make a small pouch full deposit! “Some rainy day I’ll be needin’ ya.” He said to his packet of gold, but the townsfolk thought differently. There hadn’t been rain in Dry Gulch in a long time!

One morning, in the midst of the hottest, driest summer on record, Eb eats his breakfast and sets out to prospect for gold. Around lunchtime it finally happened, the biggest raindrops the town had ever seen. The storm grew and grew until a massive tumbling torrent washed Eb, his shack and all his belongings down the hill.

When the rain subsided, the town was gone, washed away in the midst of the storm. “We’re ruined!” cried the mayor as everyone started to worry. Then a little girl named Miranda said, “What is this?” In her hand she held a small pouch of shiny gold, which sent the townsfolk digging in the mud for more. When they had cleaned and scraped all the mud-covered lumps, they found Ebenezer’s wood, lumber, nails, tarpaper, shingles, beans and more.

The townsfolk knew it was not there stuff it belonged to Ebenezer. However Ebenezer looked at the townsfolk and said “That’s what I’ve been trying to tell you, I’m saving it for a rainy day!” 

This story is priceless and I would share it with children from 0 - 90!

Our elders do know much more then we can ever imagine, and without Ebenezer, Dry Gulch would have been no more then a dry waterbed in the ground!

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