Sunday, October 6, 2013

May 1941, Week 1

May 1
Thurs - Went down to moms and stayed after dinner. Joe was here fro dinner. Tonite, mom, snooks and Helen Parks and I saw the academy award winner, Ginger Rogers in "Kitty Foyle". Joe picked us up.

May 2
Fri - Joe stayed home until after dinner. I went to Helens. They were cleaning house, then later went mushroom hunting. I sat in the car -- Joe didn't get home until eleven. We didn't go to the class party.

May 3
Sat - Felt a little better. Ironed while Snooky cleaned up the house. Baked two rhubard pies. Joe came home early, for supper, and then went to a meeting at Parmells. I stayed at moms.

May 4
Sun - Its so warm. We didn't go to S.S. Joe's taking the enamel off the cabinet. We went to church tonite, and Joe took part in the Mens program. After church Joe & I went with Helen to the restaurant

May 5
Mon - Was sure hot today
Went to my doctor at Ladoga. Everything normal
Came home & Mr & Mrs Wolf came, this eve; mom, Mildred, Glen & Gwennie. After Wolfs left all of us went to the show & saw Lil Abner. To bed about 11:00.

May 6
Tues - Our first rain in ages. A slow rain worth millions
Packed some things. Mom & Snooky came down for supper. We had chilli & lemon pie. Putchy has something wrong with his kidneys. Wonder if its poison?

May 7
Wed - Took Putchy down to moms
He apparently feels alrite but can hardly control his kidneys. I'm worried about him.

"Kitty Foyle" was a 1940 movie about a lower middle class gal who falls in love with a wealthy socialite. It isn't the happiest of movies and not the kind of story Hollywood normally put out.

"Li'l Abner" also came out in 1940 and the biggest name in it was Buster Keaton of silent film fame. He played Lonesome Polecat in this rural comedy adapted from the popular comic strip.

Putchy the tomcat reappears and this time there really is cause for worry. It appears his wanderings have gotten him into a pickle.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

April 1941, End

Apr. 22
Tues - Was deathly sick at my stomach all day. Joe came home early & went to the conservation clubs fish supper. Helen, mom, Snooky & I drove over to Mildreds. Letter from Daisy S. today.

Apr. 23
Wed - Still terribly upset. Joe bought 2 lbs of the smelt last nite & I asked mom & snooky for dinner. Went down & had mushrooms at their house tonite.

Apr. 24
Thur - I was down to moms most of the day. Came home & did about 2/3 of my ironing. I throw up so much. I haven't been able to record anything in this only sickness

Apr. 25
Fri - Still sick. Mom & Snooky here for supper. Mildred, Glen & Gwennie came for a while tonite. Glen has a job at Lafayette.  S. Wray wanted him to barber here.

Apr. 26
Sat - Washed my hair & fixed my dress. Baked 2 rhubarb pies. Feel better. Tonite Joe & Helen, Lucile, Golda & Cecil & Joe & I, went to the ssurprise on Windy. He was sure surprised Came home & threw up the refreshments.

Apr. 27
Sun - Went to S.S. this a.m. To moms for dinner. We all went mushroom hinting & fishing today. Went to C'Ville tonite with Helen & Joe P. Ate sundaes, and went to the skating rink & watched the skaters.

Apr. 28
Mon -  Went down to moms for dinner. Was over to Mildred M's a while. Mom & Snooky were here for supper. Joe bought some new shoes today

Apr. 29
Went out to Helens this afternoon. Hal. Lucile was here & asked me to go with her a musicale at Thorntown tonite. Mildred & Windy, Mom & Snooks were here tonite. Aunt Nina & Morrison came down tonite.

Apr. 30
Joe & I, Mom & Snooks, Helen & Ab, Nina & M. went  mushroom hunting. Found some. Aunt Nina & Morrison went back today. Joe & I rented Bill Breaks house today. Helen P, Mildred M, & Lucile & I were at Parnells tonite, to arrange Mothers Day Prog.

The misery of the pregnancy continues and I can identify with Mamie's entry on the 24th. There's no way to convey how the entry trailed off down the side, yet the frustration is clear enough in the words. This is why I'm unable to maintain a daily journal for it ends up being filled with illness and pain which nobody would want to read -- especially me.

Once again the sheer amount of socializing amazes me. They were different times.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

April 1941, Week Three

Apr. 15
Tues - I havent had fire for a week. Joe cleaned yard & I cleaned the store room; partly. Went to the country with him after dinner & Mildred Maxwell was here the rest of the afternoon. We all M& S, M & G & I wen to the show "Laddie" tonite.

