Thursday, August 28, 2014

Mayo Clinic

May 28, 1932 - Moved back into the dining room today.  Cleaned up the house.  Went to the dance at Carroll with Ray tonite.  Stopped in and talked to Mrs. Smith a few minutes.  A large crowd at the dance, had a pretty good time.
May 29, 1932 - To S.S. and church this a.m.  Read and slept this p.m.  Mom went with the RNA for their Memorial Services this p.m.  Went out to Ola's about 6 o'clock.  Had supper.  A.W. came out after me and we went to Norfolk.  Saw a gangster picture at a new theater on the south side of the street.  Uncle Hans and the rest came from Rochester this a.m. at 5:30.
May 30, 1932 - Went out to the cemetery this a.m.  To the park this p.m. for the services.  Saw Lydia and talked to her awhile.  After the services Annie, Ola and kids, Aunt Lena, Uncle Hans, Meta, Lyle and Martha were up here for lunch.  Aunt Lena is getting along fine, so the M.D.s say, that's why she didn't have to stay in Rochester for about a month as she thought she would have to do.  Raymond Wittler's birthday.

I was a little disappointed to not find any information on the Mayo Clinic that was especially interesting or particularly blog-worthy.  Which isn't to say they do not do marvelous work there.  I did think the statue of the Mayo brothers was a bit unusual but very nice.

Here is the first paragraph of the wikipedia article about the Mayo Clinic:

     Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit medical practice and medical research group based in Rochester, Minnesota. It is the first and largest integrated nonprofit medical group practice in the world, employing more than 3,800 physicians and scientists and 50,900 allied health staff.  The practice specializes in treating difficult cases through tertiary care. It spends over $500 million a year on research. In 2014, Mayo Clinic marks 150 years of continuous service to patients.

     Dr. William Worrall Mayo settled his family in Rochester, Minn., in 1864 and opened a medical practice that evolved under his sons into Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic ranked No. 1 on the 2014-2015 U.S. News & World Report List of "Best Hospitals", and has been near the top for more than 20 years, and it is widely regarded as one of the world's premier medical practices. The practice is distinguished by integrated care. It has been on the list of America's "100 Best Companies to Work For" published by Fortune magazine for eight years in a row.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Rain, rain, rain -- then and now

May 25, 1932 - Ray and I gave the dining room floor a coat of varnish this morning.  We ate on the back porch. Rained real hard tonite about 8 o'clock.  A strong wind also.  It just blew the water through the west windows upstairs and down.  Gave the outside edge a coat of varnish right after supper.
May 26, 1932 - Windy, cloudy and cold today.  I varnished the new congoleum rug, the downstairs closet, and the dining room cupboard.  Florence S. came up this p.m. and told us about some of the damage the storm did last nite.  Ray, Mom, F.S. and I went west of town to see how the railroad track were washed.  Went out to Ola's a few minutes.  Arthur Holt's birthday.
May 27, 1932 - Cloudy and cold today.  We canned 19 pints of rhubarb and pineapple.  Ray finished cutting out the small rugs for the dining room.  Maris, Orville, Meta and Martha were here this p.m.  Stayed for lunch.  I was taken into the Rebekah Lodge tonite.  I think I'll like it.  A.W. came tonite after I'd left.  Isn't that a heck of a note!  Wish I'd been home.

Since I am very late with this, I will let it stand pretty much as-is.  Except to note that the Winside history book says this regarding the rain on May 25:

     A heavy rain flooded the basements of many of the houses and business places -- about two feet of water rushed down Main Street.

Oh, and that it can quit raining at our place for a while.  'Tis a bit of a swamp.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Happy Birthday, Uncle Ray!

May 22, 1932 - Mom and I went to church this a.m.  After dinner Mom, Grussmother and Ray went to Stahl's.  I slept and read this p.m.  Arnold came after me about 6 p.m.  Was at Wittlers for supper.  Lydia, Arnold and I went to Norfolk to the Baccalaureate Services.  After that we tagged and were tagged by the Walker kids driving around Norfolk.
May 23, 1932 - Ray is 19 years old today.  Took the tablecloths back to Walkers, got my mail that had come there, got my checks from Mr. Strate and then on to Norfolk.  Grussmother went along.  Deposited my money in the Postal Savings.  We bought a congoleum rug for the dining room and paint for the kitchen floor.  Went out to Annie's tonite, it rained and we stayed all nite.
May 24, 1932 - Mom helped milk this morning and I did the dishes.  Came into town and took up the dining room linoleum.  Scrubbed the floors.  That was a hard job.  We got done at 4 p.m.  Ray went out to Ola's this noon.  After supper I helped Mom work in the garden.

