Alfred Duryee Guion – The Beginning – (24) I Quit My Job Cold

Grandpa and Arla have moved to Trumbull with five children and Grandpa is still working in New York City. He continues the story:

sol-alfred-duryee-guion-at-time-of-weddingA.D. – Meanwhile, I was having serious commuting problems. Each winter the trains were frequently late, which, together with the antagonistic attitude of my immediate boss at the office, made my frequent late arrivals at work increasingly disagreeable incidents. Also, the 7 mile auto ride to and from Trumbull in all kinds of weather, the 2 1/2 to 3 hour train ride to Grand Central, followed by a crowded subway ride to the battery, and this twice a day, not only was physically exhausting but also necessitated

Arla Mary Peabody Guion - portrait

Arla Mary Peabody Guion – portrait

my leaving home early and arriving home late. There seemed only one sensible alternative – to seek employment in Bridgeport. A letter campaign from New York to Bridgeport manufacturers proving unfruitful after months of vain effort, in desperation, I resolved on drastic measures. With five little ones to feed and clothe I simply had to get a job, so burning all bridges behind me, I quit my New York job cold to wage an all-out on-the-job search to find something in Bridgeport. To make this step was one of the most difficult decisions of my life, but within two weeks I became Assistant Advertising Manager of the Bridgeport Brass Company and a few months later, Advertising Manager, which job I held until I left to start an advertising agency of my own.

Dave

Dave

DAVE – You have to realize that back in those days, only the lowest of the low would swear or cuss or use bad words of any sort so what would have been shocking in those days is absolutely nothing today. My father was Advertising Manager of the Brass Company and Bridgeport Brass Company had to plants. The one that was on E. Main St. had a great big sign on top that said BRIDGEPORT BRASS COMPANY. I don’t know how it fell under Dad’s responsibility, but at any rate, he got a frantic call one night, “You’ve got to come down to the plant. We’ve got a big problem. People are calling it – – – blah, blah, blah.” It seems that the B and the R in the BRASS had failed so that what they had was a big sign that said BRIDGEPORT ASS COMPANY. This was an incredible thing. Dad managed to square it away by making a few phone calls to the electricians and they quickly found the problem and fixed it.

A.D. – in Trumbull we became interested in local activities. A local volunteer fire company was started in which I was a charter member. To raise money to buy firefighting equipment we ran annual carnivals which were successful for many years, and in which the old Waverley electric car played a part.

Cedric Duryee Guion

Cedric Duryee Guion

CED – we still have a series of pictures of the old Waverley in the backyard. Rusty and some of his friends, my mother and my aunts, all dressed up in these beautiful period costumes from the 1800’s that were in good condition in the attic. They all dressed up in these close and we took pictures of them in the Waverley. Rusty pretended to be the groom and Aunt Dorothy was the bride. Rusty had his stovepipe hat on and all the ladies were all dressed up. Of course, the Waverley didn’t have any tires on it but it looked nice.

We kept the Waverley electric car in the barn. Dick, poor Dick, got all excited about the war effort. He thought, “Well gee, here’s this old junk and it’s pretty well shot.” The fire Department was looking for scrap metal. Dick was very patriotic and he thought he’d give them the Waverley, and at the same time, help the war effort

A.D. – I became Justice of the Peace, and Judge of the local traffic court. Later, for two terms, I served as the town’s First Selectman, during which time we celebrated the 300th anniversary of the town and also saw an old mine property converted into a public park. Arla became President of the Women’s Community Club, and was active in the Parent Teachers and other civic affairs, especially where common sense and sympathetic help was needed.

Tomorrow, I’ll be posting letters reflecting life of two relatively nerw Army Recruits. Dan, who was drafted in January, is in training in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina, but there are rumors flying that they will be moving soon. Lad is at the Aberdeen Proving Grounds , Aberdeen, Maryland, training in mechanics for the Army.

Judy Guion

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