Trumbull – Dear Ced (3) – Sept. 1843

Ced @ 1945

Page 3    1/3/43

Dear Ced:

It seems so in adequate to try to write thank you for the generous money order you sent. I shall try to follow out the spirit of your wish in being your proxy Santa Clause. It is funny you should have mentioned a blanket for this is something I did want very much. I had an idea, also, that this would be an ideal gift for Aunt Betty. I had seen them advertised, and as George Lipovaky’s married sister had worked at G.E. and had been able to get items they manufactured at a lower price than the regular retail figure, I arranged with her to get them for me. I inquired about it from time to time, following the time in October when I gave her the check, but was told stocks were low but they thought they would be able to do something about it, but when the present stock was gone there would be no more for the duration. About three days before Christmas I was informed that there was not a blanket in the place and I therefore had to hastily arrange with Elsie to bring up a blanket from the shop – – not an electric one but the good old-fashioned kind. I’ll try it again later and see if anything happens.

If I remember correctly I took you three older boys one time to call on a friend of mine who taught in Girard College in Phila. and at whose house stayed. I first tasted Philadelphia scrapple there. The name was Gerard. They had a couple of youngsters about your age. He has since died but I got a Christmas card from his wife Elsie. She says: “Betty works for an insurance company and seems happy in her work. Bob graduated from U of P last June with honors – Phi Beta Kappa, although he worked part-time at his college course. He majored in English expecting to teach. The Army got him in Aug and for 15 weeks he was studying in technical school and is now at Patterson Field, Ohio. For the first time since he entered the Army he is happy in his work, doing technical research work for the repair men. He is not at all mechanically inclined and felt his training was such a waste if he had to do actual repair work.” You were pretty small but you may remember them.

A few minutes ago the first siren blue and then the apparatus clanged past the house up Daniels farm road and then the ambulance at full speed. This was too much for Paul, so he and Dick and Jean piled out to see what was cookin. When they returned it was with the news that some one with A, B and C stickers on his car ran into a tree outside of Mrs. Boyce’s house, setting the car on fire, but doing the driver no physical damage, perhaps because he was to acted to know what it was all about. He left company to buy chief Beckwith after the fire had been extinguished and I imagine he will have to do some tall explaining if he wants to retain his B and C books.

I am still trying to find these portable radio batteries. Carl was unable to locate                                                                                                                                                    any, in fact he was bemoaning the fact he could not get any car batteries. Pretty soon will all realize there is a war going on. Dick says he is fast coming to the conclusion that the boys in the Army are the lucky ones and civilians the ones to be pitied. Here’s hoping 1943 brings you all you want most.


Tomorrow and on Sunday, I’ll  be posting another letter from Grandpa to Ced in Alaska, Dan in Pennslylania, and Lad on route to California.

On Saturday and Sunday, I’ll continue the story of Biss and her adventure in StPtetersbirg,

Judy Guion

Trumbull (2) – Dear Dan – Jan, 1943

Daniel Beck Guion - (Dan)

Page 2,     1/3/43

Dear Dan:

I am enjoying reading Don Quixote. I had always planned to do so but for some reason or other never got around to it. To have so nice an addition as a Christmas gift from my literary son is appreciated more than you may imagine.

And speaking of Christmas gifts, I have just received a letter from Ced, enclosing a $50 money order. He says: “It is almost impossible to get anything up here of a native variety, and so I have decided, as have many others, that money was best. For yourself you are to buy a G. E. Electric blanket – – the balance of the money to be used at your discretion, being sure to take care of all the immediate family, Aunt Betty and Elsie and Grandma. I am still out of the Army and still “in the air as to developments”. We have moved, Rusty moving in with a friend, Dick and I taking a lousy apartment which we hope to leave as soon as possible! So, won’t you and Lad both let me know what I can buy here and send you as coming from Ced in the way of a post-Christmas gift.

