Trumbull – Dear Foreign Legion – Bits Of Family News- December 13, 1942

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Trumbull, Conn., December 13, 1942

Pulchritudinous Al

Reticent Dan

Uncommunicative Ced

Dear Foreign Legion:

A real winter’s day here. The snow began last night and has been at it steadily all day – – those big, soft, fluffy flakes that pile high on bush and branch, putting a white cap on all familiar landmarks and a cloak of ermine on the ground itself.

My prospecting this week has unearthed only one nugget – – a letter from Flint, Mich., revealing Lad’s address as c/o Ordnance School, Flint Sec., Armory, 1101 Lewis St. It reveals no war secrets, but leaves one in no doubt as to Lad’s keen appreciation of feminine beauty. He says: “Due to the fact that Flint is such a friendly town and so full of really pretty girls that this is the first time I have had a free moment. I should really be ashamed of myself for not taking time to write earlier but I really have had such a good time and so thoroughly enjoyed every moment that I can’t honestly say that I am. But I’ll try to be better in the future.”

They left Aberdeen Wednesday P.M., arriving at Pittsburgh through a blizzard at 2 A.M. the following  morning. They started just before noon and reached Flint late that night. Seeking accommodations at the “Y”, no room there but a girl at the desk (a really beautiful blonde), told them her mother had an empty room. They spent Friday and Saturday nights there (no charge), and were invited to an exclusive formal dance Saturday night where they met Flint, Mich. “And boy, girls galore. And since that time I’ve had more fun that I have ever had in my life and I really mean that. It is wonderful here. I’ve met more beautiful girls here than I ever thought existed, and everyone is very friendly. If we did not have to stay at the Armory, the stay here would not cost us a cent. In fact, we turned down about six invitations for suppers because we can’t make them in four days, and next week and the following is all accounted for. And all kinds of dances – – most of them for the better society. The “Y” girl, Elizabeth (Lee) Duhaune, is of this set. Since then – – wow – – I just can’t imagine anything better.”

It would seem from the above that Lad is not exactly homesick and is manfully doing his best not to be overcome with ennui. Flint may sound hard to you and me but it has certainly resulted in a spark or two for Lad.

Last week I finally succeeded in getting a box off to Ced with knick-knacks of one sort or another for his Christmas stocking but decided to wait for a reply to last October’s inquiry as to what he wanted before I bought him a serious gift. Of course it will reach him late but I’d rather that than send something not particularly desired.

No word from Dan except through Barbara. Apparently he is still at Red Lion (Pennsylvania). I don’t know whether to address letters to him there or at Lancaster (Pennsylvania).

Dave has been home most of the week with a cold but the rest of us are O.K.

DAD

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

In order to include all of the final letters of 1942 this week, I am posting this quick Christmas greeting to Ced from the Larry Peabodys here.

CDG - Christmas Card envelope from Larry Peabody, Dec., 1942

CDG - Christmas card front from Larry Peabody - Dec., 1942

Dec. 8, 1942

Dear Ced —

         Recently we received a letter from your Dad giving details and whereabouts of each of you boys. So glad to know that you are all well and to hear about your various activities.

         You have been an Alaskan for a long time so trust you must be enjoying yourself there. When you return home remember the L.K. Peabodys are now Ohioans and stop off  to visit us! We have had a grand year (in spite of the war), in our new-old home. We had a wonderful summer gardening, etc. Alan is in school now and loves it.

          We haven’t been back to N.R. (New Rochelle, New York, where most of the Peabody’s used to live)
since we came out here two years ago. Weren’t you surprised to hear that Kemper, Ethel, Grandmother and all are now living in Vt?

          Our love and very best wishes to you for a happy Christmas —

                                                                                               Marian, Larry and Alan

For the rest of the week, I will be posting the final letters of 1942. All are from Grandpa to his scattered sons.

Judy Guion

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Trumbull – Dear Braves From A Trumbull Reservation – June 11, 1944

Trumbull House with tall grass in front

The Old Homestead

Trumbull, Conn. June 4, 1944

Dear Braves from the Trumbull Reservation:

Old Ham in the Face greets you and says “How”. The Children of the Setting Sun (Lad and Marian, who have gone back to California, after a furlough) have come and gone, leaving this wigwam quite desolate at their departure. Laughter-in-her-voice (Marian) and Young Willow Tree (Jean, Mrs. Dick), my two daughters-in-law, got along very amicably and there was not even any hair pulling match staged for the amusement of the bystanders. He-who-fiddles-with-engines (Lad, a very talented mechanic) is as tall and rangy as ever and has developed no hint even, of a front porch. Pistol packin’ Mama Aunt Betty (Lizzie Duryee, known as Aunt Betty, Grandpa’s Mother’s sister, who is staying at the Trumbull House for an extended period) has been worrying all the week for fear they would not get enough to eat and return to the Land of the Sunshine and Oranges looking like shadows, but this happily was prevented partly through the generosity of the neighboring Ives Tribe Neighbors who live across the street) who bravely invited us all over to a powwow and feast Friday night, which as usual was most excellent.  Elsie of the Choo-Choo’s End (Elsie Duryee, Grandpa’s sister, who has a shop in Grand Central Station) invited them down to a matinee Saturday afternoon from which they returned in time to greet at supper time Helen ((Peabody) Human) and Dorothy (Peabody), who had come up earlier in the afternoon to look over their mother’s belongings and also to “serve” a paper on me in connection with Grandmother’s Will. Served me right, of course. By the way, the play they saw was” Mexican Hayride” ( [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_Hayride_(musical) ) which apparently they enjoyed very much. Lad, during the last few days of his stay, has been using the “family car”, if that is what you can call the contraption which has been successfully abused by Dan, Dick, Dave, Ced and now Lad. Having obtained temporary markers for it and rented a battery from Dolan’s, thought he would give it a critical once over with his Santa Anita Army Eye with the result that he quickly noticed the absence of the carburetor. At first we figured Ced might have snatched it in trade with some of the natives for blubber are other geegaws, but later we concluded that some of the neighborhood “juvenile delinquents,” who have been known to steal the neighbors gas, needed a carburetor for a Chevrolet or “shrovrolet” as Marian, in an inspired moment, baptized it, and helped themselves. Lad finally was able to borrow one from Steve Kascak, but as the man said who came home one night and found his wife had run off with another man,” My God, but I was annoyed”. However as most of the boys with cars are joining up with Uncle Sam pretty soon, maybe these activities will cease and become null and void, as it were. Thanks to Ced, who cleaned up the whole top floor when he was here, Lad and Marian were comfortably (I hope) tucked away in his old room of fire smelling memories, and by the way, the two aunties raved over the way the attic looked. Never in their long association with Trumbull, and the memory of man runneth not to the contrary, had they ever seen this catch-all for discarded effects so neat and clean appearing. Who said “The evil men do lives after them”? There ain’t no attic evil interred with Ced’s bones! Or maybe I should have said “good”. Oh well, you figure it out to suit yourself. Shakespeare won’t care.

Guess I sort of got off the track, but anyway, here’s notice to the next one of you Guion upstarts, whoever he may be, who next brings home a new wife, that he’s got a mighty high standard to shoot at if he is to maintain the quality level of the first two to jump off the dock. Marian, like Jean before her, won everyone’s heart. Both seem to feel, as husband pickers, they did a little better job than the other, which puts me in a hell of a spot, so I agree with them both. If it ever came to a showdown I would have to put in a plea of non-compes mentis, corpus delicti, acqu regis or whatever it is they do under those circumstances.

Dave, bless his heart, continues to keep us supplied with reports of his progress quite regularly whether he makes any or not. He is now in Signal Center School which is supposed to be the best in the Signal Corps – – the best equipped, best life, treatment and best for ratings. “You see, a Signal Center is a clearinghouse for ALL messages from division and up. All the messages are written by an officer and delivered by a messenger to the Signal Center where they are classified as to importance, how they shall be sent (radio, pigeon, motor messenger, messenger, telephone, teletype) and then they are put into code (cryptographed). They teach message procedure, a little of all the agencies above mentioned and cryptography. If you do well in the latter I understand you may be sent to advanced Cry. School for three weeks and are graduated as a cryptographer”. This is what our youngest is aiming for and more power to him. Watch his smoke. While you others are busy bringing home attractive daughters the first thing you know he will be walking up and clanking a commission right down under your noses. And don’t say I didn’t warn you.

No letter from Ced this week, but that really doesn’t matter too much as we are still reading, rereading and digesting (mentally of course) the long six page single spaced letter he wrote a couple of weeks ago. And as for news from the Anglican branch of the family in London, I am prepared any day now to be told we will receive no more letters for a while due to the fact that invasion activities have driven out every other form of activity. In fact we were all startled yesterday afternoon to have announced over the radio that advice from Gen. Eisenhower’s headquarters was that the invasion had started. This was denied a few moments later, but gee, didn’t we all get a thrill while it lasted.

Lad, I learned, is not teaching diesel anymore, but is in charge of a group of men, sort of a miniature General Motors assembly line, where defective motors from all kinds of Army vehicles situated in all parts of the world, needing major repairs, are sent back to them and re-built into first class condition. Lad’s group is concerned with the electrical end. He likes the group he is working with very much.

Dick, from what Jean tells me, is no longer an M.P. but is doing clerical work in connection with an Army transport command and is in the Provost Marshall’s office. His horses escaped the other day and as far as we know, the Brazilian police are still looking for them.

According to a letter Ethel ((Bushey) Wayne) received yesterday, Carl (Wayne, a fried of Lad’s and Ethel’s husband) who has been on a tanker taking oil to the Far East, is on his way home and expects to arrive sometime around the end of the month. He has been somewhere near Australia but just where we don’t know. Monsanto joins the Marines this week. Tiny is home. Someone said he has been put into the reserves.

The weather this week, I am glad to say, has lived up to the best traditions of even a Californian, so Marian got acquainted with Trumbull at its best. The Iris was out and also the Rhododendri (page Dan to see if that is the correct plural of Rhododendron) was in full bloom.