Apr. 16
Wed -  It rained last nite & Helen took us mushroom hinting too early. I started feeling so bad after we got home I went to moms. Felt better after dinner. Walked to town with Snooks this eve. Joe came early; we all had supper at moms.

Apr. 17
Thus - Joe mowed & cleaned the yard. Snooky came down & ironed for me. Went down to moms & it rained. Mildred, Gwennie, Mom & Snooks came home with me for supper.

Apr. 18
Fri - A nice day. Spring is sure early. Everything in bloom. Joe spaded on the garden. Went to C'Ville with Joe, and on out to aunt Matties. Got to feeling bad. came home about 6:30. & went to bed.

Apr. 19
Sat - Moms birthday 55th. Joe & I went fishing (2 sunfish)
Went down to moms & spent the afternoon. Aunt Nina & Carl Jr surprised us by driving up. Carl went to the alumni banquet. They'll stay for the dinner tomorrow

Apr. 20
(Sun) - Cold. Aunt Florence, & Fred Marian & baby, Nina & Dr Carl, aunt Vyda & Ward, Mildred, Glen & Gwennies mom & Snooks, Joe & I, Jack & Jackie were to Helens for mom & aunt Vydas birthday dinner. Tonite, Helen, mom, Snooky, aunt Vyda & I went to church. Uncle George came after aunt Vyda tonite

Apr. 21
Mon - Didn't do much this a.m. Mom & Snooky washed. This afternoon we walked out to the covered bridge, & found 5 tiny mushrooms. [A little early for them.] Was sick & threw up several times tonite.

The pregnancy doesn't sound like a smooth one at this point.

"Laddie" was a 1940 remake of the 1926 movie adaptation of the novel of the same name. The only names in the cast that rang a bell were Peter Cushing in a supporting role and Joan Carroll. IMDB does not have much on the film. Wikipedia has a very brief plot description: "A farmer romances an English girl."

Sunday, July 21, 2013

April 1941, Week Two

Apr. 8
Tues - A warm day. I took my dinner & went down to moms to cook it. After dinner we helped clean up the yard where Uncle Dan had cleaned cut the trees. Letter from  George B. from Niagara Falls. Joe got home about 8 tonite.

Apr. 9
Wed - Letter from Ethel. A nice day
Went to the pre-Easter services at the church tonite. Afterward went with Lucile to Mildred & Wendys to pay respects to Austin Maxwell.

Apr. 10
Thurs - Joe & I went to the creek & looked around this a.m. & to Ladoga this afternoon. Visited Ethel, Mrs Jones & Mrs Gich. Ate Supper at Ethels
It was a beautiful day.

Apr. 11
Fri -  Dad passed away  4 years ago today.
We went fishing & caught a few undersize sunfish & threw them back. Came home & ate dinner. Laid down after dinner. Went to Easter services tonite. Mom, Snooks & Lucille P.  came home with me. Lucile Stayed until 11:00 o'clock

Apr. 12
Sat -  A beautiful, warm day. Had the house open. Cleaned up the house & ironed. We went after greens. Mom, Snooks & I went to see 'Chad Hanna'. Smith came in the show
Joe was at Abs Place. I came home with him.

Apr. 13
Sun - Easter
Went to S.S. & church [102 at S.S.] It was actually hot. To moms for dinner. To the woods with Helen and Joe Parks. Came home & went  to C'Ville for "double-dips". They spent the evening here. Boy, but I'm sore & tired tonite.

Apr. 14
Mon- Went down to Moms today. It is still warm. Mildred & Windy have been here twice when we weren't home. Mildred came down tonite. She doesnt feel very well.

Chad Hanna was a 1940 circus melodrama set in 1840's upstate New York and starred Henry Fonda and Dorothy Lamour.

Mamie was referring to attendance at Sunday school rather than the temperature when she wrote 102. That's impressive for a small town church even in the more religious times of the early 20th Century.

Monday, April 29, 2013

April 1941, Week One

Apr. 1
Tues - Mom, Snooky, Helen & Ab went to uncle Carls funeral today. I was by myself all day and until midnite tonite. Joe has sold $7000 of Life ins. last nite & tonite.

Apr. 2
Wed - Felt bad all day. Snooky  came & cleaned up the house. Wnt down to moms this afternoon & went to bed. I wish I felt better. This is awful

Apr. 3
Thurs -  It rained. Snooky & I walked out to Helens this afternoon. I ate two bowls of soup. Went to moms for supper & ate a T Bone steak. We saw Tin Pan Alley with Alice Faye, Betty Grable, John Oayne, Jack Okie

Apr. 4
Fri - Was by myself all day. Snooky & mom helped Helen clean house
Went down to moms for supper.
Joe came after me about 8:00

Apr. 5
[Sat.] - Snooky cleaned up the house & then ironed this afternoon. She & mom wer here for dinner & supper. I felt better. Mrs Gray & Mrs Brown called on me.