A letter from Don Whitney asks about each of you boys individually and asks that you write him at 1904 Franklin St., Olympia, Wash., where he is living with his wife. He tells how on July 6 his vacation was interrupted by orders to go to Armored Force Officer Candidate School, Fort Knox, Ky, from which on Oct. 3rd, he was assigned as 2nd Lt. to the  743d Tank Bn., Fort Lewis, Wash., where, as an assistant personnel officer, “the red tape flows freely around me”. He says: “This is my first experience with this section of the country and I am enjoying it very much, in spite of the fact that we are in the midst of the rainy season during which it is a rare day when the heavens do not pour forth moisture in abundance, not to say superfluity. We are practically on the shores of Puget Sound which means that it snows, but seldom, and never stays on the ground. 1907 was the last year there was any natural ice for skating here. Yet you can travel 50 miles inland (if you have a C card) and find a climate approximately that of northern Maine. When the weather is clear, as it is once in a while, we can see Mount Rainier. It appears to be about 5 miles away but is really 80.”

I thought of you yesterday, Dan, old scout, and the energy with which you tackled job after job around the house here when you were home, and spurred on by your example, I thoroughly cleaned the kitchen linoleum. It looked so good after finishing it that I applied a coat of varnish to keep it clean and shiny and then, when they had all gone to bed last night, I gave it a second coat, for good measure. In between times I cleaned the cellar so that it looked as if some fairly respectable people were in residence, so to that extent at least, I started the new year right. Dave took down the Christmas tree (what Butch left of it) so we are now restored to what Pres. Wilson would have termed a state of normalcy.

We are now looking forward to a visit home soon again from you, Lad having up and left for sunnier climes. I hope you spend New Year’s feeling better physically than the week before and that next visit home will find you better able to enjoy yourself.


Tomorrow, page 3 of this letter which Grandpa addressed to Ced. On Thursday and Friday, another letter from Grandpa to his sons away from home.

Judy Guion

Trumbull (1) – Dear Lad – Jan., 1943


TRUMBULL, Conn., Jan. 3, 1943.

Dear Boys:

Notice the date? No erasures, which means that I hit it right the first time this year I have written the date, indicating mental acuteness in spite of advancing years, war weariness, income tax woes, offspring uncertainties or what have you. Just to start the new year right, I shall write each of you a letter, trying not to duplicate on material so that you may each have the doubtful, clandestine satisfaction of snooping into the other fellow’s letter when he’s not around to see what you are doing.

Dear Lad:

Well, that’s a nice way to end the old year! And how hard-hearted of you. Here I have been saving pennies all the year, even robbing baby David’s piggy bank in order to have enough funds to purchase bourbon, Scotch, Irish and gin to go on a little binge all by myself to properly usher in the new year when you have to spoil it all by wiring me on Dec. 31, as follows: “No news was good news. Radiator trouble. Send $30 care Western Union, Tulsa, Okla.” As you did not specify whether the radiator in trouble was the cars or yours, my imagination is left full play. What became (stern voice) of all the alcohol you once had in the radiator? I only hope you will not be reduced to eating sterno with a spoon. However, as you may now have learned (I hope), I duly dispatched to the 30 simoleons with what was intended to be a cheery New Year’s greeting, hoping your head would have cleared sufficiently by that time to be able to read the message without seeing it double. By the way, as an extra precaution to aid in proper identification, I requested they ask your army number, and in less you see some reason why this is not a good idea, I think I shall follow this procedure in the future with any of you boys who ask for funds by wire. A bi-product of your message was the news that you were on your way, and quite possibly you have already arrived at your destination as these words are being written. If you don’t have another attack of girl trouble in as virulent a form as the epidemic that hit you at Flint, perhaps we may hear a bit more of the growth and progress of Corp. Guion. At present, I am sorry to say I cannot reply to any of your unanswered letters. Since Christmas, when Dan staged a bout with old man Barleycorn and used the alcove divan as a first aid dressing station, he has been back in the clutches of the Army, and speaking of clutches, he and Barbara, so the latter informed me, have decided to become dis-engaged, arriving at the decision by mutual agreement. I had a nice letter from Ethel in which she expresses regret that she sort of moved out on us without warning, due primarily to the tremendous task of getting the whole outfit moved so far and so quickly. She says: “We like it so much here and everyone is well and happy. You know how six people eat and there is no domestic help here. We just can’t wait for things to be so you can all come and visit us.” A letter from Roger Batchelder says he is out of the Army and in the Reserve. He says he made the slightest mistake of remarking to the adjutant (a 1st Lieut. who went to the Academy), “Pardon, sir, but when I was carrying a rifle around, you were in diapers”. He told the general about it, resulting in three weeks leave with pay and transferred to the Reserves. I imagine he had a few under his belt when that happened. Some people never learn. He said the only notification of Austin’s death came to him when a hotel clerk showed him the obit in a newspaper.