The only thing I regret about the newlyweds visit (I keep coming back to that subject – – the memory will undoubtedly linger for weeks and crop up at the most unexpected times and places) is the fact that there were not a number of snapshots taken to send so that you absent ones might in spirit relive with me the short but very pleasant visit. By the way, on the way back they have arranged to stop at Milan, Ohio, and see Larry’s (Peabody) place. It will be a case of when Marian meets Marian Larry’s wife, Marian). They left this afternoon on the 4:38 from Bridgeport, I, putting on a brave front and waving them goodbye in a very nonchalant manner.

The old humbug

DAD

Thursday and Friday, I will post another letter from Grandpa.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Chilluns – Well, They’re Here – May 28, 1944

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

Lad (Alfred Peabody Guion) and Marian (Irwin) Guion), my Dad and Mom, on their wedding day, November 14, 1943

Trumbull, Conn., May 28, 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 (Elsie Duryee, Grandpa’s sister, who runs a shop in Grand Central Station) 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, (Lad’s sister, Elizabeth, Grandpa’s only daughter) Zeke (Raymond “Zeke” Zabel, Biss’s husband) and the two youngsters (Biss and Zeke’s sons, Raymond, Jr., known as Butch, and his younger brother, Marty) came over for dinner but Jean ((Mortensen) Guion, Dick’s wife, who lives at the Trumbull House with Grandpa) 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 cruises 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 (Grandma Peabody, who passes away in January, 1944) 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  (Arnold Gibson, Lad’s best friend, and wife Alta (Pratt)) 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 (Peabody, Grandma Arla’s youngest sister) for a few minutes, says Ted and Helen ((Peabody) Human, Grandma Arla’s sister, and her husband Ted, the uncle who hired Lad and Dan for work in Venezuela)  expect to be in New York this week, that Anne ((Peabody) Stanley, Grandma Arla’s younger sister) has gone to Vermont presumably for Gweneth’s (Anne’s daughter) graduation. Aunt Dorothy (Peabody), Grandma Arla’s youngest sister)  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

For the rest of the week, more letters from Grandpa to his scattered flock, attempting to keep everyone quite knowledgeable about family events. 

Judy Guion

Early Years – Memories of David Peabody Guion (1) – 1926 – 1946

After my Uncle Dan (Daniel Beck Guion) passed away in 1997, I realized that first-hand accounts of this particular “Slice of Life” would only continue to diminish over time. I needed to record the memories of my Aunt Biss and her brothers and share them with the family. This culminated in the idea of a Blog so that I could share these memories with anyone who would be interested in the personal histories of some members of The Greatest Generation.

Over a period of several years, whenever possible, I recorded the memories of my Dad and his siblings. 

In July of 2004, I sat down with my Uncle Dave and recorded his memories. With the other siblings, the memories were recorded in a somewhat chronological order, but with Dave, after a few early memories, he went right to his Senior year in high school when he made the decision to enlist in the Army. The conversation continued through his service, from Basic Training and his posts in Okinawa and the Philippines until he came home after World War II was over. I then led him back with questions about his childhood. I will present his memories as they were recorded. 

SOL - Young Dave on Porch

David Peabody Guion about 1928

I remember just a few scenes from my early years in Trumbull.  When my mother was alive, I remember one time she had to walk all the way down to the bridge with me to get me to go off to school, and even then I didn’t want to go.  That stuck with me all my life.  I never liked school.  It wasn’t until I got to college that I began to realize that I finally found something I could enjoy, but that is another matter.

Did any of my siblings mention that we used to grow a little bit of mint cross the front of the barn?  My Dad really liked rhubarb and we grew a rhubarb patch.

We had a dog, which came from Rusty (Heurlin, a friend of Grandpa and Grandma Arla’s, who moved to Alaska and became a famous painter), named Mack, when I was a kid.  Mack was named after the Mackenzie River up in Alaska.  Rusty is a whole other story.  My main remembrance of Mack was one day, we were out playing in the yard and I had a stick.  I held it up in the air for him to go get it and he jammed his fang into my thumbnail, and it  HURT.

I remember doing something to my sister (Elizabeth, know to family and friends as Biss) one day and she threatened me with something and I said, “You can’t catch me!”  and I took off and ran out into the yard.  I was making pretty good headway but she eventually caught up to me.  I don’t remember what she did to me, but I just remember but I got caught.

When I was a kid, I had quite a temper.  It was a real nice combination.  I had a temper and I was a crybaby.

I remember one day, Dick and I used to fight all the time and he did or said something that made me annoyed and I picked up a box of matches … now a box of matches was probably a hundred little wooden matches in a very thin wood box.  Anyway, I picked up the box and threw it at him.  Unfortunately my aim was good that day and I hit him in the forehead.  He started to bleed.  Again, I don’t remember what happened after that but I’m sure it wasn’t anything good for me.

Trumbull House - Grandpa and kids - 1928 (2) Steps and Landings, steps and landings - @1928

Sitting on the front steps

Front row: Don Stanley, David Peabody Guion, Elizabeth Westlin Guion and Gwen Stanley.

Middle row: Richard Peabody Guion, Cedric Duryee Guion, and Dorothy Peabody (Grandma Arla’s youngest sister).

Back row: Alfred Duryee Guion (Grandpa) and Alfred Peabody Guion.