I have nothing to add to this and need to get it posted, so I'll leave it 'as is'.  Hopefully I will be more inspired for the next post.

Here's little Ray since we are talking about his birthday.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Gotta love it

May 19, 1932 - Hot and windy today.  Finished straightening out my things today.  Made six hot pad holders.  We had some new radishes and onions from the garden for dinner today.
May 20, 1932 - Went down town this p.m. and talked to Irene W. for over an hour.  Got some groceries.  Ray, Annie, Ola and kids were in tonite.  I'm so glad they came.  I was getting lonesome.  These last 3 days have seemed like 3 weeks.  I'll be glad when Mom comes home.
May 21, 1932 - Cleaned upstairs and downstairs today.  Uncle Hans, Aunt Lena and Aunt Mary K. were here this p.m.  They were going to Emerson tonite and to Rochester tomorrow.  Went to the show at Norfolk with Arnold tonite.  Saw Joan Blondell in "The Crowd Roars" and the 4 Marx Brothers in "Animal Crackers."  Mom came home tonite and we talked until 4 a.m.  Opal Schneider Mann's birthday.

How neat is it that Grandma and Grandma Anna stayed up until 4 a.m. talking!?  I wonder what all they had to discuss for that long.

Here is some interesting stuff; more interesting than I thought I would find simply looking for a movie poster and plot summary for "The Crowd Roars" (from wikipedia):

     The Crowd Roars is a 1932 film directed by Howard Hawks starring James Cagney and featuring Joan Blondell, Ann Dvorak, Eric Linden, Guy Kibbee, and Frank McHugh.

     The driver in the film's auto racing sequences was Harry Hartz, a successful board track and Indianapolis 500 race professional.  It was remade in 1939 as Indianapolis Speedway, with Pat O'Brien in Cagney's role, Ann Sheridan in Blondell's role, and McHugh playing the same role he played in the original.

     Motor racing champion Joe Greer (James Cagney) returns home to compete in an exhibition race featuring his younger brother Eddie, who has aspirations of becoming a champion. Joe's misogynistic obsession with "protecting" Eddie from "women" causes Joe to interfere with Eddie's relationship with Anne (Joan Blondell), leading to estrangement between Joe and Eddie, and between Joe and his longtime girlfriend Lee (Ann Dvorak), who is made to feel "not good enough" to be around Eddie.

     During the race, a third driver, Spud Connors, wrecks and is burned alive. Driving lap after lap through the flames and the smell of burning flesh (and maybe past the burning body) while blaming himself for the accident, Joe loses his will to race. Eddie goes on to win. Afterward, Joe's career plummets as Eddie's rises. The power of love eventually triumphs and Joe's career and his relationships with Lee and Eddie are rehabilitated.

     Sentimentalism is downplayed in this "pre-Code" film. The lingering stench of Spud's burning body is implied strongly by the horrified expression on each driver's face as he passes through the smoke and tongue of burning gasoline that marks the wreck site, sometimes pushing his scarf against his nose.

The main thing that caught my attention in this article was "pre-Code", a term I had not heard before.  Here is what I found out about that:

     Films made in the Pre-Code era frequently presented people in sexually suggestive or provocative situations, and did not hesitate to display women in scanty attire. In this publicity photo, Dorothy Mackaill plays a secretary-turned-prostitute in Safe in Hell, a 1931 Warner Bros. film directed by William Wellman.  

     Pre-Code Hollywood refers to the era in the American film industry between the introduction of sound in the late 1920s and the enforcement of the Motion Picture Production Code (usually labeled, albeit inaccurately after 1934, as the "Hays Code") censorship guidelines. Although the Code was adopted in 1930, oversight was poor and it did not become rigorously enforced until July 1, 1934. Before that date, movie content was restricted more by local laws, negotiations between the Studio Relations Committee (SRC) and the major studios, and popular opinion, than strict adherence to the Hays Code, which was often ignored by Hollywood filmmakers.

