Trumbull – Dear Dan and Dave (1) – Discharges and Ced is Home – November, 1945

Trumbull, Conn., Nov. 11, 1945

Dear Dan and Dave:

You to being the only outlanders left, the salutation above is correct, although on second thought, it was only about five minutes ago that Lad and Marian left for Aberdeen to make that their temporary home until he is discharged, their hope being that their sojourn will not be long and of course they are hoping to get home on a pass for Thanksgiving. However, they took along a limited amount of housekeeping utensils so that if they are stuck there for any length of time, they will have the ways and means of existing until the Army order finally comes through. Anyway, they will thus have an opportunity of celebrating their wedding anniversary together, which otherwise might not have been possible in view of the fact that obtaining another pass so soon after the one this week, might be difficult to secure. It was Marian’s birthday today so we were able to celebrate that en masse anyway. By all the laws of reason, Lad should be permitted to file his request for discharge in accordance with recent public announcement from Army headquarters, but due to a technicality in the wording, Lad not being on furlough or assigned to temporary duty, is not eligible. Dick is due for return to a camp in South Carolina the day before Thanksgiving, but is today writing for transfer to Fort Devens, which, if granted, with the necessary traveling time, will give him until after Thanksgiving to report there and file his request for discharge. Here’s hoping. As far as we can figure it out now, Aunt Elsie, Anne and Gwen (Stanley) and perhaps Lad’s friend in Aberdeen will be here for Thanksgiving, besides of course, Ced, Dick and Jean, Aunt Betty, myself and I hope Lad and Marian. The Zabels go up to their Trumbull in-laws for that day and here for Christmas. Aunt Helen (Peabody Human) has gone to the Bahamas to join Ted (Human, her husband), and Don Stanley is overseas somewhere.

Ced, in Alaska, with, I believe, a company plane.

          I mentioned Ced. Yes, he’s home. Got home Wednesday night and came in almost like Santa Claus. We were all sitting around the kitchen table, supper just being over, when in through the dining room walks Ced, as nonchalant as you please, having scorned to come in the back door, choosing rather to shinny up the front porch, onto the roof and in through the hall window, this procedure being necessary by virtue of the fact that I had put up storm windows on all the French doors on the ground floor and the front door was locked. He had flown down from Anchorage to Seattle in his own company plane and from there took the train to Ohio, where the Taylorcraft two-seater plane he had ordered was being built. Thence by train to New York, where he stopped in to see Elsie and Aunt Anne before “dropping in” on us here. I am going to ask Ced in a minute to write you a little more about the plane, etc., so I will not go into further details on that now.

The new furnace is in and working (but not paid for yet), and thanks to Dick and Ced, all the storm windows are up — the first time in many years, it seems, that I have not had to do this job myself. I doubt if they realize how much of a help they have been, as Saturday afternoons and Sundays furnish so little opportunity to do what is necessary. Also the little time Lad has been home he has been a great help in furnace regulation and other jobs of a mechanical nature that have needed to be done for a long time. It’s been so good to have three of the boys home together, but naturally only 3/5 as good as the ultimate. Anyway it’s the biggest score we’ve had in quite some time.

Tomorrow, Wednesday and Thursday will complete this long letter from Grandpa to Dan and Dave, and on Friday I’ll post a note from Marian.

Judy Guion

Special Picture # 261 – A Memorable Day for Ced – 1920’s

 

 

 

 

The following is from the Memories of Cedric Duryee Guion (Ced, son #3). I honestly don’t know if this picture was taken on the same day or if they did this on more than one occasion. I can’t identify each of the individuals in this picture, but my guess is Grandma Arla and her sisters are there. I also think the little boy in front is 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 clothes 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.”

Images of Waverley Electric cars:   https://www.google.com/search?q=waverley+electric+car&rlz=1C1NHXL_enUS724US724&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjy_d2KouLVAhVFZCYKHTZmBkcQsAQINA&biw=1448&bih=689

History of the Pope-Waverley manufacturer: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope-Waverley

Trumbull – Dear No. 2 son and No. 3 son – No News From No. 3 Son – February, 1942

Ced @ 1945

Trumbull, Conn., Feb. 8, 1942.

