Red Headed Stepchild
(The Barrett family memoir of Navy Life)
by Sophie Ruth Meranski with photos


MARBLEHEAD Naval officers at Melbourne late July l925-Jack Barrett? }m{J}
#914 p 35 This published photo of a group of U.S. Naval officers visiting Melbourne, Victoria province, Australia 1915 appeared in an Australian journal - they were embarking on a railroad tour on the "Reso" train to Bendigo and Ballararat. The center figure may be Jack Barrett but I am not absolutely certain.//: [Peter Nathan e mail:] Re: Edwin G. Boring- China 1931 John: I read Boring's "History of Experimental Psychology: in graduate school. I also read his more general history of psychology as both an undergraduate and a graduate student. I had no idea you were so interested in things psychological. I took very few courses in psychology during my undergraduate days. For example, I didn't take Skinner's Nat. Sci. 114, something I greatly regret. Although I did take Robert White's abnormal psychology, I took nothing from Bruner,Miller, Stevens, or any of the other luminaries there at the time. My major was a much softer social relations, which was probably a mistake. I did take Kluckhohn and Murray's Gen. Ed. course, as you note, and that was a great experience. I was also able to do my honors thesis with Murray, and that was wonderful. My best courses, though, were in English, where I had close to the equivalent of another major.I hope you have a wonderful holiday season, John. Peter At 03:15 PM 12/15/98 -0800, you wrote:Peter- Does youe library have the Edwin Boring "History of Experimental Psychology"? He placed greatest emphasis on Fechner, Helmholz, and Wundt in the history of experimental psychology- and considered Wundt the most important for his creation of first experimental laboratory 1889, though William James started one at Harvard a year later. He reviewed Aristotle, phrenologists Gall and Spurzheim,"personal equation" of astronomers, in which it was discovered individuals recording data from telscopes have different reaction time and nerve transmission takes measurable time- Goethe was interested in color vision - Hering Cannon- Gestaltists I think the big three were Wertheimer, Kohler, Koffka - Boring teased behaviorists including B.F. Skinner by coining the phrase "the psychology of the empty organism" - Pavlov came into the story with the salivating dogs - stimulus and response. Have you met an "generalized normal human adults" recently? They seem to have become rare, but trained observers of mental phenomena were important in classical pscyhology. Boring was involved in studies of troop morale in world War I. I forget whether he was the one who stressed the loyalty of the individual to friends in a unit as one of thethings get keeps people going when things are really rough in the trenches. Boring talked of Binet* and commented "Intelligence is what intelligence tests test." I also took Social Psychology SocRel 117 sophomore year with Roger Brown,interested in Psychology of speech and language, and senior year I took Psych 148 Cognitive Process in Personality with Jermore Bruner and George Miller - they discussed on of the French researchers on child development-Piaget. I audited Raphael Demos Psychology 1b - Descartes-Spinoza-Hume-Kant-W. James "I think therefore I am - soul in pineal body -"Am I a man dreaming I am a butterfly or a butterfly dreaming I am a man?" - mind tabula rasa at birth - categorical imperatives - "What is matter?" "Never mind" - What is mind?" "No matter." I also junior year audited SocSci 4 with Clyde Kluckhohn and Henry Murray, which you took for credit. I remember Kluckhohn saying"the strong individuals get around society's rules" Many years later I sat next to Henry Murray at a Phi Beta Kappa dinner in Fogg courtyard. He turned the conversation to "gurus" On the whole mother found China an interesting experience and had some very good friends and collected fine furniture and dishes, whch she used until 1976 thefts -rugs and some other things survived till 1993.She was lonesome when my father was out at sea especially just after she arrived in November 1930. She had wonderful freinds including the Paul-Gertrude-Nathalie Rice family, Marine William W. Paca, Grace Liang and family, Army wives Mrs. Mendelssohn and Florence Hilldring, the Warrens and Danish Heningsons, Mr. Isemonger and daughter Tina, though she was cautious with him after her experience on the HENDERSON and Mrs. Moore at the Court Hotel - the Faison Jordons, Dr. Supan,the fur buyers who got her the coat, ChaplainWilliam Maguire on the Chefoo trip,the Ashleys at Shanghai when leaving on world tour and others. He did have somje sort of serious skin problem on her hands - whether fungus, allergy or whatever. She was underweight and had digestive upsets part of the time,and my father worried her about cholera and other oriental diseases but she was happy. She studied Emily Post - did some entertaining but got discouraged when one of the few women guests got drunk and avoided entertainment that served alcohol thereafter. Jim Ullyot has now set things up so I can put the memoir directly on the photo website - this happened yesterday ,and it is very important - at the moment there are three text entries and will soon be many more as I transfer over a hundred excerpts presently on E mail. I also typed an essay on my grandfather John Robert Barrett 1854-1942 - go to year 1854 on website to read this new material. Have you seen the 1911 Meranski family group of ten? If you are ever in Minneapolis look up Jim Ullyot Harvard 1962 through his company Creative Communications 3050 Metro Drive Suite 210 Bloomington MN55425. I sent a memoir excerpt this spring to Rick Stekel by E mail - got a brief answer - meant to reply further by regular mail, but at least he was on his feet in April - sorry if he was sick. More soon- John//I looked for Elaine Trehub's husband's name in my APA biographical directory, but he does not appear in it. Perhaps he was never a member of APA or perhaps he has resigned. The material your mother wrote Ms. Trehub is fascinating. I was particularly interested in her life with your father in China during the early 1930s in Tientsin, Shanghai, and Peking. She mentions inviting someone to visit their gunboat. Did she actually live with your father on a gunboat, was she quartered in a navy facility on shore, or did she and your father have to find a place together on their own on shore? I was also interested to see your reference to "my friend, Edwin Boring". I took Psych. 1 from him. We used his book (Boring, Langfeld, & Weld) and I found the course a bit dry. What was the nature of your friend with him? He is, of course, a seminal figure in modern-day psychology. I hope you had a good Thanksgiving, John. I found myself remembering Thanksgivings during our college days, when those of us from the provinces would be invited to local homes. During Thanksgiving of our freshman year,for example, Bill Hoppe and I were invited to the Talamo's home in Worcester.
Subject: Probably Lt. Jack Barrett
Year: 1925JulyJack?