Rushville Republican

Columns

March 7, 2013

Ward: The year I was born

RUSHVILLE — I was given a booklet telling about the year I was born. First off, I was surprised to learn that Richard Petty, Warren Beatty, Jack Nicholson as well as Bill Cosby and Mary Taylor Moore were born in the same year. Dustin Hoffman was also born that year and I thought he was a tad younger than I am. The world war was yet to come, but the American ship “Panay” was sunk by the Japanese in China. And the Japanese bombed Shanghai. One thing that did occur that was a true disaster was the Hindenburg explosion in New Jersey. And a surprise to me above all else was this was the year the Golden Gate Bridge was opened to traffic.

DuPont came up with nylon and my mother was ecstatic as she used nylon stockings a lot in my later years. “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” opened at theaters all over the country. There was an ad for an airlines (United, to be exact) and the plane they were flying was a Douglas DC3 which in time became the work horse of the Air Corps during World War II in later years. RCA Victor had an ad about a phonograph-radio and how modern and nice it would be in your living room. I liked Philco because Dad sold them and so that was what we had, although RCA was a good radio company.

I am certain this isn’t all that earth-shattering, but Donkey Serenade and Muskrat Ramble were popular songs of the era. I remember Spike Jones and his band in later years and boy were they ever different. Fibber Magee and Molly and the infamous closet full of stuff that fell out when opened. The Great Gildersleeve and his problems being the water commissioner of his town were radio favorites. Lum and Abner were popular evening radio programs. I loved Lone Ranger, The Shadow, The FBI in Peace and War, Roy Rogers, Superman in the late afternoon after I got home from school. I also remember a daylight soap opera taking place in Rushville Center which grandma loved and I liked because of the area it took place in.

Philco and Zenith were also popular brands of radios and Philco was standard on Studebaker autos. There was a motorized reel lawn mower advertised for $76 and this is something way earlier than I had anticipated. I did not see such a thing until well after World War II in Rushville. There was an ad for Dexter twin tub washers. They were nothing more than two metal tubs with one having an agitator with a wringer in between the tubs. Gold was  $20.67 an ounce, average income was all of $1,788.00 a year. Gas was a dime a gallon and bread 9 cents with milk at 50 cents a gallon. The Dow Jones average was all of 166 and a new car cost an average of $760.

One thing I found rather interesting was that the Coleman Corporation, noted today for camping equipment, in my day also made and sold home gas kitchen stoves. In my youth, gas was prevalent in Rushville and most homes had it. Not all heated with it because it was expensive, but would use it to cook with or supplement the coal heat during the winter months. General Electric still made and sold small appliances as well as refrigerators and stoves. In fact, they had a full line of home appliances and they were considered top of the line.

I really felt that things had changed much more drastically than I really thought they had. And I remembered the days later on in my life when Ruth Lyons and her 50/50 club was the noontime radio show of the day. I liked WIBC’s Pick A Pocket program at noon. This program had a gentleman from the station in front of the Circle Movie with a vest with pockets all over it. Those pockets had questions, silly and easy questions, in them as well as small prizes. People loved it and went to the theater just to be on the program; all you had to do was answer the question and win the prize. The newly minted Shopping Centers boasted radio kiosks from the numerous radio stations in Indianapolis. They would originate programs for the teenagers from those kiosks and the teens would dance around them during the summer.

I really enjoyed the differences between then and now and possibly you would too. I found that some of the restaurants/shopping centers like Cracker Barrel carry these booklets for most years, way back to the ‘20s. So, if you’re interested as I was, go for it. You might well be surprised at how things were then. I sure was.

 

1
Text Only
Columns
  • This column will self-destruct in 5 seconds I've become completely infatuated over the past few weeks with a gift I received a few Christmases ago. It was a completely unexpected gift from one of my big brothers: a set of "Mission: Impossible" DVDs. No, not home videos of me begging my kids to

    April 15, 2014

  • Don't sweat the small things There are a few things in life that really get under my skin, one of which is complaining. Yes, I complain sometimes, but it doesn't last too long at all before I put myself in check. There was a story this week that really touched my heart and like

    April 15, 2014

  • The timeless beauty of wicker No matter what the day may bring, I can leave it all behind when I take my evening walk. Strolling through our historic neighborhood on Indy's south side is a multifaceted treat. It is good for my heart, it erases the cares of the day and it affords

    April 15, 2014

  • Self deposit box I love where I bank. It's a branch inside of a big supermarket. I can make a modest withdrawal and then go and blow every last penny in the cookie aisle. The tellers at the window appreciate me. They know about my obsession with round numbers and und

    April 15, 2014

  • Change can be done here In previous columns I've suggested that one of the factors holding this community back is the relatively poor image many of us have of our town. The point, as some may recall, was made by several people who live in other communities who said Rushvill

    April 15, 2014

  • Second hand rose...or fashionista? "Fashion is an expression of individualism mixed with charisma"....John Fairchild 1940's sensible shoes with a '70's midi-skirt. High waist skirts with over the knee boots. Polka dot shirts with bell-bottom pants. Retro fashion is here to stay, and w

    April 11, 2014

  • Mankind is not causing global warming Back on Feb. 26 of this year, an article appeared on FoxNews.com with the following headline, "Greenpeace co-founder: No scientific proof humans are dominant cause of warming climate." Here's what Patrick Moore, a Canadian ecologist and co-founder of

    April 8, 2014

  • One fine day True story here: a long time ago, a young woman from Cincinnati daydreams of growing up and meeting a nice man, getting married, learning to cook, having two children, etc. etc. Eventually, it all comes true for her. Except it all happens in a major

    April 8, 2014

  • It is time we take back our country What ever happened to the America of my youth? That great country that was indeed the jewel of the common person of the world. The country where one could actually, through hard work and industry, make a good living and actually have the OPPORTUNITY

    April 8, 2014

  • Net tricks My wife and I went on a binge last week. If you think I'm talking about an eating binge, you've never seen how thin we both are. If you think I mean a shopping binge, you don't know how cheap we are. And if you think it was cleaning binge, you've nev

    April 8, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest Police Arrest Suspect in Highway Shootings Drought Concerns May Hurt Lake Tourism Vermont Goat Meat Gives Refugees Taste of Home Calif. Investigators Re-construct Fatal Bus Cras Mayor Rob Ford Launches Re-election Campaign Appellate Court Hears Okla. Gay Marriage Case
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.