Lloyd heads out early to go to the big city in hopes of finding a new car, but instead comes home with a big surprise for Mary-- a new radio!
The next day she manages to get to the dinner table on her own for the first time since delivering lil baby David on the 14th. Paul, who had been gravely ill, finally goes back to school on Monday after being out for weeks and weeks.
Something different happens here in the diary, too. 1935 pages that were left blank become the pages that she records some 1944 happenings.
Flash forward 9 years. Paul is now a young man. He is getting ready to leave in the US Army. His marriage to Patsy is also recorded.
Mary reports after two days of silence that she is very sick and didn't think she would live. We should probably take her at her word. C.G. comes by, and it is supposed that that is Dr. Grover. He put the "soft pedal" to things and that helped.
As we reflect on our parentage, so does she. She remembers that it is her parent's wedding anniversary. Ovello H. Hemminger and Lenora Francis Wright were married October 20th, 1903 in Columbus, Ohio. Her dad died in a car accident December 9th, 1929, just about six years earlier.
Today is the day. Little David Arthur Benson was born at 12:50 pm, delivered by his father there at their Marion home. Can you imagine the excitement?
Mary reports that she suffered some and didn't have any medicine to help her along. Friends helped out, like Massie, Hellen, Florence and Mrs. Gilbert. Mrs. Bosh was surprised as were some of the other neighbors that the baby had come.
This is Mary's fourth and last child. Happy birthay, baby!
I sure hat to see Paul sick, Mary writes. He has a fever of 103 degrees. There is grave concern. Mary is afraid to tell her own mother who is still recovering from surgery.
She is up day and night with Paul, bathing him to cool him down. Lloyd's adult sons come by and bring ice cream for the little sufferer who now has a fever of 105. Everyone is worried. Will the other kids remain healthy?
Mary's mother is taken to Columbus for a gall bladder operation. Some money got wired to them to make things happen. Was it Florence? Who is Florence? Who is the old maid she doesn't like?
The 28th is Lloyd's birthday. He is 54. He got for his birthday new socks, a tie and a garter. Whoo-hoo. Then he worked on putting pickles up for winter.
The pickling continued the next day as well with Nellie and Massie. Word was also received that her mother, Lenora, would be operated on the next day. Frank, Ida and E. came around midnight to drive her to the hospital in Columbus. She says they had trouble. Today a drive from Marion to Columbus should only take about an hour, depending. She didn't arrive until 5:30 am!
The next day the operation took place. Mary cried and prayed and went without eating nearly all day. She stayed with her mother until about 8 pm.
Three more days without entries. On the 26th we learn that Mary's mother, Lenora, is not doing well. Gall bladder problems.
Two people are mentioned for the first time. Who are they? Uncle W, probably married to Florence as we will see after we turn this page; the other is Miss Irma. Who are they? Lenora did not have a brother with a name that began with a W or a spouse named Florence.
Now that they have had a full pay, things like clothes for the kids are gotten and a washing machine seems like a good idea. $10 wouldn't put them out very much.
I'd love to look at a Marion Star for this weekend to see what show they went to see on Sunday.
Would you believe that the police were prowling the neighborhood looking for the loud radio? Of course, we're talking something like that new swing sound from that new kid Benny Goodman on NBC played over a Philco; not some hip-hop blasting boom box.
Lawrence is mentioned here. He is one of Garnie (Benson) Weaver's kids, the father of Don Weaver, former Morrow County Commissioner who just recently passed away. Also mentioned for the first time here is Emma. Who is she?
Ah, summertime. The family, with the first paycheck in a long while, and a new car, head out for the country to spend time with Grandma Lenora Hemminger. While in the area they stopped over to the cemetery where Mary's pappa Ovella is buried. It is also where Grandma Slane, Ovella's mother, has just recently been buried. They fill in the grave some which has apparently settled some.
Cakes, pies, berries, candy and melon are all mentioned. The kids love getting out.
