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

 


WEBSITE DEDICATION + INDEX p. 75 #1251 use year "1492" for quick access

 

RED HEADED STEPCHILD -DEDICATION KELSEY,MAGUIRE,GEETTERS In late August 2000 I thought of the idea of a dedication for the Barrett family memoir RED HEADED STEPCHILD. It would have to be in keeping with my mother's wishes, as I consider her the senior author, who wrote most of the basic text and painstakingly copied down a great deal of correspondence, which would otherwise have been lost in 1993 thefts. I have had to make many judgments how she would wanted various materials handled and arranged, but I have tried to conform to what her intentions were. At the moment I am thinking of a four part dedication, honoring both the individuals and certain classes of people they symbolize. The four are: ALBERT KELSEY, who taught English, especially Boswell's Life of Samuel Johnson, and assigned a biography project for each student to do an interview of a moderately prominent person in Boswell's style, with as much direct quotation as possible. Bert symbolizes many wonderful teachers- those Jack had at Boston Latin, Revenue Cutter School, Naval War College, Fordham, Boston College, and Northeastern Law Schools, those Sophie had in Hartford and at Mount Holyoke College, and those I had - Mrs. Barbour, Miss Ponte, Mrs. Davidson at Thomas Jefferson School Waikiki, and my piano teacher Giuseppe deLellis and many more. We read many other biographies - classical Plutarch, Xenophon, Plato, Suetonius, Samuel Johnson's Lives of the English poets, Carl Sandburg's six volume life of Abraham Lincoln. Also Sophie and Jack were very close with Albert Kelsey through Roxbury Latin debating. which they followed closely for six years. Also Lee Lockwood as 1949-1950 TRIPOD editor began a "Meet the Faculty" series on which I did much work. The Odyssey is a kind of biography we studied closely with Cary Potter 1950 - he strongly seconded Homer's words that the greatest blessing in life is a happy marriage - this is a central theme of RED HEADED STEPCHILD a love story in time of war and travel, like the Odyssey. With Frederick Weed we read the fictional Forsyte Saga by Galsworthy, which has had some influence on the family history research that will appear in Volume Three of 'STEPCHILD'.- SECOND: -- PACIFIC FLEET CHAPLAIN WILLIAM A. MAGUIRE, who found Sophie accomodations at Chefoo during Asiatic Fleet exercises 1931 and was a hero in December 7, 1941 attack and wrote up Jack Barett's work in Pearl Harbor OVERSEAS TRANSPORTATION OFFICE 1941-1942 in chapter "BREAD ON THE WATERS" in "THE CAPTAIN WEARS A CROSS" 1943. It was Father Maguire who first said "there ought to be a book" about Jack Barrett and his work. Father Maguire symbolizes Jack's friends in Navy, Marines, and Coast Guard, including those that died, especially the two thousand four hundred victims at Pearl Harbor, where he tried to warn opinionated Admirals of the danger of air attack. In many ways Pearl Harbor is the climax of the forty-chapter memoir - Jack was well trained to try to save American lives but the RED HEADED STEPCHILD was frustrated by Roosevelt's "fair-haired boys". REBEKAH + ISADORE GEETTER The remaining dedication will probably be to my mother's baby sister Rebekah Geetter and her husband Dr. Isadore Geetter, who were an inestimable comfort to Sophie during seventeen and a half years of widowhood 1969-1987. They symbolize many wonderful relatives - and I do not desire to slight any of the others. Jack's relations are described extensively in the text, including chapters on his father, and his half-brother Bill and half-sister Mollie and relations like Loretto Buckley in Ireland, May and Ed Hartigan, and the Mehegans and Fahrbachs, who assisted gretly in fiding information. Sophie's other sisters Esther Meranski and Bertha Pollack and her brother Pete Meranski of Baltimore were of great importance to her, but in the years this memoir was written the friendship and frequent hospitality of the Geetter family were overwhelmingly important. So my present plan is to dedicate this memoir to Albert Kelsey, William Maguire and Rebekah and Isidore Geetter.WORD SEARCH SYMBOLS: "KEY WORD" SEARCH SYMBOLS KEY WORD tools-- Enter these symbols in brackets or (capital) parentheses to find chapter materials and photo subjects quickly. In parentheses: (7)TAX THESIS (8) MOUNT HOLYOKE COLLEGE (9) REVENUE CUTTER SCHOOL 1909-10 (R) Roxbury Latin School (Y) Yosemite, Yellowstone, Over the Mountain chapter, summer 1947 photos in west (**) botany+ Arnold Arboretum topics. LETTERS in REVERSED, CAPITALIZED BRACKETS: }C{ indicates best edited text of each chapter, "RED HEADED STEPCHILD". Other REVERSED,CAPITALIZED BRACKETS: }C3{ Materials for PART THREE Barrett relations and early history in preparation }F{ Fordham Law School + New York 1928 with XANTHOS letter }M{ light cruiser MARBLEHEAD 1924-1927 photos + chapter text, }A{ Astronomy. LETTERS or NUMBERS IN CAPITALIZED BRACKETS: {B}BUCKLEYS {C} CLAXTON 1936 {D} DAHLQUIST {F} Hartford-Meranski-family {G} Grandpa Barrett {H}Hawaii {I} Ireland {J} Jack Barrett {M} Mollie Barrett {N} New-York-Brooklyn 1939-1941 {P} Panama + survey ship HANNIBAL 1933-5 {R} West Roxbury years after 1947 {S} Sophie Meranski Barrett {T} TRUXTUN 1929-1930 + TRINITY 1938-9 {W} William Joseph Barrett {X} XANTHOS letter, Dedication, guides, and explanations of purposes of memoir {Z} Barrett family photos before 1900 and family history chapter.{4} Jack 1912-1920 {5} VOYAGE TO THE ORIENT - TRANSPORT HENDERSON 1930 {7} HONEYMOON January March 1932 {9} NORTH CHINA 1930 --September 2, 2000 -John Barrett junior . Locations of RED HEADED STEPCHILD text chapters by WEB PAGE SEQUENCE--- p ONE at photo #7 Philadelphia 1937 -=-p SEVEN Home is the Sailor Massachusetts 1947-1969 p 13 THIRTEEN at photos #100,101,102 HANNIBAL Panama-Costa Rica 1933-4-5 - -=- p. FOURTEEN # 111 WILLIAM JOSEPH BARRETT -=- p.SEVENTEEN-EIGHTEEN 5 China-TULSA main text at p. 18 #139 photos at #135,#136,#137,138,#139 -=- p. EIGHTEEN 18 # 142 BROOKLYN-NEW YORK- HYDROGRAPHIC OFFICE August 1939-July 1941 -=- p. TWENTY-FOUR 24 #783 EAGLE 19 BOSTON and family photo p.36 #922 -=- p TWENTY-FIVE HONEYMOON on PRESIDENT PIERCE January-March 1932 via Philippines, Egypt, Europe-=-p TWENTY-NINE #864 TRUXTUN p. TWENTY-NINE 29 #867 OVER THE MOUNTAIN" WESTERN NATIONAL PARKS summer 1947. -=- p. THIRTY-ONE at photo #877 Boston Latin School 1902-1906. Related photos p 41 #960,#961. -=- p. FORTY-TWO at #965 or #333 HOME IS THE SAILOR 1947-1969 -=-p FORTY-FOUR #986 VOYAGE to the ORIENT "SLOW BOAT TO CHINA" transport USS HENDERSON 1930 -=- p.FIFTY FOUR Frank DELAHANTY letters relate to battleship WYOMING, Naval War College, Virginia 1935 destroyer CLAXTON 1936 Hawaii 1946 and to 1970s. -=- page 55 FIFTY-FIVE Web page FIFTY-FIVE contains First five chapters of VOLUME ONE of RED HEADED STEPCHILD Sophie Ruth Meranski Barrett family, Hartford Connecticut and Mount Holyoke College, social work, and marriage to 1930. Chapter ONE is Hartford and Mount Holyoke.Chapter TWO discusses social work 1923-1930 mainly in Philadelphia and New York. Chapter THREE GREENWICH VILLAGE ROMANCE Sophie meets Lieutenant Jack Barrett August 1928,and they marry June 1929 . Chapter FOUR contains text of Sophie's 1925 Economics + Sociology master's thesis "The Young Offender and the Criminal Law in Massachusetts". Chapter FIVE presents Meranski family letters.-=- Web page FIFTY-SIX 56 begins with Chapter SIX "Musical Interests of Sophie and Jack Barrett" I am thinking of dividing RED HEADED STEPCHILD into Three VOLUMES. The first is fairly complete - Young Sophie Meraanski and her family, Hartford, Mount Holyoke College, social work marriage. The SECOND VOLUME follows JACK BARRETT AT SEA - Revenue Cutter School, briefly LIGHTHOUSE SERVICE, RESERVE + REGULAR NAVY 1909 to 1947, most of the time away fom Boston except 1912 and 1932-3. This VOLUME is getting near completion, as this week I have got the very long CHINA- TULSA chapter 1931 in near final form - a very important chapter that had to be pieced together from many sources, which has a great deal of Sophie's personal reminiscence. Most of VOLUME TWO will soon be ready for proofreaders. The EAGLE 19 chapter 1932-3 and NEW YORK- BROOKLYN HYDROGRAPHIC 1939-41 chapter have been put together during August 2000. There remains VOLUME THREE - THE BARRETTS in BOSTON - The WILLIAM JOSEPH BARRETT chapter with important ANITA DOUREDOURE material has been on the website for some time, and in AUGUST the BOSTON PUBLIC LATIN SCHOOLS chapter has been re-edited with many additions, including materials on Dan Lyne, David Niles, John Carroll Poland of West Roxbury Historical Society, Dr. James . Moloney Captain USN and more. Sophie Barrett's chapter on {early) "BARRETT FAMILY HISTORY" may be split and expanded, as a great deal of material is available, and also materials on Cork Ireland and South Boston and the chapter "CHILDHOOD + SCHOOLS." A considerable portion of a chapter on Jack Barrett's father "JOHN ROBERT BARRETT" 1854-1942 is in existence, and there is material for Chapters on Jack's half-sister Mollie, various Buckley O Farrell Hartigan Lane Lynch Mehegan and Fahrbach relations, which will require comsiderable time and effort. Current Sophie's chapter H-O-M-E I-S T-H-E S-A-I-L-O-R 1947-1969 is the next priority, partly because Jack Barrett's Boston College Law School 1951 classmates will be observing their fiftieth reunion in 2001. Jack's legal interests probably will deserve a separate chapter - he began law school nights 1927-9 at Fordham Bronx campus- completed LL.B 1951 at Boston College and wrote master's tax thesis at Northeastern Law 1963. His thesis on abolition of Sixty-Five Day Rule in federal income taxation of Trusts and Estates appears on lower portion of web. page ninety-one. Jack and Sophie took a great interest in the debating at Roxbury Latin School under Albert Kelsey and in the music of Giuseppe deLellis, and Sophie raised a great deal of money for Roxbury Latin School TRIPOD magazine - they lived three blocks from the school, and this part of their story can be put together. Many photos survive from their West Roxbury years,and these will be listed and described. They both were active in Wet Roxbury Historical Society - Sophie for more than a decade. Comments of interested persons might be very helpful, especially those with photos or other material, and proofreaders specializing in particular chapters could help enormously - VOLUME I chapter SIX Musical Interests of Jack and Sophie Barrett Web page Fifty-Six then contains VOLUME TWO chapters of Jack Barrett's years at Hydrographic Office and in U.S. Navy from 1912 through about 1927. The first item focuses on Jack's mentor at Naval Hydrogaphic Office 1913-1916 Gershom Bradford, and his maritime writings, including material on S-4 submarine sinking and rescue effort December 1927. The next chapter begins when Jack returned to South Boston after Revenue Cutter School November 1911, has material on his Lighthouse Service experience in Maine 1912, four years in Washington 1913-1916 at Naval Hydrographic Office, Naval Reserve Officer duty World War I and commercial experience. Then there is material on destroyer TOUCEY 1921, battleship WYOMING 1922-2. -=- Web page FIFTY-SEVEN 57 gathers materials on Barrett family years in Hawaii 1941-1947, including Jack's frustrating attempt as Assistant War Plans Officer to warn superior officers of grave danger at Pearl Harbor, and then his work four years 1941-5 as Assistant Personnel Officer in charge of Overseas Transportation Office, handling all surface transportation of Navy Personnel and families.Other materials are being placed in more convenient sequence, and over 550 photos relate to materials. -=- Lower half Web p. SIXTY-FIVE second copy of Sophie Barrett 1925 Master Thesis Mount Holyoke -=- p SIXTY-SIX In 1923-4 Jack took Junior Course at Neval War College, Newport, Rhode Island,and his TACTICS thesis spring 1924 appears on web page SIXTY-SIX 66. -=- Material on MARBLEHEAD 1924-1927 is being gathered on web page SIXTY-SEVEN and includes subsequent experiences of Phil Dahlquist, Micky and Maimie Ashley of Shanghai, Harold Fultz, Eddie Arroyo, George Phillips, Forrest Close, Alexander Sharp, the Craig family of Melbourne, Australia, and the Anderson and Rainey families of New Zealand. -=- p. SEVENTY-EIGHT Material on Revenue Cutter School 1909-11 includes many photos of Mediterranean cruises and text now on web page SEVENTY-EIGHT 78. --p.EIGHTY-ONE tanker TRINITY 1938-9 and Coronado-Pardees p EIGHTY_TWO COMMAND of DESTROYER CLAXTON 1935-6 p EIGHTY-TWO #1312. -=- p NINETY-ONE Jack Barrett 1953 Northeastern Law School master's thesis in Taxation, - portion of chapter "HOME IS THE SAILOR 1947-1969"... PLANNED FINAL ORDER OF TEXT: At web page 55 [Fifty-Five] Web page 55 contains First four chapters of VOLUME ONE of RED HEADED STEPCHILD Sophie Ruth Meranski Barrett family, Hartford Connecticut and Mount Holyoke Colege, social work, and marriage to 1930. Chapter 1 is Hartford and Mount Holyoke.Chapter 2 discusses social work mainly in Philadelphia and New York 1923-1930. Chapter Three Sophie titled "GREENWICH VILLAGE ROMANCE" 1928-1929 + marriage June 1929 to Lieutenant Jack Barrett. Chapter 4 contains text of Sophie's 1925 Economics + Sociology master's thesis "The Young Offender and the Criminal Law in Massachusetts". Chapter Five presents Meranski family letters. Web page 56 begins with Part I chapter Six Musical Interests of Jack and Sophie Barrett. VOLUME II follows Jack Barrett's life after he entered the Revenue Cutter School May 1909, until his return to Boston August 1947. The Revenue Cutter School chapter is in segments on Web p. SEVENTY-EIGHT, with many 1909-1910 photos from ITASCA cruises. Web page Fifty-Six then contains chapters of Jack Barrett's years at Hydrographic Office and in U.S. Navy from 1912 through about 1927. The first item focuses on Jack's mentor at Naval Hydrogaphic Office 1913-1916 Gershom Bradford, and his maritime writings, including material on S-4 submarine sinking and rescue effort December 1927. The next chapter begins when Jack returned to South Boston after Revenue Cutter School November 1911, has material on his Lighthouse Service experience in Maine 1912, four years in Washington 1913-1916 at Naval Hydrographic Office, Naval Reserve Officer duty World War I and commercial experience. Then there is material on destroyer TOUCEY 1921, battleship WYOMING 1922-2, NAVAL WAR COLLEGE Newport, Rhode Island 1923-4 and TACTICS thesis spring 1924 web page SIXTY-SIX and web P67 light cruiser MARBLEHEAD 1924-7 Hawaii-Australia-Nicaragua-China. In preparation are chapters on New York 1927-9,[trip home from China, sub S-4 sinking,December 1927, XANTHOS letter to New York Post on naval Preparedness, January 1928, and two years night law school at Fordham 1927-9], destroyer TRUXTUN 1929-30 Philippines-Yangtze Sophie's Voyage to the Orient of transport HENDERSON 1930, gunboat TULSA Tientsin and North China 1930-31, Honeymoon around world on Dollar Lines 1932, EAGLE 19 in Boaton 1932-3. Next are chapters on SURVEY ship HANNIBAL 1933-4-5 Panana, Costa Rica Virginia at web p.THIRTEEN 13 photos #100,101,102., -=- command of destroyer CLAXTON 1936 - web p. EIGHTY-TWO 82 #1312. -=-PHILADELPHIA chapter 1937 is on web P. ONE at photo #7, -=-TRINITY tanker to Orient 1938-9 at p. EIGHTY-ONE #1301 -=- and NEW YORK Branch Hydrographic Office 1939-1941 directory at P EIGHTEEN # 142 -- in chronology and text sequence. Web page 57 gathers materials on Barrett family years in Hawaii 1941-1947, including Jack's frustrating attempt as Assistant War Plans Officer to warn superior officers of grave danger at Pearl Harbor, and then his work four years 1941-5 as Assistant Personnel Officer in charge of Overseas Transportation Office, handling all surface transportation of Navy Personnel and families.Other materials are being placed in more convenient sequence, and over 550 photos relate to materials. "Then Over the Mountain" tells of visits to Western National Parks 1947, p TWENTY-NINE #867, and "Home is the Sailor" highlights of Jack's return to Boston and West Roxbury 1947 to 1969. [Northeastern Tax thesis at p. NINETY-ONE]. VOLUME Three will cover Early Barrett family history, Jack's childhood and schools, BOSTON LATIN School, p THIRTY-ONE #877 -=- his half brother William Joseph Barrett, p FOURTEEN at #141 -=- his father John Robert Barrett, letters, and and account of Sophie and John Barrett after 1969. --------. 1999 text: Corrected and expanded versions of "RED HEADED STEPCHILD" begin below on website pages 75 and 76 with Chapter One "Sophie, the Meranski family Hartford and Mount Holyoke 1901-1923" and Chapter Two:Social Work and Marriage New York-Philadelphia 1923-1930." Chapter three on website p 65 is Sophie's 1925 Master's Thesis "The YOUNG OFFENDER AND THE CRIMINAL LAW in Massachusetts" directed by Professor Amy Hewes Economics and Sociology. ENJOY+STUDY"RedHeadedStepchild"by Email or WEBSITE Sophie Meranski Barrett 1901-1987 wrote the main text of Navy family memoir "Red Headed Stepchild" beginning 1969 at 52 Emmonsdale Road, West Roxbury, her home 1947-1987. Most of the text can now be seen on website http://www.ccilink.com/barrett with more than 500 photos. Her son John B. Barrett Jr. collaborated and is typing and editing material from handwritten notebooks and recollections. Interested persons may request specific portions by E mail as they are edited, including 1924 and 1925 theses of Jack at the Naval War College Newport Rhode Island and Sophie in Economics and Sociology at Mount Holyoke College, South Hadley, Massachusetts. There are also numerous letters from Navy, Coast Guard, Marine and other friends and many relatives. A website Index and Directory begins at top of website page 75 seventy-five, and below is a more complete outline of the present organization of materials, which can be E-mailed.Reasonable copying of these materials for personal and scholarly use is very welcome and encouraged. If anyone should be interested in adapting portions of these materials for large scale publication, a financial contribution to assist further work might be appropriate -contact John B. Barrett at 113 West Third Street, Port Angeles Washington WA98362-2824 current 2000 E mail addresses include sunfuture@yahoo.com, jbbarrettjr@mailcity.com, Meranski@yahoo.com--- meranski@hotmail.com--- Sophie's original writing began with a series of eight "black notebooks" mainly 1969-1974. A little later she conceived the idea of a book primarily about her husband Commander John Berchmans Barrett 1888-1969, with a chapter on his brother Bill and much material on Barrett family history. Material on Sophie's own family the Meranskis and her early years before 1928 was mainly in the black notebooks. Some of the Chapter Titles in the "Red Headed Stepchild" narrative included: I.-Barrett Family History II-Childhood and Schools IIa [web p 82 # 1313] Boston Latin School 1902-6 -3-.Revenue Cutter Service 1909-11 [web p 78]4.William Joseph Barrett 1895-1967 [chapters 5-7 ] 5-Interval between Revenue Cutter Service and Regular Navy 1912-21 Naval Hydrographic Office DC and Reserve Officer World War I -6- Regular Navy,Destroyer TOUCEY 1921 Charleston SC -7- Battleship WYOMING 1922-3 -8-NAVAL WAR COLLEGE Newport 1923-4 with TACTICS thesis [web P66] and related Delahanty letters [web P54] -[Ch9 at web P67]-"Newest Ship in the Navy" Light Cruiser MARBLEHEAD 1924-1927 War Games Hawaii visit Australia-New Zealand 1925 action Nicaragua-Shanghai China 1927 many letters Phil Dahlquist, Harold Fultz, George Phillips, "Boney" Close, Jack Fradd, Edward Arroyo -TEN-[web P 97-#1439] Shore Duty New York 1927-9 During this time December 17, 1927 Jack was sent to sea in inadequately equipped New York Harbor tug in the desperate effort to rescue crew of submarine S-4 who were trapped alive in hopelessly deep water off Provincetown Cape Cod. This was on his mind when he wrote a January 1928 letter to New York Post under pen-name "XANTHOS" about Naval preparedness and irresponsible attitudes in United States Congress. "XANTHOS" was the name of Achilles's horse in the Iliad, which warned him of his impending doom. "XANTHOS" originally meant blond, but some of Jack's Boston Latin friends humorously applied it to his reddish hair and tendency to make grim predictions in military and naval affairs. He deplored lack of action by Hoover when Japanese attacked Mudken Manchuria 1931 and again when Franklin Roosevelt curtailed Naval Reserve program June 1933. He warned of danger at Pearl Harbor for a long time, especially the weekends, and lack of effective liaison with Army. He lost his mother in 1889 but had a happy relation with his stepmother and her children and family. But he would occasionally refer to himself as the "Red Headed Stepchild." Sophie originally considered writing a memoir 1950s of the Pearl Harbor attack under the title "I was There," but Fleet Admiral Leahy had used this title for his memoir as President Roosevelt's chief of staff, so Sophie settled on "Red Headed Stepchild" for Jack's biography,. which expanded to cover family and friends. _ELEVEN-[web P55] "GREENWICH VILLAGE ROMANCE" Sophie met Jack August 1928 at 27 Commerce Street, Greenwich Village, New York, where she sublet from social worker Anne Taylor. She describes their romance and marriage in the Red Headed Stepchild text. This material may be combined with the more extended account in the notebooks of her social work and life New York 1923-1930. -TWELVE-[ web p 81 #1305] Destroyer TRUXTUN summer 1929-May 1930 Philippines-Yangtze Rive-Nanking. Jack Barrett wrote some recollections of the TRUXTUN in 1967 for the Commanding Officer of a new TRUXTUN then being commissioned. He also was begnning work on family history and school days.In many ways this was the beginning of the family memoir, and Jack identified many photos and recorded information on Barretts, Buckleys, Mehegans, Revenue Cutter School, Boston Latin, and Naval Hydrographic Office. --THIRTEEN-[web P 83 # 1322 + # 1326] VOYAGE to the ORIENT ["SLOW BOAT TO CHINA} Sophie's long trip on Navy Transport HENDERSON from New York to Tientsin China via Oanama, California, Hawaii, Guam. -FOURTEEN-[web P 99] Life in the Orient November 1930-Januiary 1932 centered at Tientsin with visits to Peking, Chefoo, Wai-Hai-Wai, Shanghai- war in Manchuria -FIFTEEN- Return via Egypt and Europe- honeymoon via Dollar Line PRESIDENT PIERCE and VAN BUREN January -March 1932. -SIXTEEN - EAGLE 19 Boston drilling Navy Reservists based at Charlestown NAVY YARD MUCH CONTACT WITH BARRETT family April 1932-summer 1933 -SEVENTEEN- Survey Ship HANNIBAL Web p 80 -1933-1935 west coast PANAMA and Portsmouth, Virginia important letters Robert Hinckley, Richard Visser, Mervin Halstead, Dan Candler, Paul Lehman, Ferguson,Ted Agnew,Ascherfelds, Boyds,Lafayette Jones, -EIGHTEEN- Command of DESTROYER CLAXTON [web p 82 #1312] 1935-6 landing force exercises Culebra, Puerto Rico, lunch with Sec. Ickes- drilling of Annapolis midshipmen at Gardiners Bay Long Island - letters of Admiral Orlin Livdahl,Captain Warren McClain, future CBS newsman Richard C. Hottelet, grandfather Barrett -NINETEEN Shore Duty Philadelphia 1937 -TWENTY -TANKER TRINITY to Dutch East Indies and Cavite Philippines -humorous letter of Captain Haskell C. Todd of Belfast Maine- account of Captain Fred S. Holmes and young engineer Hyman Rickover-family saw Boyds, Delahantys, Pardees in Southern California 1938-9 -TWENTY-ONE Brooklyn 1939-1941 Command of Naval Hydrographic Office NY 1940-41 - promotion to Commander -World's Fair, Jones Beach, Atlantic City letters about MARY CELESTE mystery from Charles Edey Fay and Gershom Bradford 1879-1978 -TWENTY-TWO [web P 57]- PEARL HARBOR, WAIKIKI, Thomas Jefferson School- This is a very long chapter. In many ways the climax of Jack Barrett's career was his effort to warn of Pearl Harbor danger while briefly assigned to War Plans July-October 1941 and then his four years service in charge of OVERSEAS TRANSPORTATION OFFICE PEARL HARBOR until after the final victory in 1945. Sophie's first treatment was in Black Notebook One recently edited May 1999- then her treatment in "Red Headed Stepchild" in 1970 and a special -November-December 1981 newspaper article prepared for fortieth anniversary of attack on the request of West Roxbury Transcript Editor Jason Korell. Sophie describes -Dedication of Aiea Naval Hospital 1943- and her surgery there May 1947- visits with Honolulu Star Bullletin editor Riley Allen and his wife 1942 and with Captain and Mrs. Samuel Wilder King 1946 - Thomas Jefferson School and Punahou- our landlod Walter Glockner and his habeas corpus situation with the military governor- Jack's court martial duty 1946- our nieghbors the Distellis, James and Edythe Needles, the Samoan tenants upstairs, wartime barbed wire, gas masks, centipedes and bomb shelters. Important letters - Wilfred Pang long active in Honolulu Chinese community describes wartime work of the Overseas Transportation office- Chaplain Maguire's book "The Captain Wears a Cross" 1943 treats the same subject=- Gene [Mrs. Paul] Nelson tells of taking her two young boys to San Francisco in big convoy December 26, 1941- hero Henry Brantingham tells of arriving in Honolulu without proper uniform after being evacuated from Philippines April 1942 AND SENT TO WASHINGTON D.C. TO RECEIVE CITATION FROM PRESIDENT Rooosevelt for his unit, whose PT boats evacuated Gen. MarArthur- -TWENTY-THREE web P 57-#1108] - "Over the Mountain" After planning for more than three years, the Barrett family summer 1947 toured Yosemite, redwoods, Crater Lake, Columbia River Highway, Mount Rainier, Glacier Park Montana, Yellowstone Grand Teton (with long night drive 'Over the mountain" from GrAND CANYON OF the YELLOWSTONE RIVER TO MAMMOTH HOT SPRINGS-then home by northern route to Hartford and Boston. TWENTY-FOUR - "Home is the Sailor" - Barrett's stay with Jack Barrett's sister Mollie - move to West Roxbury 1947- John attended Roxbury Latin and Harvard- Jack completes law school at Boston College Law School 1951 under G.I. Bill -Hartigan cousins help find Irish relatives. Much West Roxbury material still being prepared. Recently PART ONE has been organized from "Black Notebooks, letters, and recollections: This material is nearing final form, though gaps are being filled from Sophie's handwritten texts: As currently planned VOLUME ONE will have at six parts:--- {i} Sophie and the Meranski Family,- Hartford Connecticut and Mount Holyoke College 1901-1923 {ii} Social Work New York-Philadelphia 1923-1930 {iii} GREENWICH VILLAGE ROMANCE 1928-9; (1v)"THE YOUNG OFFENDER AND THE CRIMINAL LAW IN MASSACHUSETTS" Sophie's 1925 Masters Thesis in Economics and Sociology at Mount Holyoke College directed by department head Amy Hewes with extensive bibliography of early historical sources. {v} MERANSKI-GEETTER_POLLACK-Hartford-Mount Holyoke -related letters and materials Arthur Meranski, Rebekah Geetter, Jason Pollack Mollie Aronson, Ivan McCormack. John Barrett plans to reconstruct 1970s materials on Mount Holyoke alumni - much destroyed in 1993 thefts. [vi] John Barrett essay "Musical Interests of Sophie and Jack Barrett" These five chapters focus on Sophie's l;ife up to 1928, when she met Jack Barrett. VOLUME TWO follows Jack's life 1909-1947. Then the early years of the Barrett family will be VOLUME THREE,along with events after 1947 and letters and relations located in the 1970s and more recently.- Most of this material will be available on the website, but can be E mailed to those who are interested in a particular topic or segment. Many recent photos and material from storage added to May 2000.- John Barrett