     As a result, films in the late 1920s and early 1930s included sexual innuendo, miscegenation, profanity, illegal drug use, promiscuity, prostitution, infidelity, abortion, intense violence, and homosexuality. Strong women dominated films such as Female, Baby Face, and Red-Headed Woman. Gangsters in films like The Public Enemy, Little Caesar, and Scarface were seen by many as heroic rather than evil. Along with featuring stronger female characters, films examined female subject matters that would not be revisited until decades later in American films. Nefarious characters were seen to profit from their deeds, in some cases without significant repercussions, and drug use was a topic of several films. Many of Hollywood's biggest stars such as Clark Gable, Barbara Stanwyck, and Edward G. Robinson got their start in the era. Other stars who excelled during this period, however, like Ruth Chatterton (who decamped to England) and Warren William (the so-called "king of Pre-Code", who died in 1948), would wind up essentially forgotten by the general public within a generation.

     Beginning in late 1933 and escalating throughout the first half of 1934, American Roman Catholics launched a campaign against what they deemed the immorality of American cinema. This, plus a potential government takeover of film censorship and social research seeming to indicate that movies which were seen to be immoral could promote bad behavior, was enough pressure to force the studios to capitulate to greater oversight.

Here's the photo mentioned above....racy, to be sure!

Monday, August 11, 2014

A new clothespin bag

May 16, 1932 - We washed today and such a beautiful day.  Took a nap this p.m. and then sprinkled the clothes.  Leeroy is getting so big.  He's so wide awake and happy practically all the time.  Annabelle can talk your head off if she once gets started.
May 17, 1932 - We got our ironing done today.  Took a bath and nap this afternoon.  Ray and I went to the Old Time Dance in Hoskins tonite.  Didn't have a very good time, not many there.  A boy and girl were here in Winside asking for me last nite.  They left before Grussmother could tell them where I was.  I think it was L. & A.  Just my luck not to be at home!  Brrr!
May 18, 1932 - Hot and windy today.  Got up quite late this morning.  Made a new clothespin bag.  Started straightening up the mess in my room.  I was going to go to the Commencement exercises tonite but was too lazy to get ready, so went to be early instead.  Lyle Jenkins birthday.

Oh, my . . . a clothespin bag.  I am sure Mom remembers when I made her a clothespin bag/apron for either her birthday or Mother's Day.  I was reasonably young when I did it.  I had learned to sew on the sewing machine (thanks, Mom!) earlier than my friends, but still I missed catching the bottom seam.  Instead of sewing it first and then adding bias tape for some pizzazz, I did it all at once and some of the clothespins were able to fall out.  It had three pockets in a line so Mom simply didn't use the defective pocket. What I remember most though, was how I used Mom's old one to make a pattern for the new one and was proud for such a wonderful and labor-intensive gift and then Grandma kindly telling me that such a thing wasn't really best-suited for the occasion -- a reminder of chores as a gift.  I was a bit wounded at the time.  Funny thing is, I don't remember Mom's reaction to the apron, only Grandma chastising me ahead of time.  She must have been having a bad day since that wasn't really like her to rain on my creative parade.

This photo must be staged because that lady doesn't have a clothespin bag or apron at all.

Back to Winside history, here is 1893, short and sweet:

     March 7, permission was given to Messers Tracy and Dixon to move the J. G. Hayes building on the street to be used for a hardware store until a new building can be put up.
     April 4, 242 votes were cast at the village election
     May 1, F. W. Burdick resigned as village attorney.
     May 2, Winside saloon tax was set at $550.00 for the ensuing year.
     July 29, the board granted to the Ladies Aid Society the right to use the park for picnic purposed.
     September 4, H. E. Mason organized the school into classes and put in the ninth and tenth grades.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

What a nice brother!