Apr. 6
[Sun] - Worse again. Went down to moms for co-op dinner. Mom went to Mr Jennings funeral. Mrs.W (can't make out the name - Patrick) Weliever came to see mom, and old neighbor of 25 yrs ago --

Apr. 7
Mon - Snooky here this a.m, to help. Letter from Mrs Jones. -- Snooky & I walked to the covered bridge after dinner. A beautiful day. Mom out to Helen. Mildred was here. We got books from the library & read tonite.

Mamie must have felt too ill to go to the funeral since she was so fond of Uncle Carl. It looks like moving out has helped the relationship with her mother a great deal.

Tin Pan Alley was a 1940 musical set during WWI. This was typical fare of the era and even the smallest of towns had a movie theater of some kind. Darlington's was a tiny one!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

March 1941, End

Mar. 29
Sat - Got up & moped all day. Did bake two pies for tomorrow - for company. -- Got word that dear uncle Carl Rudolph passed away today. It just makes me heartsick
We loved him so much.

Mar. 30
Sun - Joes dad & Mary here. Had ham loaf - pea salad - scalloped potatoes - green beans & peach pie. After dinner we went to the park & old mill. Made ice cream in the evening, & played cards.

Mar. 31
Mon - Had mom & Snooky for dinner, to help eat up leftovers. Feel awful. Went down to moms for the evening. Joe didn't come & I walked the floor. At 2:20 Snooky & I walked up home & found him in bed. Had been since 11:30 Grrrrrrr!
Rev. Strawmeyer called to see how I was.

Now I'm curious about Carl Rudolph since this is the first I've heard about him outside of being a name in the family tree.

Joe was not Mr. Sensitive and that is an understatement.

March 1941, Week 4

Mar. 22
Sat - Snooky was here this morning. Went out to Helens, with the aunts & mom this afternoon. Was awfully sick tonite. No one realizes how awfully sick I am, not even Joe.

Mar. 23
Sun - I didn't feel like S.S or church. Joe took me out riding along Sugar Creek, and it seemed spring-like. Oh, if I could only feel like myself once more!

Mar. 24
Mon - Snooky is going to stay here for a while. Walked down to moms this afternoon. Have tootache tonite. I feel like Hell

Mar. 25
Tues - Snooky & I walked out to Helens & I took a bath. Believe I feel a tiny bit better, but my tooth hurt. Was awake nearly all nite with this filled tooth hurting. Just suffered awful

Mar. 26
Wed - Joe took me to the dentist at C'Ville. He took an ex-ray. Told me what to use, hot salt water. We went to Ladoga & out to Marys; I used it & got relief. We stayed for supper.

Mar. 27
Thur - My sick stomach came back on me today
Letter from aunt Nena - Snooky came and did my work. Helen Parks came by for  me to go to the show, but I didnt feel like going. Snooky stayed all nite.

Mar. 28
Fri - Mildred & Mom & Helen came in a few minutes this evening. I feel worse than ever. Had to miss the Sunday School party tonite. Joe went & I guess they had a good time.

C'Ville is Crawfordsville. 

I can't help identifying with Mamie's feelings about being sick. People are so wrapped up in their lives that they simply don't notice others sufferings.

Monday, March 18, 2013

March 1941, Week 3

Mar. 15
Sat - Mildred Maxwell cam in before we had breakfast. Richardsons here this afternoon
Joe went to get me some medicine today, and Dr. Humphreys thinks I may be pregnant. Joe is tickled pink.
Snowed a wet snow last nite.

Mar. 16
Sun -Laid around sick all day and not a soul came in. Mrs Brown came over to see why the water was frozen up. It turned cold. Joe won $5.00 on a basketball lottery.

Mar. 17
Mon - 6° this a.m. Joe styed home with me until afternoon because I felt so tough
Helen was here this afternoon, & stopped again tonite. Joe was out to McClaskeys tonite.

Mar. 18
Tues - Still cold. I went out to Helens & stayed today. Joe & Mr. Wolf didn't get back until 11:00 tonite from Inp'lis. Snooky stayed with me until 10:00 o'clock tonite.

Mar. 19
Wed - A nice day, but I've been so sick. Snooky was here this afternoon & Edna Leach. -- Mom & Snooky were here tonite. Joe got in about 8:30

Mar. 20
Thurs - Went to Ladoga to Joes dad. Aunt Minnie (from Ky) & Raleigh were there & Lillian & Bob. Felt sqeamish. Went to Dr Gross after dinner. I guess I am pregnant. I'm just simply petrified; I'm so scared. Fraid I wont come thru.

