Trumbull – Dear Chilluns – Well, They’re Here – May 26, 1944

Lad and Marian Guion's wedding - Nov. 14, 1943 - close-up with hat and coursage

Trumbull, Conn., May 26, 1944

Dear Chilluns:

Well, there here! They arrived about 11 o’clock Saturday morning. I met them at the railroad station and knew at first glance what I have surmised right along: that my new daughter rated 100%, not only with her husband but with her father-in-law, and I don’t doubt with all her new brothers in law when you have had a chance to get acquainted. With no more than a very short acquaintance to date, I should say her two outstanding characteristics were kindness and a jolly good nature – – a happy disposition and a natural charm that makes everyone like her at once. As she will probably read this I won’t say too much on the subject here and now but I think any family reunions we have, and which of course I am looking forward to, will be all the happier for her presence. It looks as though Lad’s married life would be a peaceful and happy one.

They had an uneventful trip from Los Angeles except in that section of the country where the floodwaters delayed all travel, but stopped and had a fleeting meeting with Aunt Elsie at the Grand Central just before rushing to catch the Bridgeport train. Last night we saw some pictures of the wedding on both movie and Kodachrome slides. They were both pretty tired after so many nights traveling and trying to sleep under difficult conditions so this morning they slept until dinnertime. Biss, Zeke and the two youngsters came over for dinner but Jean had been invited some weeks before to spend the weekend with her aunt, so the family circle was not quite complete.

Right now Marian and Lad are looking over our famous log telling of the famous cruise of the Helen, and from the laughter that bubbles out frequently it seems as though there must have been quite a few funny incidents. I guess I’ll have to look over it myself again to refresh my memory.

The only note this week is a letter from Dave in which he is hopeful of making legal matters in connection with Grandma’s will to be an excuse for catching a furlough in June. He is now completely recovered from the mumps, which I guess was a light case, and is now back in the regular routine. I am waiting to find out if he will continue in radio where he left off.

Mr. and Mrs. Gibson stopped in after church today to see Lad and said Arnold and Alta had started on their motorcycle for San Francisco where he is to be stationed a few days before final acceptance under the contract he had arranged for work at Pearl Harbor. Alta cannot go out there with him immediately but hopes eventually to line up for some sort of job that will permit her to join him later. He sold his Packard, his canoe and the trailer within a day after advertising them in the paper.

Lad, who talked with Aunt Dorothy for a few minutes, says Ted and Helen expect to be in New York this week, that Anne has gone to Vermont presumably for Gweneth’s graduation. Aunt Dorothy is not feeling yet quite up to the strain of wartime train trips but hopes before long to be able to make a visit to Trumbull. Meantime Lad and Marian plan to go to New York someday this week to see them all.

Summons for supper, combined with lack of further news, induces me to forgo starting a second page, so ta ta from

DAD

Tomorrow and Friday, one more letter from Grandpa about Lad and Marian’s trip to Trumbull. Grandpa finally meets Marian. 

Judy Guion

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Friends – Dear Ced From Rusty – Citation – May 24, 1944

Nome, Alaska

May 24, 1944

Dear Ced,

Sure wish to thank you for taking care of frames for me. Will someday show appreciation for lifts you’ve given me. But plans have taken a change with me on these frames being sent here. May have you deliver them later on to someone in Anchorage who may take care of selling my work, as then would only need 2 frames — one gold and one silver to show paintings in — judge type of frame best for pictures I sent to this person in Anchorage — send picture without frame and tell him which kind to use. This is a more practical arrangement. So hold onto them until you hear from me on this score.

Cashed your money order and sent to B_____ of Indian Affairs Office to pick you up some ivory. In same mail came a check from Harry Olson of Anchorage for whom I was going to do some work. But came to find out that they are sending all their ivory ____  to office in Juneau. Next best thing I can do is to pick up stuff direct from natives on trips to Pt. Barrow. Will stop at D_______ where Indian Affairs got ivory was in hopes of getting ____ so I will get the jump on them here over there. But what may be of greater value are whale bone baskets made farther north as the art is slowly passing away and most all this work is real art.