(I cannot imagine why Dan would not have been in this picture, so he might be the blur behind Dave and Elizabeth, but I am not sure.)

Don and Gwen (Stanley), my cousins from Aunt Anne ((Peabody) Stanley), Grandma Arla’s younger sister), were here all the time.  They’d plead and beg and finally their mother would give in and they would stay for a few days.  I don’t know how to explain it because the house, the Big House, has changed so much with renovations but there used to be a screened porch on the southeast corner of the house and there was a window there that looked from the stairs out onto that porch. Don and Gwen were there and Dick and I were talking, talking, talking, talking, talking.  We had been warned on two or three occasions to quiet down and go to sleep.  If Dick has told this story it will be a different version than mine because what happened was the last one to speak when the last warning came was me.  So, I was sent upstairs away from the rest of them and as I went up the stairs, I kicked at the window to warn them that I was going to cause trouble for them.  Anybody else and everybody else will tell you that I kicked in the window on purpose, but at any rate, I never bought that story.  It was a warning.  I kicked it to warn them but I broke it.  The next thing I knew, my father came charging up the stairs, gave me a good spanking and sent me to bed.  When I got into bed, I began to feel something sticky down around my right foot.  I was already crying and upset, and when I checked it, I’d cut my foot on the glass, which made me feel still more hurt and angry, and suffering such a terrible injustice.  I was probably nine or ten when that happened, maybe eight, well it had to be after my mother had died and I was seven when she died.

Somewhere along the line, have any of my siblings mentioned that there was about a year and a half between each of them and five years between Dick and I? I just wanted to make sure you knew that.

Tomorrow, more of the Early Years and Memories of David Peabody Guion.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – To My Little Sons, Everywhere – Lad Visits Dan – December 6, 1942

Alfred Duryee Guion (Grandpa)

Trumbull, Conn., Dec. 6, 1942

To my little sons everywhere, just everywhere: (a la Mrs. Pennyfeather)

          (including Red Lion, Pa., Flint, Mich. and Anchorage, Ala.)

Old Father Guion went to the mailbox

To see if a letter had come

And when he looked in, the mail was so thin,

He sighed, spat thrice and said “mmm”.

And that, my little dears, ends the bed-time story for tonight.

A letter to Barbara (Plumb, Dan’s girlfriend)  brings news that one day last week, Dan, while engaging in a heavy bout with Morpheus on his camp cot, was awakened by the news that a visiting soldier was without the barbican wall (at Red Lion , Pennsylvania) seeking admittance and who should it prove to be but Brother Al (Lad) and a fellow traveler enroute to Flint, Mich. So Lad is on his way but at present I do not know what his new address is to be in that hard Michigan city.

Grandma Peabody at her home  - cropped

Grandma Peabody, Anna Charlotta (Westlin) Peabody

A letter from Grandma (Peabody) describes their rooms in the St. Albans house as large and the ceilings high. She says: “It does make me feel so bad when I realize how near I came to seeing you all before we left, which occurred on the forenoon of Nov. 11th arriving in St. Albans about 10 that evening. Gwyneth (Stanley, daughter of Anne (Peabody) Stanley, divorced from Fred Stanley)  is here too, going to high school where she is taking shorthand and typing. She loves Vermont, has spent two week-ends with her father and stepmother and loves the baby. Kemper (Peabody, 2nd son) has a nice office off from the living room.  He is retaining his business in Mount Vernon. Dorothy (Peabody, youngest daughter) has the cutest little apartment at #5 Minetta Street, N.Y. City. On Labor Day, Anne (Peabody Stanley, 3rd daughter) went to New York to see Donald (Stanley, her son) who had had his appendix removed. He is now back at training school. Anne lives at 37 Davis Ave., New Rochelle. She has been working in a gift shop there for some time. Larry (Peabody, 3rd son)  and Marion are very happy in their place. She did a lot of canning of stuff from their own garden and is very active socially. Alan (their son) had a very short attack of pneumonia but with the aid of the new sulpha drug recovered completely and is now back in school again. We hope to have Dorothy up here with us Christmas if all goes well. I miss her so much. We have been together for so long and she has been so good to me always and taken such splendid care of me when I have been sick. You knew I had a very bad time last February and have been very slow in recovering but I believe I am improving a little more and more. I can’t do any kind of work that takes much action so I have taken the dishwashing job. With love to Aunt Betty and all the Guions in Trumbull and elsewhere,” Her address is Mrs. Anne W. Peabody, Fairfax Road, RFD 2, St. Albans, Vt. Burton’s (Peabody, oldest son) address is Capt. Burton W. Peabody, 1223 11th St., N.W., Washington.

Mr. Ives (neighbor across the street), I learned, is in the hospital again but Carl (Wayne) says he is expected home soon. A band of Young Trumbullites, who have made McKenzie’s drugstore their hangout for some months, formed themselves into a club and I have let them use the large storage room on the ground floor in the barn as a meeting room. They put up the big iron stove and are otherwise getting it ready for occupancy with comfort during the winter months.

Goodbye for now and don’t go sticking beans up your nose.