Mar. 21
Fri - Snooky was here & worked, this a.m. I walked out to Helens with them this p.m. to keep from being alone. Feel terrible. Aunt Vyda & Florence came tonite. How I wish I could feel better.

Inp'lis has to be short for Indianapolis.

It's interesting to read about the pregnancy and Mamie's fears. Of course it had a happy ending with my father's birth in November, but the terror over things going wrong is palpable in the March 20th entry. Feeling that ill had to raise worries.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

March 1941, Week 2

Mar. 8
Sat - Was sick most of the nite & today
Joe was home for dinner. Did bake two pies today.

Mar. 9
Sun - Joe & I went to Sunday School this a.m. Wnt up to Walter & Ednas & Paul & Helens after dinner. Went to church tonite. Found out that Helen W. & Lucile P, had both been here while we were gone this afternoon.

Mar. 10
Mon - Warm & rainy. Joe was in town all day. Mildred & Gwennie were here a few minutes this afternoon. I guess Mom & Snooky went home with them -- Wished for someone to come in tonite, but none did. Got my studio couch today.

Mar. 11
Tues - Snow & blizzard although not so cold. Washed some hand washing --- Putchy came home this morning since Mom wasn't home to let him in --- he caught a big rat in the cob bin -- Helen spent the evening here.

Mar. 12
Wed - I mopped the kitchen, ironed, & swept and dusted. Made a trip to town this evening -- Joe didnt get home till 9:37 I laid on the new daveno & ate candy & read Rachel Fields "All this, and heaven, too"

Mar. 13
Thurs- Cleaned up the house. Helen Parks was here this afternoon. Putchy found his way home again tonite -- Have felt bad all week. Joe didn't get home until after eleven tonite.

Mar. 14
Fri - Robins are thick outside -- a lovely day
Feel sickish - Joe stayed home until noon -- Came home early tonite and we went to the show and saw 'One night in the tropics".

"All This, and Heaven Too" by Rachel Field was a best selling historical romance published in 1938. It was based on a real murder case in France involving a love triangle between a governess, her employer, and his wife.

"One Night in the Tropics" was a comedy musical that also happened to be the movie debut of the famous Abbott and Costello comic duo. It was also the first time the immortal "Who's on First?" skit was put on film.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

The Air Raid Letter

This is a transcription of a letter from Jess Renfield to Mamie and appeared in the local newspaper in Darlington, Indiana.

Letter Tells of Air Raids in England

Our readers will remember a letter we published several months ago from the same writer as the letter below. Both letters were written to Mrs. Mamie Boone. This one we are printing in part, gives a very vivid description of conditions in England. With some personal remarks first, the letter starts

My dear Mamie --

You will have wondered how we were fareing I suppose; and you will have heard over the radio and seen in the press that our own much loved city (Manchester) was the victim of a concentrated night attack by enemy bombers just 2 days before Xmas. Although, as you know we are several miles out of the city, it was the most terrifying experience we have ever known.

The first attack was on the Sunday. Bruce and I had been to a Xmas carol service at a nearby chapel in the afternoon. (There are no evening services or meetings held anywhere now because of night raids.) And the atmosphere was so beautiful and peaceful. We walked home, had an enjoyable tea and just settled in the easy chairs round the fire.

Soon after 6 o'clock the dreadful note of wailing sirens filled the air. It was a bitterly cold night with a keen east wind. By 7 o'clock great fires were to be seen blazing away in the city where I spent so very many happy years of business life. The crump and thud of bombs and the deafening noise of our own anti-aircraft guns was indescribable.

You see Mamie, all the enemy planes on their way to the city passed over our locality and as you will have heard and read many of the German airmen do not bother about military objects but just release their load of bombs at random. Prior to this terrible night it had been quieter and Rogers family had not been in their garden underground shelter. Further, we had had heavy rain and the place was damp; and Audrey suddenly got a dread of being buried in the earth so their family was crouched under the heavy oak dining table if things were bad.

Bruce and I therefore decided to sit by the fire and simply hope for the best; but can you imagine how the hours dragged, for we could not read, I could not knit, all we could do was to listen to the constant din of the planes overhead. About 11:30 there seemed to be a lull so I said to Bruce "Come along I think it is going quieter, we will go to bed." This we did, still downstairs in the Lounge.

We must have dozed off for a couple of hours but were suddenly awakened at 1:30 by the most deafening din of machinery overhead you can imagine. I said to Bruce, "Isn't it terrible, the planes seem to be circling overhead." We lay for a few moments and then we heard a great swish, swish, swish.

"Bombs," I said, "dropping."