Ice is still reflecting into sky blinding light. Looks like you were going to lose but Army in turning point of war with regard to invasion. We had invasion pool here – month by month — but will not take any chance until month of July. For some reason or other I peg July 5th but who cares what I think anyway. I could be wrong on this psychological analysis. That means — look it up in the dictionary!

You wouldn’t like it here — grapefruit $0.90 apiece — lemons $0.20 apiece. Why should I eat them just because they are not to be had during winter time up here? Never went in for them much before says I to greedy storekeepers so can wait till I get back on the farm someday where fruit will be a carrot (for the eyes) then pounds of tomatoes for the gut.

Was over to the flying preacher’s house at a little gathering tonight and we all turned to pages this and that and sung hymns. Find it rather difficult at times to sing with T___ in the cheek. But soon he is taking me on a trip to ___________  in the Piper Cub. Went down to Solomon with him few weeks ago and attended church with him there. Getting to be quite religious these days and seeing as much of Seward Peninsula as I can. Attended Catholic services at Nulato (?) On way over and was invited to dinner at rectory where I had a delightful repast with Father Band and interesting evening with the 3 sisters. It is nice or good to see how the different men of the different clergy live.

How goes the flying? And how is your Daffy boss treating you these days? Nothing new here — marking time only for the breakup. Old Hankus Morgenthau put his hand and seal to distinguished service citation in behalf of War Finance Program where — upon beautifully centered and over pale blue lithograph of Minute Man is this number, name, with “Rusty” written between C. H. It is a neat little tidbit of parchment but I did so want to get a Purple Heart. Feel wounded as it is so I think that I should – Enuff Stuffy Stuff so’ll be writing you anon – when I have something interesting to tell you.

Best to all friends in Anchorage as ever and thanks again for taking care of the frames.

Rusty

I’ll finish the week with more letters from Grandpa to his scattered family.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Children – War Speculation – May 21, 1944

The Old Homestead

The Old Homestead

Trumbull, Conn.   May 21, 1944

Dear Children:

Your pop has been working like all get out today – – out in the sunshine being a dirt farmer in an effort to make the place look halfway presentable to the homecoming bride and groom. Yes Sir, they really are coming and may even be here this time next week. Lad writes: ”The first Sgt. told me my furlough would start May 24th. If possible I will get the U.P. (Union Pacific) Challenger leaving LA Tuesday at 6:45 PM. We intend to spend one week in Trumbull and one week with Marian’s folks in Orinda”. I would like to quote the letter in full, but the hour is late and I am very much in need of a hot bath before I hit the hay and any hoo, there is a letter from Dan, two from Dave, a six page single spacer from Ced, and I’d watched the sun come up “over China ‘cross the Bay” if I ever tried to quote them all in toto, so you’ll just get a wee sample from each this trip. Take Dan, for instance. His letter is dated April 1st, but the envelope was postmarked May 12th. In it he says: “I must inform you that I can receive no more packages until further notice and may even have to return some that you have already sent – “existing regulation”. Now that looks to us in Trumbull like one more bit of evidence that the long awaited invasion is getting closer. Dave is out of the hospital, with one mump behind him. He omitted any reference to feeling “swell”. He expects to be transferred again but if this has occurred he has not yet signaled the message home. He asks what is the latest dope on how long the war will last, adding “you’d be surprised how little we know of this war after we get into the Army.” I have consulted my crystal ball and have this to report: When will be invasion start? Only a few of the top men know. Possibly no exact date has been set depending on how progress in Italy, bombing results in Germany and the invasion coast for softening up process. How long after invasion starts will it take to get “firm”? Probably weeks, rather than days. Heavy casualties? Yes. Secret weapons? Probably some on both sides. Will paratroops be landed behind the lines? Yes. Will there also be a new Russian push? Yes. When will the war be over in Europe? Best informed opinion believes this year. Dave, in view of your inquiry and interest in the war I am graduating you from the funnies, which was all right for your boyhood with its childhood diseases like MUMPS, to News Week, such as a real he-man like your father reads.

