Ced’s Coming of Age Adventure (4) – Arriving in Chicago – July, 1934

Blog - CDG - Letter to his Dad - Arriving in Chicago - (4)Thursday, July 26

6 PM

Dear Dad,

I am staying here for four days at $.50 per day (I get a room about 4′ x 8′ with a good clean comfortable bed and although an inside room there is an open court and I get pretty good air on the third floor. I also have the use of the public shower and wash. I stayed with Draz’s over until Wednesday afternoon and got a ride into Toledo, from there I walked about a mile and was picked up and carried about 6 miles. I walked another mile and was carried about 12 miles; as I stepped out of this last car I signaled a 1927 Cadillac it actually stopped and picked me up. The driver was alone and proceeded to tell me all about his past, present and future (and could he’s swear!). He left me at Annapolis, Ohio, and then I walked about a block and a car stopped without the use of my right thumb. He was in the 1934 Buick and what a smooth ride! I stepped out of that car and as I did another car stopped without being asked and took me about a mile. I then walked a mile and got another ride for about 2 miles. That I walked about a mile and signaled an Auburn going about 55 and he stopped and picked me up. He told me he had been told not to pick anyone up as he had once gotten “bumped on the noodle” by a hitchhiker. He told me he was going to Chicago and we went along all right for a while and then he said he was tired and so he let me drive about 180 miles while he slept. At one time we stopped and he bought me a hamburger sandwich and a glass of milk, and did it taste good in the nice restaurant he went to! We arrived at his hotel about 2:30 AM and I went directly to the “Y” and got a room on the 18th floor for $.75, an outside room. I slept until 12:30 today and then walked along on the outside of the Fairgrounds but I did not go in as I would not have had a full day there. Tomorrow I will start bright and early (?) And put in a full day at the fair. After looking around a bit I came back to the ”Y” and enjoying my present room, the location of which I have shown approximately on the enclosed card.

There is a large recreation room and writing room etc. and I think living here will be very pleasant and worthwhile. The Draz’s all asked about you and wanted to be remembered to you. Mr. Draz offered to assist me if I got into trouble and they were very nice to me all the time I was there. They have a Nash and a new Ford V-8 and do they like the Ford! They also have a nice old house about hundred and four years old. Well goodbye until the next.

Lots of love,


Chicago YMCA with Ced's room marked

Chicago YMCA with Ced’s room marked

Chicago YMCA Postcard (message on the back)

Chicago YMCA Postcard
(message on the back)

The message reads:

Dear Elizabeth, Dick and Dave,

This place is only four blocks from the fair grounds and the city of Chicago is practically as large as New York. To tell you the truth, I wouldn’t mind having you all here, what fun we could have at the fair,

The fair itself takes up about 14 or 15 city blocks and I get tired just walking the length of it. Lots of love, Ced

P.S. I am sending your watch ticket Elizabeth and you better see Mr. Johnson soon.

For the next several weeks, we’ll be exploring the Chicago World’s Fair just as Ced did. He kept scads of memorabilia and I want to share it with you. Most of it also includes his notes and his reactions.

Next week I’ll be posting letters written in 1945. Lad and Dan are both in France and Dan’s wedding to Paulette is fast approaching. Ced remains in Alaska, Dick is in Brazil and Dave is on Okinawa. Grandpa continues to carry on in Trumbull with Marian, Lad’s wife (and my Mom) and Jean, Dick’s wife and his Aunt Betty, who helps care for the house.

Judy Guion 


Special Picture # 200 – 1934 Chicago World’s Fair

During the summer of 1934, a year after the death of his Mother Arla, at the age of 17, my Uncle Ced hitchhiked from Trumbull, Connecticut to Wisconsin and North Dakota  to see where his mother had grown up and to meet his relatives who remained in the area. Along the way, he spent 4 days at the 1934 Chicago World’s Fair. Here are some of his souvenirs.

CDG - 1934 Chicago Fair Postcard - The Enchanted Island

Post Card – The Enchanted Island

CDG - Chicago Fair - 1934 (Enchanted Island) (2)

Ced writes: “Walked around the outside of this place but did not go in: mostly pleasure park amusement for small children.”

The caption in the lower right-hand corner reads: A child’s dream of Fairyland come true. Youngsters have the time of their lives in this enchanted spot.”

Special Picture # 179 – 1934 Chicago World’s Fair – A Story Of A Century Of Progress

CDG - Chicago Fair - 1934 (of interest in the Ford exhibit)

In the summer of 1934, my Uncle Ced (Cedric Duryee Guion, then just 17 years old) hitchhiked from Trumbull, CT to North Dakota and Wisconsin in search of the roots of his mother’s heritage. Arla Mary Peabody had been born in North Dakota and moved to New York where she met and married my Grandpa, Alfred Duryee Guion. She had passed away the previous summer after a long illness and Ced wanted to meet members of his Mother’s family. On the way, he stopped at the Chicago World’s Fair and spent four days there, taking in the sights. This is the introductory page of a booklet entitled, “What I saw at the CHICAGO WORLD’S FAIR   1934”

Special Picture # 72 – Chicago World’s Fair – 1934

CDG - 1934 Chicago Fair Postcard - The Enchanted Island

This is a postcard from the 1934 Chicago Worlds Fair. It shows the Enchanted Island. Ced spent four days at the Fair on his hitchhiking trip from Trumbull to North Dakota and Wisconsin to meet the Peabody relatives in the place where his Mother grew up. You can read about his Coming of Age Adventure by clicking on that category.

