Trumbull – A Very Busy Sunday (1) – October, 1941

It is 1941. Lad has been back from Venezuela for about 5 months and Dan has just returned from Alaska. They are both working for the Producto Manufacturing Company in Bridgeport and hoping they won’t get drafted, but the war is moving closer each day.

October 12, 1941

Dear Ced and Dick:

I almost missed out on my weekly letter to you as this has been an unusually busy day. Aunt Elsie came up last night in honor of Aunt Betty’s birthday, and because she had to get back to New York early to trim the window, she had to leave in time to catch the 10:20 train this morning. As Lad was still asleep and Dan has no driving license, it was up to me to drive her to the station along with getting Aunt Betty fixed up, lighting her stove, etc., getting her breakfast, getting Elsie’s breakfast, starting dinner and so on. Then, because Mrs. Warden was coming home from the hospital today with her new baby, I invited Paul and his wife in to dinner. The doctor yesterday had told Aunt Betty she could come down to dinner today, so we had to get the dining room heated up. Dave helped me with this after coming home from church while Dan did some work around the yard.

While we were at dinner, Bruce Lee, his two sisters from Maryland (one of them Jack’s mother, Dick,) Jack’s father, their two young daughters and Pat all breezed in. This resulted in questions about Alaska and Venezuela developing quite naturally into showing of motion pictures, souvenirs, etc., during which Don Whitney, Barbara, Chet, Jean Hughes, Babe and Red dropped in. Then it was necessary to get the three Westport girls some supper, as Bruce and his party of older ones left for dinner waiting them in Westport, but the girls stayed on to see the finish of the movies. Then I had to get Aunt Betty back upstairs, get her supper. I have left Dave to act as host to the three girls while the rest of the gang are upstairs visiting with Aunt Betty and I sneaked off to do this.

This photo of a 1941 Buick Special – dark blue –  is from the following URL –  

          The big news this week is that on Wednesday Lad bought a car. It is a twin of mine, same make, year, model, except that it is dark blue. I arranged a loan for him at the North End Bank, which, together with some $200 that Dan loaned him, made up the purchase price of $900, which, incidentally, is also the price I paid for my car. His car has more mileage on it than mine, but he says mine has more pep; in fact, Lad says my car is the peppiest car he has ever driven.

Dan, as he probably informed you, is working at the same place as Lad — the Producto Machine Co., only on different work. He seems to be getting along all right although it is entirely different work than he has ever done.

I thought I had been able to get a girl to help in the office, and Italian girl from Southport, but after being there three days she left word Saturday morning that she could not keep the job as her mother had been taken sick and she had to stay home to take care of her. That leaves me up in the air again. It is almost impossible to get any kind of girl around here these days to do any kind of work, as the demand from the factories where high salaries are paid, cleans the market out pronto.

I do wish one of you boys would write me as we have heard nothing from Alaska since Dan left.

Tomorrow I’ll post the rest of this letter.

On Wednesday, a letter from a friend from Venezuela to Lad.

On Thursday and Friday, another letter from Grandpa to Ced and Dick in Alaska.

Judy Guion


Trumbull – 2017.01.16 – Indlvidual Letters (1) – This One to Lad – July, 1945

APG - Marian on side porch in June, 1945.

Marian Irwin Guion in Trumbull

   Trumbull, Conn., July 15, 1945


(Just for a change, I think this week I’ll write to each of you individually. I really  do this each week but it may sometimes seem in addressing you collectively that I am sort of broadcasting impersonally although the fact remains that if you, son, who is reading this letter now, were the only one away from home, I would still be writing this same letter to you and saying practically the same thing to you that I am writing to yous.)