Ced writes a long interesting letter. It is worthy of quoting at greater length than I have time to do tonight, but I will get the high spots. He is going to night school in Anchorage, a 10 week course, five nights a week, two hour sessions, preparing for CAA examination for commercial pilots license. He is supposed to take his pre-induction physical on the 17th, but has hopes of being deferred as men of his age working on the airlines commercially outside the Continental US are subject to deferment. Mail will reach Rusty at Nome, Alaska.

Your birthday, Ced, kind of snook up on me without much warning. Next week, however, I expect to get some kind of a box off to you with a few trinkets to let you know we still remember your visit here a long time ago. All this week I have been wrestling with a lot of government red tape to get those auto parts off to you. The exhaust pipe cost $2.50 and the floor mat $6.50. I had to go to the customs inspector for a number, had to have the paper notarized, had to get a receipted bill from Buick, and the express cost $4.18. I also asked Mr. Whitney to ship you a filter and send me the bill.

If Lad and Marian are home next week I may be too excited to write, so if you don’t hear from me for two weeks blame it on married life. Meantime, don’t stop writing on that account to your

DAD

Tomorrow, a letter from Rusty to Ced, and more letters from Grandpa for the rest of the week.

Judy Guion

My Ancestors (22) – John Guion – 1723 – 1792

(1) Louis Guion); (2) Isaac Guion; (3)Isaac Guion (II); (4) John Guion; (5) Elijah Guion, Sr.; (6) Elijah Guion, Jr.;  (7) Alfred Beck Guion; (8) Alfred Duryee Guion; (9) Alfred Peabody Guion; (10) Judith Anne Guion

 

John Guion, sixth child of Isaac II, was born February 1, 1723. On April 15, 1747 he married Anne Hart [born April 11, 1728- d. February 26, 1814]. She was the youngest daughter of Monmouth Hart who was a descendent of Edmund Hart, who settled in Flushing, Long Island, in 1654. He formed a protest against the Dutch government which forbade them to entertain Quakers. For that he was imprisoned.

John Guion was the father of Elijah Guion. John Guion is worth a little further mention, mainly because he and Anna Hart, whom he married on April 15, 1747, were the greatest breeders in the American Guion family up to the end of the 18th century. Whereas four or five children had contented the other Guion’s so far, John and his English wife had 11. Jonathan (b. 1749) who, fought in the Revolution; Sarah (b. 1751) who married a Haddon; Peter and James, who evidently didn’t marry; Dina and Anna (b. 1755 and 1757) who both married English boys named Knapp; John (b.1762) who was killed in the revolution after he had married a Phobe Heustice;  Abrahm (b. 1765) who married Mary Purdy (the Purdys are a prominent Connecticut family today); Isaac, (b. 1767) who married Elizabeth Wiltsea; Elijah (b. April 19, 1770), our ancestor who married Elizabeth Marshall; and Monmouth (b. 1771) who married Anne Lyon.

It will be perceived that John Guion and Anne Hart had their 11 children over a period of 22 years; thatcovered the French and Indian War, the Sugar Act and Stamp Act troubles, and up to the eve of the American Revolution. So far from participating in these stirring events, I gather that John Guion stuck to his farm and his fishing, bred and reared his family, and was the last man in the colonies to deserve the beating from the British that he received. When Anna Hart Guion died, I don’t know . It’s possible that she was an old lady and at the wedding when her next-to-youngest son Elijah married Major Marshals girl, Elizabeth.