It was awful to hear them coming down and not knowing where they were going to finish. I simply rolled out of bed, ran into the dining room where my clothes were, scrambling into them and my heart was palpitating as never before. In the meantime we had heard the bombs explode or at least hit the ground in the road at the end of our drive.

The A.R.P. wardens had to arrange for all the people in the road to be evacuated. Just fancy this about 2 a.m. on a winter night. Mothers with tiny children. Everyone was taken to the Cinema in the village because the bombs were time bombs which go off sometimes in an hour, sometimes in a week and so just 2 days before Xmas all these people had to leave their homes and possessions and either live with friends for a week or live in the Cinema.

Most of the bombs fell on the roadway making huge craters, but one fell on the farm and another took the side off a house; but no one was injured. The road was closed for a week to traffic and in order to do my shopping I had to go a roundabout way to the village, through field paths.

After these bombs had fallen, we stood by the staircase for an hour. We are told this is the safest place in case the house is hit. Shortly afterwards, however, there was such a terrific crash we were almost blown down the hall. I was terrified; and we decided to go across the road into Rogers shelter.

It was now about 3 o'clock, the planes were still humming overhead and the sky across the fields toward us was blood red from the fires. We went down into the shelter but the Rogers family were not down. They had relatives staying with them and all crouched on the dining room floor.

We stayed in the shelter about 1-2 hour and then I began to imagine all sorts of things. It was very cold and damp as they had not had heat on for weeks and I thought no one knows we are here, just suppose a bomb drops on the shelter, we shall be buried alive. So I persuaded Bruce to go back to our own house and I was so cold we made a pot of tea -- and didn't it taste excellent and comforting.

It was 6 o'clock in the morning when we heard the last plane go over; and it was 6:30 when the "all clear" sounded, so we had practically 13 hours of hell on earth. Everyone looked absolutely worn out. Even when Bruce left for the office at 8 (when it was still dark) the sky in the direction of the city was like an orange tinted painting -- the dying glow of the fires.

When you have known and loved a city as we have and then it is practically laid waste in 12 hours it makes your heart bleed. The most hard hearted folk have wept over it. But buildings can be replaced, it is the terrible loss of life and the hundreds of maimed and injured. Women and babies, young children -- yes, and the old people with nothing to hit back with, being killed at their own firesides.

One of the most sickening sides to it is the number of people who are trapped under fallen houses, etc. In one street near to Bruce's father works 68 people were trapped -- some for days. You see on this particular night these German murderers for they are that, dropped so many bombs all round the city, miles out in fact in residential property. A land mine was dropped in the next village and a few people were killed. These land mines, at least the blast from them wrecks houses and blows windows out and doors off for about 1-2 mile all round where it drops.

Jane (our evacuee) only went into her new high school in Sept. It cost 80,000lb to build and it was destroyed during this one night.

A land mine was dropped on a farm at the end of my sister's road; and roofs were blown off and windows out in a good many places. My sister just escaped damage, although the people on each side had all their windows blown in.

If this war has done nothing else it has made us all realize how much dearer life is than even the most valuable of possessions and you know Mamie, life is very sweet to most people, no one, at lease, few want to die before their time.

All men and many women (those who have business posts) have to do (in turn) a night of fire watching both at their business premises and at their homes. In our front porches everyone has a bucket of water, sand-bags, a rake and long shovel -- all in readiness to deal with fire bombs.

Still there are happy days with friends around. My sister comes for the day once a week and I go there alternately. We spend each Saturday as we have done for 25 years with Win and Wally, managing to see a film from 5:30 to 7:30 (before the siren goes). It is our Saturday at Win's this week, but Wally is "on call" at the Ambulance Post all night and Bruce is on duty here at home fire watching, so Win and I will probably be together round the fire, knitting for the soldiers.

How time has flown. It is 4:15. Bruce has been going in a friend's car to the office and will be home in an hour. Thank goodness the days are lengthening.

There is no shortage of food. We have to be careful with butter, lard, bacon, tea and sugar and meat which are rationed. Today we are having stewed steak, carrots, potatoes, milk pudding.

And the letter ends, again a personal note.

This letter is transcribed from a clipping that isn't dated, but from the contents and a brief death notice at the end of the page it appears to be the letter mentioned in Mamie's March 3, 1941 entry.  Due to a lack of proper formatting by the local editor, I have edited it into paragraphs to make reading much easier. Also, some missing words and letters from damage to the clipping have been guessed at. All spelling, punctuation, and grammar errors are uncorrected.

UPDATED: A long lost newsreel on the Manchester Blitz can be seen here.

March 1941, Week 1

Mar. 1
Sat - Went out home & found Putchy. Worked all day. Made two trips to town. Was simply worn out today Joe is Better of the measles, but hasn't any pep.