Dear No. 2 boy and No. 3 boy:

This morning as I arose late, as is my wont of a Sunday morning, and glanced out of my bathroom window up toward the cluster of buildings we associate with the name of Knect, I saw but bare brown fields intervening instead of the snow-covered landscape. Only in our own driveway were isolated patches of ice to remind one that a few days ago a real winter landscape was our portion. The change is due to the fact that for the last two days a steady rain accompanied by a plus 32 degrees of temperature cleared the snow off into the swollen streams. (Exciting way to start a letter, n’est sai pas?)

We are at times driven to such little subterfuges as referred to parenthetically above by the realization that there is little news of importance to record and yet at the same time we are faced with the realization that both Alaska and Virginia are hanging on desperately waiting for news from home, as home, in turn, is waiting just as eagerly for news from you. I have lost track of the number of weeks that have passed since hearing from Ced.

Your letter, Dan, postmarked Fort Belvoir on Feb. 2nd is the last we have heard from you. The scissors and the three Spanish books you asked for were parceled and posted to you last week. I feel a bit guilty about not sending the $10 by return mail but as the scissors was the only item marked “urgent” and as you are quarantined for two weeks and unable to leave camp there didn’t seem any need for funds. For my guidance the next time you need funds will you please let me know whether you would have any bother cashing a check, as I would feel much safer mailing a check than I would five or ten dollar bills. Of course I could have sent you 10 one dollar bills at once but that seemed rather bulky. Anyway, to stop the argument here is the ten.

Now as to the income tax, sure I will pay it, if it is made out in ink and properly signed. The copy I saw, as I recall, was made out in pencil. Do you happen to recall what you did with either copy.

It seemed as though you were sober when you wrote the letter because it is quite rational and your sense of humor was very evident even to the addressing of the letter to me care of Aunt Betty, which little touch by the way she duly appreciated, but between that time and the time you put your return address on the back you must have bent your elbow too often resulting in a slight befuddlemenet of faculties in that Pvt. D. Guion gives his location as Co. D, 4th Btn. ERTC, Ft. Devens, Va. Oh well, we have to be understanding with these boys in love.

My last word of advice to you before we pass on to dishing out a few scathing remarks to Ced, is to be sure to get up in ample time in the morning so you won’t keep the captain waiting breakfast for you.

To Ced: As for you, you great big lanky backslider, is your brain so far from the writing finger on your long arm that it takes all this time to get an action message from one tother? First I blamed the delay to Uncle Sam but I’m getting a little suspicious along about now. Tell Rusty he better jack you up or I’ll be blaming him. Come on, loosen up and tell me what’s happened during the last month. I still have somewhat of a fatherly interest in you.

Aunt Betty sends her best to both of you, but this is one of the many things you may take for granted. Spring must be coming. I got a seed catalog yesterday and we turn the clock ahead tonight.

DAD

 This entire week will be filled with rather short (for Grandpa) letters filled with the usual news of family and friends to Dan, in the Army, and Ced, in Alaska.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Remnants of a widely scattered family (1) – News From Ced – November, 1945

Trumbull, Conn., November 4, 1945

Dear Remnants of a widely scattered family:

Lad came home again this weekend but still has nothing definite to report as to his future with the U.S. Army. He has presented to the Army authorities a request from Socony-Vacuum(the company he worked for in Venezuela from 1939-1941) asking that he be released so they can employ him in a civilian capacity after giving him some training. Possibly when next he comes home, he may have some news on this. According to newspaper reports, which of course have not proven 100% correct in the past, Dick should be released when he finally goes back to report the day before Thanksgiving (if you please). That leaves Dan still with a flock of “firsts” to his credit — first in the Army, (referring to you boys, of course), first in France, first to marry outside of the USA, first to be discharged, first to get a post-war job, but alas, NOT first to come home. Oh, well, you can’t have everything.

And Ced let loose a small atomic bomb in P.O. Box 7 this week — the nice kind of explosion, and small only in a relative sense. He writes he expects to get home for Thanksgiving — but here, I’ll let him speak for himself: (letter dated Oct. 24th from Anchorage, received Oct. 31st.) “Planning to have Thanksgiving dinner in Trumbull, I hope. Probably arriving in a new 2-place Taylorcraft. It is now 9 P.M. I am due at work at 5 A.M. tomorrow to send out the Juneau trip, so will make this brief. There is more work for me to accomplish before I leave than I can ever hope to do and I am about to go stark-raving mad. The Ski Club is stirring around on winter sports and election of officers, I should do some work on the Buick, straighten out all my clothes and belongings, as Morgans plan to sell their house. They are going to settle near Los Angeles after Chuck leaves the Army. (Chuckie died of appendicitis two months ago but two weeks ago, a new boy was born named Douglas. I will stop off for a visit with them in Seattle. Of course I have not enough time to do even the ski club work, as affairs at Woodley’s have been in turmoil and we’ve had lots of overtime. My finances are in a sad state and I may have to send you a hasty “gimme” wire one of these days, that I am hopeful of making the grade — at least till I get back there. I’d hate to ask you for funds, especially after the island deal — isn’t it fine to have the island, tho? We’ve had cold and blowing and snow this last week — miserable fall weather. See you all soon. Ced”