Dear Lad: I suppose no one of you in the armed services is more fed up with the whole thing then you. I have not dwelt on the matter in any of my letters because it can do no possible good. We all except the fact as unavoidable and part of war necessity and it does no good to grouse over the fact. That does not alter the fact that there exists here at home a deep sympathy and understanding of the wretchedness of it all, if that is any comfort. I know how patient you are by nature but even you probably get disgusted at times with the whole idea. I have found that when you come to some mental obstruction that must be faced, it is useless to rant and rave at the thing. It is far better to dismiss the unpleasant aspects from your mind and replace it with some hopeful thoughts. Back home here the papers are mentioning from time to time how educational opportunities will be available to the returning soldier, not only the youngsters who have had to quit before going to high school but the older men also, who want to follow up specialized lines. It is all quite vague at present but considerable thought seems to be given the subject of educators who have by war’s demands, been jolted out of their old routine and challenged to meet this new demand by newer and up-to-date methods of adult education. So it means to me that what you wrote to me a while ago about your desire to look over the field a bit before making a definite decision is not only wise, but far more likely to be possible of ending in some practical method of fulfillment educationally than would otherwise be possible if not so many were not in the same boat and the obligation of the country were not so widely recognized in the way of responsibility to you men. The fact that you are a bit older than many of the drafted men also has its advantages. You are much more sure to know what you want than the youngster who is not so mature in his thinking. I don’t mean that things stand out crystal clear as to your future path but I do mean that it will take far less to pierce the fog to see your goal that it will be for the younger ones. It may surprise you how quickly a catalyst will clear up the whole mess, if such, it seems to you to be at the present time. As Marian has undoubtedly told you, and a wise feeling it is, too, she would rather see you in a job doing this sort of thing you like at a moderate income than grabbing the first thing that comes along with a good stipend but not work you would enjoy.

My Buick clutch is getting worse and worse and very shortly I will HAVE to do something about it. And that reminds me, you wrote me some time ago telling me what to instruct the repair man to do in making the change. I have looked back among your letters to find it but cannot locate it. Can you recall what these hints were and give them to me again? Stopped in at George Knapp’s yesterday to get some ethel. (Ethel is very scarce around here these days. Ed Dolan has not had any for three weeks, and one has to stop at 6 to 8 stations before you can find one with any and sometimes not even then. As usual, he asked about you and always wants me to give you his regards when I write.

I don’t suppose you know any more than we do here but we are hoping that you’re being shipped to the south of France does not necessarily mean that you were going direct to the Eastern theater of war via the Mediterranean instead of coming home first. Anyway, we all have our fingers crossed, hoping for the best, while mentally preparing for the other. The more time passes, with current Pacific news, the nearer the end does seem.


Trumbull – Grandma and Dorothy Move Out (1) – August, 1941

This is the first half of a letter sent to Grandpa to his three sons who are all living and working in Alaska. They are all worried about the draft as much as their oldest brother, Lad, on the east coast, is worrying.


Alfred Duryee Guion (Grandpa)

   Alfred Duryee Guion


                                                                                                                                                                        Trumbull, Conn., August 31, 1941

Dear sons:

If one puts no restraint on one’s thoughts but just naturally expresses on paper the first thing that occurs to one’s mind, what would you guess would be the uppermost thought, even though it be not so pleasant a one with which to start a letter and one already worn almost threadbare? You guessed it. If you, Dan, and you, Dick, for weeks on end, for a period of two months at least, day after day had called on the postmaster for a letter and your old dad had failed to write you, how would you feel about it all? Are you both so much busier than Ced? In a few days now it will be my birthday. One of the nicest remembrances I could receive would be a real long friendly letter from each of you. I’m hoping.

In that connection, and following my usual custom of celebrating the occasion by evidencing the fact I am glad to be alive, I have mailed you collectively my copy of “Wild Geese Calling” which I hope you will enjoy reading. You don’t need to bother about returning it. Maybe Rusty or some other of your friends may like to read it also.

Zeke went fishing this morning so I invited Bissie and her brood over to Sunday dinner. They have just left.

Burton and Helen were up over the weekend. Aunt Dorothy is much improved, has been gaining weight steadily and is now practically back to normal. They have taken an apartment in New Rochelle and plan to move into it on Wednesday of this week. Helen has gone down with Burton today and Burton expects to drive up Wednesday to pick up Grandma and Dorothy. About the middle of the month Helen expects to leave for Brownsville, Texas, to join Ted for an indefinite stay.

Lad has heard nothing more from the draft, although I think I told you there was an article in the paper some weeks ago under a Shelton (draft board headquarters for this district) date line that mentioned Lad’s name among others that would be called into service the latter part of August. It is my understanding that Footherap is taking up the matter of temporary deferment with the board in Lad’s behalf. He likes the job he has with the Producto Co., and is being paid $.50 an hour with prospects of advancement.