Mar. 2
Sun - Mrs Brown came home
I went to S.S. this a.m. Joe & I went for a little walk. Helen & Ab came in just as we were eating. Walter & Edna came out & we played euchre. Joe still feels tough from the measles

Mar. 3
Mon - I washed curtains. Got a pitiful letter from Jess, telling about an air raid. Sent me a gift. --- We went up to Helen & Pauls tonite.

Mar. 4
Tues - Went out to Helens & washed this a.m. Came home & cleaned the house up. -- Helen & I saw "The Invisible Woman" tonite with Virginia Bruce, John Howard & John Barrymore Charles Ruggles

Mar. 5
Wed - Ironed this am. Joe here for dinner. Mildred M. was here most of the afternoon - Joe home for supper. Helen asked me to go to White Church tonite but I didn't go.

Mar. 6
THUR - Helen Parks came down & asked Joe & I to a surprise on Joe P. tomorrow nite - Helen & Ab got their new Buick --. Joe came home early & we saw "Northwest Mounted Police" with Gary Cooper & Madelyn Carroll.

Mar. 7
Fri - Cleaned up the house thoroughly. Didn't get thru until afternoon. Went to Joe Parks surprise party tonite & had fun. Helen & Paul, Mildred & Wendy, & Joe & I -- Got home shortly after midnite.

Given the long hours people worked back then, it surprises me how often they stayed up late. Of course, they weren't farmers, but still...

Jess was Jess Redfield, Mamie's penpal near Manchester, England. At the time, Germany was still bombing cities. This is the first mention of World War II in the diaries and I have an undated newspaper clipping from a scrapbook that may be a reprint of this specific letter. It is a grim account and I'll be posting it after this entry.

"The Invisible Woman" was a science fiction comedy. I had never heard of it until now and wonder if it inspired Stan Lee when he created the Fantastic Four over twenty years later.

"Northwest Mounted Police" was a Western despite being set in Canada during the Riel Rebellion of 1895.

Monday, February 25, 2013

February 1941, Week 4

Feb. 22
Sat - We gavethe house a thorough cleaning. Washed My hair after dinner, some underwear etc -
Helen & Ab gave us some suckers & we cleaned them after supper. We played Michigan out to Helen & Abs tonite.

Feb. 23
Sun - Mom & I had a set-to -  this a.m.
As usual when two families try to live together. Went out to  Richardson & rented their house here. To church tonite & out to play cards at H. & A. Today was lots warmer. Hope it is warm Tues. when we move.

Feb. 24
Mon - I packed all day. Mom wouldnt even speak to me. Joe & I moved several car loads of stuff to our new home today. I think we'll like it fine.

Feb. 25
Tues - We got most of our stuff moved today and ate supper to ourselves tonite. Sure seems good to be by ourselves. It turned lots colder this evening.

Feb. 26
Wed - Walter Leach has sure been nice to us kids helping us; Ab helped Joe this a.m.
Didn't go to Priscilla's shower but took gift. Joe went to work after dinner, but came home about seven & said he was sick.

Feb. 27
Thurs - Joe was sick all nite & went back to bed this morning. Helen came in & said she had been sick & so had Snooky. Guess its the flu. Awfully tired tonight, trying to get straightened up

Feb. 28
Fri - We missed the S.S. party tonite. Joe felt so bad & was all broken out. I called the Humphreys & he confirmed our suspicions that is was measles. Where he got them, we dont know. I let Putch out for the 1st time this a.m. & he wandered away.

Well, that was quite a week in my grandmother's life. Suddenly moving out of her mother's place and then her husband getting the measles right afterward had to have been rough, especially after being ill around her birthday. I wonder what the fight was about?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

February 1941, Week 3

Feb. 15
Sat - Cleaned up part of the house today, then proceeded to chill & ache & have a slight temperature. Joe came in early Bed all day. Birthday greeting from Gishs.

Feb. 16
Sun - Went to S. School, with Helen, Mom, Snooky & Joe. Mildred Glen & Gwennie got her about 11:00 & Ab came in at noon - for our birthday dinner. Had this sinus infection this afternoon and went to bed. Felt better at Suppertime. We four went to church.

Feb. 17
Mon - Snowed last nite & we have a blizzard raging out side tonite (all day, too)
We washed, & this afternoon I cut out Helens dress, & started to take the enamel off my kitchen cabinet.

Feb. 18
Tues -  Only 7º above this a.m. We did our ironings worked on the cabinet letter from Ethel. Helen came in tonite & we practiced our trio tonite. It sounds swell.