Tomorrow, a letter addressed to Dan and on Wednesday, a letter addressed to Ced. Thursday and Friday, another letter from Grandpa to all his boys away from home.

Judy Guion

Life in St. Petersburg, Florida (4) – Thanksgiving Was Awful ! (2) – December, 1934

The next day we started for St. Pete at about 10 AM and we got back around 11. I drove about halfway. Then we changed into our bathing suits and went to St. Pete Beach. I stayed on the beach for about an hour then went up to the car and took a nap. We came home about six o’clock. I think we went into town for dinner.

The next day Mr. Bailey and the Farmers came and stayed overnight and we went to the beach the next day. I stayed for about three hours then got in the car and took a nap. In other words every weekend we go to the beach and I get into the car. That last one was a mistake. I got into the car and stayed for a half hour just thinking, when they came up after me and told me to come fishing with them. We fished for about two hours and caught eight fish.

Then we came back and ate on the beach. Mr. Bailey had brought some steaks. We didn’t cook the fish there because it was late and would take too much time to cook.

Is the furnace fixed? I gather that Alfred is the caretaker for the furnace?

I should think you would have saved some money by buying your overcoat now instead of dyeing your spring coat – seeing as you have to buy one anyway. That was like saving $.50 and spending a dollar. Aunt Anne does realize what you are up against because she’s up against the exact same thing.

She suggested $10 and I just added more and didn’t have room to explain the whole thing. That ten was for all my extra expenses including dental work. I have all the books I need at present. Later on I have to get another book for English and one for French.

I will see about the Chamber of Commerce – you know we have no phone, otherwise, I would have given you the number long ago.

Tonsillitis is catching so I don’t think it wise for David to play with her or else you’ll have another doctor bill on hand. It rained a few drops last evening. Cloudy half the day today.

School closes the 21st and opens the 7th. Don and Gwen like anything that Dick or Dave would – Anne – you know. I don’t know what I want although I would like a Hawaiian guitar, fairly good – if possible.



Tomorrow I’ll start letters written in 1943. Lad is starting a new adventure in California with three of his buddies from Aberdeen, Maryland.

Judy Guion

Life in St. Petersburg, Florida (3) – Thanksgiving Was Awful ! (1) – December, 1934

Having had a New England Thanksgiving dinner her whole life, Biss can’t quite accept spending the day at the beach. It just doesn’t feel right!

Wednesday, 3:45

Study Hall

December 5, 1934

Dear Dick,

You forgot to tell me about the Shrine Circus your teacher took you to see. What is your teacher’s name? I am still in seventh period. I was half a minute late yesterday so I

Elizabeth (Biss) Westlin Guion

have to stay one whole hour. Isn’t that the dumbest luck? I have been writing all afternoon and my hand is tired. That is why my writing looks so funny.

What became of that hut out by the playhouse? What were your marks in school? Marks close Friday down here, I think.