Now that, dear children, is a sample of a short letter that says a whale of a lot, and what a big wave of gladness it brought with it. Of course Ced, we’d like to hear all the details about the plane and your plans for the trip, but that all can wait until you get here, under the circumstances, particularly as with all you evidently have to do, there won’t be time for lengthy correspondence, so even if we don’t hear from you again until you glide down at the Stratford Airport, it will be O.K. incidentally, I know a Trumbull family that would like to be on hand to see you make that landing at the Stratford Airport. And of course if you need funds, your dad hasn’t failed yet to come across when called upon and it’s rather late in the day for him to start anything different. My credit seems to be still good at the bank even when the balance gets microscopic. It’s worth waiting a long time to get a letter such as this, with that kind of news and I wouldn’t mind even waiting as long as that again if it brought equally good news with it, each time.

Page 2   11/4/45

One of the boys that was with Lad’s outfit in France, came home with him this weekend. He is quite an amateur photographer and has just come in and snapped a picture of me at the typewriter writing you my weekly letter. If it comes out O.K., I shall send you a copy.

Grandpa, Marian and Lad, Jean and Dick  and Aunt Betty Duryee, in the kitchen of the Trumbull House.

Last time he came home with Lad he took a family group in the kitchen which came out well and when he goes to his home in Chicago, probably for Thanksgiving dinner, he expects to make up some prints. And speaking of photos, Dan makes a plea to send him recent photos of you all, and sets a good example by sending one of himself which I am sending on to you, and hope you will reciprocate. Dan’s address is Mr. Daniel B. Guion, O.T.C.Q.M., UST Graves Reg. Serv. Hq., TSFET (rear), APO 887, c/o P.M., New York City.

I have not the slightest idea what all these initials stand for but here’s a stab in the dark. (Maybe someday Dan will enlighten us), Officers Temporary Corps, U.S. Quartermaster, U.S. Temporary Graves Registration, Temporary Service Force, European Theatre.

For the rest of the week, I will have additional portions of this five-page letter.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Dan and Ced (2) – A Long Snake With Bulges – February, 1942

2/1/42    page 2

Very little news to record. This morning after getting the dinner started I was lured by the sunshine and fairly mild temperature (40 or so). I set out for a walk at 11:15, intending to walk up the old railway roadbed as far as the reservoir and beyond it, try to find some means of crossing the feeder stream and coming home on the east side. However, due to the heavy rain all day yesterday, the river was so much in the state of flood that I could find no place to cross until reaching Whitney Avenue, then I struck in back of the old mill but must have trended too far east because after traveling by dead reckoning for over an hour I finally came out back of Footherap’s. I reached home at 1:45, 2 ½ hours of steady walking without any rest. At an average of possibly 4 miles an hour chalks up 10 miles with no apparent ill effects except a healthy leg tire.

Business with me is dragging along the bottom during January we hardly did enough to warrant keeping open. If there had been any wolves in the vicinity they have walked right in the open door. I am waiting to see if this is the permanent state of affairs with the war on of the tax situation as it is or whether it is just a temporary lull for adjustment. Food prices are skiting. Dick asked me to get some boiled him for sandwiches. $.70 a pound is the present price.

I heard the other day that Dick Boyce is married and that Bob Kascak has joined the Navy. Household tragedy – – Dave, in carrying a full oil bottle for the kitchen stove hit it on the cellar stairs, smashed it to bits and splashed two gallons of kerosene over his trousers and nether extremities. No one was handy to apply a match or my youngest might have gone up in smoke. At that, he did almost enough cussing to ignite anything within respectable flash point.

Dan, if my memory serves me right, the law requires that when you change your address you are supposed to notify the Dept. of Motor Vehicles. Probably if you do not do any driving down there you can get away with your permanent address as Trumbull. Are you still legally the ownee of the car Dick is driving around?

