So what exactly is a "Jackstraw"? There are several definitions but the following, though very different, have bearing on what we do:
- My senior citizen customers 40 years ago often asked me, "Where'd you get that name, "Jackstraw", sonny? Then they would go on to explain that "Jackstraws" was the predecessor of today's game of "pickup sticks". The difference was that you had to pick up different gardening tools like picks, hoes, rakes and shovels. These were the tools on our truck much of the time. Once finished, we had to pick up all the sticks from the debris generated by our work. You got different point values from picking up a rake than a digging iron, for example. Sounds a lot like pruning a tree or bush, or planting or digging up shrubs doesn't it?
- Webster's Dictionary defines a Jackstraw as "an all around hand" (at the docks): one who could repair fishing net, clean fish, remove barnacles from the hull of the boat, and fix all kinds of things.
- Webster's Dictionary also defines a Jackstraw as "a low character in the social stratum".
- The real reason I picked the name was from an inspiring song of loyalty and treason in the Old West written by Bob Weir (and Robert Hunter) of the Grateful Dead - it was the inspiration for the name of this business! I just liked the song! It was as simple as that but every other definition fit like a well worn glove.