 


#1252 p 75 WEBSITE GUIDE and INDEX - Red Headed Stepchild, photos, and other writings

 

The TOP TWO SPACES OF WEBSITE PAGE 75 SEVENTY-FIVE are planned as a MAIN INDEX to this website. As of May 1, 1999 the first two chapters of Red Headed Stepchild are below here on web PAGE 75. CHAPTER ONE is entitled "Sophie Meranski and family at Hartford and Mount Holyoke 1901-1923" Chapter Two is entitled, "Social Work and Marriage New York-Philadelphia 1923-1930." Most of the source material is in Sophie's handwritten "Black Notebook Number One, begun 1969. These two chapters are nearing final form. The third chapter will be Sophie's 1925 Master's thesis "The Young Offender and the CriminalLaw in Massachusetts" directed by Professor Amy Hewes, chair of Ecominc and Sociology. The fourth chapter will be Letters on "Meranski family and Mount Holyoke College" It will include letters of Sophie and her sister Mrs.Rebecca Geetter, their nephews Colonel Arthur Meranski and Jason Pollack, and family friends including Mrs. Mollie Aronson, Mrs. Rose Rosenblatt Witkower, and James Ivan McCormack. These materials are presently scattered on the website but will be brought together in Chapter Four. These chapters will be Part One: "Sophie and the Meranskis." After beginning the black notebooks, of which there were eight, Sophie decided to organize material about her husband Commander John Berchmans Barrett in a work entitled "Red Headed Stepchild" which focused on him and his Barrett relatives in South Boston, Melrose, Cork, Ireland, California, Darien Connecticut and New York City. Her treatment was chronological. She prepared a chapter outline. The arrangement was chronological, beginning with cousin Robert Mehegan's September,1911 account of the arrival of members of the Barrett family in boston in 1841, but for the website I am thinking of an arrangement that first treats Jack's Barrett's own Navy career and preparation, including Revenue Cutter School, and then Part Three will deal with Barrett family history, including Sophie's long chapter on Jack's brother William Joseph Barrett 1895-l967. More than four hundred photos are currently on the website - many early Irish relatives - a remarkable 1911 Meranski family group- Boston Latin 1906 class photo-photos from 1923 Mount Holyoke YearBook "Llamarada" from China 1930-31, Egypt 1932, John's early years 1936-1940, Barretts in Hawaii 1941-1947, Yosemite, Crater Lake Mount Rainier and Glacier Park 1947. Roxbury Latin photos 1949 -1953 and Jack and Sophie together 1930, 1940, 1946, 1951, 1956, 1957, 1966, 1967 - also many photos of grandfather Bill and Mollie Barrett and Bill's wife Virginia, and many of the Meranski-Geetter-Pollack relations -notably Dr. Isadore Geetter's January 1945 visit in Waikiki and the big family gatheringin the back yard of 92 Fern Street Spring 1948. Two long theses are on the website- 1924 TACTICS thesis by Jack Barrett at Naval War College Newport Rhode Island- Battle of Jutland - Communications - Gunnery, role of BATTLESHIPS, DESTROYERS, CRUISERS, SUBMARINES- and Sophie Barrett 1925 mount Holyoke Master's thesis "The Young Offender and the Criminal Law in Masachusetts" advised by Amy Hewes, Economics and Sociology., Many essays by John Barrett are on the website and will be indexed. These include "Musical Interests of Sophie and Jack Barrett" "Essays on the Arnold Arboretum" "FUSION Energy" "Omega Three Oil - also called Alpha Linoleic -FLAXSEED" and FUTURE of the SUN and Life 0n EaRTH" "HAPTOPHYTE ALGAE" "YOSEMITE GEOLOGY" Episode of Greenwich Village romace 1929:..."he invited my brother & his bride to have dinner with him at Longchamp's Restaurant on Fifth Avenue on Thursday evening June 20,as Pete & Jen had theatre reservations for that evening in New York City..We had a pleasant dionner,& when Pete & Jen left,Jack & I walked the few blocks to my apartment building when he said goodbye as he was leaving the next afternoon & still had a lot of packing "I'll be at your office at noon sharp to take you to lunch before I shove off at three."I had recently changed jobs & became Director of Personnel Research at Macy's stores at 34th Street.Jack came into my private office as my assistants were out to lunch that Friday noon..Without a word of warning he asked,"Will you marry me?"Though he candidly discussed many frustrations and problems in the lives of Navy wives,he convinced me to marry him,& I made no reply except to suggest that we go to lunch.We went to the Hotel McAlpin. Suddenly he got up,paid the waiter,took me by the hand, & we rushed off to the subway & were married at New York City Hall at two p.m. with complete strangers- passersby- as witnesses-then we hurried down to the railroad station, where he shoved his bags on the train just as the porter was yelling "Last call for the three o'clock train for Chicago." He left without a kiss or even a handshake,& I did not see him again for for nearly seventeen months, until November l4,l930 in North China. My sister Babe in Hartford saw a short item in the newspaper that I had married a naval officer named Barrett- So my sister in Hartford knew I was married,but very few of my friends in New York knew of the marriage except Anne and Ivan and Mr.Lyons. People asked me for dates - I declined to date Jack's law school classmate Joe Brill,- but a youing dentist persuaded me to have Thanksgiving dinner 1929 at his mother's home. The lady took a liking to me and tried to promote a romance, so I cut back on accepting social invitations. In my work at Macys, I had considerable contact with Jesse Straus & one of his brothers,who together managed the store at that time. They advised & assisted New York governor Franklin Roosevelt on many projects.Their parents Mr. & Mrs. Isador Straus were victims of the sinking of the TITANIC in l9l2 when Mrs. Straus would not go in a lifeboat without her husband, & he refused to take a seat from young women & children.A sister of my Mount Holyoke l922 friend Harriet Cogswell was working at Macy"s & corresponded with Harriet who was teaching at Gin=Ling missionary college Nanking & later married consular diplomat Paul Meyer.Jack Barrett later met Harriet & her fiance when the destroyer TRUXTUN was at Nanking on Yangtze River patrol in February-March l930,. & the TRUXTUN officers were guests at the American embassy.One of Harriet's students Dr. S.Y. Hu later did Ph.d work at Radcliffe on hollies & became Harvard's herbarium curator of Chinese plants for many years & wrote widely on Hong Kong flora, daylilies, & Chinese food plants & the rediscovered Metasequoia glyptostroboides. Harriet's sister in l980's gave Mount Holyoke College twelve boxes of historically interesting photos of Chinese live in l920's & l930's. mainly around Nanking & Peking.In May l930 the New York Times published an extended article on the personnel policies of Macy's stores. The main objective was to increase efficiency by reducing employee turnover.The report quoted psychologist Dr. V.V.Thompson on the effort to match the employee talents to the job & not "put a round peg in a square hole."_


 


#1253 p 75 Chapter One Hartford - Meranskis-Mount Holyoke 1901-1923

 