DAD

Tomorrow, I will begin more Early Years with the Memories of David Peabody Guion.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Elsie – Family History Concerning Our Grandmother – Clara Maria de los Delores Marina de Beck Guion (1) – July 8, 1940

This letter from Grandpa to his sister, Elsie May Guion, included news of the death and funeral of a close family friend which I will not include, and the very interesting Biography of their Grandmother, Clara Maria de los Delores Marina de Beck Guion. The story begins with Clara’s Grandmother, Juana Cadoret and will fill the entire week.

Clara's Ancestors - Juana (cover)

The original Journal compiled by Florence Gay Osborne

The following bit of family history concerning our grandmother, Clara de Beck Guion, was compiled by my first cousin, Mrs. Florence Gay Osborne, daughter of my Father’s sister, Clara Guion Gay, about 1893. Since then, cousin Florence has died.

Alfred D. Guion

July 8, 1940

Clara's Ancestors - Juana (title page)

Title page

Clara's Ancestors - Juana (1)

Page one

BIOGRAPHY OF CLARA MARIA DE LOS DOLORES MARINA DE BECK GUION

Clara Maria de los Dolores Marina de Beck Guion was a descendent of Mons. Jean Cadoret, a wealthy French nobleman who, about the middle of the 18th century, married Mademoiselle Juana _____________, a widow, whose parents belonged to the nobility of Spain. She (Juana) was probably born in Castile, and when she was seven years of age was betrothed to a Spanish nobleman, many years her senior.

Juana took no pains to conceal the dislike she entertained for her future husband, in spite of his many gifts to her.

On one occasion, she prepared for his next visit to her by filling the seat of the cushioned chair with pins, pointing upward. When he called, the little Juana received him with unusual cordiality – to his great gratification – ushered him into the drawing room and offered him a chair, running quickly away without waiting for him to seat himself, which he did, rising with the utmost haste and with an angry protest to his perspective mother-in-law. The mortified lady ordered the child to be brought into the room, but she was not to be found until a prolonged search revealed her hiding place under a heap of charcoal. To be obliged to appear with face, hands and once white dress in a pitiable plight, was sufficient punishment for the dainty lady who no doubt repented of her misdoings.

Her married life with this gentleman was none too happy, and his early death left her a childless widow.

Mons. Jean Cadoret had been sent into Spain, probably as the Minister from France, where he married Juana and took her to France. Six children were born to them: Katrine, Lorenzo, Francis, Jeanne, Frederick and Josephine, the youngest, who was born in Brittany on June 13, 1780.

Her three sons had been sent to England to be educated. Lorenzo, the eldest, was studying for the ministry in the Church of England. Francis began the study of medicine, but the sight of blood always caused him to faint and he was obliged to give up his studies.

Clara's Ancestors - Juana (4)

The page with the story of Jean Cadoret’s death

Clara's Ancestors - Juana (4a - close-up - Guilliotine)

Close-up of the drawing of a guillotine in the original journal

During the French Revolution, Jean Cadoret, who was an ardent Royalist, while at a public dinner, expressed himself in strong terms in favor of the King. Upon leaving the banquet hall he was met by a gendarme, who, saying “Monsieur est mon prisonier”, hurried him off to prison. He never saw his home again, but after lying in prison for several months, was guillotined. His wife and daughters made several visits to him but they were in danger of arrest and were secreted by friends in a sort of tower near Paris. As soon as possible, arrangements were made for Mme. Juana Cadoret to flee from France. She was concealed in a Cracker Barrel, cushioned and lined, let down secretly from a window and hurried on board a vessel bound for Cuba, where she would be safe under the flag of her native land. She had in Havana, a cousin, the wife of Tacon, a wealthy slave owner, and afterward Governor of Cuba. Mme. Juana Cadoret made a home for herself and in a year sent for her children.

Tomorrow and for the rest of the week, I will continue to post the fascinating story of three very strong women, my Great-Great Grandmother, Clara Maria de los Delores Marina de Beck Guion,  her Mother, Josephine (Cadoret) de Beck, and her Grandmother, Juana Cadoret.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Fugitives From A Trumbull Farm – A Look Back At Last Year and Local News – May 14, 1944

This post was supposed to go live yesterday at 12:05 AM but it didn’t … so here it is now. Enjoy.

All five of Grandpa’s sons are serving Uncle Sam in one way or another. Lad (with his wife Marian) is in California training vehicle mechanics for the Army, Dan is in London and Paris, probably helping to draw maps for D-Day, Ced is in Anchorage, Alaska, rescuing and repairing airplanes at the airfield that has been commandeered by the Army, Dick is an MP, in Brazil, acting as a liaison between the Army and the local workers and Dave is at Camp Crowder, Missouri, receiving further training before being sent overseas.

Aunt Betty (Lizzie) Duryee, Grandpa’s Aunt

Trumbull, Conn., May 14, 1944

Dear Fugitives from a Trumbull Farm:

This is Mother’s Day, which fact was delightfully brought home to our consciences by Aunt Betty’s receipt yesterday of a lovely box of flowers from Lad and Marian. After a moment of embarrassment on her part trying to explain the “mother” angle, she at last broke down and confessed all, although how Lad and Marian got wind of the affair way out in California made me realize that Lad should be in the Intelligence Department, instead of the Ordinance. All joking aside, it certainly made a very deep and heartwarming impression and I and was asked here and now to say how grateful she is and how chagrined she felt at never having yet acknowledged the Easter remembrance. She has difficulty in writing, as you know, but is saving it all up for a personal thank you when you arrive.