In the 111 years since the first Guion’s had landed, the Huguenots had outlived their clannish this and were mating with English blood as a matter of course. Elijah Guion himself, though he bore a French name, was half English. Elizabeth Marshall was wholly so, with just a sprinkling of Huguenot and of scotch.

Sources:

COLONIAL ORIGINS of the CALIFORNIA GUIONS, An Informal Genealogical Study by Ernest Jerome Hopkins, finished in 1952.

Descendants of Louis Guion,  Huguenot, of La Rochelle, France and New Rochelle, West Chester County, Provice of New York, A Guion Family Album, 1654 – 1976,Compiled by J. Marshall Guion IV, Edited by Violet H Guion, Olean, New York, 14760

A French Huguenot Legacy by Debra Guiou(n) Stufflebean, Expanded and Revised 2nd Edition, LuLu Enterprises, Inc, Morrisville, NC

************************************************

Tomorrow, I’ll begin a week of letters written in 1943.All of the boys are serving Uncle Sam in one way or another. Grandpa continues to hold down the fort in Trumbull.

Judy Guion

Voyage to California (13) – John Jackson Lewis – January to March, 1851

(1) John Jackson Lewis, (2) Edith May (Lewis) Rider, (3) Marian Faith (Rider) Irwin, (4) Marian Dunlop (Irwin) Guion, (5) Judith Anne Guion.

The following are transcriptions of John Jackson Lewis’s diary and journal of his voyage to California in 1851. He was travelling  from New York to visit his older brother William in San Jose.

Diary

Spent most of the day in writing. A number of persons, bound for San Francisco, combined to-day for the purpose of trying to get a passage at a reduced price, and in the evening 22 tickets for the New Orleans were contracted for at $75, each to be taken out tomorrow morning. Tickets have been selling at auction today in the streets, for $52-$76. A number of miners returning from Cal. passed through Panama on to-day. They do not give very encouraging reports, but they generally look healthy though rather rugged.

Journal

Spent most of the day writing. A combination was formed to-day, among those bound for San Francisco, and a committee appointed to endeavor to procure a passage at a reduced price. The prospect this evening is that steerage can be obtained for $75; cabin $150. This we think will do very well. Tickets for the steamer Antelope were selling at auction to-day in the street, at prices varying from $52 to $76 for steerage, but whether the sales were real or sham I was not certain. A number of Californians have passed through this place since my arrival here, on their way home. They appear to be nearly all unsuccessful miners, and well satisfied to get away from the country. They represent the winter as having been unusually unprofitable to the miners of the dry diggings, from the extreme scarcity of rain. Many of them threw up large banks of earth with the intention of washing them out when the rains set in, who from the want of it, left them and abandoned the country. They are a rugged looking set of fellows, but they generally look well and hearty. Indeed I have seen but little sickness since landing on the Isthmus, – three or four cases of fever constituting almost the entire amount. One of my fellow passengers in the cabin of the Cherokee was sick when I left the vessel, but he is now here apparently well and in good spirits. He says he and the fever parted company at Chagres, and have not known each other since. Our committee this evening agreed to take 32 tickets for the steamship New Orleans, at $75 steerage; $150 cabin, offered to leave a list of names, and pay part of the money, but the agent told them it was needless, – they might come to the office at 9 o’clock, and the tickets should be made out at those prices.

Tomorrow, more about My Guion Ancestors in New Rochelle, New York.

On Monday, I’ll begin posting letters written in 1944, when all five sons are serving Uncle Sam.

Judy Guion

Army Life – Lad Writes From Camp Santa Anita, April 28, 1943

This letter gives you a pretty clear picture of Lad’s life right now. He’s out socializing, probably with my Mom, and teaching during the day.

apg-camp-santa-anita-april-28-1943

Camp Santa Anita

April 28, 1943

Dear Dad –

Again, weeks have passed. I just have too good a time to sit down and spend some of it writing, and I really should. However, you can rest assured that if anything of importance happens, you shall know of it. No news will be good. I have definitely decided to keep the car, but not as you suggested. I am sending you a check for $525 and will try to send you $100 more within the month.