1901=1923 Hartford MHolyoke +Thalia Goldfeld RECENT ADDITIONS to website http://www.ccilink.com/barrett At website page 75 around #1256 are several newly corrected expanded chapters dealing with Sophie Barrett's early years- One section covers Sophie and the Meranski family and Hartford and Mount Holyoke 1901-1923; and the next deals with her social work and statistics 1923-1930 primarily New York and Philadelphia and leading up to her marriage to Lieutenant Jack Barrett and travel 1930 to Tientsin China. A website index is in preparation and will be E-mailed to anyone interested in studying website materials and perhaps helping to edit them and make them accessible and user-friendly. Sophie Barrett 1901-23 "RED HEADED STEPCHILD": CHAPTER I Meranski Family Hartford and Mount Holyoke College Sophie Barrett memoir Thalia Goldfeld Meranski 1869-1925 To the best of my knowledge my mother Thalia Goldfeld Meranski came to Hartford Connecticut from Vienna Austria with her younger brother Jacob, when she was a girl.I understood that she and my father were married in Germania Hall at the corner of Main and Morgan Street in Hartford August 8, l890. My first memory of my mother finds her standing in the living room, holding my infant sister Babe in her arms on Pleasant Street when I was five years old, in l906. Babe was her eighth and last child - all healthy.I was her sixth born in a family of four boys and four girls. My mother was of average height, slender, black=haired and black-eyed.She was a good cook, but I never saw her sew or mend, because by trade my father was a tailor,which he learned in Cairo Egypt as a very young man.My earliest memories are of him working at home on Pleasant St. Hartford about l906.He made men's expensive overcoats of dark blue woolen material with velvet collar.One habit of his I remember that reflects the cold climate he came from- he would put a lump of sugar inside his mouth and pour tea from the teapot directly on the sugar.My father was an excellent tailor who enjoyed his work until his eyesight was strained by the use of fine needles and dark thread on dark blue overcoats and black velvet collars. Apparently around l909-l9l0 as he got into his mid-forties, it became difficult to adjust to the close work. In l906 owing to a financial Panic my father found it very difficult to support his large family of ten in Hartford, where very few customers if any could afford a custom made overcoat. Through a friend Samuel Schlimbaum he found work as a tailor in New York for a time in l907. He located a cheap tenement at Twenty-Seventh Street near Third Avenue and wrote my mother to bring the family.Less than a year old my sister Babe was an infant in arms suffering from the measles when my mother gathered her brood in a horse=drawn carriage and took us to the Hartford railroad station. My sister Esther remembers my mother keeping Babe's face covered with a blanket as we rode in the coach train to New York city.My three older brothers slept on the floor at 27th Street, and one night Ben stepped on Al's hand, which was sore for weeks afterward.I was too young to go to school, though my sister Bertha did attend New York schools for some time. I spent most of my time looking out the window, as my mother had two very young children to care for. Although I was less than six years old, my mother would give me ten or twenty cents every noon, and I would go to the store to buy the baloney.We had no bathroom of our own and had to share the toilet out in the front hall with the other tenants on that second floor.To supplement our diet, we had a corn popper and popped corn on the coal stove nearly every night.My brothers would take a coal hod down to the railroad tracks and spend long hours trying to fill their hods with coal that might have fallen from the coal trains. Wood was difficult to get, but my brothers searched endlessly for kindling wood. One evening my father's friends the Schlimbaums had the ten of us for supper. We went to their flat by streetcar, and I can remember my disbelief at the number of courses and quantity of food on the table. As a matter of fact, I believe we ate at their home several times. At Halloween, looking out the window at our home I saw some mean tricks as teenage boys would hit passersby with long socks with a heavy brick inside. One morning I was standing in the front room when my father unexpectedly came home. My mother without a word followed him from the entrance down in the kitchen to the front room and watched the poor man put his scissors and his tape measure on the table. When she questioned him with her expressive eyes, he told her that there was not enough work in the tailor shop, and as the last man hired, he had been fired. Only a few months after our arrival, my father was laid off as he had least seniority.He communicated with his friend Elizah Cohen, who found us an inexpensive tenement on Portland St. in Hartford,where my father used the front room as his tailor shop & managed to make a living sewing custom fitted overcoats for Gimmel Burnham We returned to Hartford and lived on Portland Street.I attended the Second North School in first and second grade. My sister Babe had rheumatic fever at Portland Street when she was around four years old. There are Portland Street neighbors named Goldfield listed nearby in 1909 directories, but we have not been able to find out if they were relatives of my mother. In Boston in the l970's we spoke with a widow Celia Goldfield of Milton, whose husband had come from Rovno in eastern Poland, on the same railroad line as Brody,where my mother came from.The name probably dates back to an Austrian taxation plan of the later eighteenth century.My mother had a family photo album. We believe her parents named Abel and Bertha were deceased in Austria before 1890.Ellis Island opened in l892, and immigration records from New York from the 1880's are said to have burned. We lived on Portland St.until he bought a restaurant at 25 Morgan St.from Charles Abuza, father of Sophie Abuza, later well known as Sophie Tucker the singer.She sang in local restaurants & married Albert Tuck & changed her stage name to Tucker.In l9l0 or l9ll the Meranski family posed for a formal picture. All of us had new clothes for the fall holidays,so my father and mother with the eight children posed for a picture that did justice to every one of us.I still have a framed picture of the group that my sister Babe gave me.The picture shows my father David Meranski l865=l933, my mother Thalia Goldfeld l869-l925, my brothers Harry l89l,Ben l892 Abe l896 & Israel Peter l903 and my sisters Esther Nov. l9,1894.,Bertha July 25, l898, Rebekah ("Babe") Nov. l, l906 and my self,Sophie Ruth born October 4, l90l at l9l Front St. My mother had a wooden barrell into which she put large quantities of blue Concord grapes to make the wine for Passover.I enjoyed putting the grapes in the hole in the barrell & enjoyed the wonderfully sweet, clear wine she made every year.I remember the big coal stove at 25 Morgan St. & the big pots & pans my mother used to cook the noon meal for her 25 regular customers & her family of ten.We never had customers for breakfast or supper - just for dinner at noon. She usually started the meal with pickled herring (or soup meat if preferred) followed by noodle,or rice,or pea, or barley, sliced bread,prunes or dried apricots, & tea. They charged thirty=five cents for dinner, & tips were unknown,even when my sister Bee helped my father serve his customers.I remember one diner who came into the kitchen to fill small bottles with very weak tea. He claimed to be an eye doctor & he used his bottle of tea as medicine.A diner of long standing had epileptic fits in the restaurant. One diner,a handkerchief salesman paid my sister Bee (Bertha) & me to fold handkerchiefs for him. One day I was standing at the coal stove reading "BLACK BEAUTY",when the book accidentally fell into a large pot of soup before my mother had skimmed off the grease-I was horrified as I fished it out & tried to dry it out.It was a library book, but I blotted the book again & again & dried it out.I returned it to the library in fear,but I never heard from the library about it. (The Hartford Public Library had the first full-time Professional U.S.children's librarian, Carolyne Hewins,native of West Roxbury Massachusetts on Emmonsdale Road)My mother made blackberry wine in a pottery jug & used it as medicine for stomach ache.She frequently pickled a large crock of herring & onions, which she served in the restaurant & the children ate as an after school snack.The restaurant was heavy work for my mother & the advent of the automobile allowed salesmen to cover more territory & eat on the road= the volume of business fell off,so my father decided to give up the restaurant & go into the tailors' supply business. He bought threads, needles, scissors,tape measures, linings, wax,, tailors' chalk etc & stowed them in our house & tried his luck without any success from the start.So in fall l9l6 he bought a house & general store at 4 Wooster St.The house had three tenements. We occupied the second floor, six rooms.The first floor had only three rooms because of the large store.There were six rooms on the third floor,which we rented out.The general store had a full line of groceries- bread, fresh fruit,fresh vegetables,penny candy &hardware, especially pots & pans. We enjoyed a victrola,a telephone,& Esther bought a piano,which Babe used for many years. I shared a bedroom with my sister Bertha while my eldest and youngest sisters Esther and Babe had another bedroom. I often wore Bee's outgrown clothes.I was a sophomore at Hartford Public High School-walked the two & a half or three mile route every day - rain, snow,or shine.At first I walked with my sister Bee (Bertha)& after she was graduated I walked with my younger brother Pete, but he soon deserted me for the boys.One of my earliest school recollections concerns third grade when I transferred to the Brown School on Market and Main Streets right around the corner from my home at 25 Morgan St.My third grade teacher Miss Murphy & another teacher Miss Flynn were outside my room talking in the corridor just before class was to start at nine when for no reason at all that I can recall,the girl in front of me screamed loudly. When Miss Murphy rushed to her,she said, "Sophie pinched the back of my neck."Although I denied the charge, Miss Murphy,whom I feared,got her strap & strapped my hands several times.(Conversation: the students sometimes used to say,"Oh Miss Murphy,just drop dead."), My fourth grade teacher Miss Drago was a young,kindly woman of Italian extraction who was an excellent teacher & through her I became an excellent speller somehow,& she also interested me in geography.Because the fifth grade was too crowded,I was promoted from the fourth to the sixth grade, =unfortunately,I now believe as I missed a lot of history,especially English history. However my sixth grade teacher Miss Callahan worked hard with us, was a fine disciplinarian & insisted that I be promoted to the eighth grade,again causing me to miss important geography & history information= subjects that I had to try to learn in adult life as I took no history courses in college & only ancient history in high school.My eighth grade teacher Miss Ensign lived in Ensign, Connecticut- a young,kindly woman who seemed to me to embody everything fine.I was just thirteen years old when I entered the ninth grade at least a year & in most cases almost two years younger than the other students in the course.The fifteen-year-old boys & girls enjoyed each other but except for one boy whom I didn't like & wouldn't date none of the boys or girls paid any attention to me.I was short & thin=lonely until a new girl came to our class named Mildred Vien.Her parents ran a rooming house on Main Street.She sat across the aisle from me in school & occasionally she invited me to her home to do homework.I can't remember whether or not she was smart,but I do remember that she got on my nerves by starting out very fast when we had arithmetic tests- writing quickly even before I had finished reading the questions.I should have realized that she was older than I, that she had had fifth & seventh grade arithmetic I had missed,but instead of concentrating on the job before me I was upset by the headstart that she had on me.So I stayed out of school, and that worried my kindly mother who had a husband & eight children to care for not to mention her doing all the cooking for the restaurant she & my father ran to earn our living.Finally Miss Clark,our ninth grade teacher,a wonderful,tall,heavy,kindly understanding woman,came to our house to see why I was absent so long from her class.She could have sent the truant officer,but she didn't even report the absence to the principal-merely entered it in her attendance book.I remember her sympathetic patience with me that late afternoon-school didn't even close till 3:30& she always kept some children after school for disciplinary purposes. When I finally confessed that sitting so close to Mildred Vien had unnerved me, she immediately offered to change my seat,so I sat in front of Andrew Diana, a handsome fifteen-year-old who went steady with Josephine Avitui.Miss Clarke put me in the "B" class section rather than with the brighter students in the "A" class.I soon recovered my composure & with her enouragement I decided to take the college course at Hartford Public High School.I was the sixth born in my family,but no one before me had taken the college course or studied Latin.Just before noon one morning,I had finished our arithmetic test,when Andrew Diana whispered to me,"Sophie, let me see your paper."I gave him my paper, but as Miss Clarke was walking up & down the aisles she spotted Andrew copying my paper & invited both of us to remain in our seats when the lunch bell rang.She took Andrew's test & tore it up,saying his grade for the test was "zero".Calmly she got her strap -gave me three hard strap blows on my right hand,& to this day I have never again cheated on a test or examination.She continued to be most kindly toward me, & Andrew also graduated in June.So I was still thirteen when I entered the Hartford Public High School,& it was a long walk from my house to the school.I was really afraid of the stern Miss Taylor who taught the ancient history and even more afraid of my Latin teacher Mr. Coffin....I memorized every word of the history assignments & studied my Latin grammar until I fell asleep at night.On the final day of my freshman year we were far back in the auditorium at the exercises for the graduating class.I was startled when someone punched me in the back & said,"Go on up, Sophie.They are calling your name."When the principal started awarding prizes,I paid no attention as I took it for granted that the prizes were only for the graduating class.Bit I received a five dollar gold piece for being the best Latin Student in the freshman class.I put the five dollars in the Dime Savings Bank,where I still have an account (l97l).It was my first deposit.The summer of l9l5 I had a vegetable garden near the East Hartford bridge on the Connecticut River east of the city. I prepared the ground with a spade, made rows for seeds with a fork,and planted my seeds. In the first row I had little red radishes, then carrots,then beets, then green beans, then peas,onions, lettuce & other vegetables. I also grew tomatoes, cabbage, turnips, and swiss chard. As soon as I was fourteen years old I got a working permit & worked as a salesclerk for W.T. Grant company on Main Street in Hartford.I sold dry goods from nine in the morning until ten o'clock at night every Saturday & received fifty cents for my long day's work.I went home for lunch,carried back my sandwich for supper & enjoyed a chocolate soda,which Grant's sold for five cents.Sophomore year (fall l9l6) we moved to Wooster Street even farther from high school,& I invariably walked to & from school. Our l9l9 Class song was (tune Chopin A FLAT polonaise), {""Nineteen,dear old NINE-teen. -Fairest class of old NINE teen. Fairest class at Hartford High -Love for you will never die NINEteen dear old NINEteen Fairest class of OLD NINEteen."..My home room & English teacher was Miss Harriet Barstow, a young (l9l5) graduate of Mount Holyoke College,interested in missionary work. Her sister was also a teacher. Miss Barstow encouraged me to apply for Mount Holyoke College. Many of the girls had given up the idea of college because the best girls' colleges just that year had decided to require college entrance examinations for the first time in the year we were scheduled to enter. [p.15] But Miss Barstow was persistent with me and helped me to make out an application to Mount Holyoke College.She had sent for the form. So I took the College board exams in English, Latin, and mathematics as required at that time. Mount Holyoke agreed to accept me on condition that I take trigonometry my freshman year, as my grade in geometry in high school was unsatisfactory. So I reluctantly agreed to take mathematics my freshman year at Mount Holyoke. My high school subjects senior year were English, German, Latin, and Chemistry. I do not recall my grades and have no record of them. As soon as I was sixteen years old, I started to work Saturdays and summers at G. Fox and company.'s department store on Main Street, where my brother Ben worked in the shipping department. I sold notions. When I left at the end of the summer 1919 to enter college, the department gave me a sewing basket filled with all the pins, needles, darners,cotton,scissors,tape measure that a college girl away from home really needs. When I wrote to the college accepting admission, I asked for work to do to help pay expenses, and the college gave me a job waiting on table for lunch and dinner seven days a week, except no Sunday supper. Since none of my older brothers or sisters had attended college, we were all enthusiastic, even though none of us knew how we could finance the venture beyond my freshman year. My savings from working at Grant's and at Fox's would cover freshman year but allow nothing for clothes or recreation., To a seventeen year old girl who had never been farther from home than high school, a trip to South Hadley, Massachusetts seemed too much. So my beloved brother "Al" (Abe) volunteered to accompany me on the train to college the Saturday before classes were to begin.My oldest sister Esther, a bookkeeper for Swift & Company loaned me her suitcase,which was more than ample because about the only clothes I had were those I was wearing.She also gave me her fur lined leather winter coat which I used all four years at school Since it was really only a jacket I really needed the woolen skirt I wore with it. It was an uneventful trip - we took a train to Springfield, changed there to a Boston and Maine train for Holyoke, then had a long trolley ride to South Hadley. I was to live on the fourth floor of Pearsons Hall [on the west side of the main road near the President's home] , and as it was geting dark that September afternoon, the small room with its bare furnishings did not look inviting, and I think my brother would have taken me home if I had asked him to. At this point my "big sister" appeared. She was a member of the class of 1921, who had written to me during the summer. She was pretty and cordial, and her greeting to me and to my brother helped, but she left almost immediately saying she would get in touch with me again. Al had to leave for the trip home- so he was off, and I was alone- left to a lonesomeness which I survived but which led many of my classmates to leave. Fortunately I was scheduled to have dinner at 5:30 so that I would be free to wait on table at six,& after the wholesome generous warm food I felt a little better & managed to wait on my table without seasoning the food with tears. But that Saturday evening was an eternity. Freshman week was not observed at Mount Holyoke. I stood by the window in that small room on the fourth floor looking out at the awful darkness and struggled against my loneliness with nothing to do, as I had so few possessions to unpack and so few stamps to waste on letter writing. Eleanor Hall had the cubby hole next to mine, and Olivia Sherrod had the one across the hall from me, and Clara Michal was next to Olivia. I didn't meet Eleanor or Olivia for some time, but I met Clara on Sunday because she too waited on table. Soon I knew all the girls who waited on table. and when I heard Olivia sobbing in her room I went in to comfort her - but before the first week was over,she had left Two freshmen Becky Smaltz and Frances David from Germantown Friends School had a double room on that fourth floor -but the rest of us had single rooms- there were Kay Trufant, whose family grew cranberries on Cape Cod, Mildred Janney, Ruth Connally,, Anne Bell, and Agnes Cormack.18- Soon after Olivia went, Anne Bell and Agnes Cormack gave up too and went home. I was crazy about the cook,Elizabeth & she liked me, gave me extra steak & vegetables & always offered me extra dessert. Her warmth kept me there when others gave up & went home,& her food added seventeen pounds to my weight so that the only way I could use my one woollen skirt was to keep it together by a horse-blanket-sized safety pin supplied by the cook,who could even make hash taste good.Since I always wore a white middy blouse,the safety pin did not show.At most I had three middy blouses but kept them clean in a well supplied laundry in the basement of the dormitory. After I left Pearson's I went back every year to see Elizabeth even after I became a member of the faculty. Those of us who waited on table fared better at dinner than the other girls because we ate first just as soon as the food was cooked & of course before there was a shortage of any item. We had our lunch after the others ate. My subjects freshman year were Chemistry, Trigonometry, German, and English. Except for the "Trig", which gave me some trouble, I had no academic difficulty. I concentrated on making friends with Clara Michal, Mildred Janney, Ruth Connally, Becky Smaltz, and a few seniors. The greatest thrill of my life up to that time came the Wednesday before Thanksgiving- because I was going home after I served brunch. I could hardly breathe for excitement, as my sister Esther had sent me the price of the round trip. I rarely wrote home as I had used the few stamps I had and had no cash to buy one-cent or two-cent stamps. I remember my joy when Julius Aronson, my brother Al's best friend,wrote a letter to me enclosing one dollar early in my freshman year. I used it at the college bookstore for theme paper. As I left the building where my last Wednesday class let out at noon, I was overjoyed to be going home. I greeted my father first downstairs in the grocery and general store heowned - then my mother up in the kitchen - then my sisters and brothers as they came home from work and school.I walked home from the railroad station with my suitcase, and then walked back to the station Sunday afternoon with Esther and my younger brother Pete. The next summer 1920 I went back to Fox's notion counter and spent my sophomore year residing at South Cottage and again waited on table to help meet expenses.My courses were German, Physiology Economics, and Sociology.. Sophomore year I roomed with Eleanor Hall who had lived next door to me in Pearson's,who drew a lucky number enabling her to choose a room very early on the list,& she invited me to join her in spacious quarters for two. {Eleanor later studied library science at Simmons College. I saw her at reunions in 1978 and 1983]. There in South Cottage there was quiet for study & soon after the mid year examinations I received a note from Professor Alzada Comstock saying that she had given me a grade of 98 on the Economics exam and considered my paper the best she had ever read by a student. We used Taussig's text and recited from David Ricardo: "Corn is not high because rent is dear. Rent is dear because corn is high."


 


Chapter One Sophie Family History p 75 #1254 second part after Alzada Comstock, Taussig sophomore year Mt. Holyoke

 