My Buick’s speedometer shows a mileage of 20,000, concurrently with which one of my white sidewall tires has blown, another has had to be vulcanized and still a third has a patch on it. So the only thing seemed to be to get two new tires. Through Wells, Lad has been able to get a discount on two new black wall General tires, net cost of which is around $30. (white side walls would have cost an additional $19 for the two tires). Due to the shortage Lad had some trouble in locating my size but finally succeeded in getting two General tires. I think I shall have the two good tires still left retreaded which will fix me up fairly well for the winter. I have also, at Lad’s recommendation, bought an entire new set of spark plugs.

Tomorrow, I’ll be posting the rest of this letter.

On Saturday and Sunday, I’ll share the next steps through the eyes of 17-year-old Ced, on his Coming of Age Adventure.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Old Timers (1) – A Recap of One Year Ago, July, 1945

Alfred Duryee Guion - summer, 1946

Trumbull, Conn., July 1, 1945

Dear Old Timers:

Just for the hell of it let’s turn back the pages in the book of time and find out the status of things one year ago.

On July 1st, 1944, Lad wrote about receiving a letter from the Williams in Venezuela “Things have changed a lot there but the oil business is still going strong. Most all of the fellows have gotten married so I’m not the only one. Some of them have children though, so they are ahead of me in that respect. D-day for me is getting closer. Sometime this month the 142d is being transferred to some camp in the East. It looks as though I will have to go by train so Marian may drive east in the Buick. Right now the 3019 is doing some work in Camp Haan. We have been having a rather hot spell here in that, the day before yesterday, it was 105° in the shade.”

On July 3rd, Dan, who was spending his last week at Kew in London and experiencing the mental strain of the buzz bomb raids, quite likely not knowing that before the month was out he would be landing on the beaches of France and entirely unaware that there was a little Belgian-French girl waiting to meet him, writes: “We are now engulfed in a realism which focuses war in sharp, unmistakable images – – exciting, significant, decisive.”

On June 29th Ced reported in lengthy detail reminiscent of a medical report, that the poor old Buick was completely shot and had had to be laid up for repairs. He acknowledged receipt of the birthday gifts from home, reported his burns were now completely healed, that he had completed his CAA test with a score of 86, and related with delectable humor his letter to Literary Digest people about his renewal subscription, enclosed with another boost for “Union Now”.

Dick had not written since the previous April so the record for Brazil was rather blank.

A letter from Dave dated July 1st related how, on his return to Crowder from his trip home, he had gone to sleep and had gone past the station where he should have gotten out, but, nevertheless succeeded in getting back before the deadline.

My letter to you boys on the same day lamented Dave’s departure for Camp, noting the fact he had forgotten to take with him puttees and necktie. Lad was informed I had mailed his camera light gauge and a box of films, and a message from Dan was quoted in which mention was made that Peggy (Beebe) had donated blood in his behalf.

And Lad’s comment about the weather a year ago reminds me that the last few days here have been extremely hot, well up in the 90s, and only a few minutes ago a shower has made it a bit cooler. It really has not been the high temperature so much as the humidity which has made it seem hotter.

Tomorrow I’ll continue with the second page of this quite long letter.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Guions (1) – A Few Words For Ced – June, 1945


Trumbull, Conn., June 10, 1945

Dear Guions:

Here is one third of the month gone already and we really haven’t had one typical June day all-day yet. Today is nothing that the Chamber of Commerce could rave about either. Yesterday afternoon I was able to get part of the lawn mowed and some of the fallen tree trunk in back sawed up, but I haven’t yet finished taking down all the storm windows and putting up screens. (Note to Lad. There are some jobs like the aforementioned storm windows that can’t wait for you boys to come home, much as I appreciate your thought of helpfulness in a recent letter).