Tonight I’m again on company duty, but instead of C.Q., I’m Corporal of the Guard. The few times I’ve been on company duty are so infrequent that I really have nothing to complain about. For instance, tonight is the first night I have stayed in camp since I got here January 9, with the exception of that first night, due to quarantine.

It seems that the course in Diesel Engine Principles has finally gotten through to the right authorities by fair or foul means, and pressure has been applied to the effect that the course is to have its first sanctioned appearance on May 3, if it can be put into workable shape by then. Art Lind and I have been working on it and it looks possible. We are hoping.

Our new showers have been opened in the camp with plenty of hot water. There are 197 of them, so we no longer have to the go to the Y in Pasadena to get a hot shower, and speaking of cleaning up – my razor finally begin to show signs of excessive wear, so I turned it in for a new Schick Colonel – eight dollars. The new one operates very nicely. If you remember, you sent me a clipping concerning the need for men with the knowledge of other languages? I had taken you on it, but nothing as yet has been heard from it.

Don’t worry about my operator’s license. I have already written to Hartford asking them to send them to me, but if they come to Trumbull, please forward them. As regards grandmother you, I believe, did the right thing. Personally, I certainly would never have even hesitated, as you probably know. My love to all, and to all a good night –

Laddie

Tomorrow, another segment of the Diary and Journal of John Jackson Lewis regarding his Voyage to California in 1851.

On Sunday, more about the early lives of my Guion Ancestors in New Rochelle, New York. 

Judy Guion

Trumbull – To My Dear Little Easter Bunnies (3) – News About Friends and Family – April 25, 1943

Alfred Duryee Guion

A nice long letter from Jean revealed that she is having a real vacation, is getting a real Florida tan, sees Dick every evening and doesn’t know when she will be home.

The last word from Grandma is that she is coming to Trumbull but just when has not been decided. Every day now the weather ought to be getting pleasanter, particularly if the laws of compensation work out, as we have had a most unspringlike April, and May ought to be really good.

A postal from Aunt Helen reveals she is in Mexico City for a while where they have enjoyed most of all hearing some good operas. She likes the climate in contrast to that in Florida. Of course you know Mexico City is situated at a high altitude.

Aunt Betty sends her love to all. Carl has bought a small boat and is probably off in it today.

Now just a few intimates for various members:

Dan: enclosed is your drivers license for 1943. Be sure to sign it as instructed.

Ced: I don’t know how it happened but someone saw your ad about parts for the Buick, and while there is considerable doubt as to whether parts are available, if it is possible they will be duly purchased and shipped.

Lad: did you get your birthday fountain pen?

Jean: the old place doesn’t seem so sunshiny and cheery without you, but your letters help.

Dick: your life insurance premium has been paid and I did what you told me to do on the and of my shirtsleeve.

Paul has sought and received permission from Mrs. Ives to use the back part of their lot for a Victory garden. He has gotten Mr. Reynolds to plow it. Victory Gardens around here are quite the rage. Howland’s (Department Store in Bridgeport, CT) has rented a separate store to sell garden supplies of all kinds. The lumber companies are making a specialty of prefabricated chicken coop’s and tool houses. (I know for I am handling the advertising of some of them.)

Red (Sirene) goes Thursday for induction and then has about a week before he actually gets into the swim. Dave is bemoaning the fact that all the young fellows here are in the service and he is champing at the bit and would away. “Joseph, being 17 years old was feeding the flock with his brethren. Now Israel loved Joseph because he was the son of his old age; and he made him a coat of many colors”.

Oh, well, good night.

DAD

Grandpa has brought everyone up to date on what everyone else is doing. He held the family together during a very trying time for each of them, for various reasons. I wonder if the boys realized how much these weekly letters meant to them and if they ever told their father.

Judy Guion