Taussig's text and recited from David Ricardo: "Corn is not high because rent is dear. Rent is dear because corn is high." During the years after World War I there was a period of great enthusiasm for singing at the college. Our l923 class song "The SPHINX" was written (lyrics) by archaeologist Marion Nosser with music by classmate Ruth King Dunne freshman year,"Wind hushed, the desert lies dreaming Under the far eastern sky Only the Sphinx keeps its secret, Waiting for daylight to die.Now 'neath the warm blue of heaven,Rousing itself with a sigh,Softly it speaks & its whisper Floats to the dome of the sky.Hark don't you hear the far echo? Borne on the night wind to us? Now has the Sphinx told its secret "NON SIBI SED OMNIBUS" (for all, not self).Faithful,we'll guard it forever, Marching Beneath it unfurled Until the age-long secret lies in the heart of the world." . After a fire destroyed Rockefeller Hall one November, forcing residents to live in the gymnasium, several girls of our class wrote a "Fund=Raiser" song for alumnae & friends, " Holyoke's RAISING College-BRED (BREAD) From the Flower (FLOUR) of the land. From YEAST (y'east) & West with plenty of SPICE She makes a superior brand.We KNEAD (need) a lot of DOUGH To RAISE the Fund 'tis SAID. But WE are NEEDED (KNEADED) too,you see, For WE are COLLEGE=BRED (BREAD)." Mildred Holt participated in that and led us in"Competitive Class Sing" which we frequently won. One song used the melody of Triumphal Chorus of Verdi's AIDA to the words "Where Peace & Freedom Reign, the Happy Songs of Children Rise. The desolate of all the earth find here their sorrow dies."That sophomore year I made the acquaintance of a Massachusetts Agricultural College senior who occasionally came over to see me.His name was George Quint,a journalism major whose fiancee Sade Slonim of Hartford was my sister Bee's girl friend. (Their son Bert Quint was CBS-tv foreign correspondent East Europe-Near East l970's.That summer between my sophomore & junior years I worked with my sister Esther at H.L. Handy company near the railroad tracks.Across from the company where I did filing that summer was the Cohen Coal company, where a young man worked & smiled at us when we were going to or coming from work. He was often outside directing his coal truck drivers. When I returned to college for my junior year,my finances were precarious but Mount Holyoke had initiated a new system of reduced rates for some rooms,so I took a fourth floor room where I waited on the table of Miss Amy Hewes, who was at the head of the Department of Economics & Sociology.She told Miss Wheeler the house mother that my waiting on her table was a complete joy to her. Consequently in my senior year I waited on Miss Wheeler's table, where all her VIP guests ate.My courses junior year were German, (with Grace Bacon, who had been in France with Red Cross in l9l9 & sang songs like "Joan of Arc"), Economics (Money & Banking), Bible,Ballads & Psychology.There were several Freshmen on Brigham Fourth Floor & a senior named Cora Hughes, who were fond of me & pleaded with me to attend Junior Prom. I explained that I had no partner, no evening dress,& no money to pay for the ticket & to pay for a man's room.So one freshman named Gray offered me a blue velvet evening gown(which I tried on).Cora Hughes (l922) offered to teach me to run the Mount Holyoke College switchboard saying I could make thirty=five cents a hour , & she would let me take her hours until I had earned enough to meet the Prom expenses,which we small (& I continued Senior year after she graduated.) Now the problem was the man.(George Quint was graduated,about to be married).I wrote to my sister Esther,asking her to find out the name of the boy who worked at the Coal company across from Handy's. I was pleased to learn that he was the son of the owner-&probably would have the use of a car. So I wrote him inviting him to Junior Prom,and when he accepted,all of Brigham's Fourth Floor rejoiced.It was all a pure joy from the time he arrived,until I received his box of candy & thank you note . That summer again I worked at G. Fox & Co.but now at the stationery counter which was short-handed.Also that summer I wrote to the Dean of Mount Holyoke College (Purrington) reluctantly telling her that I couldn't meet the costs of the Senior year. because my younger brother had entered Trinity college & that my brother Al (Abe) was married & that my sister Bea was not working because of illness. Whereupon the dean offered to lend me without interest any amount that I might need to return to college. So I borrowed several hundred dollars,which I returned to the college before the end of the next year (l924). Again .senior year I lived in the cheaper room Brigham's fourth floor,waited on table but had a little more spending money because I worked a few evenings a week & Sunday mornings operating the telephone switchboard,which I enjoyed..My courses were French, Social Work, Statistics, Philosophy,& Art. "Lights Out" was at ten o'clock. All girls in the college were supposed to be ready for bed at this time. Occasionally a girl could keep her lights on later to study,but even then she had to be safely in her room by ten o'clock. Toward the end of the junior year I received a note from a Junior at Massachusetts Agricultural College,who said his fraternity brother George Quint of New York suggested we get acquainted.After that we dated Saturday evenings during the remainder of junior & senior year. His name was Nandor (Ferdinand) Porges (of Hyde Park, Massachusetts). Early in the senior year my friend Nandor Porges told me that he had made the Massachusetts "Aggie" football team.He invited me to the last game of the season against a traditional rival.So I sat alone & saw him on the Aggie bench sucking lemons & wrapped in a blanket.The game went badly for Mass Aggie & as time went on I watched him impatiently sucking lemons,but the game ended without his taking part.He planned to go on to Rutgers to study soil chemistry.On the last Saturday evening of our senior year, he & I were sitting on a bench under a tree near my dormitory.It was after nine thirty by the Mary Lyon clock, which was illuminated & which we could see from where we were sitting. He had to take a ten o'clock (9:50 pm) trolley for Amherst, & I had to be in my room with lights out by ten o'clock.As we were both about to take final exams & to leave right after graduation, we knew that this was our last meeting.When he asked me to marry him,I agreed to..He pinned his fraternity pin on me,gave me verbally his parents' address in Hyde Park, told me again that he expected to go to Rutgers the next year to study soil chemistry. As his trolley left at ten minutes before ten, he left me at Brigham Hall at 9;45 & rushed off without even a handshake. Exams came & went.I heard nothing from him. Commencement came & went.Still I heard nothing from him.When I had been home (Hartford) a week & was about to leave for New York City (social work) I decided to free myself of a promise made hurriedly to a boy who didn't telephone or write,,so I wrote to him carefully, putting my return address on the envelope, in case I had remembered his address incorrectly & told him I had changed my mind about marrying him & would return his fraternity pin shortly.But I waited to hear from him before returning the pin,thinking that he would surely answer the letter & make some explanation as the marriage proposal came from him although I had never encouraged him to believe that I was interested in him except as a pleasant social contact. I put the fraternity pin in a bureau drawer & forgot to take it with me when I left for New York City very soon after the letter & my father promised to forward any mail that might come from him. I naver heard from him & I never returned his fraternity pin,thinking if he wanted it he would have to write for it. But he never did.At the first class meeting senior year there was a hearsay report that all the previous year's officers should be re-elected unanimously. Some members of the class were indignant that a handful of girls should run the class all the time, so they insisted upon individuals nominations for class officers. I was elected Sargeant at Arms, a post that gave me pleasant duties that year & at reunions.(Class won silver cup for high attendance at 25th Reunion l948 -stolen photo showed Sophie holding the cup with class officers) Before I was graduated,I knew every member of my class.Attendance at morning chapel & at Church Sunday was required. In the Senior year each girl wore cap & gown every morning to chapel.& when the service was over, the Seniors marched out in twos,singing a hymn to the accompaniment of the organ.Every Sunday a well known minister would visit the college to conduct church services.. [near bottom page 23 - John Barrett note{Sophie's father & mother and sisters Esther & Babe Rebekah rented a car to attend the l923 graduation at which Sophie received her A.B. degree. They were guests at the luncheon table of Sophie's advisor & future boss, Amy Hewes, head of Economics & Sociology Department,which was organized l907..The morning speaker had been Alexander Meiklejohn, president of Amherst College,who had strong views on excellence in education and was considered radical..Someone asked "Pa" Meranski what he thought of the speaker,and he replied in his usual loud voice,so that everyone at the table could not miss hearing him,"They'll fire him."(Miss Hewes remained polite & unpeturbed). "Pa" Meranski's prediction proved correct.He was active in teaching English to immigrants through the Moses Montefiore society in Hartford and in helping families make funeral arrangements through Capitol city Lodge..His daughter Babe recollects that around l9l2-l9l4 Boris Thomaschevsky of Yiddish theatre, Second Avenue, New York & members of his family when on tour would sing at the Meranski restaurant on Morgan Street, & Thomaschevsky invited Bertha Meranski to travel as a singer with his company,but her parents considered it inadvisable. She was active in the glee club and girls Business Club in class of l9l7 at Hartford High along with her friends Eva Levin &..Silverberg. Their photos appeared in l9l7 yearbook, but in l9l9 there was no yearbook because of paper shortage after World War I.The three older Meranski brothers,Harry Ben & Abe were drafted late summer l9l8.It made their mother so nervous that she put salt instead of sugar she was making.Two went to Fort Devens, Massachusetts & one to Fort Dix New Jersey. Two had influenza, probably Harry & Ben.Several of the family took middle names or nicknames -Benjamin Franklin Meranski, Sophie Ruth Meranski = she loved the Book of Ruth in the Bible-Israel Peter Meranski & Rebekah "Babe" Meranski Geetter.Sophie sang many World War I songs: "Alsace is sighing, Lorraine is crying Your mother France looks to you.Our hearts are bleeding Are you unheeding Come with that flame in your glance. Through the gates of Heaven Do they bar your way? Souls who passed through Yesterday (chorus:) "Joan of Arc,Joan of Arc Do your eyes from the skies see the foe? Don't you see the drooping fleurs-de-lis? Can't you hear the cries of Normandy?Joan of arc may your spirit guide us through! Come lead your France to Victory!Joan of Arc they are calling you." She sang the Plattsburg March:"Oh it's not the pack that you carry on your back,Nor the Springfield (rifle) on your shoulder Nor the Four Inch crust of khaki-colored dust that makes you feel you're surely getting older,And it's not the hike on the old turnpike That drives away your smiles nor the socks of sister's That raise the blooming blisters-It's the last long mile." (Breitel). She effectivly rendered Irving Berlin's "Oh,how I hate to get up in the morning! Oh,how I like to spend my time in bed! But the hardest thing of all is to hear the bugler call,":You gotta get up,you gotta get up,you gotta get up this morning!Someday I'm going to murder the bugler. Someday they're going to find him dead.I'll put my uniform away,I'll move to Philadelphi-ay & spend the rest of my time in bed."She also liked(with slight variations)to sing his:"I give the moon above To those in love when I leave the world behind,I'll leave the song birds to the blind.."and "Cohen owes me ninety-seven dollars. It's up to you to see that Cohen pays.I have a bill of goods from Rosenstein & sons On an I-O-you-ou-ou for ninety days.If you'll promise me my son, you'll collect from everyone, I'll die with a smile upon my face."From l9l7 also were comic songs music by Bert Grant & lyrics by Sam Lewis & Joe Young"Pat McCarthy hale &hearty Living in Oregon-He heard a lot of talk about the great New York-So he left the farm where all was calm,And he landed on old Broadway- He took the little Mary Ann into a swell cafe: 'Arrah go wan I want to go back to Oregon.I want to go back to stay.I could feed the horses many a bale of hay for all that it costs to feed one chick on old Broadway.Arrah go wan gowichagowaygowan arrah go wan I want to go back to Oregon!'" and "Timothy Kelly who owned a big store Wanted the name painted over the door.One day Pat Clancy the painterman came Tried to be fancy & misspelled the name. Instead of a Kelly with a double L, Y, he painted "Kely" but one L was shy.Pat says 'it looks right,but I want no pay -I figured it out in my own little way.If I knock the "L" out of Kelly. It would still be Kelly to me.Sure a single L, Y or a double L, Y, Should look the same to any Irishmans eye--Knock out the L from Killarney, Sure Killarney it always would be,But if I knock the L out of Kelly,He'll knock the "l" out of me."From early Hartford days Sophie sang "Moving day, moving day. Take you oil stove from the floor.Take your stove,and There's the door." "Oil,oil,kerosene oil- My oil is better than Finnegan's oil. Finnegan's oil is water. Mine's kerosene oil." To the tune "Love me & the World is mine" l907 hit she sang_"I care not for the Hartford Times I dare not read the Evening Post-I do not want the Journal-One cent & the WORLD (newspaper) is mine." She liked Alfred Gumble's l9l3 " When the honeysuckle vine Comes a-creeping round the door A sweetheart mine Is waiting patiently for me-You can hear the Whipporwill Sounding softly from the hill Her memory haunts you Rebecca wants you Come on back to Sunnybrook Farm." A minor key phrase in this song also appears in l9l5 "Are you from Dixie? Are you from Dixie? Where the fields of cotton beckon to me. I'm glad to see you Tell me how be you And the friends I'm longing to see? Are you from Alabama, Tennessee or Caroline? Anywhere below the Mason-Dixon line?Then you"re from Dixie! Hurrah for Dixie! 'Cause I'm from Dix-ie too."(George Cobb-Harry Yellen) Also "In the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia In the Trail of the Lonesome Pine. In the pale moon shine our hearts entwine Where You carved your name & I carved mine-O June in the mountains of blue Like the pine I am pining for you.In the Blue .Ridge Mountains of Virginia, in the trail of the lonesome pine." Particularly when her younger brother Pete courted and married a Baltimore belle Jeanette Goldberg, she was fond of the chorus "There's a girl in the heart of Maryland With a heart that belongs to ME When I told her of my love the ORIOLE above Sang from the old apple tree And Maryland was fairyland when she prmised my bride she"d be There's a girl in the heart of Maryland With a heart that belongs to me." To the same melody & rhyme pattern she sang a curious parody:"'There's a man in my room',cried Mary Ann -'Put him out,put him out' cried Sue."I'm afraid,I'm afraid',cried another little maid,'What shall we all ever do? '....'who do you suppose that he may be?' 'No you DON'T put him out', cried Mary Ann-'What's in my ro-oom belongs to ME.'"' end of NOTE} Sophie narrative:-_ ' _ Commencement day my father and mother -24-came to the graduation exercises where President Meiklejohn of Amherst was the main speaker. After his talk at Miss Hewes's luncheon, my father said,"They'll throw him out." Sure enough a year later President Meiklejohn was forced to resign from Amherst because of his controversial views, My father and mother were invited by Miss Hewes to have lunch with her at her table in Brigham Hall. Then we drove home. I have some good snapshots [[stolen 1993]] of me and some classmates taken Commencement Day.Miss Hewes in 1970 when this was written was ninety-two years old and was living in OssiningNew York with Madeleine Grant, another Mount Holyoke professsor. [Every four years Mount Holyoke put on a Faculty play, which usually related to college history. Alzada Comstock of the Economics and Sociology Department had a major role in the 1924 play while Sophie was junior faculty. That play dealt with a Mount Holyoke faculty in episodes twenty-five years apart, - 1874-1899-1924. President Mary Woolley was a highly successful fund-raiser up until the 1930s Great Depression, and she articulated the need for career opportunities for women in Education, business, and government. She had a very active public speaking schedule and spent much of 1922 in China touring on missionary-related activities. She made a point of knowing every student and faculty member, though Sophie's personal contacts with her were not numerous outside of the Sunday chapel, in which Miss Woolley usually spoke and introduced speakers.Miss Woollley was a strong opponent of smoking "a dirty habit." The college was founded as a seminary by Mary Lyon in 1837. Miss Lyon had a major interest in botany as well as religion. Although the seminary was very small, until developed into a women's college in 1889, there was a strong tradition of scholarship, including science. One faculty member found a fossil dinosaur skeleton in the Mesozoic rocks of the Connecticut Valley, but it was destroyed in a 1917 fire. Many of the best-known faculty such as organist -choir director Professor Hammond dated from the 1890s, as did biologist Cornelia Clapp, who had affiliations at Woods Hole marine biology, so Miss Woolley was not entirely responsible for the development of a strong faculty. English was the largest field of study, but there were many concentrators in Economics and Sociology, a combined department organized around the time Ames Hewes came to the faculty in1907 and reflecting her interests as a labor economist and statistician. She was friendly with Dr. Louis Dublin of the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company an actuary and pioneer of statistical research in public health and accident prevention - he made studies of tuberculosis and venereal disease. Others in the Department included Alzada Comstock and Ethel Dietrich, who tended to be on the Economic side- and Aryness Joy, who went to the Children's Bureau, United States Department of Labor, where Sophie Meranski worked summer 1924 in Detroit and June-November 1935, with extensive travel. Of Sophie's friends from freshman year in Pearsons Hall, Clara Michalopoulos born Symrna Asia Minor home in Springfield Massachusetts became a social worker in Detroit, Boston, and New Haven - and Rebecca Glover Smaltz was in State Labor Department of Pennsylvania and active in Young Womens Christian Association in Philadelphia. These two remained among Sophie's clostest friends more than sixty-seven years 1919-1987 and saw her at 1933,1948, 1978, 1983 reunions. Becky's friend and roommate Frances David was also in social work and statistics. She compiled an amusing colllection of comic songs "College Crackers 1923" and as an unpaid voluneer she continued the Statistical Reporting Sophie began at the Philadelphia Child Guidance Clinic.Sophie was junior faculty in 1924 in the Statstics Lab under May Hewes. In1988 College History librarian gave John Barrett junior a very interesting photo of Sophie standing in the lab with five students of the class of 1925 seating at typewriters and accounting machines. Unfortunately it disappeared in 1993 thefts. Students included Frances Manning, Emily Miller Noss, Emily Barrows. A member of the 1925 class Ruth Muskrat was a Cherokee Indian from Oklahoma who became for many years an official of the Indian Affairs Bureau of the U.S. government. In Detroit summer 1924 Sophie lived with the Patterson family while doing statistical research on adults who had graduated from schools for the Retarded -they generally were self-supporting and had good family life. Mary and Ruth Patterson were in the classes of 1923 and 1925. Ruth was in the statistics course and invited Sophie's younger brother Pete to the 1925 Senior Prom as her own fiance was far away to attend. It was an opportunity for Pete to see his sister's college, and in 1926 he returned the courtesy by inviting Sophie to a dance at his fraternity at University of Maryland Medical School, and she stayed with the family of his future wife, Jeannette Goldberg and got to know the Goldbergs.] Notebook One page 30- In September 1923 when I returned to Mount Holyoke College to assist in the Department of Economics and Sociology I had a lovely big room on the first floor of Hitchcock Cottage, occupied by sophomores only.They were pleasant girls who gave me no trouble. We had our meals in the large cottage next door where I headed a table and was served by a waitress for the first time as I had waited on table all four of my undergraduate years. I tried to lead the conversation and make sure the girls got enough to eat. One of the girls at my table was Anna Mary Wells, who had just entered the class of 1926 with sophomore standing. She became of professor of English at Rutgers and writer of many New Yorker articles and the 1963 "Dear Preceptor," a life of Thomas Wentworth Higginson 1822-1911 that emphasizes his interest in women's education and careers and his editing and preservation of the poetry of Emily Dickinson, the innovative woman poet who lived in Amherst, Massachusetts and spent a year at Mount Holyoke. Dickinson and Higginson corresponded many years on literature, with the older well-known clergymen in role of tutor and mentor, though they met only twice briefly. Then in the 1970s I friendly correspondence with Anna Mary after I learned from Elaine Trehub that she was researching a second book on Miss Woolley. The second year 1924-5 I lived at Cowles Lodge.,also occupied by sophomores. My classmate Betty Gilman, an assistant in chemistry, lived there too. There was a kindly, elderly house mother. Betty made a pretty red dress for me, with white collars and cuffs, and she even did a good job cutting my long hair into a stylish bob. I still have a fine picture of the two of us taken in academic cap and gown on Commencement Day 1925 when both of us received Master's Degrees. Betty went to Yale in New Haven on a fellowship and received a Ph.D in Chemistry. She married Elliott Roberts Ph.D Yale soon after, - raised two girls and a boy and has lived many years in Westport, Connecticut. When a senior at Mount Holyoke College she was president of the Student Government and has taken as an alumna a vital interest in the development of the college. One of her daughters attended Cornell, another Tufts, and her son completed a five year course for a master's degree at MIT. I sat next to her at Alumnae meeting at our twenty-fifth reunion, and we had a good chance to talk while we ate our lunch there - the box lunch. We also rode together in Ruth Peck's car to our banquet at a Holyoke hotel. I have a real note fron her every year at Christmas time. Soon (1973) we will have our fifty year reunion.


 


#1255 p 75 Social Work and Marriage Ch. 2 New York-Philadelphia Greenwich Village Romance 1923-30

 

