Jessie (age 57) is still recovering from a hospital stay for a sore back and has yet to return to her job at Kilpatrick’s Department store in Omaha. Her husband Harry (age 60, who she refers to as Daddy) was busy building an enclosed front porch for their home in Council Bluffs, Iowa.
Other people mentioned this week include Harry and Jessie’s daughter, Agnes Grosvenor (37), who lives across the street with her husband, Jack Grosvenor (40) and their three children – Judy (17), Linda (16) and Jackie (3). Also mentioned are Mr. Wolmer (a neighbor), Dr. Martini (one of Jessie’s doctors) and Boh Tomes, a co-worker of Jessie’s at Kilpatrick’s.
April 2, 1959 (Thursday)
“I was restless all nite, so jittery. I cut down on my medicine. So far can’t see where it has helped. My back hurts, must be from hanging up a few pieces of wash. Daddy said he slept pretty good. I was going to hang out my clothes. Mr. Wolmer has a fire going so am going to hang out over at Agnes’s.”
April 3, 1959 (Friday)
“Almost supper time. I cleaned the house and I am done for. Not so weak as just tired. I am feeling better or else I couldn’t do what I did. No mail from insurance companies yet. A long time it seems to pay a bill. Daddy got tax form from Texas – ‘school taxes’.” [Note: Harry and his brothers owned a small parcel of land in Texas that they inherited from their father. They leased it to an oil company for exploration for a while in the 1950s but no oil was found.]
April 4, 1959 (Saturday)
“It is 11 a.m. Daddy is going to work on porch. I was going to wash but don’t believe I will, too windy & dusty. I feel pretty good, Daddy seems to be more perk. 7:25 p.m. We walked up to Hinky Dinky for a few groceries. Daddy put down quite a bit of flooring. He was tired and ready to quit.”
April 5, 1959 (Sunday)
“Daddy put down some more flooring while I got dinner. Made a banana pie. When we finished eating, I was so tired & shaky I laid down, left my dishes. Daddy laid down later. … I talked to Boh. When vacation list came around, my name was not on it. Looks as if I am out. No September vacations anyway. So what? Will have to wait and see.”
April 7, 1959 (Tuesday)
“Have to go see Dr. Martini this p.m. Hope I don’t have to wait for hours. I had a headache all nite. A funny thing. When I quit these pills, got my headache back, also misery in back. I am so sore & stiff this a.m., from washing, I suppose. I took 2 Anacins last nite. They hurt my stomach. Never did before. … I got in to see the doctor on time. He gave me more pills, said to take 4 a day for 2 weeks and come back. Also said I can go to work Monday on trial, see how it goes. He said if I didn’t have to work, he would say quit because I am going to have to live with this arthritis, should take medicine & wear brace all the time. I told him I cannot afford that.”
Larry Lehmer is a professional personal historian and senior legacy planner at When Words matter where he connects generations through their stories. To learn more, visit his web site, send him an e-mail or follow him on Twitter.