Dave is the only one who made use of P.O. Box 7 this last week. I am beginning to get concerned about Ced. It’s been over two months now since we last heard from him and you must admit a lot can happen in that time. However, I suppose I need not assume he has set the post office on fire, run over the edge of a glacier with his Buick, skied into a hospital bed or ran afoul of a plane landing on Woodley Airways field. In due time, I suppose, I shall get a letter from Ced, the old smoothie, contrite, sincerely regretful and so full of pathos that we are moved to tears and joy at its receipt, like the shepherd that rejoiced more at the one lost lamb that returned to the fold, more than the 99 that didn’t stray away, we straightaway forget the endless mailbox searching’s twice a day fruitlessly conducted and give full reign to the joy of the occasion. Just the same, if we don’t hear from him soon, he will be eligible for Dick’s class. Fact is, I haven’t heard from him since he reached the age of 28. I ask you, isn’t it enough to worry about the boys in the war without taking on peacetime worries too? Yet statistics show that more people are hurt and killed in auto accidents annually then in war. In fact I can’t even feel you are safe when you are in bed because these same statistics show that more people die in bed then in any other place. However, I’ve said enough, Ced, so that you may draw the conclusion that this might be construed as a gentle hint a letter from you might be welcome.

However, if you think the above paragraph finishes with you, Ced, and warrants my turning the spotlight elsewhere you are mistaken. The cup is not only full but runneth over. The Southworth’s invited us all in for a buffet supper Thursday night, and as both the boys are most interested in flying, you somehow or other got into the conversation and of course nothing would do but they must see pictures of the landing field during an Alaskan blizzard, plane wreck, etc., and this in turn led to my reading them the account of your famous rescue mission, but alas and alack, after much travail and many vicissitudes, you leave us balanced on the edge of a precipice, teetering back and forth, so that to this day, we do not know what happened and frequent calls for help interspersed with S O S’s have failed so far to supply the final details. In memory of your childhood days and recollections of the “Perils of Pauline”, don’t keep us longer in suspense. And incidentally, if you have snapshots of the crew, the cat or the wannigan, I should like to file copies in the scrapbook with the typewritten account. So now that your duties as president of the ski club are lightening, force yourself to completing this monumental work of an Alaskan adventure.

Trumbull – Dear Bachelor Sons – Feb., 1943


Jean (Mrs. Richard) Guion

Jean (Mortensen) Guion

Trumbull, Conn., Feb. 28, 1943

Dear Bachelor Sons:

Dick has been home all of this week, enjoying his state of married bliss which Jean has been sharing with him as much as being away from him with a cold can fulfill that specification, and tomorrow he departs again from Shelton to begin his training seriously to materialize the four freedoms. Jean, meantime, has decided to take up her abode with us so that she can be here when Dick comes home on furloughs, and because she has here a room all to herself, which she did not have at her home, where she can more or less be on her own, and then, too, most of her girl friends are in Trumbull, the bus passes the door here where it does not travel so close to her Stratford home, etc. As Dave, latterly, has been working at the Algonquin Club from 5 on setting up their menus on the multi-graph and along with it all, enjoys a first-class club dinner, with Dick gone, it would have left to elderly and sedate people to take the evening meal in a house that for so many years has echoed to the sound of young folks. So Jean will serve as one tenuous link with the past.

At dinner today, after putting away the broiled chicken, sweet potatoes, ice cream, cake, etc., I presented to Dick, on Ced’s behalf, a much delayed Christmas gift in the form of a money belt, as well as a compact toilet kit, emergency sewing kit, etc. After dinner, Red (Sirene) came in and they went out and took some snapshots, which I shall await and, if they turn out well, shall send you each prints of the “newlyweds”. Of course their plans are of necessity quite vague, but I know Dick has in the back of his mind the prospect of going to Alaska, “when the lights go on all over the world”.

Catherine Warden, sometime after the middle of March, goes to the hospital for an operation, taking the children to her sister’s in Mass. for the time she will be away.

Thanks, Dan, for your “quickie”, and also for the razor blades. I had hoped you would be able to get home this week and to break a bottle of champagne over the bow of the S.S. Richard, as he left the ways, but I hear that Paul sort of substituted for you last Friday with a bottle of rye replacing the conventional medium. I think Dick has arranged to sell his car, on time, to Bob Strobel, for something over $100, which leads me quite naturally to the thought of your car, Dan, and whether, now that March 1st is at the threshold and a new car license is due, you want me to renew it for you or allow things to rest in status quo. Instruct me as to your wishes, son.

The whole family was invited to supper at the Mortensen’s last Thursday, which we all enjoyed very much. They are very nice and I like them all. On the way over, in my Buick, I had a flat. Luckily, I had, a while previously, obtained authorization from the local rationing board to purchase two new tires so Carl got busy at once and tomorrow I expect to be the proud possessor of two new second grade tires, which is all I am allowed.