short but important additions from notebook at end of chapter Marriage City Hall New York- sister in Hartford sees newspaper notice of semi-secret marriage--- CHAPTER TWO Social Work and Greenwich Village Romance 1923-1930 JohnB Barrett Partial sequence of text: summer 1923 Lower East Side NY Edelschick-sausages- doctor. at clinic +cousin+-Hewes and thesis-Pollacks Dorchester- canneries 1925- +ANNETaylor+ Mother- +Hewes-to Clark+ BeckySmaltz p 178- Stokowski- Josephine Dana and Agnes Drummond Spring Garden - cattle -Knitter pasted from #19k Jean Morton - "Pinafore" Dr. Strecker- Almena Dawley -Frances David- +Baltimore+ Emmanuel Lyons- Jack Barrett 27 Commerce Bill Nuremberg law - Esther- sinus- Finn Pappp Brill Abe Perkins Marie Nelson Pete and Jen Woolley= shack Babe-Geetter weddingJune 16 train Macy's Cogswell Hu TEXT #19 New York I was well acquainted with Professor Amy Hewes through her course on statistics & waiting on her table.She secured a job for me with the United Hebrew Charities of New York,where I was to be a family case worker & live in the Christie Street settlement house on the Lower East Side.The job was to be permanent,but a week after the l923 Commencement I received a telegram "Would you accept position as department secretary & my assistant for two years? Letter follows.Wire reply at once.Amy Hewes."I wired acceptance & asked the United Hebrew Charities if they would accept me for summer work only.I did social work in the slums of the East Side & in the evenings taught citizenship for naturalization papers in exchange for board & room. In the morning I walked to Cherry Street to work.The men, women & children had matresses on the fire escapes to sleep & occupied them earlier in the evening to get a breath of cool outdoor air.Women hung laundry on the escapes.I had some photographs (stolen l993) of Christie Street showing the fire escapes crowded with people.As I walked back to the settlement house for lunch,I passed hundreds of pushcarts,which sold everything, usually just parked in the street up against the curb.There were very long thin Italian breads,pungent Italian cheeses & a large assortment of sausages-spaghetti & macaroni in every shape & size-I was amazed at the variety offered. Miss Minnie Edelshick,supervisor of family care work at the United Hebrew Charities in New York City gave me three families to care for-not new cases because I was scheduled to work there only two & a half months.One of my families consisted of a widow & her three children ranging in age from ten to four.Since she complained of stomach pains,my supervisor advised me to get advice at the free clinic for women held from ten to twelve each morning at the Bellevue Hospital.I gave the woman the trolley fare & told her to meet me at the clinic at ten o'clock the next morning,but she failed to appear.I went to her house (very small,dark tenement on Cherry Street) that afternoon-very hot-& she told me that by the time she had gotten the three children up & to the clinic it was closed.Also that her clock was old,unreliable=-that it was slow & she would not agree to meet me at the clinic the next morning because she couldn't see how she could get there on time.She told me that other women in that neighborhood had gone to that clinic repeatedly but had not received treatment because of the crowds.The next morning I went to her home at nine o'clock sharp, found the four of them in one bed,all sleeping in their stockings & underwear.The good-natured mother cooperated with me- they all got dressed-had a little bread & milk,& the four of us went off,by trolley car, to the Bellevue Hospital's free clinic for women where we arrived about ten fifteen. The receptionist gave us a card with a number on it,& we sat down in the waiting room, crowded with women & children pl77 I watched the hands of the clock as the time passed.My woman was patient & pleasant, but the three children were uncomforable & restless-& I don't blame them. About quarter to twelve,the receptionist announced that the doctors would take no more patients that day & told us to leave.I was hungry,hot discouraged & near tears,when I realized that the woman & her children were so much more bewildered than I was.I went alone toward the doctors' offices,& when I saw a woman emerge from one office at twelve o'clock,I just walked into find a young doctor taking off his white, starched robe, getting ready to leave.I asked him to examine my patient,explaining that I was a social worker who had waited the whole morning for service,& that the woman's three young children had waited too.He told me that he had just given two hours of free service to the clinic,wanted to go out to lunch & then to his own office.But I explained that the woman was in pain, told him I had gone to her house at nine that morning- & when I offered to take him out to lunch & pay for it if he would examine her,he smiled (that unbearably hot afternoon),put the white coat on again,& examined the woman.He gave me a prescription for medicine which he said should clear up an acid stomach condition, & I gave the woman the price of a trolley ride home.Then I asked him to take me to a very inexpensive restaurant because I did not know that neighborhood, always had lunch in my settlement house.-p178- and the truth was that I had less than two dollars in my pocket. Again this kindly doctor smiled, took me to a good nearby restaurant, ordered good lunches for two, encouraged me to talk about family case work and the settlement house, paid the bill and the tip, and listened patiently when I said the people were treated like cattle in the free clinics.[then] Consulting his watch, he said he was due at his office, and as we parted in front of the restaurant he remarked, "If I wasn't a married man and if you were not so young and attractive, I'd show you that New York is more than slums and free clinics. Bit if that medicine does not clear up Mrs. ----'s acid condition, I'll see her again at my office free of charge." So we parted, and I did not see him again as the woman's condition improved.I knew no one in New York. I had very little money to spend because I was in debt to Mount Holyoke College, so I spent many evenings just walkng along Broadway and Fifth Avenues looking in the shop windows and watching the people. One evening when I was having dinner in the Settlement House - deserted that hot August night- the cook told me that a young man was there to see me. He explained that he was graduated from Columbia Medical School in June - that he was a new intern at the Bellevue Hospital, that the doctor who had treated the woman and taken me to lunch was his cousin- and that his cousin suggested that he call on me. We had a pleasant visit, and he invited me to see the show"Seventh Heaven". Since I had never seen a Broadway musical comedy, I certainly enjoyed myself, and he took me to several shows and movies before I left New York just before Labor Day. -179- Although my path led into statistical research in the field of social work and I never returned to family case work, I always have - and still do - considered it of vital importance. {In notebook one p. 179 Emmanuel Lyons material follows here]. In the summer of l924 the day before my sister Bee married Sam Pollack in Hartford,my sister Esther saw me off for Detroit,where I was scheduled to work for the U.S. Children's Bureau in a study of retarded people who had attended special classes in Detroit's public schools.I lived with Mary Patterson's family. In September I returned to Mount Holyoke College,where I typed book lists,Miss Hewes's letters & the exams-where I was the Statistics lab asssistant,& studied Labor & Psychology & Criminology & in l925 received a Master's degree after oral exams & a thesis: "The Young Offender & the Law in Massachusetts. "Massachusetts innovated in l825, when Reverend Ward, a Rhode Island native, led an effort to segregate juvenile prisoners from hardened older criminals. Around l870 Massachusetts led an effort to reduce prison populations & rehabilitate offenders by supervised probations, and around l906 Judge Baker was active reforming juvenile courts & left money for reseach at a Judge Baker Foundation in Boston. I compiled an extensive bibliography and noted curious ecclesiastical crimes in colonial times. In June l925 working for the federal Children's Bureau I went from Mount Holyoke to Boston to work under Miss Channing,who was making a statistical study of delinquent children whose fathers had police records for drunkenness -she was working there temporarily transcribing at police headquarters information where children were being treated at Judge Baker foundation.We learned about Dr. Healy & Augusta Brenner- two well known personalities in the field of maladjusted children.For two weeks I lived in Dorchester on Canterbury Street with my sister Bee Pollack & her husband, Sam, and this was a chance for me to meet his parents & many of his brothers & sisters - a family of ten, who immigrated from Minsk, Belorussia between l905 & l909. Sam's grandmother Mrs.Hanapolsky led a large contingent when she was over ninety years old, as Sam Pollack's nephew describes in his historical novel, "Yonder is the Dawn," earliest of a sequence.A l920 Harvard Phi Beta Kappa graduate in chemistry in three years, Sam developed the formula for the sweet drink ZAREX & then worked at LaRoux liquers Philadelphia & later at Schenley Liquors in quality control at Cincinnati & later as a vice-president in New York,with an office in the Empire State Buiilding. Bertha & Sam left for a summer cottage on the Winthrop beach, where they rented a small room from a Boston dentist,had kitchen privileges,& ate on the porch. I rented a room at a Winthrop hotel, then was ordered to Washington DC to do statistical work.I was surrounded by congenial co=workers,& I could walk easily from my boarding house,which was a joy.The girls I worked with lived there&were friendly,& the food was excellent- especially the bacon, sausage & the corn fritters.But my Washington duty was very short-lived.Because Caroline Legge had recommended me as an investigator (I had worked for her all the summer of l924 in Detroit) Miss Nathalie Matthews in charge of Children's Bureau research,sent me to Dover,Delaware to investigate the tomato canneries there & in nearby towns.I received my regular salary plus a cost-of-living per diem rate-so financially I was better off that I had been in Boston or Washington.The Hotel Dover was a nice place to live ,but I was lonely.There were two other women investigators in the Dover job,but I saw nothing of them because they were close friends-older than I was & spent evenings in their own room writing up their reports onthe day's findings.The job itself was interesting.I could use public transportation or hire a taxi & be reimbursed.We were interested in the working conditions of the children-their ages,hours of work & wages.The canneries were out in the country as near the fields as possible.The canneries established camps & imported laborers,largely women & children,who sorted.washed & peeled tomatoes.They were engaged by scouts,who sent buses at the beginning of the season (in Delaware about July l5) & returned them home after September 30.When word got to the workers that the "inspector" was present,the children would flee while the women remained at their posts.But often I managed to enter the work rooms before the children got the word,so I saw many of them at work & interviewed many of the older children who then realized I was not there to harm them. Working conditions in Delaware were bad. Women & children stood many long hours on a soggy wet floor-their rubber aprons dripping with tomato juice.The tomatoes are sorted first to remove rotten or green ones,then sorted according to size & peeled before going to the sterilizing & canning machines. Many had cuts on their fingers from the sharp knives they had to use to peel & cut out rotten spots. When I asked one woman how she & her three children could sleep on the blanket that served as their bed in a tent,she answered, "We can't sleep good.It's too tight."We had no legal right at that time to inspect the canneries & talk to the women& children.The proprietors always admitted me.They feared Congress would forbid the employment of women & children in canneries that refused to allow Children's Bureau agents to enter. We always asked permission to go through the plant,& I was never refused.About the fifteenth of August I went to Indianapolis Indiana to inspect children's & womens labor in the corn canneries. My mother had had surgery in l92l for gall bladder cancer, which was mis-diagnosed for a long time, & it was too late to save her. She was told she had "adhesions."Her health gradually declined,though she enjoyed my Mount Holyoke graduation l923 & contined to feed & look after her husband & large family & regular guests, including Julius Aronson,whose mother had passed away,and an Irish boarder who used to sing.Her brother Jacob had some sort of speech problem-perhaps hearing related.He came with her from Austria via Hamburg in l890 or a little earlier, possibly with the Witkower family April l890. The Meiselmanns were also acquaintances from Brody.Judge Saul Seidman of Hartford is a Meiselmann descendant.After my mother passed away, my brother Ben furnished information that her parent's first names were Abel & Bertha, probably deceased before their children emigrated. After my mother's death September 8, l925 - for which I was completely unprepared, I was desperately lonely under the travel and working conditions as a child labor inspector for the Children's Bureau on the eastern shore of Maryland. My best friend there was a Goucher graduate Anne Starr Taylor, who had grown up in State College Pennsylvania. She had to write her child labor reports in the evening, and she was anxious to finish her assigned investigation as soon as possible, because she had an apartment in Greenwich Village at 27 Commerce Street in New York City, and she wanted to go back and find a job in the area. Impulsively I resigned my job and went home planning to take care of my widower father and brother Ben and two sisters Esther and Babe still living at home. In late 1925 for a time I became an unpaid maid, but I did cook the meals and keep the place clean. However, my evenings were a problem. Esther was not allowed to bring her non-Jewish boy friend Charlie Bardous to the house, though they had a serious relation many years and worked together as bookkeepers at the meat company, which became part of Swift and Company. Babe was nearly nineteen and recently out of high school and speding most evenings with her future husband Dr. Geetter, and my brother Ben was unwell. I had been away at college and at work so long [six years] that I had few close friends left in Hartford. [Classmate Joe Paonessa was losing a battle with tuberculosis]. I thought I owed it to my thesis advisor Miss Amy Hewes of Mount Holyoke College to explain why I had resigned the well-paid job she had gotten for me with the Children's Bureau, and I thought she would praise me for looking after my family. I was amazed by the speed with which she answered my letter.She advised me to employ a housekeeper at once and get out of there.She told me to go to New York City to see, by appointment,Miss Mary Augusta Clark, a [1903] Mount Holyoke College Graduate, Statistician for the Commonwealth Fund's Division of Mental Health, and also to see a man who wanted a statistician in the New York Association for Improving the condition of the Poor. I was offered both jobs and took the one with the Commonwealth Fund as Statistical Recorder in the Philadelphia [Demonstration] Child Guidance Clinic. When I wrote to my classmate Rebecca Glover Smaltz of Mount Airy, Pennsylvania to ask her to locate a temporary residence for me in a YWCA or in any inexpensive [p58,181 notebook one] l78 place, she answered immediately that she would meet me at the station in Philadelphia,& drive me to their home,where I could stay until I found permanent quarters.So I lived in their spacious home in Mount Airy, where Becky drove me to work in South Philadelphia every morning & drove me home at night. One evening we we went to hear thePhiladelphia Symphony orchestra-with Leopold Stokowski - the first symphony concert I ever attended. It was a wonderful Stokowski weekend.Although the Smaltzes were perfect hosts,who seemed in no hurry to have me leave,I kept searching for an inexpensive place to live.One of the students at the Child Guidance Clinic,Marion Pierce was living in a Settlement House in South Philadelphia within walking distance of the clinic,& as there was room for me there,I moved in,& received room & board in exchange for some evening tutoring of men about to apply for citizenship papers.Mine was a solitary job-I read records of problem children & made cards fom the records-cards to be used later in statistical studies of maladjustment.Our rooms in the settlement house were tiny.Social life was impossible there.There was no social or recreation room for thee residents.Most of the students living there had to study evenings when they were not on duty. When Josephine Dana & AgnesDrummond, who lived in the Settlement House & worked for the Children's Aid Society asked me to share an apartment with them,I was glad to. It was a small furnished apartment on Spring Garden Street;the three of us were congenial & tried to make it homelike.Josephine invited me to spend a weekend at her family home in Windsor, Vermont,where her elderly mother lived alone. Josephine hitched up the horse & buggy Saturday morning & drove it to a sale of cattle at which her two brothers were present,& they were among the bidders for the cattle auctioned. It was a new experience for me from beginning to end that I always remember wirth great pleasure. They were descendants of Richard Henry Dana author of the Pacific adventure "Two Years before the Mast." It was so interesting to listen to the auctioneer tell the cow's age,weight, when it freshened-milk production- & then listen to the bids.The bidding was lively & competitive. Another time -183-Josephine asked me if I'd like to go with her to Cape Cod for my week's summer vacation. She reserved a place for two at the private home of the Bearses in Centreville.The Bearses were very cordial old Cape Codders who gave us excellent food and played whist with us in the evening. We were within easy walking distance of Craig's Beach, one of the finest beaches in the world.On Saturday evening Walter Washburn drove to Centreville from Windsor,Vermont to visit with Josephine. -184- Soon after our return to Philadelphia, Josephine gave a tea at which Walter was present and at which she announced her engagement. After the party I left for Cleveland to work temporarily at the Cleveland Child Guidance Clinic to help clear up back statistical work piled up by the illness of their recorder. In that clinic I met two well-known psychiatrists, Drs. Carl Menninger and Dr. Lawson Lowry, who were friendly.I had a good time socially there, and when I left Dr. Lowrey, director of the Cleveland Clinic, gave me an unsolicited recommendation. When Josephine Dana married,Agnes Drummond and I continued on at the apartment. Another social worker - from the Children's Aid- joined us. Her name was Helen Goldsborough, and she came from the Deep South.She wanted to see New England in the winter, so Josephine invited Helen and me to spend a weekend in Windsor, Vermont. It was very pleasant, but Josephine gave us a large sled to use on a steep hill. Helen sat in front to steer and unfortunately steered it into a fallen log, throwing me from the sled and injuring my knee. Not long after moving into the apartment I had a telephone call from Carl Knitter,who was introduced to me by my former student at Mount Holyoke, Frances Manning, who became an economist.Carl was a Rutgers graduate attending Hahnemann Medical School, in his senior year.He was an avid fisherman, made his own colored flies for bait and often brought flies to the apartment for me to admire and brought his violin to play. We spent many pleasant evenings and weekends together, but my young sister Babe's boy friend Dr. Isadore Geetter warned me that the Hahnemann was a homeopathic medical school, not then recognized or accredited by most medical institutions such as Jefferson Medical School where he was then studying. After graduation from Hahnemann,Carl went to Oregon,to practice medicine and to fish. About a year later he wrote asking me to go out there and marry him. I refused. Not long after that he returned to New Jersey and telephoned inviting me to dinner at his parents' home. He had given up his practice because of violent headaches.Later I heard that he had died from a brain tumor. Jean Morton, of Morton Avenue, Morton, Pennsylvania,was Executive Secretary of the Child Guidance Clinic.Her father was a doctor. One evening she invited me to be her guest at a performance of Gilbert & Sullivan,in which both she & her father sang.I knew nothing of Gilbert & Sullivan but was charmed by that amateur production of "Pinafore." & have since attended many Gilbert & Sullivan productions,especially at Camp Kabeyun,,Alton Bay,New Hampshire in the l950's.Jean & I usually had lunch together at Hughes cafeteria, where I never tired of the egg salad sandwiches. The head of the Child Guidance Clinic,Dr.Allen,encouraged me to attend Dr. Strecker's class in psychiatry at the Pennsylvania Medical School.I attended without cost & learned a great deal from that well-known psychiatrist,who was conscientiously teaching young medical students.He usually had one or two mental patients from the Pennsylvania Hospital at the class to discuss their symptoms & treatment.Although I was a statistician, not a psychiatric social worker,Miss Almena Dawley,head of the department of social work in the clinic,gave me a real case to handle-from taking the application & the social history,to arranging for psychiatric interview & the psychological tests through carrying out the treatment measures.The child guidance clinics in Philadelphia,Cleveland,Baltimore & Los Angeles were two year Demonstration Clinics paid for by the Commonwealth Fund of New York & administered by the National Committee for Mental Hygiene (also supported by the Commonwealth Fund).The Commonwealth Fund had the income of Mr. Harkness's thirty-eight million dollars to use "for the betterment of mankind."Each clinic had the services of two or three full time psychiatrists,two psychologists,six psychiatric social workers,an executive secretary, a statistical recorder,a telephone operator,& a staff of clerical & stenographic workers.The director of each clinic, a psychiatrist,had the responsibility of trying of trying to get the community to support a child guidance clinic after the demonstration clinic closed in two years.The Philadelphia clinic had a social worker & two students from the Smith School of Social Work in Northampton,Massachusetts.The clinic examined & treated children up to sixteen years of age= delinquent children & children who had personality difficulties & bad habits.These children were referred to the clinic either by their parents, by their school, by a social agency or by a juvenile court judge.A social worker investigated the family history & home & school conditions - a psychiatrist gave the child a thorough physical examination, a psychologist tested the child for I.Q., mental age,& school attainment,& the psychiatrist gave the child a careful psychiatric interview.Then there was a staff meeting of the social worker, psychiatrist, psychologist & chief social worker-also the statistical recorder, and the treatment of the child was initiated.Our Philadelphia clinic was taken over by the community on a reduced scale,& one of my Mount Holyoke classmates, Frances David, took over my job as statistical recorder as an unpaid volunteer. She had put together when we were undergraduates a collection of comic songs,"l923 College Crackers." Two I often sang for my family were: "I had a fat twin brother.We looked like one another.You ought to see the way he'd laugh At the lickings I would get. He tought it very funny To go & borrow money & watch the people chasing me do make me pay his debts.The girl I was to marry Couldn't tell us two apart.She went & married brother Jim & she nearly broke my heart.But you betcha I got even With my brother Jim.I died about a week ago & they went & buried. him." 2."Pull the shades down,Mary Ann,Pull the shades down Mary Ann-Last night by the pale moon light I saw you I saw you You were combing your auburn hair On the back of a Morris chair.If you want to keep your secrets from your future men, Pull the shades down,Mary A-aan." p.182] It was while I was working at the United Hebrew Charities l923 that I met Mr Emmanuel Lyons.He lived in Jersey City , commuted daily to his mid-Manhattan office, where he worked for an advertising firm. (He lost money publishing two books, "l00l Retailing Ideas" and its sequel "2222 Retailing Ideas") Lost photos showed me in deep snowdrifts February,l926 at his western New Jersey farm in Pittstown, New Jersey.The farm had two farm houses,one for the tenant farmer & one for Mr. Lyons & his guests.Each summer he offered the United Hebrew Charities a chance to send a family to live at his farmhouse, & on weekends he took a few social workers to the farm with him.One Friday afternoon I joined him at the railroad station with two other case workers.He paid our fare to Pittstown.where we walked from the station to the farm,where we had an abundance of fresh vegetables & milk & enjoyed good conversation at meals.It was a most welcome change after the heat & pavements of New York City,& when I wrote him a thank you note, he answered, ""For bread and butter you return cake." He became a close friend (much older) of both myself & my future husband Jack Barrett, especially when I returned to live in New York City in l927,l928, l929, in in l930 he selected my diamond ring after I hurriedly married two hours before Jack left for the Philippines.Mr Lyons visited in Philadelphia at 1927 New Year's Day, when we saw the mummer's parade, an annual Philadelphia tradition with huge numbers of festive floats. Becky Smaltz's paternal aunt "Auntie" invited me to [1926] Thanksgiving dinner at her home and also invited my brother Pete to come up from the University of Maryland Medical School, Baltimore, where he was in his second year. "Auntie" Smaltz