It is interesting to look back and see what the state of things was a year ago today. Grandma (Peabody) had recently arrived at Trumbull. Dorothy (Peabody, one of Grandma Arla’s sisters) and Anne (Peabody) Stanley, another sister) were visiting us to partake of one of Grandma’s toothsome pot roasts. Dan had been expected home and had telegraphed his regrets at his inability to obtain leave from Lancaster (Pennsylvania). Lad had just recently arrived at Santa Anita (California) and had not even mentioned the existence of anyone named Marian. Dick and Jean were at Miami, Ced reported he had missed out by several days on his guess as to the date of the break in the ice jam, Art Woodley (Ced’s boss and the owner of the airfield where Ced worked) was visiting Washington to see about getting the new plane and Rusty (Heurlin, an old family friend and famous painter of Alaskan life) was on tour in northern Alaska with the Governor. (Governor Ernest Gruening and Major Marvin “Mukluk” Marston)  Dave was still in the “bosom of his family”.

And right here it might be well for the latter to speak for himself:

David Peabody Guion

“Boy, have you got a surprise coming! I woke up yesterday morning with a slight sore throat. By last night it was getting kind of swollen so I went over to the infirmary to see what could be done. The diagnosis was MUMPS and I’m in the post hospital. I spent last night in the ward but this morning they gave me a room. It’s just a little place but I feel quite exclusive. Between this room and the next one there is a bathroom, tub and all, which I share with the guy next door. I wasn’t doing so well in radio school. There were seven of us that they were going to drop Saturday if we didn’t improve. Now I won’t have the chance. Maybe I can get into clerk school – – that would be perfect. And I know code now which is a pretty good thing to know. The thing that really hurts, though, is the fact that I had planned to get home by the end of June for graduation, but now as I see it, it will be impossible. All the news in this letter is not too good, but nevertheless, my morale is high in spite of it all. To say you are in a hospital always sounds bad but in the Army you can’t stay in your barracks, especially if you have something catching like MUMPS. I don’t feel bad and the life we live here is swell – – movies today, for instance. (Next Day) my private room life is finished. I’ve been transferred to a windowed-in porch which I share with two other “mumpees”. I feel even better today than I did yesterday. I hope I keep improving – – at any rate, don’t any of you worry.”

Earlier in the week Mrs. Guion  (Jean, Mrs. Richard)  received a package from Brazil and she has been walking around on air ever since. A pair of alligator shoes, several pairs of fine silk stockings, and the biggest hit of all, a beautiful, genuine alligator skin handbag that is the envy of all the girls at Harvey Hubble (A shirt factory in Bridgeport, CT, where Jean works) . Boy, but that made a big hit and puts Dick right up in the top class as husbands go.

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Alfred Duryee Guion

page 2    5/14/44

Now for a report on what local happenings may be of interest.

Arnold (Gibson, Lad’s best friend in Trumbull) has decided to give up work here and go to Hawaii. He is just recovering from an attack of jaundice which has delayed his plans somewhat but he talks of going sometime later this month. I don’t know whether he is going to take the trailer or not.

Art Mantle (a neighbor and friend of the boys) came over to see me last evening as I was sitting out on the back lawn looking over the evening paper and pitting my wits against the crossword puzzle man. He looks more mature, as might be expected. Altogether he has been away six years. He was wounded with some shrapnel in the arm and leg but has entirely recovered now. It was while he was on a cruiser fight with some warships in a night battle at fairly close range. They sunk the Japs. He asked about each of you individually and asked me when I wrote to give you his best.

Zeke (Raymond Zabel, husband of Elizabeth (Bissie), Grandpa’s only daughter) has been laid up all week with a cold or something, celebrating his birthday in bed. Elizabeth has been repainting her dining room and has fixed up the yard. We are all invited over there next Thursday.

Blog - Lilac Bush

Lilac blooms

Lilacs are out in full now. I have been arising an hour or so earlier these fine spring mornings and trying to do the Dan-est (a reference to the fact that Daniel, son # 2, loved to garden and keep up on work in the yard) in fixing the yard, flowerbeds, etc. This morning I alternated between getting dinner and taking down storm windows and putting up screens. As a one-man act it’s kind of slow work but I managed to get through without any serious consequences in trying to balance a storm window on a rickety ladder. This afternoon I had to go to Bridgeport in my disguise as J.P.  (Justice of the Peace) and hitched two middle-aged people who aspired to the matrimonial state.

Paul (Warden, the husband and father of the family renting the little apartment in the Trumbull House) was home for the weekend but left an hour or so ago to go back to Sampson ( A U. S. Naval Training Center in Sampson, NY.).

No further word from Lad and Marian. Jean says there was another rumor, Dick reports as to the possibility of a 21-days furlough for the Brazil”nuts”, permitting him to get home for a visit before being transferred elsewhere. He will ask to be transferred to Alaska if given the opportunity to choose. I’m a bit concerned about not having heard from Ced for so long. I try not to let the war tension get on my nerves but I wish you youngsters would not put my fortitude to the test too far. You see, I have a five-fold Sword of Damocles hanging over my head and too long an interval in hearing from any one of you puts a bad strain on my optimism. So have a little pity, please.