Thanks, Lad, for the prompt follow through on last week’s letter. It was very interesting reading. At present, Carl has it, but I expect to get it back tomorrow and pass it around to others, including Babe (Cecelia Mullins, Lad’s girlfriend), whom I saw at Center school Tuesday when I got #2 ration books.

And now may peace be upon you and blessings from your               DAD

Tomorrow I’ll post a letter from Lad, who has been in California for a couple of months.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Lad, Home at Last (2) – June, 1941

page 2    June 8, 1941

Lad - LAD bracelet in gold

Lad brought home with him some gold nuggets he got at the mine and some native made gold jewelry. He also brought a native bow and arrow for spearing fish. Dan probably knows how the latter works. There is a detectable barbed head on the long bamboo arrow, connected to the arrow with strong cord. This head comes off when it strikes the fish and the wood floats to indicate the position of the fish.

Lad plans to go down to New York to spend two or three days this week, interviewing officials at Socony-Vacuum, calling on Fairbanks Morse with relation to a possible job, doing some shopping for Pariaguan people and seeing off some others who are leaving for Venezuela. He has until July 1st to decide whether or not he is going back. If his answer is yes he has another month’s vacation, both with pay, and his expenses back if he decides to return. He looks just about the same. From some of the photos he had sent home I expected to see his face a bit fuller but he evidently lost any excess flesh he had gained. It is awfully good to have him back again. He spent most of Friday and Saturday in Bridgeport buying clothes as the only suit he had was the one he wore down. I have had no opportunity as yet to have a real talk with him, as quite naturally, he has been flitting hither and yon renewing old acquaintances. He decided to take the front spare room. This morning he spent looking over the Buick, adjusting the carburetor and making sundry adjustments so that the car now runs considerably better.

Thursday night Barbara left early to go to some shower and the next morning Helen called me up and told me the news about her father’s passing. She asked me to be an Honorary Pallbearer for the funeral yesterday afternoon. It was a clear day after the services at Wilmot and West Funeral Home, the funeral procession wended its way to the cemetery in Long Hill in the vicinity of the water tower. Everything went smoothly and decorously. I have seen none of the family since.

I wonder if Dan thinks it worthwhile for me to renew his operator’s license for 1941. If so, we should sign the blank attached to his old one and return it to me.

Unless I hear from you to the contrary, I shall discontinue the serial numbers on my letters, as this was done originally for Dan and Lad’s benefit when they were in the wilds of Venezuela. Elizabeth stopped in a while ago and says they are moving into their new house Saturday afternoon, which is also the day the old tenants are moving out. Your letter was very interesting, Ced. The only question you neglected to answer re: Woodley’s was what competition you have. Nary a word from Reyom.


When I was recording my Dad’s (Lad)  memories of his life, he told me this story: After working in Venezuela for two and a half years, the company required that I take two months off and go to a temperate climate. So I went home. Just before our ship landed in New York City. an announcement came over the PA system that some government employees would be coming on board. When they arrived, they asked everyone for their passport. They told me that I wouldn’t be getting my passport back. I went to Trumbull and shortly thereafter, got my conscription notice, classifying me 1-A. Because of my draft status, I had trouble finding a job. I’ll finish the week with one letter from Grandpa, one from Grandma Peabody to Ced  and another one from Barbara (Plumb, Dan’s girlfriend) to Ced. 

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dear Prodigal Son (1) – Mail and the Alaskan Highway – Nov., 1942

Ced and car - 1940 (3)-head shot

Trumbull, Conn, November 15, 1942

Dear Prodigal Son:

“And he arose and came to his father. But when he was a great way off his father saw him and had compassion and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven and in thy sight and am no more worthy to be called thy son. But the father said to his servants, bring forth the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and shoes on his feet, and be married, for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found. And they began to be merry.”

