Sunday, August 29, 2010

Weekend in Ft. Madison

Here we are in the late 50's in our backyard in Ft. Madison, Iowa. The yard was a gentle slope to the creek behind - Dry Creek. That is until one night when there was a 10" rain and Dry Creek became very wet and washed away the slope and left kind of a cliff. We still had a lot of backyard, however. Looks like this was taken after the big rain since there seems to be a fence there. We planted gourds to grow on the fence.
Bill and Ray looking at a box - can't remember what was going on at that time. Maybe if one of the kids remember, they will leave a comment.

Sherry standing beside a little redbud tree that we dug up on the bluff behind the cornfield near our house. Redbuds are Iowa's state tree and there was a lot of pretty pink in the landscape in the spring. Surprising, the little thing grew.

Mom, Dad and Bill. Do you like my fashionable outfit? Used to wear an apron a lot - but with bluejeans? Looks like that's the case. I haven't seen these old pictures for a long, long time. Brings back memories. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, August 27, 2010

Happy PFF

A postcard purchased on the same trip in 1950 where we picked up the Niagra Falls cards - this one is a very large card and shows the bridge through the Thousand Islands between the United States and Canada. It, too, is linen. (That's the postcard, not the bridge.)

The back of the card has plenty of room to write a message back home! Thanks to Beth, for hosting. (Click to enlarge)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Pabst Brewery in Peoria Heights

A picture (which I found on the internet) of the old Pabst Brewery in Peoria Heights, Illinois, where my father worked for many years until retirement. I was a small child during the depression and Dad was off work for a long time, so you can imagine how thrilled my parents were when he was promised a job at the new brewery that was opening. Sadly, there was a big fire just before it was to open so there was a big delay. He did, however, eventually go to work there.

I found the little miniature Pabst bottle in an antique store and also the old bottle cap opener that advertises Pabst. The pin is my father's employee pin that he wore on his shirt at work. I found the old bill on the internet and also have some other memoriabilia pertaining to Pabst in files on my computer. When we were in Portland, PBR is certainly a popular beer there so evidently it is a favorite again. (Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Aunt Leah and Bergner's in Peoria

My Aunt Leah worked for many years in the notions department of P. A. Bergners, a large department store in Peoria, Illinois. She was still working there when I graduated from high school and had a job with Galbraith & Baymiller, attornies, in Peoria. Every day I rode the White Star Bus for the 20 or so miles to Peoria. Once in a while, I would stay after work and go home with Leah for an overnight stay with her and my grandmother. Aunt Leah was special.
In the picture above, Leah, is second from the right. She is with a group of women that also worked for Bergner's - two of them I can remember. They are having lunch in the tearoom which was not far from the notion counter.
At an auction west of Chillicothe in the mid 80's after we had returned to Illinois, I bought a big box of sewing related items. In the box was this receipt from a purchase made by the lady from Princeville at Bergner's. I have always wondered if my aunt had made the sale and if she had written the receipt. It could have been her, but I will never know.

This is Berner's in the middle 1930's. The side entrance to the store was down the hill at the left of the picture and you took the stairs to the main floor where the notion counter was right to your left as you entered.

Peoria had trollies - street cars - and here is one making a turn from Main to Adams St. In the later years, my grandparents didn't have a car and went everywhere on the street car. Leah used to say the streetcars were like bananas - they came in bunches. I vividly remember riding them. In this picture, the first tall building on the left is the Lehmann Building and that is where I worked for Galbraith & Baymiller.
Just a little Piece of the Past - so very long ago. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

These postcards were purchased when my husband and I took a trip in August of 1950 as is the subject of my previous post.

I have noticed that some of the participants in PFF talk about "linen" cards - at least, I think that's what I read. These cards appear to have the texture of cloth on the surface.

This is a pretty card with the Maid of the Mist. Do you know I can't remember if we took a tour on that or not! Understandable, since it was 60 years ago!