May 13, 1932 - Oh! so hot today.  There were 52 at the picnic.  Ray brought the ice cream about 12:15.  It was all eaten at dinner time!  5 gallons!  Had races, etc. for kids this p.m.  I got nice and sunburned.  Went home about 5:30.  Stopped out to Annie's and had supper there.  Made ice cream with the ice left in the freezer.
May 14, 1932 - Ray and I went back to the schoolhouse about 10 o'clock this a.m.  I had to finish my reports and then clean up the mess.  It was 4 o'clock before we were headed for home.  The car was loaded down with my junk.  Ray and I went to bed quite early tonite.  Rose Stamm's birthday.
May 15, 1932 - Picked some tulips for Hilda, Mom and Annabelle.  Stopped at Ola's, gave them the tulips and got some lilacs.  Stopped and visited Mom a few minutes then went up to Uncle Max's.  Looked at pictures, etc.  Had dinner and supper there.  Stopped in at Uncle Hans' this evening.  We stayed at Ola's tonite.  Annie and I are doing our washing together tomorrow.

Of course, all the brothers in our family are real peaches, but I bet there are some out there in the world that would not spend six hours on a Saturday helping their sister pack up her school stuff and haul it home.

I am not sure when the photo was taken exactly, but it darn sure wasn't in 1932.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Code words

May 10, 1932 - Lovely day.  Corrected and gave back exam papers today.  Played marbles the 1st recess with the little kids.  Went to Nurnberg's tonite.  Looked at flowers etc. before supper and after supper looked at pictures, talked and worked puzzles.  Got a letter from Florence Jenkins today.
May 11, 1932 - Harry, Minnie and I went to school before George this a.m.  Made health posters today.  Sent home the list of what each family should bring to the picnic.  Called up the others this eve.  Walked down to the field where Raymond was working and told him.  Went to town this eve. and got some lemons, etc. for picnic.  Also went to choir practice.
May 12, 1932 - George and Delmar weren't at school today.  We sorted and put the books up on the shelves.  Picked up around the schoolyard.  Made out report cards and parts of other reports.  Went to Norfolk this eve.  Saw Richard Bartholomew in "Alias the Doctor."  The "slobbering sisters" went with Maas' and the "scrubs" with G. Jochens.  Went to Trano's.  We measured booths, switched places, had malted milks upset, etc.  Helen Rhuday's birthday.

Bartholomew sounded perfectly fine to me, but in looking for information on the movie itself, I found Grandma was incorrect.  The actor was Richard Barthelmess, someone I had never heard of.  Seems he was kind of a big deal, and was one of the founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to boot.  A little more from wikipedia:

     Russian actress Alla Nazimova, a friend of the family, had been taught English by Barthelmess's mother.Nazimova convinced Barthelmess to try acting professionally and he made his debut screen appearance in 1916 in the serial Gloria's Romance as an uncredited extra. At this time he also appeared as a supporting player in several films starring Marguerite Clark. His next role, in War Brides opposite Nazimova, attracted the attention of legendary director D.W. Griffith, who offered him several important roles, finally casting him opposite Lillian Gish in Broken Blossoms (1919) and Way Down East (1920).

     He soon became one of Hollywood's highest paid performers, starring in such classics as The Patent Leather Kid (1927) and The Noose (1928); he was nominated for Best Actor at the first Academy Awards for his performance in both these films, and he won a Special Citation for producing The Patent Leather Kid. He founded his own production company, Inspiration Film Company, together with Charles Duell and Henry King. One of their films, Tol'able David (1921), in which Barthelmess starred as a teenage mailman who finds courage, was a major success.

     With the advent of the sound era, Barthelmess' fortunes changed. He made several films in the new medium, most notably Son of the Gods (1930), The Dawn Patrol (1930), The Last Flight (1931), and The Cabin in the Cotton (1932), Central Airport (1933), and a supporting role as Rita Hayworth's character's husband in Only Angels Have Wings (1939).

     Barthelmess failed to maintain the stardom of his silent film days and gradually left entertainment. He enlisted in the United States Navy Reserve during World War II, served as a lieutenant commander, and never returned to film, preferring instead to live off his investments.

Impressive stuff, but the summary of the movie does not make me want to rush out and find it, however:

     Karl is the workaholic adopted son while Stephan is the lazy one. They both go to Munich to study medicine and Karl is at the top of the class while Stephan is barely passing. When Stephan's actions causes the death of Anna, Karl is the one who takes the wrap and three years in prison. When he gets out, he finds Stephan is dead and a sick child needs an operation and he does brilliant surgery. This gets him noticed and his mother tells them that he is Stephan Brenner, not Karl Brenner. She tells Karl that he must cure sickness in the world. But, being that he is Stephan, he can no longer marry Lottie, as she is now his sister.