Now to be sure I didn’t fall on my neck when I saw that letter in (PO) box 7, but otherwise, I know just how this old man felt, no matter whose neck he fell on. Mailed on October 30th, it reached me November 14th, which bears out what you said about the mail service not being as good as formerly. As you may observe if you get my letter written last week, I have just about made up my mind that I have imagined the importance of letters from home to be far greater then was actually the case, judging from the response they have elicited lately as compared with formerly. I note that they do seem important enough at least for you to notice when one week is skipped, which is something, but as I said before, I have reached the point now where I am getting a little hard of hearing and seem to understand actions a lot better than mere words. And when mail service is poor it but aggravates the case a little more. However, this letter to you is fairly earned. You are the only one to receive it this week however, just to prove I am in earnest.

As to the missing letter of 20th Sept., in case it has not yet reached you, there were only two things of moment in it; one the news of Charlie Hall’s engagement to Jane Mantle, and the other far more important to me, the receipt of one of the most unique and attractive belts it has been my good fortune to ever see. It was not alone about the thoughtfulness that was behind its choice or the value it bore because of the giver, but the buckle being so typically Alaskan seemed to impress everyone who saw it with its individuality and caused such comments as, “worth waiting for”, “something you can be proud to wear”, “never saw anything like it”, “truly suggestive of Alaska”, etc. It IS highly prized, I can assure you, and will give me a daily thrill of pleasure thinking of my far away Alaskan son.

Am glad to learn you received the Readers Digest, the McK & R ditty bag and Briggs clarifier. Carl asked me the other day if I had heard from you as to whether it was the right size. I was also glad to get that first-hand information about the Alaskan highway and particularly what Dick refers to as the Chickaloon extension. Who knows but what if you continue to be anchored in Anchorage, I will be dusting off the old Buick and starting on a long journey, provided the government will let one buy tires and gas, and you will eventually find me knocking at the door of (PO) box 822.

The information contained on the back of the last page is surprising. I don’t understand the psychology behind it any more than you but think you did the right thing.

Tomorrow I’ll post the last page of this letter to Ced, which had actually been mailed well prior to the last letter Grandpa wrote, threatening to stop writing his weekly missives unless he started receiving letters in return. But in true Grandpa fashion, he sends this letter to Ced alone, thus confirming for both Ced and Dick that he is serious.

On Saturday and Sunday, two more postings of a Tribute to Arla, my Grandmother and Grandpa’s wife, who passed away ehen her oldest child was 17 and her youngest was only 7.

Judy Guion

Trumbull (1) – Arriving June Fourth – June, 1941


One of the documents Lad needs before he can leave Venezuela.Lad - Personal Account with Socony-Vacuum - 1941

The final accounting of what Socony-Vacuum owes Lad.

A-132     Trumbull, Conn.,       June 1, 1941

Dear Ced, et al:

This is the last letter I will write for a while, at least, of which a carbon copy is made and sent to South America, for last Friday a cablegram was received from Caracas which said: “Arriving at New York June fourth Santa Rosa Lad”.

Since then, naturally, we have thoughts and talked of little else. I have asked the travel Bureau to get me a pass “behind the lines” and to do personal honor to the occasion I will get a fresh haircut and see that the Buick is washed and cleaned inside. As far as I know at present Aunt Betty, Elizabeth and Butch will go down with me to meet him. Dave unfortunately has an exam on that day and if he can arrange to take it some other time he also will go along. Between Mr. Warden and Dave they have the lawns and grounds looking pretty nifty and right at this minute, Dave, I hear, is outside beating an old rug he found in the barn which he will letter in white paint “WELCOME” and put it in front of the back door, just to follow out the old tradition. He is also planning various posters to be put here and there throughout the house so that Lad will be sure to understand he really is welcome. We will then take them down, put them in camphor balls and save them for Dan’s homecoming later in the year, and after that, as they will by that time undoubtedly have grown whiskers, we will put them in cold fiur storage so that they will be intact for later use on Ced or possibly Dick, although I am afraid the latter has washed his hands entirely of the old home, at least he has completely given us the go by up to present writing.

Who else outside of the family would be able to go down I have no means of knowing. Babe has her school, and as Carson has left, the new principal pro- tempore, would probably demur about granting permission even if it should be asked. Arnold and Alta, I learned, went to Niagara Falls on his motorcycle but Carl thinks they only intended to make it a Decoration Day trip and will be back Monday. Barbara says she would like very much to go down but because of sickness she has missed so many days lately from the office that she hesitates to ask for another day off. Don Whitney may be able to get the day off and take some of the gang down. Dave is arranging to show motion pictures of Venezuela that Lad has sent home and I would not be a bit surprised if some Alaskan pictures also found their way in on the showing.