DPG - with Zeke holding Butch

Dave keeps up fairly well with his school marks, the last report card giving him 70 in the Spanish and History, 75 in English, geometry 90. And that’s about all for this trip.

DAD

Tomorrow and Sunday, more Special Pictures.

On Monday I’ll begin a week of letters written in 1943. Lad and Marian are very serious and planning their wedding. Let’s hope that Uncle Sam agrees with their plans.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Dan and Ced (1) – A Long Snake With Bulges – Feb. 1, 1942

Biss - with Butch and family - 1940

Dan Guion, the first one in.

Trumbull, Conn. Feb. 1, 1942

Dear Dan and Ced:

Over the months, the number of carbon copies comprising my weekly letters waxes and wanes. If I should draw a diagram of them over the course of a year it would look like a long snake with bulges here and there, some larger, some shorter, some quite bulgy as though said snake had swallowed an ox and others and some, like the present, with two boys away, indicating the swallowing of only a rabbit or so.

For your information, Ced, Dan, after leaving Shelton, or Derby, went to Fort Devens near Ayer, Mass., where he stayed for just a week. Then came a postal dated January 28th, reading as follows: “Here it is! Engineers Replacement Center, Belvoir, Va. I am one of about 50 who is being sent to the destination of my choice. Most recruits go where they are needed, willy-nilly. Luck, wot? Belvoir is about 20 miles from Washington, D.C. I don’t know any particulars of my address or station but the future will soon disclose my lacking details. I leave Devens at 5 PM tonight (Wed) via (presumably) Pullman.” And that is the last I have heard directly from my soldier son except that Dave mentioned Barbara having received a card from Dan saying he had reached Washington.

Last week’s mail also brought a card from the local Draft Board granting Lad a B-1 rating until April. I had heard that both the President and Vice President of Producto had gone to bat for Lad on the basis that the company is doing 100% war work, and he, as head of the shipping department, fills an important post – – and incidentally filling it in a manner, so I learned, better than it has been filled by any previous man on the same job.

And as for you, Ced, my erring one, you know what the Governor of North Carolina said to the Governor of South Carolina, don’t you? “It’s a long time between drinks” and that applies to letters from Alaska. I just live on hopes as each day sees me fumbling with eager hands at the combination of P.O. Box 7. It is well, as some poet once remarked, that hope springs eternal in the human breast. There is one thing worse than no letter at all and that is to peek through the glass, see in the box and airmail envelope from Alaska, and then find it to be addressed to an absent brother and have the latest news tantalizingly locked up inside and legally padlocked by Uncle Sam. That to my opinion calls for the exhibition of remarkable qualities of self control on the part of one whom modesty prevents mentioning by name. As soon as we know Dan’s mailing address this small piece of torture will be forwarded to him. But for future guidance, don’t think you have written the letter home under such circumstances.

Needless to say, Dan, we were all jubilant here to learn the news conveyed by your card. So you ascribe it to luck, hey? Well, I’m not so sure. The Century Dictionary defines luck as “that which happens to a person by chance”. I don’t recall hearing that any of the great philosophers have ever written an essay on luck, but it might profitably be a subject for investigation. What proportion of luck consists in having improved passed hours and days so that when opportunity delivers its w.k. knock, there is not so large an element of chance in the preparedness of the person after all. The whole subject would be worth a little more probing. It might form the substance of a fireside chat – not the White House kind, but one of those interesting topics of conversation that to my mind are not indulged in as much as they merit, being crowded out of place by clever wisecracking (which is pleasing and has its place but should not be indulged in to the exclusion of all else), neighborhood gossip, argumentative subjects like the war, politics, religion, etc., but an opportunity to explore the other fellows mind and stimulate some extemporaneous thoughts and possibly unearthing points of view quite new and unique. Someone once said the art of conversation was a lost art and I have wondered if he did not mean something similar to what I have tried to get across above.

Tomorrow, I’ll finish this letter. 

On Saturday and Sun day, more Special Pictures.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Ced – Every Week The War Gets Closer to Home – January 18, 1942

CDG - Birth Certificate from Kemper - Jan, 1942

January 10, 1942

Mr. Cedric D. Guion

Box 822

Anchorage, Alaska

Dear Cedric:

The enclosed birth certificate is in response to your father’s request which I received this morning; and it is being mailed to go by air. Trust you will receive it promptly.

Tab I am delighted about your being active in airplane work as it seems to me probable that it will be one of the fastest growing industries for quite a while to come.