Thanksgiving was awful! We went to see Mr. Bailey but I don’t like him and then he took us to the beach. I don’t like the beach either. I saw a peachy collie at the hotel where Mr. Bailey stays. Mr. Bailey is going to spend Christmas with us to. Darn it. If Alfred would come down, which he wants, it would be all right for us kids and I suppose we must make the best of it because he likes Aunt Anne. She is going to see if Uncle Fred won’t come down. I only have 5 minutes of my seventh period left. Aunt Anne is going to call for me and then we are going to the movies. Dave can tell you what one we are going to see. I am sorry my reply has been so tardy but it takes time to write to each one of you and answer your letters. I want to glance over your letter and it is at home – please don’t call me Bets. How was Dick and Mrs. Boyce. Methinks I better write to them.




Thursday, 4:20 PM

December 6, 1934

Dining room

Dear Dad:

You certainly wrote a letter and a half. I will try to answer it fully. Right now Don and Billy are out in back playing marbles. Billy is a little boy who lives across the street. Gwen is out riding on her bicycle. Aunt Anne is over in Tampa at the Farmer’s. She is going to stay overnight so I am chief cook and bottle washer.

I wished that I was home for Thanksgiving. It didn’t seem at all holiday-ish to me. We got up early – 8:15 AM – and got the work done and took baths. At about 10:45 AM we got into the car and drove over to Tampa to Mr. Bailey’s hotel. We arrived at 11:15 and got into our bathing suits.

Then we drove over to the Farmers and waited while Mrs. Farmer and Mr. Bailey got ready. We waited there for about 15 minutes then went down to pick up Mr. Farmer who had to work at his office for a while. We then went to Clearwater to swim. Mr. Farmer changed into his bathing suit there. No one went in until Mr. Farmer was ready for everyone was tired and wanted to rest.

We stayed there until 5:30. I stayed on the beach until 3:30 and then went to the car and took a nap. I don’t like salt water and I don’t like Mr. Bailey so I had more fun in the car.

We went back to the hotel to change and Mr. Bailey took Mr. and Mrs. Farmer home and they changed. They got back in about half an hour. We then ate dinner – which was pretty good considering where we ate it – down in the dining room of Mr. Bailey’s hotel. In the middle of the dinner an old man came in with a collie and stayed for a minute – that was the best part of the whole meal.

By then it was about 7:30 PM so Don and Gwen went to bed or at least lay down on Mr. Bailey’s bed. They all went up two stories and had a get together. I stayed until 10 then went down to the lobby where a girl was sitting. I talked to her for a few minutes and then a boy came and took her out – thank goodness.  At 11 Aunt Anne decided to stay over so we registered and went to bed.

Tomorrow, I’ll finish the letter Biss is writing to her Father concerning other happenings in Florida.

On Monday I’ll begin a week of letters written in 1943. Lad has just arrived in California from Aberdeen, Maryland, by way of Flint, Michigan. He doieasn’t know it but he is about to meet the love of his life.

Judy Guion


Friends – Martin and Flor Williams From Venezuela (2) – July, 1941

Martin and Flor Williams - Trumbull

Martin and Flor Williams visit Trumbull

And now that I have answered most of the points in your letter I will try to give you some of the news around here.

The Ensconatus have been moved to the Siegfus’s house pending move to Cantaura, where they will set up housekeeping again. The house has been given to the Poleo family (you remember him, the radio technician, no?). His wife is very pretty and very simpatica, and their baby girl (about six months) is the most darling thing you ever saw. Although naturally we miss the Ensconatus, I can’t say I’m not so pleased also with our new neighbors; they are very nice indeed. Anita Ensconatus was operated on for appendicitis on Tuesday the 15th, as far as we know to date, is doing nicely.