Where Lad will elect to make his nest is problematical. As he is used to a tropic climate he may choose his old room in the attic; or he may prefer the front guestroom. Again, as he has been used to sleeping more or less out-of-doors the screened porch may be his choice. Of course there is also an extra bed in Dave’s room (Ced’s old room) but he may not like this so much as little Mr. Warden next door seems to like to howl quite frequently during the night watches. On the other hand, if Lad has not changed his habits to any great extent he will be up most of the night himself.

I spent all of Decoration Day and yesterday afternoon building and repairing screens, so that now every window in the house is properly protected, with the single exception of repairs to the screened porch which I do not have time to do at the front door for which I have ordered a new screen from Sears Roebuck.

I’ll post the rest of the letter covering other Trumbull news tomorrow.

On Saturday and Sunday, I’ll continue a Tribute to Arla, my Grandmother and Grandpa’s wife for much too short a time.

Judy Guion

Trumbull – Dave’s Birthday and Army News – Oct., 1942

At this point in time, Lad and Dan are in the Army. Lad came home for the weekend from Aberdeen, Maryland, and Dan arrived from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Since Dick and Dave are still living at home with Grandpa, Ced is the only son away from home.

Dave on Front Steps - 1039


Trumbull, Conn., October 4, 1942

Dear Ced:

Well, let’s see what this autumnal day can produce in the way of grist for our news mill. First, while this is not officially Dave’s birthday, it is the occasion when all the bunting is unfurled, bands play and a good time is had by all (I hope). As usual, on such state occasions, we transferred activities to the dining room, and because the furnace was not yet functioning (still needing an asbestos overcoat) and the temperature was too cool for comfort, Dan, who bagged another homer this week (the World Series influence at work), put up curtains between the dining room and living room and with the help of other Guion offshoots, hauled in a few first cousins to yule logs and ignited a cheery fire in the fireplace. He then Buicked up to Burroughs and came back with the first cider of the season, stopping on the way back to pick up Barbara. Jean and Lad, having arrived sometime during the small hours of the morning, lent the occasion a holiday atmosphere. Elizabeth and her brood were unable to come due to the fact that Butch, yesterday, had a fever and sore throat, and on advice of the doctor, had to remain at home. And then, of course, there was another vacant chair that is occupied in imagination by a certain tall Alaskan, without whom these occasions are never quite complete. However, the chef did his stuff, with balloon obligatos and all went smoothly except that Lad, in his exuberance, broke a five cent dish, which only added to the merriment. Dave opened his gifts, such as they were; Arnold and his wife dropped in and then all went out for an auto ride back to Nichols. Barbara is planning to go with Dan to Lancaster for a few days. Next Sunday we celebrate Aunt Betty’s birthday.

Lad reports that before the week is out he will probably know whether he is to stay at Aberdeen for the present or to be transferred to the new training group which will be started in Southern California. In the latter event, he will still be teaching advanced diesel work as at present. Dan reports they have actually started their surveying work in Pennsylvania. Dick’s car is showing signs of old age. It refused to start Friday and had to be left in the road opposite the drugstore. Harry Burr got it to run, but last night the transmission failed trying to make the driveway and now Dick’s thought is to put what good tires he has on my car, turn it in for junk and registered Dan’s car, using it until January when Uncle Sam will probably beckon him away from his Producto job.

There seems to be little else to report. Politics is getting a bit active again. Mr. Nothnagle, having died, and Mr. Bradley being engaged in war work at his garage, and for this reason not wanting to run again for the legislature, leaves Trumbull open for the nomination of two representatives this fall. I have been sounded out as to whether I would be willing to serve, but as it means about four days a week in Hartford from January to June, without any compensation to speak of, it doesn’t seem wise from a business viewpoint.

And so the story of the week comes to a close. In the background looms the perennial hope that this coming week may be rewarded by resumption of news from Alaska, perhaps bringing the final chapter in your first rescue mission and perhaps news about Trip No. 2. Anyway, we’ll be waiting, and none more eagerly, then


Tomorrow, another letter from Grandpa to three of his sons, then a letter from Lad, then a letterfrom Grandpa and another letter from Lad.

Judy Guion