And that about closes up the bulletin for this time. Cheerio.

Dad

Tomorrow and Sunday, more of the Early Years with the Memories of Elizabeth Westlin (Guion) Zabel.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Chips From The Old Block – News About The Huerlin Family And The Peabodys – October 12, 1942

Lizzie Duryee, aka Aunt Betty

Trumbull, Conn., October 12, 1942

Dear “Chips from the old block”:

How disrespectful for you to refer to your father in these terms! Due to advancing years his letter is a day late this week, but most of the blame goes to Aut. M. Weather. The truth is that the combination of a beautiful fall day, changing foliage and the desire to make Aunt Betty’s birthday a pleasant one, I decided, after the dishes were washed yesterday, to be unpatriotic enough for the first time since gas rationing went into effect to use my car for a trip other than for business, so we all ups and with Lad at the wheel, takes a trip around the new Saugatuck Reservoir, after which, being down in the direction of Westport and not having seen the Lee’s for some months, we decided to drop in for a short visit. As usual they gave us a warm welcome, invited us to supper and then we sat around and talked a bit. They had several extra guests. Alice (Lee) told me that Britta ((Huerlin) Bagshaw) and Syd (Bagshaw, her husband)  had moved up into Westchester Co., that Anna (Heurlin) was living with them and that Mrs. Heurlin (Rusty Huerlin’s mother) had died, all of which was news to me.

Grandma Peabody at her home  - cropped

Grandma Peabody ( Anna Charlotta (Westlin) Peabody)

The only other item of news is a letter from Grandma (Peabody). “Kemper and Ethel (Peabody) have bought a large dairy farm about 1 mile from St. Albens, Vt., 465 acres of ground and nearly 200 cattle, of which 107 cows are being milked. The milk is pasteurized and bottled right on the farm and taken by trucks to St. Albans for distribution. The main building is a farmhouse with 10 rooms and two baths. They are thinking of moving up there this fall and are taking me along. The whole family is crazy about the place. You probably know that Franklin (Peabody) is more interested in farming than anything else. Anne ((Peabody) Stanley) is working in a gift shop and Donald (Stanley, her son) has been busboy in the Howard Johnson restaurant for some time but they are closing the place for the duration. Donald has joined the Merchant Marine and is hoping every day that his call will come. It makes it hard for him because jobs are not plentiful for a young man expecting to go into the service. Gwyneth (Stanley. Anne’s daughter) has been staying here since she came back from St. Albans just before Labor Day. She is going to school taking a secretarial course. Dorothy (Peabody) has taken a small apartment as she prefers to be alone. She is still with the Traphagan School and enjoys the work. She is fine and very happy being independent. Helen ((Peabody) Human) and Ted (Human) are in Miami but do not like it there. Helen wrote she couldn’t buy a decent piece of meat anywhere until one day she saw a small sign and went in and tried it. ‘At last, I am getting good meat’. Burton (Peabody) is in Washington as a liaison air service officer and has a lot of work to do. He has to fly many hours each week looking over airfields to find what kinds of bombers and planes may be able to land.”

The furnace got plastered this week — with asbestos cement — Dick, wielding the trowel. A second coat will be applied later. So far we have not started a fire yet, Aunt Betty spending most of her days in the kitchen. On occasion, like Sunday when we had dinner in the dining room, we boosted up the temperature with the aid of the fireplace.

With some of the funds the boys gave me for my birthday I had a miniature made of Mother and also had a physical checkup by Dr. Laszlo. He recommended a gallbladder x-ray which I am glad to say, showed nothing wrong there. I have to cut out fats, however.                  DAD

Tomorrow, a letter from Lad with some news and on Friday, another letter from Grandpa.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Alumni – Lad Home and Winterizing – September 27, 1942

With Lad and Dan able to get home frequently, Ced is the only one receiving regular letters at this point, although Lad and Dan are probably receiving their own copies also.

Ced @ 1945

Cedric Duryee Guion

Trumbull, Conn., Sept. 27, 1942

Dear Alumni:

‘Tis one of those heavy dull days, damp within and without, that seem to permeate into one’s brain cells and arouse enough enthusiasm to induce a nap. The only event to lift one temporarily out of the state of sluggishness was having Lad home with us again for Sunday dinner, he having hitchhiked from Aberdeen and surprisingly, making the trip in less time than he would by train on an overall basis. He reports having driven his car down last Sunday without mishap of any sort. Tires held up and gas held out. He will probably sell it if he gets an attractive offer or is transferred to California. The latter he feels is a possibility. Dan had expected to get home but had to go on guard duty so the chances are he will try to make it next weekend when we are celebrating Dave’s birthday.