Ethel and I hear occasionally and with a great deal of interest the letters that you write to your grandmother and other members of the family.

Kind regards.

Sincerely,

(Kemper Francis Peabody, Grandma Arla’s brother)

KFP:MG

 

 

Trumbull, Conn., January 18, 1942

Dear Ced:

Every week the war gets closer to home. Last Wednesday Lad received notice of reclassification in A-1 and while Producto will try again for his deferment he does not think there is much chance of it’s going through. He was wondering today if it would not be a good stunt for him to enlist with the idea that in so doing, he could more or less choose the branch of service he would prefer, rather than wait to be drafted and thus be deprived of a choice. In that event I believe he would prefer the Navy. However, this was more thinking out loud than it was a statement of what he really intended to do. And this of course is Dan’s last week home. He leaves Wednesday from Shelton to begin working for Uncle Sam and that at present is the extent of our knowledge on the subject. Dick registers next month and as for you, I am waiting to hear some late news from Anchorage on your status.

Zeke’s car froze up during the cold snap last week and busted the water pump so the car is now laid up. He is doing nothing about having it repaired and according to Elizabeth he may decide to get along without a car as he goes to and from work in the bus anyway, or, if he can pick up a good used Ford whose owner does not want too much for it, he may do that. Used cars are getting scarcer and dearer. One would think that with so many joining the armed forces and others putting up their cars because of tire shortage there would be more than enough to offset the idea of a coming car shortage because of car manufacturers going over 100% to war work, but prices for used cars do not seem to reflect this theory.

Lad’s message to you is “Keep your chin up and watch out for the planes”. (He has just departed to pay his usual visit to Nichols) The other three boys are up at Plumbs. Dick, I believe, has gone over to Stratford to get Jean. There was some talk of going skating but as the temperature has been up around 40 today I think they decided either to play ping-pong or possibly go for a walk.

Aunt Betty wants me to send her usual greeting and to tell you she looks forward to your letters which she enjoys very much. Arnold dropped in just before dinner today and is now on the night shift at Conn. Tool & Eng. Co. Dick is also on night work now. He leaves here at three and gets home at midnight. Miss Platt has decided to continue alone by herself for the present, I imagine, as she has taken a smaller office in the Court Exchange Building (where the Algonquin Club used to be at the corner of Broad and State. Dan has been home all this week and has spent about three days cleaning out the attic. I don’t recall whether I told you that Lad is now head of Producto’s shipping department and has been complemented on the way he has done his job even though he was put in charge on short notice with very little experience.

I received word from Kemper that he had forwarded your birth certificate to you. I hope it reaches you promptly and is what you wanted. Let me know what more I can do for you. It makes me happy to know I can be useful to you once in a while.

A couple of weeks ago I added a hastily written P.S. on one of my letters, at Dan’s suggestion, to the effect that if you did not need all the blankets and sheets Dan and Dick used and wanted to get them out of the way in connection with moving, it might be a good stunt to ship them home. Under ordinary conditions we have ample but with Dick and Dan home it used up pretty much all of the surplus so that when we have visitors, such as happened when Anne and Don and Gwen stayed here, we had to do a lot of juggling around to try to make them comfortable and if Anne had not brought some warm blankets with her, it would have been embarrassing. However, don’t bother about it unless you have more than you need for yourself and Rusty. Take good care of the blanket I sent Dan as this was a 100% virgin wool blanket from Read’s —  the best they had and rather expensive. Anything you ship back you can send C.O.D., as I imagine your expenses these days are a bit of a problem.

By the way your last letter (none arrived last week) said nothing about moving. What is the present status in this line?

Friday Dan went over and brought back Elizabeth and the kids here to supper. She then took them up to the Zabel’s and all went to the movies – – a feature called The Corsican Brothers, (http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0033490/  ) a tale of Corsica based on one of Dumas’ novels. It was fairly good.

I suppose you are betting on the ice breaking up this year. When do they start the pool?

In spite of the strange and unusual titles to which letters are addressed to me, with the help of postmistress Kurtz, they all, as far as I know, have been delivered. And on that score, a letter came the other day to Aunt Betty which was addressed to “Miss Betty Dwigee”.

And that’s about all I can scrape up in the way of news (?) Which leaves me but one alternative — you know what.

DAD

Tomorrow and Friday, a 2-part letter written to both Ced and Dan, who has now joined the fighting forces of Uncle Sam.

Judy Guion