Peabodys and Duryees – A Word From Aunt Betty – Sept., 1940


Aunt Betty with Doug and Judy (cropped) - 1953

APG - Aunt Betty letter about Duryee family history, Sept, 1940


72 Elm Ave.


Sept. 8, 1940

Dear Laddie,

Your letter of July 28th, which I received on Aug. 6th, made me feel ashamed of myself for not answering your former letter to me last May. You certainly returned good for evil and I appreciate it and hope you will forgive me as well.

You see I am trying to make amends by writing so soon after getting the letter and picture of you feeding the deer, it is a very good picture of you, and the deer must be very tame. You spoke of your father mentioning about my saying that I had not heard from you for ages, as I have said, I did get a letter in May. You did say in that letter that you had received a birthday letter, but what I had really meant was whether you had received the account of the Duryee family that I had sent at Christmas time, for since sending that, I have mislaid my copy, so please keep your copy for it is now the only record we have.

Now this letter, which I received on August 6, does answer all my questions and you have indeed thanked me for everything.

Now about the trip on Mother’s Day. It was a lovely Sunday in May and Dad, Richard, Cedric and Daniel came down in a new Buick car he was trying out, stayed to dinner here at the Knolls, then Dad said that being Mother’s Day, they had planned to take me on a trip in the country and that I must choose where I would like to go. Of course anywhere was just grand for me for I don’t get many rides as a rule, so then Dad said, well, he had thought I would enjoy a ride to Newburgh to see the Smiths. Oh boy! I had never thought of anything so delightful so we got an early start and were over the Tarrytown Ferry up by way of, and through, West Point, and then over the Storm King Highway to Fairfield which is the name of the Smith’s place. They were home and so very glad to see us. Elliott had not seen Dad since he was a little boy and he was so glad to have an opportunity to talk to him and to meet the boys. The boys were all over the place and Mrs. Smith treated us to drinks (soft) and cake. We left there about six o’clock and drove back to Mount Vernon and Mrs. Seipp insisted that they all stay to supper which really turned out to be another dinner. Altogether it was a very delightful day.

I do so hope that you will be able to come home soon, anyway the time slips away so fast that the rest of your time will not seem too long, not as long to you as to us, we all miss you. I have been staying in Trumbull the last three weeks in August but it was so cold and damp that we could not be out much, so did not enjoy it as much as usual. The baby is dear, so good and smiles all the time, and only cries when he hurts himself or is hungry. I am glad you can see from some of the pictures that you have a car.

Keep the desire for work with the diesel engine in the back of your mind and I am sure the opportunity to get in to that field will open up for you. What we desire, yearn for wholeheartedly comes to us sooner or later. That mechanic may not turn out to be “so hot”.

I have been to the World’s Fair three times this year, standing one hour in the line to get into the General Motors, and see their exhibition of the Highways and Horizons of Tomorrow. I think it was one of the best in the fair.

I have joined a Willkie for President Club  (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wendell_Willkie ) and tomorrow am going to get a card for people who are undecided which to vote for, Willkie or Roosevelt, to pledge to vote for Willkie and then see that they are sure to register and turn out on Election Day. I know Dad is writing to you today and telling you all the latest news of Trumbull and also of Dan and Ced, it is fine they seem so well contented. I am so proud of you all, to think you all have gone out and found jobs for yourselves.

Thank you for your very interesting letter.


Aunt Betty

Ced’s Coming of Age Adventure – On His Way Home – 1934

Chagrin Falls, Ohio

Sat. Sept. 1

Dear Dad:

I saw Vivian and Aunt Anna before I left Star Prairie and they gave me five dollars to “have a good time on”. I got good rides all the way down to Madison Monday and Tuesday headed for Chicago and found cousin Rudolf there where he is staying. I spent Wednesday at Chicago with him and we went to the fair Wednesday night and saw The Black Forest and the “Standard Oil Line Power Show” and then went to the Ford building and saw their movie which was excellent and then we heard the Ford Symphony band.

I started for Cleveland Thursday morning expecting to get there by night but I didn’t get a ride until four o’clock in the afternoon. I had a terrible day of it and first went to bed on the road at 3 AM. I made Cleveland at three o’clock yesterday and here I am at Chagrin Falls. We are going to the air races tomorrow and I will leave for home on the third or fourth and probably won’t arrive home until the seventh or eighth or maybe the ninth.

I am anxious to get back home again and see you all and am glad to hear that Alfred is going back to school.

On the trip from Madison to Chicago I rode in 1934 Packard, what do you think of that? I have lots of things to tell you when I get back and hope I can remember them all. There are so many that I’m afraid many of them have gotten lost back in my mind but I guess they’ll come out in the wash. It will certainly be nice to get home and until next week, goodbye.

Lots of love to you and the kids.


The line about the 1934 Packard makes me wonder if the Packard that Lad drove was a 1934. Here’s a picture of the Packard. Can you tell? If you have any information, please leave a comment.

Packard and Mack

Packard and Mack

Next week I’m going out of state on business so I’ll be posting Special Pictures at least through Saturday, Maybe even Sunday.I hope you enjoy them.

Judy Guion