The movie poster is lovely, don't you think?

Enough of movie stuff -- what in the world is Grandma referring to with "slobbering sisters" and "scrubs" and such?  I wonder if she would have remembered from that far back if we would have had the chance to ask her.

Monday, August 4, 2014

The things you learn . . .

May 7, 1932 - Ray turned the machine for me this a.m.  Ola was here for dinner.  Cleaned up the house.  Went to Norfolk with Arnold this evening.  Saw Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. in "It's Tough to Be Famous."  Bridge north of Norfolk not fixed as yet.
May 8, 1932 - Ray came in this a.m. and took me out to Annie's.  She gave me some instructions about the picnic.  Took a picture of the kids.  Was getting ready to have Ray take me to Walker's this p.m., but Arnold and Lydia came.  Was at their place for supper.  Went to the pageant "Life Immortal" at the church this evening.
May 9, 1932 - Nice day today.  Finished giving examinations today.  Minnie asked me to come over to their place tomorrow nite.  Mr. and Mrs. Walker, Mote and I went down to Ed Scheurich's tonite.  The baby surely is sweet.  Stopped at Lou Scheurich's and got some fish.  They caught them last nite and had them in the tank.

I didn't find a movie poster for "It's Tough to Be Famous" but I did find this summary:

"When his submarine, S89, is sunk by an excursion boat, Scotty is the last one left aboard after helping the crew to be rescued. However, Navy divers are able to save Scotty and his heroics make him a hero. Retiring from the Navy as a Commander, he finds that, as a hero, he is in great demand. There are parades. speeches, endorsements, banquets and autographs galore. Even his marriage to his sweetheart Janet is headline news. Everyone wants a piece of Scotty. The only thing that Scotty does not have is his freedom and a life of his own."

This is rather reminiscent of the much more recent movie, "Flags of Our Fathers" detailing what happened in the lives of the Iwo Jima flag-raisers after the famous photo.

I had previously heard, of course, of Douglas Fairbanks, Jr. but did not know of his WWII service.  I found this on wikipedia -- interesting stuff.

In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed him special envoy to South America.

Although celebrated as an actor, Fairbanks was commissioned a reserve officer in the United States Navy at the onset of World War II and assigned to Lord Louis Mountbatten's Commando staff in the United Kingdom.

Having witnessed (and participated in) British training and cross-channel harassment operations emphasizing the military art of deception, Fairbanks attained a depth of understanding and appreciation of military deception then unheard of in the United States Navy. Lieutenant Fairbanks was subsequently transferred to Virginia Beach where he came under the command of Admiral H. Kent Hewitt, who was preparing U.S. Naval forces for the invasion of North Africa.

Fairbanks convinced Hewitt of the advantages of such a unit [clarification needed], then repeated the proposal at Hewitt's behest to Admiral Ernest King, Chief of Naval Operations. King thereupon issued a secret letter on March 5, 1943 charging the Vice Chief of Naval Operations with the recruitment of 180 officers and 300 enlisted men for the Beach Jumper program.

The Beach Jumpers' mission would simulate amphibious landings with a very limited force. Operating dozens of kilometers from the actual landing beaches and utilizing their deception equipment, the Beach Jumpers would lure the enemy into believing that theirs was the principal landing.

United States Navy Beach Jumpers saw their initial action in Operation Husky, the invasion of Sicily. Throughout the remainder of the war, the Beach Jumpers conducted their hazardous, shallow-water operations throughout the Mediterranean.

For his planning the diversion-deception operations and his part in the amphibious assault on Southern France, Lieutenant Commander Fairbanks was awarded the United States Navy's Legion of Merit with bronze V (for valor), the Italian War Cross for Military Valor, the French L├ęgion d'honneur and the Croix de guerre with Palm, and the British Distinguished Service Cross. Fairbanks was also awarded the Silver Star for valor displayed while serving on PT boats and the National Order of the Southern Cross, conferred by the Brazilian government. Among his other exploits was the sinking of the light cruiser Capriole while in command of a mixed division of American PT Boats and British Motor Gun Boats.

He was made an Honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) in 1949. Fairbanks stayed in the Naval Reserve after the war and ultimately retired as captain in 1954.

Sounds like the stuff of movies.

I am giving the Winside history book the day off.