had an excellent cook and maid, and after dinner we were taken to a football game - my first "big college" game. While still in his first year at Medical School in Baltimore, my brother met his future wife, Jeanette Goldberg. Since he wanted me to know her, he invited me to a formal dance at his fraternity house - I wore my sister Babe's white formal gown with feathers at the bottom, and I stayed as a guest in Jen's home. I liked her and her family very much. I thought and still do that she should have attended that dance together. They were very much in love, and it was a real sacrifice for both of them not to be together [that evening]. {John Barrett note- earlier there is an account that spring 1925 Pete attended the Mount Holyoke Senior Prom with one of the Patterson girls of Detroit, at whose home Sophie lived summer 1924. Her fiance was too far away to attend, and Pete had an opportunity to see Mount Holyoke - this was in the year prior to meeting Jen. In the summer of 1927 -184-185- I transferred to New York City to Miss Clark's office on Forty-Second Street near Fifth Avenue. I was then in Publications. We worked on statistical data for the Division of Mental Hygiene of the Commonwealth Fund. My research at the Philadelphia Demonstration Clinic was the basis of Miss Clark's book "Statistical Reporting Techniques for Child Guidance Clinics". Although we remained good friends, and my assistance was acknowledged in the introduction, I did not get formal credit, and it was largely my work. I was unable to use the material as a subject for a doctoral thesis at Columbia University as I had planned, because they considered the material had already been published under Miss Clark's name.I also assisted on other projects, including proof-reading a textbook "The Problem Child at Home" by another author, who was grateful for the many typographical and other mistakes I removed. For a few days I occupied the apartment of one of Miss Clark's friends in Brooklyn, but the friend was returning Monday, and I had to leave. I remembered that Anne Taylor, who had worked with me on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, said she had an apartment in New York. I found her in the telephone book Saturday evening, and when I telephoned to ask her if she knew of a place where I might live, she said she could not think of one at that moment but that she would come out to see me in Brooklyn right way and bring her date with her.She came with Ivan McCormack,and when she heard my predicament,she explained that she had a small apartment with only two bedrooms- one very small. She occupied the large bedroom- her sister Eleanor occupied the small bedroom, and her sister Betty slept on a couch in the lving room.But she helped me pack that evening,saying that I could sleep in the bed with her until we found a suitable place for me. Anne worked as Executive Secretary of the Joint Vocational Service. As Anne was to be married in two weeks, Eleanor a schoolteacher and Betty a nurse moved into a tiny apartment on Twelfth Street.I liked it with Anne at 27 Commerce Street, Greenwich Village, and didn't diligently search for a place to live. Anne married, went off on her honeymoon,and when she returned I was comfortably located in Eleanor's [former] small bedroom, and Anne agreed to let me stay there for half the rent- just the room and use of the bathroom- no food and no kitchen privileges. I was very glad to stay there. Soon after Agnes Drummond called me up inviting me to join her and two men for dinner.Her -186- dinner partner was an old friend from her home in St. Louis, while my dinner partner was Bill Nuremberg, a lumber salesman with an office in the Grand Central Terminal Building.My loneliness then came to an end. Bill's office was very near mine, so we had lunch together every noon- a much better lunch than I could afford.Often we had dinner together, and every Sunday he drove me over Storm King Highway to an inn where we enjoyed dinner and then drove home in his big Packard.Bill N'irnberg (Nuremberg) owned a moving picture camera & wasted many expensive films & much time taking my picture. He ws everlastingly telling me to act natural & was very critical of my dress,which he considered too short & too stylish.He hung a sheet in Anne's apartment,where he showed us his movies.He lived at the McAlpin Hotel. But Miss Clark moved her office to Fifty-Seventh Street into the quarters of the division of Publications of the Commonwealth Fund and took me with her- too far away for me to have daily lunch with Bill,although I continued to see him every Sunday and had dinner with him two nights a week.Miss Clark was writing a book "Reporting and Recording for Child Guidance Clinics". I wrote the first draft of nearly every chapter of that book because I had the first hand knowledge of the subject from my work in the Philadelphia and Cleveland Clinics.Miss Clark re-wrote the material in her own style, and the book was ready for publication in June 1928. Miss Clark had written the book at the suggestion of one of the first statistical public health epidemiologists, actuary Dr. Louis Dublin of the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company, who made early contributions to understanding tuberculosis, industrial safety, and venereal diseases. From time to time as I was working on the book, the Commonwealth Fund loaned me to the New York Board of Education to advise them on records too.I also served as chairman of the committee investigating the qualifications of New York Social Workers [and developing standards]= a study being made for Walter West of the New York Association of Social Workers and for Ralph Hurlin of the Russell Sage Foundation.Harry Hopkins was a valuable member of my committee. He was then working at the Association for Improving the Condition of the Poor in New York City. I began to wonder what I was going to do next, but Miss Clark was ahead of me in planning for me.Unknown to me she had interviewed Mr. [Taylor?] Smith, director of the Commonwealth Fund; and had interested him in me so that they offered to pay my salary and my tuition for the summer session of 1928 at Columbia University, - and when the summer was over I was to be a statisticain at the Institute of Child Guidance in New York, operated by the Commonwealth Fund. So I entered summer school, registered for a Ph.d and took courses in Advanced Statistics and Social Science. Anne Taylor had a young friend Harold Nelson, who came to the apartment nearly every evening lookng for a bridge game.Anne told me that Harold was the brother of her social worker friend Marie Nelson,who came from Charleston, South Carolina,and was now Mrs. Harman Rowe of Philadelphia.One Saturday afternoon late in August 1928 I was at home in my room studying for a final exam Monday morning. Anne told me that she expected Marie Nelson Rowe and Jack Barrett that afternoon- just for the afternoon, as Marie and "Barrett" expected to join another couple for dinner and the evening.-188- "Barrett" was an old friend of the Nelson family from his Naval duty in Charleston, South Carolina in the early 1920s on the USS TOUCEY. Ordinarily I would never be at home on a Saturday afternoon in New York City,but I was determined to study all weekend for the two courses,as the exams were on the following Monday & Tuesday.So I took off my street clothes after lunch (out- as I took no meals with the McCormacks with whom I lived .I put on a deep red, long kimono sent to me by a Mount Holyoke college friend who made it for me,and I told Anne McCormack that I planned to spend the afternoon in my room working on my course.Anne then told me that she expected her friend Marie Nelson from Philadelphia at any moment, because Marie was to meet "Barrett" there & go out with him later for dinner & for the evening.Hardly had I begun to work when when Anne came in to tell me I had a male caller,and she was immediately followed by "Van" - husband of one of my social worker acquaintances. I was surprised to see him,,as he had never called before, & neither he nor his wife were particular friends of mine.Also I was embarassed to be caught wearing a kimono as I rarely stopped long enough to put one on.He explained that his wife was on vacation ((like Irving Berlin's l9l0 "My wife has gone to the country=hurray,hurray! She thought it best I take a rest & so she went away.") -& that he had a bottle of Prohibition whiskey,which he would be glad to share with me. When I explained that I did not drink,I thought that he would leave,but he was lonesome & lingered without drinking or urging me to drink.As we talked,Marie arrived-I had never seen her,& a little later I heard them greet "Barrett."When Van finally decided to leave,I walked to the door with him at the exact moment that Marie & Barrett arrived at the door to depart,&I saw a beautiful Charleston (South Carolina) belle attended by a sweet looking slender redhaired man.Neither one spoke to me as they followed Van out.Van had wasted most of my afternoon & it was hot,so I went off for a walk & had my dinner before returning home for a little serious studying in my hot room.On Sunday morning I slept late,donned an old cotton dress & decided to sweep the kitchen floor about noon-anything to keep from settling down to study. As I was sweeping,the doorbell rang,& I called,"Come in."In stepped Barrett, amused to see me sweeping the floor, but I merely said to him,"Anne & Ivan are not home."Whereupon he told me that he was calling on me &that I seemed to be very much at home. Desperately I told him how pressed I was for time,how embarassed I would be if I failed those two courses,but he calmly sat down in the kitchen & took out his wallet & showed me a picture of a child about five years old, saying, "This is my baby."I was surprised, as I believed he was courting Marie Nelson,& I said,"I didn't know you were married." He said,"I'm not married,but this is an Australian child,Sheila Craig.whom I knew in l925 whe I made the Australian cruise on the Marblehead,& I have kept in touch with Dr Craig & his family ever since."He visited for some time,& when I inquired about Marie,he said she had gone back to Philadelphia.Nothing would get him out of that apartment as he insisted I would have to have Sunday dinner somewhere, sometime-so why not with him? after which I would be free to study.Whe I told him I believed he was courting Marie,he told me that Marie was married,separated from her husband,but not free to marry anyone.Barrett was living uptown at the Knights of Columbus Hotel. he was in his second year at Fordham Law School uptown campus.In the early fall of l928 I saw little of Jack. I returned to work & steady dating of Bill Nuremberg,who had spent most of the summer in Europe, which explained why I was free to go to dinner with Barrett that Sunday afternoon. But occasionally Barrett dropped into the apartment about ten o'clock at night after school & once or twice took me to dinner but complained bitterly that he couldn't spare the time from his studies to entertain me at night.So he began to appear at the subway exit nearest my office before nine most mornings, would walk to the office with me & then telephone to me during the morning to make a luncheon date. .One weekend early that fall Bill Nuremberg told me he planned on doctor's advice to spend the weekend in bed because of an ulcer.I spent the weekend with Frances Manning (Mount Holyoke l925) in Maplewood New Jersey & returned to New York after dinner Sunday evening.As I was close to Bill's hotel,I telephoned to ask if he was well enough to have me call on him,& Bill said"Yes." His tone was not cordial-his greeting was not enthusiastic,& before I could ask him how he was, he complained that someone named Barrett had telephoned twice to try to find me & wanted me to telephone him. After a short visit,I went home,& Anne also told me Barrett wanted me to call him.It was eleven o'clock.On the telephone I said, "This is Sophie,"- he sleepily replied,"What do you want?"I told him both Bill & Anne said he wanted me to telephone,but he was just too sleepy to make conversation.In December or January Barrett moved into a small sixty-dollar-a-month apartment very close to me at 48 Commerce Street.He shared it with a mouse,which he rarely saw but which certainly lived there,because it always helped itself to peanuts Jack kept in a copper bowl. The mouse would leave the empty peanut shells. About the only furniture besides the couch was a set of nested carved Chinese tables from the Jack's Shanghai visit on the MARBLEHEAD in 1927. One afternoon he telephoned to say he was feeling too poorly to go to school that night & wanted to meet me in front of my apartment, that evening at 5:30 so we could eat dinner in the Village & he could go to his hotel room to bed.So we met as arranged, & as we stood there discussing where to dine,Bill (Nuremberg) drove up in his big car & had a male guest in his front seat. Evidently Bill planned to take me to dinner,but when he saw me talking to Barrett,he stepped on the gas & took off fast, & after more than a year of dating I never saw Bill again.Jack had tried to be friendly. My father had called on Bill & liked him, but I considered him too old to be a good marriage for me. One time he gave me an excellent investment idea: he asked for a thousand dollars to buy me stock in General America Insurance Company & returned half, as it was fully subscribed. The name of the company was later changed to Safeco of Seattle.I held the stock, which in the l960's suddenly soared in value. My initial five hundred dollar investment was sold for over thirty-two thousand dollars in l972. (A l976 letter to Ivan McCormack says that Sophie's father opposed marriage of his daughters outside the Jewish faith.Sophie's sister Esther for many years had a very happy romance with a fellow accountant at Swift & Company Hartford. but "Pa" Meranski would never let him come to the house at Wooster Street. His opposition would not have prevented Esther's marriage, except for the fact that his elderly mother was highly dependent & possessive & feared any interference with her relation with her son.Her objection was not religious - she lived to a considerable age, & Esther had a long friendship with the son but never married.She lived with her brother Abe's family on Hawkins Street for many years & after World War II with the Geetters when they moved to 92 Fern St. & Babe had five young children to look after with a busy doctor husband(David l933) Albert l935 Thalia l938 Harold l940 Suzanne l942.) Pa Meranski often came to New York to buy merchandise for his grocery, & one time he was robbed of considerable cash after visiting his son Pete & wife Jen in Baltimore in l929 or l930.He often stopped to see me, I that time I had to lend him money to get home. Jack had sinus trouble & trouble with his tonsils & planned to enter the Navy Hospital in Brooklyn for surgery.To my amazement he gave me a copy of his will in which he bequeathed to me the proceeds of his ten thousand dollar government life insurance policy.It was unbelievable.But he had the surgery & I visited him in the hospital.One night he was very uncomfortable because he was propped up too high with two pillows - the extra pillow was placed there for supper, buit the nurse forgot to remove it later - but he had good results & relief of his sinus difficulties.One of Jack's professors was John F.X. Finn. The proximate cause doctrine in torts was a subject of active study, as the New York courts had severely restricted plaintiffs' rights. Judges Carzozo & Cuthbert Pound were influential. Ivan McCormack in later years sent us news of some of Jack's law school friends, especially Joe Brill, who once tried to date me, =in later years he was associated with Roy Cohn. Another classmate John Papp, helped us find an excellent apartment overlooking the Narrows in southwest Brooklyn in September l939.Late in l928 when I chaired a committee on standards for social workers in New York City for an American social workers' association, I got to know Harry Hopkins (Roosevelt friend), who took a great interest & did a lot of work.Ann Taylor McCormack my friend and landlady kept in touch with him for many years.She was with Travelers Aid later, Ivan eventually bought a pig farm in Salem, New York, near Arlington, Vermont, where John visited Anne & Ivan in June, l97l) Although I no longer dated Bill,I had other escorts & often came home to find that Barrett had preceded me & left a note inviting me to a late supper.I usually accepted,but then he complained bitterly I was using up his time & his grades were suffering.On Saturday nights we went to movies in the Village & once he took me to a long play on Broadway "Strange Interlude" but most nights he went to Fordham's law school campus school far up in the Bronx - the school declined to let him transfer his second year to their Manhattan campus-and he studied long hours as he seriously wanted to be a lawyer- probably a Navy lawyer in the Judge Advocate's office.Jack's work in New York was concerned with War Plans & the training of Reserves,& he often went off to nearby communities & to Washington,New Haven & even to Hartford, where he called on my father & my brother Abe & became acquainted with most members of my family..When in Washington DC he addressed a letter to me which he mailed with only my name & "27 Commerce." No city at all was on the envelope,but I received it in a few days. I accused him of drinking,but he said he had been interrupted when addressing the envelope & then failed to complete it.(He liked to quote the opening of Oliver Wendell Holmes "Autocrat of the Breakfast Table": "I was just going to say-when I was interrupted. At the Institute of Child Guidance my work was too simple and routine, although my salary in 1928-1929 was seventy-five a dollars a week. It was a small statistical office with only a director and another girl who planned to go on working after marriage., I was there only a few weeks when I received a telephone call from Mary Langhead, a social worker I had known in the Philadelphia Child Guidance Clinic,-who told me that she was working in Macy's and that there was an opening for me as Director of Personnel Research . I went at noon to see Mr. Walker, the Personnel director,- later Sales Manager at Macy's, and I was hired. I had two excellent assistants, Ms Willie Kennedy and Mildred Forman - also a labor turnover clerk who was most efficient. My primary concern was labor turnover - how to reduce it and keep the figure low. After Jack left for the orient, Willie Kennedy sublet his apartment, and I attended her 1930 marriage to Marshall Verniaux. Anne and Ivan kept in touch with them up to the 1970s. They also kept track of our friend Jimmy Jemail, who wrote the "Inquiring Reporter" column for the New York Post and became an editor there. Willie Kennedy visited me in Boston in 1932 when Macy's sent her to brief Filene's executive Lincoln Kirstein on the methods we had developed to improve employee motivation and reduce turnover. When Jack's orders came through in May l929 for duty on the destroyer Truxtun in the Philippines,he asked the Navy for a year's delay so that he could complete his law course,which he was taking at his own expense.But the Navy refused,& Jack was so upset he tried to get a civilian job with the Department of Labor & applied to Frances Perkins (a Mount Holyoke alumna later President Roosevelt's Secretary of Labor),but she had no opening for him at the time.With his full time job with the Reserves & his evening law course & his effort to compete with my "dates", the man was fully occupied & now knew he was scheduled for two-and-a-half to three years sea duty in the Orient.He went over to Philadelphia to see Marie Nelson one weekend. On Sunday June 9, l929 I went alone to Baltimore to attend the wedding of my youngest brother Pete,who had just been graduated from the University of Maryland Medical School.Pete & my youngest sister Babe's fiance Dr. Isadore Geetter had been classmates at Hartford Public High School l9l7-l92l, where Pete was active in debating, & at Trinity College l92l-25, where Pete was graduated l925,but for some reason his picture appeared in l926 yearbook. He was active many years in Trinity Maryland alumni. In l925 Pete visited Mount Holyoke college as senior prom escort for one of the Patterson sisters from Detroit,because her fiance was too far away to attend.(I had stayed at their parents' home summer l924 when I worked there for Children's Bureau U.S. Department of Labor.) On the train going up to Hartford for the wedding Sunday June l6 of my youngest sister "Babe" (Rebekah} to Dr.Isadore Geetter, who had just graduated from Jefferson Medical Schhol & was to study anesthesiology,we were greeted by Mary Woolley the l90l-l937 president of Mount Holyoke College, who was widely traveled as a speaker & one of the ten most admired women in the country according to polls. She had made an extended visit to China in l922 & later was appointed by President Herbert Hoover to a naval disarmament delegation of the United States at Geneva. Miss Woolley recognized & greeted me as I had been junior faculty l923-5 in the Statistics lab, Department of Economics & Sociology. Jack had met many of my Mount Holyoke friends during our ten months acquaintance, & he remarked to Miss Woolley, "These Mount Holyoke women are wonderful- you could put them all in a bag & pick any one, & you'd do all right."Miss Woolley replied,"That isn't a very INDIVIDUAL compliment for Sophie." Babe & Geetter had a wedding reception at "the Shack" (Snug Harbor)- a property near the FarmingtonRiver in Windsor, which my brothers Ben & Abe & their friend Julius Aronson then owned, & which the Geetters later kept in the family.Besides Jack & myself, the guests included the large Geetter family,of which Dr.Geetter was the eldest son, my brother Harry & his wife Sade (Taylor),and their son Arthur & daughter Pearl, my brother Abe & his wife Ethyle (Berenson) & their son Ted & their friend Julius Aronson,my sister Esther, my sister Bertha & her husband Samuel Pollack, a l920 Phi Beta Kappa Harvard alumnus in chemistry and their young son Jason & my newly-wed youngest brother Pete & his new wife Jen Goldberg of Baltimore,whose family had helped Pete greatly at University of Maryland in Baltimore..They were on their honeymoon. Jack was scheduled to leave New York for Chicago & San Francisco on Friday June 2l, so when he was at my sister's wedding, he invited my brother & his bride to have dinner with him at Longchamp's Restaurant on Fifth Avenue on Thursday evening June 20,as Pete & Jen had theatre reservations for that evening in New York City..We had a pleasant dionner,& when Pete & Jen left,Jack & I walked the few blocks to my apartment building when he said goodbye as he was leaving the next afternoon & still had a lot of packing "I'll be at your office at noon sharp to take you to lunch before I shove off at three."I had recently changed jobs & became Director of Personnel Research at Macy's stores at 34th Street.Jack came into my private office as my assistants were out to lunch that Friday noon..Without a word of warning he asked,"Will you marry me?"Though he candidly discussed many frustrations and problems in the lives of Navy wives,he convinced me to marry him,& I made no reply except to suggest that we go to lunch.We went to the Hotel McAlpin. Suddenly he got up,paid the waiter,took me by the hand, & we rushed off to New York City Hall, where we were married about two o'clock, with two strange passersby as witnesses. Then Jack rushed for the subway & down to the railroad station, where he shoved his bags on the train just as the porter was yelling "Last call for the three o'clock train for Chicago".He left without a kiss or even a handshake,& I did not see him again for for nearly seventeen months,until November l3,l930 at Chingwantao in desolate North China, near Manchuria,(& when I finally arrived there, he told me that his ship would sail again at crack of dawn the next day for several weeks of fleet maneuvers.)Dazed after Jack left New York.I took a walk around and then returned to my office, where I said no word about my marriage until I resigned in August,l930.But my younger sister Babe read in the Hartford paper that I had married a seaman named Barrett,&they sent best wishes.Romantic-no! But after we really joined forces,life was one long romantic adventure,I would do it again if given the choice. So my sister in Hartford knew I was married,but very few of my friends in New York knew of the marriage except Anne and Ivan and Mr.Lyons. People asked me for dates - I declined to date Jack's law school classmate Joe Brill,- but a youing dentist persuaded me to have Thanksgiving dinner 1929 at his mother's home. The lady took a liking to me and tried to promote a romance, so I cut back on accepting social invitations. In my work at Macys, I had considerable contact with Jesse Straus & one of his brothers,who together managed the store at that time. They advised & assisted New York governor Franklin Roosevelt on many projects.Their parents Mr. & Mrs. Isador Straus were victims of the sinking of the TITANIC in l9l2 when Mrs. Straus would not go in a lifeboat without her husband, & he refused to take a seat from young women & children.A sister of my Mount Holyoke l922 friend Harriet Cogswell was working at Macy"s & corresponded with Harriet who was teaching at Gin=Ling missionary college Nanking & later married consular diplomat Paul Meyer.Jack Barrett later met Harriet & her fiance when the destroyer TRUXTUN was at Nanking on Yangtze River patrol in February-March l930,. & the TRUXTUN officers were guests at the American embassy.One of Harriet's students Dr. S.Y. Hu later did Ph.d work at Radcliffe on hollies & became Harvard's herbarium curator of Chinese plants for many years & wrote widely on Hong Kong flora,daylilies, & Chinese food plants & the rediscovered Metasequoia glyptostroboides. Harriet's sister in l980's gave Mount Holyoke College twelve boxes of historically interesting photos of Chinese live in l920's & l930's. mainly around Nanking & Peking.In May l930 the New York Times published an extended article on the personnel policies of Macy's stores. The main objective was to increase efficiency by reducing employee turnover.The report quoted psychologist Dr. V.V.Thompson on the effort to match the employee talents to the job & not "put a round peg in a square hole."