Frank Borgon, Andy, the Wardlaw’s, Bob Ross, Gutke, Howard and I can’t think who else right at the minute, have left. The Wardlaw’s and Bob will return, thank goodness. The Frost’s arrived and are temporarily installed in the Grubbs house (By the way, Grubbs left for good, and I can’t say I’m not glad). I believe the plan is for them to stay there until the company builds another small house on our row. How long this will take, however, is, well…., you know how those things are.

De la Torre is back from vacation, and Sanchez Martinez has therefore returned to Guario.

The Baiz’s will be terminated on August 5. Maruja came out before they knew about it, but in view of the fact that they will be leaving so soon, Emy has remained in Caracas. Socially I like them tremendously, especially Lucinda, but medically I think this move has been expected for a long time. They will be replaced by a Dr. Delfin Aroila, surgeon, who, I understand, has his own x-ray machine, etc. etc., and if things turn out as the company plans, he will perform operations locally, thus eliminating the necessity of sending everybody suffering from the slightest ailment to Caracas. Let’s hope he’s good.

The Baiz’s leaving will make a big gap in the social season, but then you can imagine that pretty well, can’t you?

John Sheldon, Mr. Sheldon’s oldest boy, is spending some time here in the field. He has been at Guario for about 2 1/2 weeks and I believe he came in here today, although I haven’t seen him yet. The 23rd of this month is his birthday and we have invited him over to dinner, as well as the Pet. Eng. with whom he has been working in Guario. Can you imagine Gruver at our table? Do you think the house, our dishes, and glassware and stand such a tornado? Let’s hope so.

And talking about birthdays and dinners, Claire has invited us over for dinner the 31st, and I think that’s very sweet of her.

Well, Al, something tells me I have taken up enough of your time; I can only hope that I have not bored you; that I haven’t forgotten any bit of news that might be of interest to you.

I believe Sieck will be leaving soon, for good. It’s too bad, he’s such a nice boy.

I don’t know if I mentioned in my last that there was a possibility of our going in September. Well, it’s very doubtful, but what we would like to do is the following. Martin has already ordered a car, with the specifications of the cars the company buys, so that we can travel over these roads safely, to be delivered to his father on August 25th. This can be done whether we go or not, but should we be able to get away, our plan would be to leave here August 29th, catch the clipper of the first of September to Miami, and have Martin’s father meet us there with the car. Do all our tropical shopping down south, visit the Williams’s who have moved to Florida, and then drive north. We would take you in, spent some time in Maine, and if possible go as far West as Minnesota to see the Wrights. This is so far a beautiful dream, after my conversation with Cosh not long ago when he was out here (for just a few hours, as usual) it would seem that it might not work. However, we can enjoy ourselves planning in the meantime, don’t you think?

Well, now I will sign off before you faint.

Give our very best to all who may be interested, and for yourself receive our very very best wishes for a happy future.

Martin and Flor

P.S. Frank Le Ray should have landed in La Guaria the 16th, according to the letter we received from him recently. Although we haven’t heard from Bishop on the subject, rumor has it that he was on the same boat as Frank. We hope so, that’s at least two of our good friends returned.

Since this picture was taken at the Trumbull House, my guess is that Martin and Flor were able to take the trip as planned, although I’m not sure of the date.

Tomorrow i’ll be posting letters from Biss to her Dad from St. Petersburg, Florida where she id staying with her Aunt and two cousins.

Judy Guion

Friends – Martin and Flor Williams From Venezuela (1) – July, 1941


APG - Lad with Flor and Martin Williams in Trumbull

Lad with Flor and Martin Williams in Trumbull

Anzoategui Camp

July 17, 1941

Dear Al,

We received your very nice letter of June 29th in due time, and I’m really sorry not to have answered sooner, but truly I haven’t had a breathing spell in ages. The fact that Mr. Wardlaw left Tuesday the 15th on vacation and Mr. Lodge is in his place for these coming two months doesn’t help much either, because, although Mr. Lorge is the best suited to replace Mr. Wardlaw, there are a million little details that keep coming up in which I have to put in my hand. I don’t object to long, uninterrupted work, except that it interferes with my own letter writing, and by no means do we wish to lose contact with you folk. The plane made its last trip Tuesday for a couple of weeks to change the motor (Paul could change a motor in a couple of days, if I remember correctly), and for this reason this letter may take a little while in reaching you. It is now 4:15, however, and I’m going to dedicate the next 15 min. to you, because it’s no use starting to file at this late hour (that’s as good an excuse as any).