Feb. 19
Wed -  3º this a.m. Went out to Helens & sewed on her dress. We went to C'Ville this afternoon for a little while. Came home & dusted. Wanted to go to the armory tonite to see the Radio Stars but Joe didn't get home until 8 & it was too cold to walk.

Feb. 20
Thurs -  Cut out my suit jacket this a.m. Helen Gerry came out about 1:00 for me to up & do some altering. Came home & sewed until 9 o clock. Mr. Partlow was here. Mom went to C'Ville & Lafayette with him.

Feb. 21
Fri - Sewing this a.m. Adah brought out some more things to do. Went out to Helens this p.m. to sew. Mildred, Glen & Gwennie came for a while. Finished Gerys things & they came for them. Joe passed his insurance test today.

It has been interesting typing these diary entries up during an equally cold February, but I live in Minnesota not the much warmer Indiana! 

Papa Joe, as we grandchildren called Joe, was an insurance salesman until he retired -- if I remember correctly. The last entry appears to be the beginnings of his getting involved with that business, but I'm unclear what he was doing at the time. I know that he worked at a factory during the war, so perhaps future entries will shed some light.

Friday, February 22, 2013

February 1941, Week 2

Feb. 8
Sat - We cleaned the house thoroughly. I'm "slightly indisposed" Didn't feel like doing anything, but 'carried on'

Feb. 9
Sun - Mom & Snooks went to S.S. I didn't feel like going. Helped with dinner. Laid around all afternoon. Helen wanted us to come out this afternoon, but I didnt feel up to it

Feb. 10
Mon -  We washed and  got all the clothes dry. Mildred & Glenn, Gwennie were here tonite. Helen & Ab came in a while. Joe didn't get home until about 9:00

Feb. 11
Tues - Went to C'Ville with Joe this noon, & shopped. Went to the "Gone with the Wind" matinee. Was it swell? Gosh! We came home about 7 - I had a raging sinus headache tonite.

Feb. 12
Wed - I ironed this morning. Helen & Ab here for chicken supper. We were invited out to Helen & Abs to the prayer meeting, but Joe & I had already made arrangements to go to Helen & Pauls to play Michigan. Home at 11:30

Feb. 13
Thurs - Went to Ladoga & C'Ville with Joe
Visited with Joes dad & Mary, Ethel, Mrs Jones, Mrs Gish, & Maxine. Came home thru C'Ville, stopped at Hubbles. Went to bed sick. For my birthday Joe & Helen each gave me a blue silk gown, Snooky - pants; Mom - headkerchief

Feb. 14
Fri - Feel all sickish on this, my birthday. Greetings from Helen, Edna, Mom, Snooks, & Mary Boone. Letter from Mary Cuske. Mildred Maxwell mom, Snooks & I went to the box supper, & dedication of the organ at the church tonite. Helen played it.

I'm amazed how much traveling was done back in 1941. Also amazing is the amount of socializing that went on, it really was the main entertainment back then. 

Being sick on your birthday is no fun and Mamie would have been 33 when she wrote the last entry.

Monday, February 18, 2013

February 1941 Week 1

Feb. 1
Sat - Worked about all day putting permanent in moms hair. Dont believe I've got a 'Putchy' any more.

Feb. 2
Sun - 'Putch' came home about 10 this a.m. Went to church. Joe worked on the car. Went out to Helen & Abe & played cards. We all went to church again tonite

Feb. 3
Mon -  We washed today and I sewed some.

Feb. 4 
Tue - We did both ironings this morning. Still sewing. We went to  Mildred & Windys tonite & played rhum. Mildred, Glenn & Gwennie were here.

Feb. 5
Wed - We saw the school production 'Jabberwock' tonite. We went with Helen. She had to play for the tap dancers. It was good.

Feb. 6
Thurs - Joe & I went to Helen & Pauls tonite but they had the flu. So we went on to Walter & Ednas, & we played euchre. It was sure cold.

Feb. 7
Joe got the car out of the garage & went to C'Ville today... Went out to Helens with mom & snooks, to dust, but Helen wanted me to go to C'Ville with her to shop. We saw Joe while there. He came home early. It was 'slick' again.

"Jabberwock" was not the much later play base on James Thurber's life, but I haven't been able to find a play from that era that matches it. Could it have been an original production at the school?

Snooks was Mamie's younger sister who went by the nickname Snookie and I named a cat after her. She had quite the life despite never leaving Darlington.

C'Ville had to be Crawfordsville, a small city/big town near Darlington.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Diary: January 1941

Jan. 18

Saturday... Cold & snow. We went to a surprise party on Paul McMurry tonite. Had fun.

Jan. 19
Sunday - George called Helen last nite. Helen came in & said we were to go to Joes dads to a birthday dinner. We went and had a good time. It was awfully  cold today. Came home early. Mildreds here.