 


#1256 p 75 ch. 4 Meranski letters

 

Meranski letters Hartford families,friends Pt I ch iv Part One Chapter Three is Sophie's Mount Holyoke 1925 Master's Thesis Economics & Sociology "The Young Offender and the Criminal Law in Massachusetts," which is on Website p 65. Chapter Four will contain letters about Meranski family and friends centered in Hartford.----: Arthur Meranskil973 letter to Aunt Sophie Barrett Notebook Eight VIII p. 145 Excerpt from letter from Colonel Arthur Meranski 15 Oct l973 Stephen Linda and Amy Lisa live in Havre de Grace, about eight miles from us. You ask me about such things as the Inchon landing,but after twenty-three years, all I retain are a sewer of impressions.I do remember a British cruiser (HMS JAMAICA?) firing overhead with me wishing the noise would stop, and then when it did cease,hoping it would start again. (It did). Then the landing craft didn't land, so we dove off it into shallow water before reaching shore. I also recall all of us trying to stop the milling around and finally getting our armored vehicles into a column and moving inland. That night on shore we split our time between shooting at North Koreans and trying to stop the local civilians from massacring supposed collaborators. My most vivid memory is of a Military Police officer who came to our outpost line the next day and said he was going to check out the next town to the south.He was told the next town was definitely not ours,but chose not to believe it.Later that day we attacked, captured the place, and got his jeep back.Never found a trace of him. More on our family. The frau, Betty, is quite tall for a woman and was red-haired before it turned gray.Our children are all somewhat outsized.Steve and Hank are both over six feet and slender. Tommy, one twin,is also tall and very solidly built, going close to two hundred pounds. His twin, Paula, is as tall as her mother and is on a fairly constant diet to keep her weightdown. As for me I ended up at six feet, and my weight has never varied much fron one hundred ninety pounds. ..PRIOR LETTER: pages136-138 Postmarked l Oct l973 received 3 Octobor l973 The Rouse Company Columbia, Maryland 21043 Mr. Arthur M.Meranski Rural Route 2, Box 505,Aberdeen, Maryland, 21001 Dear Aunt Sophie, Needless to say, I was quite surprised to receive your long, interesting, and informative letter. Upon reflection I don't think I have seen you since childhood, and I have never seen your son.So many years have passed, and so much has happened.My record as a correspondent is no better than yours, and my handwriting has never improved, but I do want to answer your letter.It is very difficult to find a place to begin, but possibly the best way would be for me to briefly review my somewhat unusual life since World War II. -I came out of the war as a Captain - Armor- and got myself out of the Army in July l946 with several decorations, two wounds, and a gorgeous case of hepatitis, as you know. For a while I took a fling at the restauant and bar business in Bantamm, Connecticut, but it had no appeal.Thereforee, it was back to the Army in l948 at Fort Bliss,Texas. While in Bantamm,I met a female from Texas who was working in Hartford,and on 21 September l949, we were married at Fort Bliss. So,a week or so ago we celebrated our twenty-fourth wedding anniversary,which strikes me as an awfully long time with the same woman. We have quite a brood, of whom more later.From Bliss we moved to Fort Lewis, Washington State.Then my luck caught up with me- two years in Korea from the Inchon landing on. Another wound.Then two years in San Francisco on ROTC duty, three in Germany, many at Fort Sill, Oklahoma,where I was a gunnery instructor and a battalion commander. From there I went to Laos,where I nobly contracted hepatitis again and was rewarded by going to Vietnam. I put in three years as Chief of Combat Instruction at the Engineer School at Fort Belvoir (spelling?) Virginia and three years as Inspector General at Aberdeen Proving Grounds. Twenty-eight years all told in the Army. sounds dry and matter-of fact, but I enjoyed every minute except for those all too frequent periods when I was scared silly. Anyway in l968 I got orders for my fifth war. Right then and there Betty and I decided that the Colonel business had no future.I flat-out retired. Since then, I have been working as a manager for theRouse Company in Columbia. It is as different from the Army as anything can get.I have an interesting job with an even more interesting salary.My responsibilities include scheduling about twenty million dollars in construction plus handling all remodelling, telephones, movies, microfilms, and blueprints.I have seventeen people to do the work. The company is very large, progressive, and interested in the personnel.We live on an acre lot just outside of Aberdeen.Our house is a five-bedroom brick rancher. Trees and a brook in the back of our lot.Very pleasant, and we enjoy it.Most importantly, we have four children: Stephan Michael aged 21, Harry (Hank) aged l9, and twins Paula Jane and Thomas Arthur now eighteen. Tommy is a senior in high school. Paula is a freshman at Harford Community College and intends to teach.Hank is in the Army, having enlisted a year ago. He will not make a career of it - just serve his three years.He will probably marry a local belle, Linda Jones next June. Stephan, the oldest, has an excellent job with a home construction firm.He has been married quite a while - almost four years.His wife's name is Linda too, and we are proud to have her as a daughter-in-law.Not only that, but we have an extremely beautiful granddaughter, Amy Lisa, who will be three on October 25th.She is the biggest morale-boosterI have ever known, totally charming,well-behaved, and humorous. A living doll, even from a very prejudiced grandfather, which of course, I am. So there you are.I have led a full and interesting life with very few regrets.I would indeed like to hear from you again- even to enter a regular correspondence. We understand you are writing a book about Uncle John.This would interest us tremendously, and we would appreciate hearing from you on it.From all eight of us to you and your son John,the best of everything,and please let us hear from you.If you wish, we will have some photographs of our tribe taken and send them to you.By the way my mother saw her great-granddaughter many times before she died, and we are very grateful for that. Again, Please do write. The address: Rural Route 2,Box 505, Aberdeen Maryland 21001. Also should you come this way we'd love to have you. Just call (301) 272-4516 Your middle-aged (but spry nephew - Art(Meranski)- John Barrett note - Arthur was in Normandy invasion June l944 France in fast-moving tanks under General Patton His parents were Harry Meranski and Sarah ("Sade") Taylor of Hartford.He called his wife Betty "The War Department" and "the Ball and Chain" He later was a fraud investigator for state of Maryland. He wrote humorous letters to his aunt Sophie until she passed away in l987. His granddaughter Amy Lisa invited John Barrett to her graduation from Aberdeen High School May l988, and John met cousin Arthur and his wife Betty and their sons Tom and Steve and Steve's family at that time. Sophie was invited to Hank Meranski's wedding October l985 but was unable to make the trip. Sophie Barrett letter to Ivan McCormack in Salem New York (Sophie sublet from Mrs. McCormack l927-l930 at 27Commerce St, Greenwich Village) (1973) November 2 Friday morning VITAMIN enclosed. Dear Ivan,As Esther's birthday approaches on the nineteenth of November it occurs to me that I have neglected her shamefully in my accounts of the four sisters in my family. That is unfair, as she was as interesting as any of us-taller than the other three with jet black hair like my mother, jet black eyes and with a better figure than Bee, Babe or me- and from an early age she mothered us as we were eight by birth and more than fourteen by additions of motherless children who actually lived with us.Esther had more close girl friends and boy friends than we did, and with the first money she earned she bought a piano for the family as well as a record player and many records - and paid for a telephone when so few people we knew had telephones that ours rarely rang.She did well professionally because she was smart and went to a fine business college for bookkeeping, typing, and shorthand- at which she was a whiz.But her first job was at Vogel and son,a Hartford wholesale grocer. To preserve their stock, there was no heat in the place - not even in her office as the men wore overcoats and sweaters at worlk and warm gloves. It was a big, profitable business that Esther enjoyed,but because she had to do bookkeeping,typing and stenography, she couldn't wear gloves while working and got frostbitten hands as well as feet! He boss liked her,so she stayed despite the cold, but when she confided to her best girl friend that her married boss was trying to make love to her- that friend told my father, who would not let her return to that job- not even to collect her pay and her sweater! Soon the business college got her a job at the H.L. Handy Company,-wholesale dealer in meats, poultry and eggs. In the (p.2) office was Charles Bardous the head bookkeeper, one other male bookkeeper, and Esther.She really liked that job, was a happy girl with a piano record player, telephone,and always treated us to "college ices" -sundaes of chocolate sauce and nuts and always had a pound box of chocolates in her bureau drawer.I used to steal a few candies, which she never complained about if she knew they were gone.One night Pete was reading in bed at age fifteen, and I said to him,"Don't drop those apple cores on the floor- throw them out."-And as he chewed Esther's candies, he replied with a gleam in his eye,"Sis, there are no cores in these apples!"Esther must have known we were eating her candies, but she never stopped us or let us know she realized we were at her drawer.And when I could not see how I could pay the colllege fees, Esther and Al told me to go ahead - they would meet the expenses! Esther gave me her suitcase,her winter coat, and a lot more , and Al took me right to my room at the college (September l9l9). =And Esther was at the station to see me off in HER best clothes I was wearing. In my freshman year she came to visit and won the hearts of my classmates, who gave supper parties in their rooms for her, and the house mother invited Esther to sit with her at the head table while I waited on that table for one hundred dollars that year. Esther was so proud of me as very few women from Hartford went to the five best women's colleges in those days- certainly none of our friends except one older one who went to Brown University in Providence (earlier) but was working in Washington when I was growing up. And when I came home, Esther had a grand job for me (l921) for the summer in HER office- so we walked to and from work together every day and across the street near the lad I eventually invited to my junior prom (p 3) for a fabulously delightful weekend- a prom date with a car and a tux of his own!I was blind to the charms of Esther because she never seemed to have men come to the house for a date but yet she went out every evening,and I thought she was walking with her girl friends - who by then had telephones.One night I went to an outdoor summer dance with a girl Esther's age and was startled when she told me she was sorry for Esther.Only then did I learn that Esther and her young boss in the office were deeply in love and had been for years, but Esther would not marry him.What I did not know is that my father REFUSED to allow it and would not let Charlie come to the house, so she met him every evening on Main Street - had no place to entertain him in any weather, and that bothered Esther's close friend, as Esther told her it would be Charlie Bardous or no one. My father object to Charles only because he was not Jewish.This went on for years while Esther saw me through college after Al married, and then Esther began to see Pete through college and medical school and mother Babe when I was away and when my mother died.Even then my father would not see Charlie. H.L. Handy sold out to Swift and Company, soEsther and Charlie were transferred to a big office force where they were never alone. Charlie then lived w8ith his aged mother,who was as opposed to a Jewish daughter-in-law (beautiful and generous and wise and kind and musical and in love with Charlie to the exclusion (p.4) of all other men) Julius Aronson loved her for years before he finally married Mollie at an advanced age.So it went on.My father died in l933, so Esther was free to follow her heart, but Charlie's mother stayed alive.- and by the time she grudgingly agreed that Esther could live with them Esther would not marry Charlie and live with that old witch -whom even Charlie thought to be a witch- and he supported her as his duty and not for love of her.Esther could not bring herself to live under the same roof as she knew the mother would make her true love's life miserable. That mother lived until she was close to one hundred (years).I don't know what finally happened to Charles as I was so rarely in Hartford-but Esther never dated any other men! She went to live with Babe and with Geetter to help them with the five children when Geetter went to war.She lugged home the meat and eggs after work from Swift and Company and stayed with the five babies while Babe shopped in the evening- and helped with the washing and the housework in addition to her job. Geetter said to me, "I think so much of Esther I don't know which one I married - Babe or Esther." She was always "Nan" to the children and should have had a flock of her own! Now her birthday approaches- about seventy-nine and Geetter will send the the big yellow chrysanthemum he sends every year - the flowers that will still be fresh on Thanksgiviing Day. Esther and I were very close, but never once did she breathe to me the sadness of her broken romance. Maybe now you will know why I was so secretive about my marriage (p5) Continued-: p. five, l973 letter to Ivan McCormack on Esther, wtc. Thu, 02 Jul 1998 14:54:07 PDT l973 letter about Esther, Pa, Ben- p. 5 to Jack - an Irish Catholic and a devout one.I knew about Esther's broken romance with a Christian, and I feared for mine even though I learned about Esther's only from her best friend who later told me Esther wept bitterly often over my father's attitude before Charles ever told his mother about Esther.So I kept my marriage secret until I was about to sail, and then I did NOT go to Hartford to see my good Dad bfore I sailed.I did not want to see him hurt that his daughter who had been so sought after by fine Jewish men should marry a Christian- even one s fine as Jack Barrett. Esther's life had been ruined, and no one was going to ruin life for Jack and me.I saw my father only once after that in l932 shortly before he died, but Jack was not with me.Pa ignored my marriage and made no effort to see me in Boston and died some months later (March 29, l933).All Hartford was there (at his funeral) to hear the rabbi say "David gave his life to the unfortunate in Hartford at the expense of his own chldren, who numbered eight by birth but countless by his big heart." Esther loved him always, so she disregarded Charlie's pleas that she elope with him as she had no desire to hurt Pa.What a person. Greater than I could ever hope to be. I was headstrong. Even when my father came to New York to urge me to accept Bill Nuremberg and to forget the charming but poor Irish naval officer of a different faith.He came to New York only to dissuade me from Jack long before Jack proposed.What I did not know was that Jack (p.6) went (December l928) to New Haven and to Hartford to inspect naval Reserves at the armories there, had found my brother Al's home had dinner there and left Al with the impression that he was seriously interested in me.Al told Pa, who came rushing to New York to put a stop to the nonsense.She had NOT met Jack but did meet him at your apartment (27 Commerce Street) the night he lost his money to thieves in the subway.There is no doubt Pa likedJack BUT vastly preferred Bill (Nuremberg) whom he had called on at Grand Central Building that afternoon without my knowledge or consent.The father watched his daughters closely - could run Esther, Bee, Babe but found me always headstrong attractive to the Italian and Irish boys.He moved away from 25 Morgan Street (l9l6) because of the attentions of Joe Paonessa- a rich builder's son from Holy Cross who lived across the street. And on Wooster Street he told Justin McCarthy a United States sailor, that his daughter could not go out with him and could NOT accept the beaded bag Justin had brought to me all the way from the Mediterranean. Justin went off with that bag really scared, and I never saw him again.My father was very tall- powerful, and even an Irish sailor feared his wrath.He did like Sam Pollack Dr. Geetter, and his three good Jewish daughters-in-law! All (except Pete and Jen in Baltimore) were married in his living room except Babe, who was married in his summer home ("The Shack" or "Snug Harbor" near Windsor) with Jack present (June l6, l929).A really wonderful man of principle. He did not just blindly object to marriage outsidethe faith. He believed firmly that the chance o hapiness in mixed marriages was slight but p7 above all he believed such marriage a great injustice to the children.I had a very good father and a very good mother.I believe Esther would be the first to agree.Charle Bardous was not her only chance for happiness.Julius Aronson loved her, Jack Fine loved her,Charlie Rosenblatt loved her - all had sense enough to make happy marriages with other girls- all were successful, happy men - all would have made Esther happy,and my father knew it. But she was in love with Charlie when she knew his mother objected and knew that after their elopement she would have to live with her as Charlie would never desert that mother who tied him so closely for her own support.He did not earn enough as one employed bookkeeper to support two households.She was happy (later) to live with Babe and Geetter and her five nieces and nephews who adore her as she appraoches her birthday on November l9. But isn't it strange that p8- she never talked to Bee or to me or to Babe about her broken rmance and that I never heard it discussed by any of my sisters or brothers? I got it in bits and piece from her friends and from my father.One of her friends married Julis Aronson and another close friend married Charles Rosenblatt.... Phil and Peggy Dahlquist loyally support (President +Nixon) Phil lied storeies about my family -please send this to him (Round robin letters were a Meranski family tradition - also among Mount Holyoke l923 classmates, and Sophie often sent round robin letters l970's to Ivan McCormack, Phil and Peggy Dahlquist, Admiral Stika USCG retired, to Sophie's nephew Col. Arthur Meranki in Abede Maryland, to Gertrude and Paul Rice in Pasadena and separately a group of HANNIBAL friends - Mary Boyd, Mary Ascherfeld, Adm. Visser,Captain Mervin Halstead, the Lehmans, Candlers, and others.) Of the others my father and mother cared for in their home I have only sketchy information except for Julius Aronson and Catherine Cooper, who for years I believed were my blood sister and brother. And Catherine married Sam Aronson! He was Julius's brother -9- who almost lived with us when his mother died but went home only to sleep as we had run out of bedspace! All of us slept two in a bed- four in a room, but we ran out of space even when my two oldest brothers Harry and Ben offered to sleep on the living room floor if my parents would only keep a few of their motherless friends. One day Al stepped on Ben's hand while Ben was sleeping on the floor, and his hand was broken.Ben needed that hand to play the saxophone when he had the vaudeville bug at an early age and left the good job in the drug store and then added gray hairs to my father's fine head of jet black hair!My father put Ben out of the house for giving up that job. Then he sent me out with food for Ben and shut his eyes when Ben sneaked in to bed at night! - And poor Pete had the earache, and Ma got Dr. Kates to come in. He asked her what she had done for the boy, and Ma said she had heated sweet oil and put a spoonful or two in the ear.The doctor turned on Ma - a very Jewish doctor and said,"I don't want no 'hoil' in 'dat h'ear."Poor Pete was in pain, but he roared laughing, and after that we would mimic"I don't want no 'hoil' in that h'ear." I forget what he prescribed, but he did clear it up. I suppose my mother could have clogged the ear andhurt the hearing permanently. When I was small my father owned a good-sized restaurant He had a big coal stove and loved to stand near it. At times one of his customers would brew tea- strong tea there and -p 10- put it into small bottles. he claimed to be a drug salesman. I learned later that hesold that tea as eye drops from his pack of patent medicines he sold to druggists.That was about 1909.(After recent Halloween activity in West Roxbury) I am reminded of l907 the one year we lived on 27th Street in the heart of the East Side of New York city in the Panic of l906 when I was five or six.In terror I stood at the window on the second floor of the tenement house and watched the boys with long stockings - women's black- filled with flour hit poor passing men and other boys across the back- hit them so hard white flour got on their clothes. I was so scared I did not go out all day. It was traditional then just as trick or treat is here.-..." {{Another portion of this letter not yet typed tells about young people in the West Roxbury neighborhood - amusing stories- sometimes they would help, sometimes be unruly. A very long letter of seventeen legal-sized handwritten pages was originally sent to Ivan McCormack with instructions to send it along to Lt. Commander Phil Dahlquist (and Peggy) of Eugene Oregon but also Sophie copied most of the historical portion later into Notebook eight. This is continuation of E mail sent about 2:30 Pacific Time July 9, l998 to Deborah Sonnenstrahl and Thalia Geetter Price.- cousin John Barrett. I hope you can follow this as many details are interesting, especially as Buzzy met Ivan McCormack around l971 or l972.He knew Esther and Babe and met Grandpa Meranski who called at Sophie's apartment at 27 Commerce Street the time he was robbed in New York subway. Grandfather sometimes went to New York on shopping trips for his grocery at 4 Wooster Street, Hartford, and passed through on visits to Pete and Jen in Baltimore and Bertha and Sam Pollack in Overbrook, Pennsylvania. In the 1880s he came through New York before settling in Hartford, but immigation records from l880's are lost.He lived on Lower East side part of l907 in Economic panic, when friend named Samuel Shlimbaum found him tailoring work. Shlimbaum was in Hartford directory one year abour l892. David Meranski knew Boris Thomaschevsky of Second Avenue Yiddish theater in New York, who performed at the Meranski restaurant with members of his family around l912. Aunt Babe Thalia's mother recollects that he invited aunt Bertha to travel with his touring troup, but the family did not think it advisable.Bertha belonged to business club and singing group at Hartford Public High School class of l9l7 with her friends Eva Levin and one other. Their photos are in the l9l7 Yearbook on file at Hartford Public library. I hope to get copies for website. There was no l9l9 yearbook because of paper shortage after World War I. There may be historical material on Hartford Public high School and elementary Brown school at Stow-Day House in Hartford, an important repository, and other interesting material at Jewish historical Society of Greater Hartford - thanks to cousin David Geetter for sending me the address.. There is a tape there that Rose Rosenblatt Witkower made for them. She lived to age ninety-one and remembered the Meranskis. Her husband was born in Vienna but his older brother in Brody. The Witkowers came to US in April l890. Rose Witkower's brother Charley was a very close friend of the older Meranskis. His father had been a populist candidate for governor of California in l884 - came to Hartford l885. Rose son continues Witkower Press. There is a letter in this notebook eight from Albert Geetter and one from Saul Seidman of Hartford, descendant of Mrs. Meiselmann, another Brody emigrant and friend of Thalia Goldfeld Meranski our grandmother. I am very glad this material has survived the l993 thefts and will be typing it out. - cousin John Barrett JASON| POLLACK LETTER:Jason S. Pollack 4A Rose Avenue, Great Neck NY 11021 Nov. 8, l973 Dear aunt Sophie,The mail today brought your long, newsy, and most interesting letter. It also caused a pang of shame, as I have been meaning to thank John for sending the letter from Arthur Meranski I do intend to write to Arthur, but first I must answer you.First of all,we are all fine. As you know Jon,who will be twenty in March is in his second year at Yale.He is a physics major and is working very hard, although he does seem to love it.Richie will be seventeen in February and is still in his junior year of high school.He will be starting to apply to college soon, probably to study Biology which seems to be his main interest.Ann expects to get her degree in Art history in June of l975.She loves the subject and is doing very well.. Now in regard to your letter. I will send it to Teddy,but first must re-read it myself,.I found your anecdoes fascinating, and do think you should consider putting them in book form if it would be possible to disguise some of the names. I enjoyed most of all your comments on the family and the family history.I have only the slightest memory of my grandfather, and really had no previous knowledge of the historical facts you supplied. I would appreciate any further information that you could supply. I didn't know my grandmother at all, and really don't know anything about her. I was lucky enough to know and be very close to your brother "Pete" I do remember Ben, but know almost nothing about the others. Perhaps you could write more about the family. The cousins are scattered all about, and some of us hardly know some of the others.You could help to pull all of us together.I must confess that my boys are at the age where they shy away from the camera, and that I have no recent shots. i will try to take some and pass them along to you. They are both very god kids, and I am very proud of them. Many thanks for the great letter, and even though I hate writing I do promise to keep in touch. Love from all of us - Jay. pages 147-148 notebook Eight Excerpts of letter from Babe Geetter dated January 17, l974 First of I do want to acknowledge your letter which most certainly did contain information that you received from Mrs. Witkower as well as the second letter from Saul Seidman. I called the elderly Mrs. Witkower just before starting this note. She was most gracious and offered the information that Meema Saura had lost her husband before leaving for America and in all probability went back to Brody from Vienna as a widow - knew Mom in Brody, and together they left for the United States. Israel Witkower was born in Europe and was a year old when he came here with his mother. Mrs. Witkower was sure that Meema was a widow when she arrived here and that Israel was less than a year old. So you see meema had no husband with whom to travel, and bears out my own conviction that Momma really had no connection with Vienna and that the two women and Yonkel the infant boy travelled here from Brody. They came here to stay with the Meiselmann family and Ma remained with them until she married Pa. Also the name and address of the young Adelman girl is now Mrs. Albert Shulman, 856 Prospect Avenue, Hartford Connecticut She was Rachel Adelman and was very young when Pa remarried. [eight years old, Sophie Barrett note] Jacob "Yonkel" Ma's brother came with her at an early age. They may have traveled with widowed Meema Sura Witkower and infant Israel from Brody. John Barrett note. Records show the ship on which Mrs. Witkower and her two sons arrived in new York April l890. No one has searched whether Tolley and Jacob Goldfeld were on that same ship. They may have arrived earlier. The older Witkower boy was born in Brody l880's,and his younger brother Israel in Vienna l889. Tolley or Thalia Goldfeld married Daivd Meranski at Germania Hall, Hartford August 8,l890, said to be age twenty, which agrees with her l925 death certificate in placing her birth in l870 or l869. Sophie Meranski's birth certificate indicated she was somewhat older, born about 1865 to be thirty-six in October, l90l. Rebekah Meranski stated her mother came to USA via Hamburg Germany. For Part One Chapter Four


