Friday, March 31, 2017

Mail Call: 31 March 1935 (George)

George Potter in Cabool, MO to his daughter Mary in St. Louis, who has recently gotten a raise in pay.

Mary is applying for government jobs in Washington, DC, but George is concerned that the upcoming 1936 election might put FDR out of office and his administration's hires out of work.

Mary is being dunned by the Draughon's Business College (Tulsa branch) for her school debts and is advised to try to pay it off in installments.

Despite their problems, the Potters have taken in a 7 week old baby and Gladys is looking after the mother, who has been diagnosed with tuberculosis and is not expected to live.  Later census records show that mother and baby survived, but they are mentioned in only one later letter (12 April 1935).

Pat (the favorite dog) has wandered off and gotten pregnant, so George expects to have to drown the pups.

"Lillian Johnson Barton":  see the mention of the Barton house burning down in the Feb 2 letter.

"Mrs. Brooks" and "Soph" (Elaine): see the March 18 1935 letter from Gladys.
"Pat" is the most often mentioned of the dogs and presumably a favorite.  Other farm dogs include Smoky Joe, Poochie and Egbert (who specialized in falling off the porch).

"Walt" is George's brother-in-law in East St. Louis, his sister Dora's husband.
The "Parkers" are George's sister Emma and her husband Silas Parker in Corry, PA

Note from Mary Potter. on the reverse of page seven..the four pages of blank writing paper must have been folded over the cash she sent from St. Louis and then reused for this letter.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Mail Call: 18 March 1935 (Marjorie)

From Marjorie Potter in Cabool (Age 11) to her sister Mary in St. Louis.

The fun in this letter is on the second page; Sixteen year old brother David has been snatching his sisters' gum and gets shut out of the house for dinner.  He manages to improvise for himself and does not go hungry,

Thanks to cousin Linda Rauk for this letter, which Mary had returned to Marjorie in the 1980's

Mail Call: 18 March 1935 (Gladys)

Gladys Potter in Cabool, MO to her daughter Mary who was working for a  bank in St Louis.

A neighbor, Mrs. Arch Brooks, criticizes Elaine (20 years old at the time) for her un-ladylike posture and gets an earful.  "Mrs. Brooks runs her house and I guess she is going to try and run our house also."  Unfortunately, as the Potters get much neighborly support from the Brooks family, Gladys doesn't seem to feel that she can really tell her off.

Gladys takes the farm off the market for now.

Lots of rain, too much to plow the garden, but the car gets stuck in the mud.

Note:  "Mrs. Brooks" is Claudine Celestine Rivry Brooks (1885-1967), Arch Brook's second wife.
She was born in France and moved with her family to Kansas in 1897 and then on to Cabool in 1903.
The Rivry estate plus the Brooks land surrounded the Potter farm.

"Marshal Brooks (1899-1951)" was neighbor Arch Brooks' brother, one-time local lawman, and real estate agent,

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Mail Call: 4 March 1935 (Gladys)

From Gladys Potter to her daughter Mary, now living in St. Louis after having moved out of Dora's place in East St. Louis.  Shorter commute to the bank, less drama, possibly better food.

"They (i.e., Gladys' sisters-in-law Emma and Dora) all have the darndest dispositions, easy to be hurt but don't care who (sic) feelings they hurt they are all alike, too"

Walter is Walt Bremerkamp and Dora is his wife (George's sister) .  They lived in East St. Louis.

"Dora treated Lillian" would be George's late sister Bessie's daughter Lillian Johnson
by then back with George's sister Emma in Pennsylvania.