Grandma Lenora Hemminger write a birthday greeting to Leo with the admonishment to be honest and true. Here is a transcript:
June 29, 1935
My Dear Grandson Leo,
Well dear little boy you are nine years old today and I will send you something later on as soon as I get it for your birthday. I hope you will be a good boy in the coming year and help your dear mother all you can for she needs your help and she did so much for you when you were little and be honest and true so everyone will trust you and put dependence in you and what you say and everyon will like you dear little boy. Best close and wishes from you loving
Shopping. Dress, shorts, toy guns, overalls, sheets and even a mattress! And then there were cherries. They canned 7 quarts.
Harold's wedding is also recorded here. Harold married Goldie L. Pierson. They had one child, Ronald Leland Benson born in Marion in July 1943. Harold was the only child of Albert and Nellie Benson. Albert was Lloyd's brother, and Nellie his 1st cousin.
Mary also writes that the kids played with some fireworks. Also noted was that she also got to hear a story on Levin's radio on Sunday. Imagine that!
Leo had a birthday on the first of July. Leo is Mary and Lloyd's oldest. He was nine years old this birthday. No special celebration was noted. Plans are made to go to the zoo on the 4th of July.
Who is Long and who is Alice that she would hide from them?
Grandma Slane was Mary's grandma Hemminger; she became Grandma Slane after her second marriage to Frank Slane. The burial was at East Liberty, Delaware County, Ohio. She mentions that she was buried near her own father. If you were to visit the cemetery today, you would not find a marker for Grandma Slane.
I once discovered where she was buried. When you turn into the drive at the cemetery, Mary's father Ovello is buried on the right, barely a car length, just as you turn in. Further back on also a tad further in on the drive stands a tall cedar, or at least one did when I last visited the area. This once small cedar marked the place of her burial.
Mary mentions Marion here. He is Marion Weaver, husband of Lloyd's sister Garnie.
Mary notes a significant cultural event on the 13th of June. James Braddock won the heavyweight championship of the world as the 10-to-1 underdog in one of the most stunning upsets in boxing history at Madison Square Garden. Of course, they listened to the match on someone else's radio. They didn't have a radio.
Mary had her toe operated on, going under by the use of ether. She suffers for several days. Family come by to see how she is doing.
Four-year-old Dorothy, or DJ, goes to her first party on Sunday at Mary Lou's. But who is that?
With some money that had come in, it appears that a treat came to the house. A quart of ice cream! Ice cream was one of those things grandma would always bring by our house when visiting when I was a little boy. Thanks, grandma!
Everything I ever learned about Decorating Day, also known as Memorial Day, I learned from my grandma. Here, on the 30th, she notes that she couldn't go to the family graves or take any flowers.
Because I knew she always did this, especially decorating her own mother's grave after she left this world in 1952, I did the same while living in the Morrow County area in the 1990's. The cemetery was located at East Liberty near where her mother Lenora and Mrs. Chambers lived in Porter Township, Delaware County. This cemetery is the first cemetery I remember wandering about in as a child.
The circus is in town. She watched the animals from Gilbert's porch, which strongly suggest that Gilbert's lived on Fairground Street. Homes there face the Marion County fairgrounds across the street. The kids were up early due to the excitement of the big top. They didn't go, but she notes that Harry's do go to the big show on Thursday.
Mary records here blood pressure and reveals that her toe nail and roots must come out according to the doctor. Lloyd's brother Albert drove her over to the doc.
Mary reports on the home improvements going on in the home. It would appear that I am my grandfather's grandson. She writes that my grandpa Lloyd had a "mad spell" and tore up some wallpaper. Hmmm. Sounds sooo familiar. I now just stay clear of wallpapering.
To visit Willard, they took a taxi. Included here is a picture I found on the internet of a taxi at the bus station in Marion in 1938 taken by a photograher named Shahn.
They listened to a radio (not their own, they don't have one) and watched an airplane. Remember, flight is a new thing still.
Maybe the check metioned in the previous pages of Mary's diary came from chain letters. Is that possible? We read here that chain letters were typed up. Guess that means they had a typewriter. No car. No radio. But there's a typewriter.
And what's mother doing running around at 3 a.m.? Strange. Sounds like one of the reasons for visiting at mother's was to help put in a garden. It may have also been their garden and food source. Their lot in Marion was not all that large.