 


#1257 p 75 letters for Part One Chapter Four-Mollie Aronson,Rose Rosenblatt Witkower Hartford

 

==Mollie Aronson information received Oct 4,l973 =written Oct 1 Julius's [Aronson's] brother who married Catherine Cooper was Sam. Died many years ago. Meyer only one left at eighty-one. Lives with a son in Hartford. "You mentioned Mrs. Witkower in your letter, and they had a bookstore on Asylum Avenue. St. Mr. Witkower passed away, and she lived on the next street to us, and now lives in California with a sister. Mrs. Witkower is Charlie Rosenblatt's sister. I also knew the Meiselman girl and the Seidmans from Sunday school. Saul Seidman is an attorney and his mother passed away a short time ago. Thought you might like the enclosed pictures taken at the Shack and you would know some of them like Celia, Rosenblatt, Charlie Rosenblatt, Jack Noll, Dora Johnson and Julius. When Julius and I were in Florida one year we spent the day wuth Teddiee and Aleen and their children and had a nice time. Can't imagine that they have married children. Julius and I went to their wedding at the Bond hotel. Of course I knew Abe and also Ben and Charlie Rosenblatt and Julius owned the Shack on the river at Windsor and had many good times there. Yes, Babe is a wonder and she does so much and has such a large house to take care of and is always the same. I saw Albert recently, and he looks good and both he and David have nice practices. Julius used to get such a kick when at the hospital and Dr. David, Dr. Albert, and Dr. Isadore Geetter would come in to visit Uncle Julius. I knew that Harold and Ava had bought a home in West Hartford and were staying with Babe. Now they are in their own home. I knew that Bee and Sam had gone to Boston to a bar mitzvah and had gone to visit you.They both look good, and I saw them last year when I was in Florida.They drove up to see Babe and family from Great Neck and tried to call me.I think I was at my sister's home and missed them. They love being in Florida and have a lovely apartment. Guess Julius used to call Bee(looks like) Mrs. Vanderbit, and she always looks stunning and is so bubbly. I stopped by to see Babe,Esther, and the doctor oon Saturday to wish them a Happy New Year-and all look good. I also took your letter along for Babe to read. We keep in touch with each other and speak on the phone each week. (Oc l,l970 ------- Dec31'73 Rose Rosenblatt Witkower letter to Sophie Mrs. Rose Witkower 14 Regency Drive Bloomfield Connecticut 06002 - "Shalom Monday December 31, l973 My dear Sophia- Your letter came as a golden nugget today, a cold blear December day.for it brought back to me a rush of memories of days that were priceless- Days when one never heard of welfare- the poor- housing or all the other dismal "isms."for we lived in the midst of all of them and still found that all was Good.How vividly you wrote of my dear mother-in-law Saura Witkower. I wish I had the sense of value then as I now have for if I had been more patient and interested, my mother-in-law would have told me all about her experiences in Europe and in America.But I a busy mother of two children had no desire or time to listen.'Twas the same when my father a Civil War Veteran tried to tell us about some of his experiences such as when he became Representative of San Francisco, California in l879 Legislature and the arrival of the Jewish people in Hartford- but we were not interested.How well I remember the many, many times my mother-in-law went over to see Mrs. Meranski- where she knew she would find a kindred soul who loved her and would listen to her chatter-there in the brick housae on the corner of Canton and Wooster Street.She would be served with home made chicken soup,with fresh noodles, a pice pof chick and szimar and of course tea and kuchen.Hundreds of times - and what love she received from the whole family- the children eagerly waiting for the peppermint lozenges she took from her handbag.- and your Mother- how I remember the day I drove my mother-in-law to your home.She prevailed on me to go upstairs to say "hello" to her dear friends.Up I went and was rewarded with such a gush of love that it warmed the heart of an American girl who was losing the warmth of expressive love. Then we had tea-in--a-glass and butter coffee-cake.As I looked around the room I saw a number of children - hers and neighbors' children.That must have been about l9l5 (actually after Meranskis moved to Wooster Street autumn l9l6).The joy of her eyes sparkled when she spoke of her daughter Sophie who was going to graduate from high school and go on to college.Well, that was something that keenly interested me.Learning was my goal, and thus far I had only received seventh grade schooling.My mother-in-law kept me posted on your achievements- as proud of you as if she was your Mother.Mrs. Meiselman was a small, very active woman who helped her husband in their small grocery store.A finer person never lived.She gave to everyone who needed help;So did her children. They adopted my mother-in-law as their own.Not blood relations.There were two boys born to my mother-in-law.As I remember the story, she married a man who worked in a bank in Vienna.I believe she was born in Brody, Austria.That name rings a bell.Am quite sure thast your mother was not born there (?) They may have met on the boat coming over to America, and my motrher-in law took care of her after they landed.I called Jennie Weinstein to find out what she knew, but she knew nothing.She sends her love.She told me of meeting your dear family - hopes you all are well.Israel Witkower (ROSE'S HUSBAND) was owner of a bookstore for fifty yearson Asylum Street - formerly Warfield's.He started as an errand boy- later became the owner. am sure you traded in the store. Israel spoke very highly of the Meranski family. Charlie Rosenblatt (Rose's brother) told me much about the summer house down near the river.The gang had much fun there.He dearly loved Ben.We have two children - Irma and Bernard (Witkower).- five grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.Thank God! Israel was born March 27,l889 - passed away on September 2,l968.- After spending four extremely happy, restful years in lovely Leisure World, California, a perfect community for Seniors, on my eighty-fourth birthday I decided to return home - West Hartford- to be close to my children.I have a very cozy three room apartment just a five minute drive from my daughter Irma, wife of Dr. Albert Reiner Deulert SPELLING??? Deutcib? Sorry I could not give you more information, but I am sure your dear mother was not born in Austria(cum granu salis). Thank you for the interesting letter. May God bless you- Yours - Rose Witkower. Sophie Barrett note l974 "Charles Rosenblatt married Celia Weinstein - Esther's chum." Postcard from Rose Witkower : received Feb 26, l974 (recommended book): Hartford Jews 1659-l970 by Rabbi Morris Silverman - mentions Capital City Lodge #119 - 1900 David Meranski Treasurer. Dr. Geetter's picture and factual item is in this book on page 351(John Barrett note July l998- Rose Witkower's recollection of Sophie's mother at Wooster Street is of great interest, but she clearly did not know whether Thalia Goldfeld Meranski was born in Vienna or Brody, Austrian Galicia, now in Ukraine. In Boston l970's Sophie and John spoke with a widow Celia Goldfield of Milton (employed at jordan Marsh Boston)- Celia's husband was from Rovno on the same railroad line as Brody. Goldfeld or Goldfield is not a common name, but I found about thirty in a survey of telephone directories of larger American cities.On Portland Street, Hartford l909 accoring to directories a newly arrived Goldfield family lived near the Meranskis for about a year. Any connection is unknown.Sophie said her mother's parents were deceased when her mother came to Hartford along with her younger brother Jack, who was hard of hearing, worked as a tailor, added a letter i to his name changing from Goldfeld to Goldfield l9l6. if directory is accurate. He lived at 25 Morgan Street with Meranskis l9l0-l9l6 and stayed there according to directories for several years when they moeved to Wooster Street late l9l6. He was a resident of Hebrew Home l931 accding to directory.It was the custom to name children for decesaed relatives , so Thalia's parents Abel and Bertha Goldfeld in Austria would have been deceased when their grandson Abe was born l896 and granddaughter Bertha July 23, l898. Rose Witkower lived to age ninety-one and made oral history recordings now in keeping of Jewish Historical Society of Greater Hartford located on Bloomfield Avenue West Hartford.


 


p 75 #1258 SUN and FUSION comment

 

Thu, 20 Apr 2000 15:26:36 -0700 (PDT) |Temperature may be Central to Technology David - In the book of Genesis you may remember the patriarch Jacob loved Rachel and worked for her father seven years - then was told he must marry her elder sister Leah first. So he married Leah and worked another seven years, finally marrying his beloved Rachel, mother of Joseph and Benjamin. For seven years after reading Kasting-Caldeira 1992 with the pessimistic forecast of Arizona-like temperatures worldwide in about one hundred million years, I was pessimistic about removing ANY mass from the sun. Mentally I was over-estimating the density and escape velocity, thinking of white dwarfs and neutron stars, which are much more dense. Statistics in 1998 Atlas of the Universe are encouraging - they suggest an escape velocity of 384 miles per second at solar surface - in line with your figure of 500 kilometers/second. I wrestled with techniques of sending space ships close to the surface, but they get captured by gravity, and melting of all presently-existing materials below 3000 C versus general surface temperature of 5500 C looked daunting. Sunspots at 4500 C might offer a target - more importantly I need to verify a friend's rumor that there may be Helium concentracions that could be targeted- have you heard anything along those lines? Heat is not the only conceivable technology to remove mass from sun, but at the moment it seems the best bet. My three most promising techniques at moment seem to be orbiting lasers, orbiting mirrors-reflectors of solar heat, or a greenhouse gas if it can be stabilized magnetically or otherwise. Therefore, the first question I would ask, - if we achieve a limited heating of solar surface, how many particles would reach escape velocity per degree C per unit area, large or small. I thought this was an extremely ambitious undertaking, but you have RAISED THE ANTE in poker terms by proposing to keep the solar heat output in semi-perpetural equilibrium. Splendid if possible. I don't know if this is an old Chinese proverb or the creation of one of President Kennedy's scriptwriters, but John F. Kennedy used to say "A journey of ten thousand miles begins with a first step." You may remember in my original essay I quoted Archimedes, "Give me a place to stand, and I will move the uiniverse." We need a place to stand near the sun. I will do the best I can to do calculations or find people who can do them, but this is something for organized "BIG SCIENCE". So far I do not have contacts at NASA. I have thought of writing former Senator John Glenn. This could be a stimulus to science and technology, at a time when NASA and the Livermore fusion agency are coming under some crticism for various mistakes. I did have a reply from Dave Des Marias junior a liverwort research- undergraduate I think in California under Brent Mishler, who is publishing molecular data on green plant phylogeny - a field long of interest to me-- and his FATHER is with NASA, but at the moment I haven't got the attention of anyone at NASA. I will try to compile .data and opinions, but here in a relatively rural area, tho I am learning my way around the Internet, I am aware of my limitations. I am excited to see that this may be within the realm of future technology. It would be nice if we could start a serious large-scale scinetific discussion, but even if my work and that of friends is totally forgotten, I believe this area will be re-discovered. Perhaps a start is not urgent, but I think it is stimlating and fun. I also believe Fusion energy needs much higher priority. It would increase our ability to deal with many natural distasters- hurricanes, drought, famine, tornados, global warming or in reverse severe global cooling - climate is clearly unstable. Even if nothing happens along these lines, fusion energy would improve living standards in US and everywhere - America with five per cent of population uses21 per cent of world energy. Charcoal burning is a major factor in destruction of tropical rain forest- if these people had fusion energy and cheap electricity, forests and habitat would be saved. U.S. balance of payments would improve, and auto-truck companies woiuld have major new markets. U.S. forces would not be needed in Persian Gulf, and one hundred thousand civillian deaths in Iraq 1991 would not have occurred. Petroleum exploration and extraction have serious envirnometnal and health consequences Niger delta Nigeria, Ecuadorean Amazon, Colombian Andes, Alaska, and many other places. I won't digress on impact of oil companies on human rights Burma, East Timor and elsewhere. The Cassini Saturn probe frightened many environmentalists- too far to use solar energy, but a plutonium accident near-earth though improbable- could be a real "Lulu'. Cheap electricity from fusion could be turned into a variety of synthetic fuels for cars and trucks. Although coloniation of very deep space probably will occur eventually, there may well be a stage where the bulk of earth population human and animal-plant goes to satellites of the outer planets, with heat primarily from controlled fusion rather than the sun. There is a need for leadership on fusion energy- for fifty years we have been told fusion power is twenty-five years away. On the conservative side, big oil companies are afraid they will be superseded, and liberal-environmentalists associate fusion pwer with the mlitary -industrial complex. Missle defenses are another issue, but I tend to believe they can work and will offer some insurance against terrorists and roge nations - posssibly North Korea, Libya, Afghanistan, Castro - who knows just who? [even the Unabomber or Timothy McVeigh if they had the chance- we have kooks in our own counrtry}. Perhaps there will be a chance to talk at Kabeyun in the summer. Where can we pass the torch in this relay race? Have you any thoughts who might do some work? i have no desire to monopolize the field. John Barrett Dave Latham wrote: David-I shall try to find people who can help. I need to relate the escape to surface temperature. -"I don't think you need to involve the surface temperature. Under ideal circumstances you have to provide 1/2 mv**2 of kinetic energy for the material to escape, where v is the escape velocity. substantial mass reduction is achieved, Doug Wadsworth correctly points out planetary orbits will be affected,The orbits will have to get larger, so that helps compensate for the increased luminosity. Thu, 20 Apr 2000 12:38:28 -0700 (PDT) From: John Barrett Subject: Moderate Mass Removal Better than None-HalfA Loaf To: dlatham@cfa.harvard.edu CC: doug@alaskacatch.com, seanroot420@yahoo.com David-I shall try to find people who can help. I need to relate the escape to surface temperature. Even if one cannot release enough mass totally to counteract increasing luminosity, a palliative effect might be of long duration. After all, there is a solar wind today. Magnetic or other confinement of a greenhouse gas is another approach. If a substantial mass reduction is achieved, Doug Wadsworth correctly points out planetary orbits will be affected, but again, this can be calculated and should not be an insuperable obstacle. All good things come to an end, but much time could be gained. With conventional space craft comparable to what we have today, it may well be feasible to send a human colony to one of the distant planets you are discovering, but it would be much harder to transfer the entire earth biomass. That may become possible with exotic wormholes and things far in the future. In the meantime, I hope my project would extend the habitability of the earth. Several students find the problem interesting and worth working on. It gives research something to focus on. Science is a relay race. I hope to do my part and find qualified people to pass the torch along. Best wishes to Dad, Nick, Tom, Peter - I do not exclude other members of the Lathams but know them less well. If anyone cares to advise on best date to visit Kabeyun this year, thoughts are welcome. I have sent some of this material to Harvard Earth Scientists especially Heinrich Holland, who hosted a James Kasting talk, - also the remarkable Paul Hoffman, Michael McElroy, Andy Knoll. I do not have an instant answer to your question but appreciate your contribution to the dialogue.-John Barrett Dave Latham wrote: space station or 'ship' close to the surface-- I have been wondering if a huge LASER could blast matter loose from the surface of the sun and accelerated some of it to an ESCAPE speed-- there is a simpler way-- Create LOCAL HOT SPOTS. Someone should be able to calculate how hot they would have to be for mass to escape from the surface. I suggest that you need to estimate the amount of power (energy per unit time) required to remove mass from the sun at the rate needed to counteract the evolutionary rate of increasing luminosity. The escape velocity from the sun is about 500 km/s, so the energy required for escape is quite high. The rate at which mass needs to be removed may be low enough to keep the energy requirements reasonable, but I doubt it. Do the calculation.Dave Latham--Ap 17-- Doug- The sun is expected to remain on the main sequence another four or five billion years according to most estimates as a G2 star - the masses and brightnesses go OBAFGKM - O is extremely hot and huge and burns out quickly - the sun is a yellow drawf- asttronomers used to memoraize Oh, Be A Fine Girl [guy] Kiss Me. The main sequence starts burn hydrogen at the core. Main sequences stars are called dwarfs' - G is yellow dwarf, K is orange dwarf, M is Red Dwarf - they may be stable trillions of years - trillion is million million or thousand billion - ten to twelfth power. But it is now estimated the sun gets ten per cent warmer every billion years- in a hundred million years the whole earth will azerage as hot as the Sonoran desert. But the clincher as far as life is concerned, photosynthesis will be greatly reduced as the warmth mades CARBON DIOXIDE react with silicate rock. We should develop cabaility to slow the sun's warming, though if we slow fusion at the core, it will take a MILLION years for the heat to work outward through 432,500 radius of sun - estimate may not be precise. God has many great blessings in store for us, but we must pray and ask him for them. April 6 was the second Millenium of the Birth of Christ according to section 20 Doctrine & Covenants. I have been working on this problem seven years, and April 7 to 12, God answered my prayers and showed me how future scientists can use the properties of physios and the sun, engineered by God and Jesus Christ, to prolong duration of life until Christ comes. That could be today or tomorrow, but God may wish us to be custodians of his Creation millions even billions of years. I would appreciate your telling your astonomny professors these ideas, but even if my work is forgotton and ignored, I know God has made a way we can prolong the survivial of our prosperity. If you will send me your Bellingham mail address, I will maoil you a copy of this, or you could print out a few copies for teachers and friends. It was wonderful having Sister Carol Anderson and the twins performing with the choir yesterday, as Share Smith has been transferred to Stake Primary duty and is not longer availabler. There is much music talent in the family, and Mike Richardson spoke very well at sacrament meetings. Keep in touch -John Barrett Doug Wadsworth wrote: Hi John, very interesting studies you are doing! I am taking Astronomy right now, and took physics last quarter up here at Western WA UNiv. The red giant stage of our Sun is like you said has a few million years away ( I thought ten million). Perhaps we will no longer be living on the earth at that time? There are some intersting revelations on these issues as well, (a new earth and new heaven) sure is interesting.. -Doug [Wadsworth]


 

 

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