Welcome to The Pondy


Sam and Skip (Muriel Carle) Oliver bought 120 acres from Mrs Hallie Byersdorfer in 1962 for about $5,500, winning over Wheeler Bridge and Timber because Hallie didn't want to see the place logged off. It was Skip's dream place and the Olivers worked for 10 years to make it a comfortable home. We built a 26' x 52' combination garage and living space, where we lived in half (26 x 26) until we finally completed the present house in 1973, just as Ed was leaving for college. Sam firmly believed in the "Early American Plan," which meant "pay cash for everything," so it took several years to complete. In 1983 the garage burned and was rebuilt on the same foundation to become the present garage and wood shop. The Ponderosa was named for the Cartwright ranch on TV -- we only got one channel and Sunday night was all about Bonanza. When Skip died in 1991, Ed was still moving around the country in the Air Force, and Dee and her family rented the property. Once her kids were grown, Dee moved to the Twin Cities where she and Ed were married in 2002. For ten years the Pondy has been our retirement destination and a weekend getaway for our extended families -- five kids plus spouses and eleven grandkids, who have re-christened it "The Pondy." Ed's younger son Jake married Leah on the property in June, 2011. Sam and Skip were surely smiling from their nearby resting spot.

In the fall of 2013, after some serious facelifting and updating, the Pondy becomes Dee and Ed's primary residence, although they will both travel regularly to their small apartment in the Twin Cities for work and recreation. Hopefully the Pondy will continue to be a getaway for extended families and far-flung friends.

Plat map of the Ponderosa property

Google satellite view

The dotted outlines are the original 120 acres plus 10 acres added during the 1980s. The orange box is location of the house and other buldings.

first 2013 December snowfall