Sylvia writes she has been granted a six-day leave and asks if she might visit us some time from October 5th to 7th, as she is going to be married, probably in January, and will then leave either for England or Canada. Her fiancé is Douglas Ward Campbell of the R.A.F. A further review of the weekly letter box reveals a letter from Aunt Helen ((Peabody) Human), now at the Hotel Dallas Park, Miami, Fla., who reports that Ted (Human, her husband) has not been well, but is much better again, that she enjoyed her stay in Brownsville of almost a year very much – – much better in fact than Miami. Another letter – – from Rufus Burnham (a neighbor from the Larchmont Gardens home, in Mount Vernon, NY) – – mentions that he and Louise are alone together for the first time in 25 years. Helen is teaching at Northfield, Eleanor is working for the Prudential in Newark, Brad is still at Yale (the Marines sent him six months notice recently) and Davis just started at Loomis School, Windsor, Conn. He says that the cancer that was the cause of Austin Batchelder’s (another neighbor from Larchmont Gardens) losing his leg has spread to his lungs and there is no hope. The last word (received from Louise from May some weeks ago) was that he was losing ground rapidly and was receiving daily doses of morphine. A note from Aunt Elsie (Guion, Grandpa’s sister) asks me to say to you boys that Sharafft’s are advertising they will give a free meal to men in uniform at the rate of four men every hour. She doesn’t know what they do if the soldiers have guests.

With Dick’s help I have thoroughly patched up all the holes and leaks in the old furnace in the hope that it will last at least another winter. The next job will be putting an asbestos overcoat over the patches and the old asbestos. Yesterday, with Red’s (Don Sirene) help, we did a Portland cement concrete job around the new cellar windows I had installed, so we are gradually getting winterproofed.

Dick has a cold, Dave a very bad one and I suppose I am being bombarded by invisible germs, which I hope I may be able to resist, although with the hay fever also hovering around, it may be an extra hard tussle. The hay fever, by the way, has not been so bad this summer. Aunt Betty keeps well and sends her best to you all. Mr. Kurtz (owner of Kurtz’s Store where his wife is the Postmistress), I understand, is ill, and has been in the hospital but is home again.

I fear this is a very uninteresting letter but it seems to be about the top of my efforts at present. At least it keeps up the record for continuous performance in the best vaudeville tradition and won’t let us down on the weekly letter schedule, if quality is not scrutinized to highly. Give my old paint slinging friend (Rusty Huerlin) a rousing clout on the back for me and tell him to write me another report on your doings when the spirit moves him. Meanwhile, here’s hoping your larder continues to be stocked with meat (We’re running short here). Keep em frying.    DAD

Tomorrow and Wednesday, two more letters from Grandpa. On Thursday, a letter from Lad and on Friday, another one from Grandpa.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – To My Sons, Everywhere (2) – Family News – June 30, 1940

A one-page but interesting letter from Lad, which, also, I hope will be amplified in his next, recounts the highlights of an eight day trip to Caracas by plane, in which he saw his dentist, had dinner and a pleasant evening with Mr. O’Connor, did some shopping, saw some movies, went to clubs and dances with friends, and in his own way painted the town a Spanish red, with the assistance of Martin Williams. His camera was stolen at Pariaguan, but nothing daunted, in true Yankee spirit, he just went out and got another — even better than his first. Apparently he did not get the matter of the tools settled as Max is back in U.S.A.

We had another large town meeting Thursday and at last Sexton won out on the audit. The level-heads lost out to the crack-pots by a vote of 176 to 204, and $6000 of the taxpayers money will be spent to satisfy a personal grudge. This is a hell of an age in which we are living.

Gwen Stanley

Gwen Stanley

Don Stanley

Donald Stanley

Aunt Anne and the children left for Vermont Monday. She has informed Fred that, new wife or not, he owes it to the children to give them the vacation he promised them on the lake, and while he had not definitely told her, up to the time she left Trumbull, when he wanted them to arrive “for a week’s visit”  and which she told him it had to be considerably longer than that, she decided to get them up there anyway and at the same time make arrangements for Gweneth to hire the same riding horse she had last year, of which she is very fond and which there was a chance she would not be able to obtain, as Carol had told Gweneth that the Kemper Peabody’s were renting a cottage on the lake for the summer and Carol was to have said horse. Methinks I can see storm clouds in the offing.

Yesterday afternoon I spent having the boys move out the old Waverley (Electric car) into the former chicken coop and cleaning and sweeping the barn out, removing the accumulated dirt of more than a year, if I am not mistaken. The next cleaning job is the cellar.

Dan’s checks From the Highway Department and Lad’s regular monthly check from Socony arrived and are deposited. They helped me to meet the semi-annual payment of interest on the mortgage due July 1st, which will be replaced, of course. The new tax schedule is now operative and hereafter one quarter of the annual tax will be due and payable every three months, starting August 1st.

Dave is quite happy because he just got over the passing mark with an average of 76 1/2, although he flunked in Latin and Algebra and will probably have to go five years. However he does not have to go back to Whittier (High School in Bridgeport) which was what was worrying him most of all.

Well, there is some hope for the future now that Willkie is nominated, and it certainly makes me feel a lot better. As you know he very definitely was my choice from the beginning. Now if Franklin will leave the wreckage and gracefully retire, maybe something can be saved for posterity. I shall end on this note of optimism.

As always,

DAD

Tomorrow, you will finally get a look at the letter and booklet I have been telling you about all week. 

Judy Guion