I humbly apologize for my outrage to “TRUMBULL”, but as I pride myself on the fact that I never make the same mistake twice  (if I can help it ), you can be sure that “TRUMBULL” will be done right by me henceforth.

We are truly glad that you are having such a nice time, but naturally regret that you will not be one of the “crowd” anymore (I have to pick up my own glasses after a party now).

Would you believe it, we haven’t heard from Pat or Willie after a couple of letters we received from them written the same day they landed in Caracas. However, I have absolute confidence in them and am sure that they have good reason for not writing. Probably are too busy and unsettled yet. You’ve no idea how much I miss them, really. Claire and Kay arrived very well and we are terribly glad to have them back. You know I always hit it off well with Claire; there is something about her that reminds me of one or the other of my sisters occasionally; and then too, she has always been very sweet to me. We had a party ready for them at their house when they arrived. It was really Mr. Leander’s party and idea but as he went to Caracas to meet them he left me in charge, and between Mrs. Wardlaw, Ruth and I, we fixed the place up, made some sandwiches, etc.

Margot and Tucker seem to be very happy indeed, and I’m certainly glad. It’s a wonderful break for both Margot and Rosemarie, as it must be tough to be left husbandless and fatherless so young. I doubt that I would ever recover if anything like that happened to me.

Little bird is singing merrily as always in spite of being minus one leg, the poor thing. What caused the accident is clear enough; Gloria dropped the cage (the top of which was loose and she had been warned to be careful) and somehow his little leg got caught. We are making a study of nature, and attempting to record it in color (on our camera). In the tree right in front of our house (a very sparse one, in fact) to little gray birds with blue wings and blue tail have made a nest. We have been watching the proceedings since the eggs, and now the two little birds (the children) are almost ready to fly. I have taken pictures of the parents feeding the little ones (which I hope turnout in spite of lack of telephoto lens), and hope to get some shots of the parents teaching the little ones to fly, which is, I believe, the next step.

July 18, 1941

The ungrateful little wretches flew out today (must have been during office hours) without even saying goodbye. And after me feeding them bread crumbs! Humph! I feel slighted.

I’m enclosing your copy of the famous “Reunion” and hope you will cherish it fondly until the date set therein. After all, one year is gone already. Can you imagine?

We certainly hope that you will get a good job, and won’t have to settle for only $30 per month. That sounds pretty awful, but of course, no sacrifice is too much when it means helping your country in critical times; and from the radio news we get here, times seem to get more critical every day. I pray every day that the US can manage to keep from sending men over. I want them to help lick the tar out of Hitler all right but I do hope they can do it without sacrificing any lives.

I’m terribly sorry that you have wasted two trips going to see my mother. When you left I didn’t know it, but since sometime in June she has been with my brother in Long Island. I should have let you know, but it wasn’t until recently that I received her address. It wouldn’t do you any good to give it to you now, as she is sailing for Caracas on August 1. Charlie, my brother, is sailing with her.

Judging by the statistics you give me relating to your dates with Cecelia, I’d say you’re doing all right, keed!

Tomorrow I’ll be posting the rest of this letter, with news from the happenings in Vemezuela since Lad’s departure.

On Saturday and Sunday, I’ll post letters from Biss, the only female in the family, about her new adventure in St. Petersburg, Florida, where she is living with her Aunt Anne (Peabody) Stanley and her children, Donald and Gwen.

Judy Guion