Jan. 22
Wed - Putchy came back today
We had prayer meeting here tonite
I enjoyed it. Would like to start back to S. School

Jan. 23
Thursday - Joe & I are down at C'Ville taking care of uncle Johno Rouse while the went to Luciles. I sewed all day. We went over to J. Hubbles when Joe sold an insurance policy.

Jan. 24
Fri -  Awoke this a.m. to see a fairyland of snow; our first big snow. Sewed again. Aunt M & uncle J. got home about 5:00. We came to Darlington & dressed & went to a S. S. party at Lucile Parnells. Had fun.

Jan. 25
Sat - Made a big snow-man this a.m and helped with the work.

Jan. 26
Sun - Joe &7 I went to SS. this a.m. Our to Helen & Abs this afternoon, to play 'Michigan'
Ate supper there, and all of us went to church. Went back there and played cards again

Jan. 28
Tues - Lucile Parnell came down tonite; also Walter & Edna. Together with mom, we played euchre - losers get up.

Jan. 29
Wed - Helen, Paul & Kay came out tonite. We taught them to play Michigan and they were so enthused they stayed until 1:00 A.M. Joe turned the car over today slid on the ice and and a narrow escape

Jan. 30
Thurs - Putchy went away this morning again. I'm sewing. We saw 'Arise my love' with Colbert & Milland tonite. It was awfully good.

Jan. 31

Fri - I ironed this morning. Putchy still hasn't come back. I wonder whats happened? Mildred, Glenn & Gwennie here tonite.

These entries are from the earliest handwritten diary I have in my possession. It's a patchy beginning, but Mamie became more faithful making entries as time went by. This is a glimpse of life before America entered WWII and before television took over homes around the world. Socializing was a regular part of life with card playing being one of the bigger pastimes.

Without a clue what Michigan was, I turned to the Net to find out. It appears to be a form of rummy which can be highly addictive in its regular form.

Arise My Love was a comedy movie starring Claudette Colbert and Ray Milland set in fascist Spain.

Putchy was a battered old tomcat who liked to prowl the town.

A Work in Progress

Now that I finally have something up here, I'll go into the plans for the blog a little more. There will be a page for photos, writings, and diary entries with the latter two being an index of links. At the moment, how the diary entries will be posted is something of a dilemma due to Mamie keeping entries in five year diaries.

For those who are unfamiliar (I was) with the concept, the diaries came pre-printed with pages for each day of the year and room for five entries. I'd rather not put up each day covering those five years in one go, so posts will most likely consist of a week's worth of entries. A month might be a bit much for one post.  We will see how it works out.

Eventually it would be nice to come up with some customized graphics for the site, however that is going to be on the back burner. For the moment, getting Mamie's words up is the priority.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Mamie's Plea

 Autumn Drought's End

The creaking, protesting window, unaccustomed to lowering
The forgotten music of water drops against the panes.
The spiteful cracks of lightning, the ominous roll of
Thunder reverberating. The clouds glowering (and lowering)
And the earth parched dusty, sucks at the dents of rain.
Louder the thunder, faster the noisy tympany
Drums against the attic eaves, and swirls the ser leaves
and water rushing through the troughs, a gutter symphony
Rivulets. Cymbals crash. leaves plastered, house shudders.

Where is God?

In the sparkling prisms of a rainbow's hue
The mornings clear sky an azure blue
In a fragrant rosebud, a drop of dew.
There is God.

In a trees lofty grandeur, with limbs upspread
In a rushing river, from a mountain stream fed.
In a golden ringlet on an infants head
There is God.

In the bear of a doves wings as it lifts on high
In the culminous and nimbus in the sky
The limpid eyes of a fawn so shy
There is God.

I, an inarticulate sensitive soul, with out the ability to
put into words the: beauty of the sunset, a trees stalwart limbs,
and whispering leaves - a drop of dew in a roses heart, the
clear eyes of a little child, the music of the rain on the roof.
Put words into my mouth, let me not be forever dumb
or give to my fingers that certain touch with a brush
that I might give to others, who do not see these in reality.
Or let my fingers transpose the sigh of the night wind
The hush of natures soothing lullaby to her children

My love, it has become September
Autumn sunlight filter through my senses
with increasing haste
Sere corn leaves rustle the story to astar
cat tail and goldenrod.
a glorious roadside waste

by Mamie Boone

This was a possibly unfinished work labeled "for a poem" by Mamie that I found in a typed collection of her writings. It conveys her desire to express herself along with a bittersweet understanding of her limitations that I found endearing. Also, it seemed like a good place to begin with publishing her writings here.