Many thanks to Beth at for being host!
(Click to enlarge)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

A Trip Out East in 1950

Sixty years ago this month, Ray and I took a trip out east in a new little green Chevie. That was one of the only really long trips we ever took in the years we were married. One memorable spot we visited was Niagra Falls where we had dinner in the Rainbow Room of the Hotel General Brock. One day I found this menu and was amazed at the prices, although when I think of what we earned that is also amazing and went right along with the low prices of the times. Regardless, it's fun to just compare the cost of things back then and during the present time.
At least for part of the trip, I kept a notebook of all the costs of our trip. Parking, lodging, food, gas - all incredibly cheap. The last item on that page is what we spent for our meal in the Rainbow Room - including tip. There is also a note that we had dinner with a "Judge Avndemier" which I barely remember. What I do remember is that I had come down with a head cold and had lost my taste and smell. That was disappointing! And I can remember the colored lights on the falls. The meal with tip came to $5.25 for both of us. My scanned copy is dim even enlarged, but a motel was $7.00, beer, pop and hot dogs for both of us came to 80 cents. Gasoline was 1.78 for a fillup--probably 15 or 20 cents a gallon.
Here we are - Ray and Carol at Niagra Falls in August of 1950. Long, long ago!!!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe

My husband was a railroader through and through. He worked for the Santa Fe RR for 41 years, starting in the summer he was 17 years old and, with time out for finishing high school and the service, retiring in 1984. We moved - a lot. The last time ATSF transferred him was to Argentine, Kansas, to the Kansas City Division. We started out in Chillicothe, Illinois, our home. Divisions were consolidated with Missouri and Illinois being headquartered in Ft. Madison, Iowa. Then he was transferred to the headquarters in Topeka, Kansas, next to Newton, Kansas, then to Argentine. I have found some nice memorabilia on the internet pertaining to the Santa Fe and I will post some once in a while along with other things I have. Above is the office building in Argentine where Ray was Division Engineer.
Here is a good picture of him at his desk. Above him on the wall is a needlepoint I did of the OS Railroad. Ray had a model railroad for many, many years, and I will also post some pictures of that at a later date, too. The reason I dubbed it the OS Railroad was for the expletive you could hear him utter when he would accidentally drive some rolling stock off the table to the floor.
(You probably notice the ashtray! Yes, he smoked - we both did. Not smart, but when we were young it was what it was. He quit first - then I did and it's been a long time for me now.)

Here is part of the hump yards at Argentine and the tower. His territory was only 7 miles long there so he was home much more than he had been in Newton where the territory was really big. Not many people anymore work for the same employer for so many years - times have changed so much. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, August 6, 2010

Happy PFF

Way back in Pieces of the Past, I have posted this postcard of my aunt and grandmother that was probably taken when they were on a trip to California to visit Aunt Nelle and her family sometime probably in the thirties judging from their cute hats. Thought this would be a good time to bring it forward to be viewed again on Postcard Friendship Friday - and a happy one to you! I will be out near the Pacific next week for the wedding of my middle granddaughter which I am looking forward to so very much. We are headed for beautiful Portland, Oregon, where the whole family will celebrate taking in a great new member and enjoy being together. See you again in mid-August. Thanks to Beth at for hosting PFF. (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

With Grandma Pearce

Here is Maggie, our grandmother, with my sister, brother and me. There are so few pictures of us together as we grew up, and this is one that means a lot to me. There are quite a few pictures of me when I was a baby and toddler and that was because, even though I was not the first grandchild, I was the first nearby. Pictures are practically non-existent of most of our years in grade school. Bud has practically no pictures of himself as a little one. And there are not that many more of Jo.
That's why this one of Grandma and Buddy is precious. He was named Charles after our dad, but Mom had heard that the movie star of the moment, Buddy Rogers, was named Charles so that's why he was called Buddy - later shortened to Bud. I still call him Bud, but everyone else calls him Chuck. This is also a good picture of our grandmother. I have so many sweet memories of her.
Don't know where these will enlarge or not, but they might. (Click to enlarge)

Monday, August 2, 2010

Page from an Old Modern Priscilla

As you may or may not know, I have loved working with fabric, thread and needle since I was a little girl, starting with cross stitch patterns from the "dime store". Usually, the thread would become so entangled I would give up on that. I have done lots of sewing, embroidery, crochet and my very favorite of all - quilting. I am also a big fan of anything vintage. Hence, I love posting to my Pieces of the Past.
Probably twenty or so years ago in Illinois, I loved going to auctions. This page from a December, 1922, Modern Priscilla magazine was in with the many old embroidery patterns and items that were in some boxes I brought home. Makes me smile to think of anyone today cross stitching on their undies - some of the undies would not have room for any stitching.

The other side of the page featured some pretty embroidery patterns that could be traced and
used in many different ways. A bit of nostalgia for the needleworkers out there. (Click to enlarge)