In Muscatine on Friday, November 30, 1951, Dale wrote, “Worked 8 to 4:30. Took Helen & Dalene to library before supper. Helen & I washed. Stan to show with Mickey. TV at night & to bed.” Mickey was my friend, Mike Collier. Above: Musser Library, the Muscatine public library in early years.
In Minneapolis on Thursday, November 29, 1956, Dale wrote, “Wrote a letter for Helen to answer an ad for Mt. Sinai Hospital PBX operator.” The following Monday, she had an opportunity to interview for the job, but turned it down, saying there was too much traffic to struggle through. The PBX (Private Branch eXchange) would have looked like the above telephone switchboard.
In Muscatine on Wednesday, November 28, 1951, Dale wrote, “Stanley went with singing group to Lutheran Homes to sing for supper. Dalene went to Ann Hocking’s for birthday party.” That singing group was the madrigal group, above, part of the high school chorus. A madrigal is a vocal music composition of the Renaissance and early Baroque eras. I’m third from the right in the back row.
In Muscatine on Saturday, November 25, 1950, Dale wrote, “Downtown in forenoon. Kids skating in afternoon. TV set delivered & installed from 2:45 P.M. to 4:45 P.M. Watched it until 12:15 A.M. Sunday.” I think we got three channels, which usually showed a ‘test pattern’ (above right) when not broadcasting any program.
In Minneapolis on Sunday, November 24, 1963, Dale wrote, “Lee Harvey Oswald killed in Dallas, we saw it ‘live’ on TV.” Watch the accused assassin of JFK above.
In Minneapolis on Sunday, November 19, 1961, Dale wrote, “Helen and I went to Atlantic Mills to Christmas shop for kids in California. Football on TV. Dalene went to St. Cloud with friends. Nice day, high about 32°.” The ‘kids in California’ were Judy, Jeff, and me. Above: a vintage Atlantic Mills ad.
In Minneapolis on Saturday, November 15, 1958, Dale wrote, “Marie called to tell us Mother and Clarence were in a car accident. Mother in the hospital but not serious. She called again at 7 p.m. to tell us severe mental shock. I weather-stripped the apartment storm door. Put a little black top on our drive. Men finished black-topping Reservoir Blvd today. Dalene went babysitting at night.” Marie was Dale’s sister in Osceola.
On Friday, November 14, 1958, in Minneapolis, Dale wrote, “Another nice day, in the 40s. Went to the bank after work. Took Helen to the library. Stan went to Northfield for the weekend. Helen and I watched the late shows.” I was 21 years old and a camp counselor for high school teens on a weekend retreat at Carleton College. Naturally, the boys staged a panty raid.
On Saturday, November 13, 1943, Dale wrote, “Worked at Omaha plant. Took the 8:30 train to Osceola at night to see Helen & Stanley & Dalene. Got home at 12 midnight. Walked from the train to Helen’s apartment.” During the war, Dale was stationed at the Omaha alcohol plant awhile. Above: the Osceola depot, built in 1907.
On Sunday in Minneapolis, November 11, 1956, Dale wrote, “Got a good night’s sleep last night. No cat noise. Dalene went to Taylor Falls with the Winchesters. Football on TV in the afternoon. Helen and I looked at house trailers. Real nice.” He got the trailer bug again; above is an ad for the 1956 Champion 8×40 1 bedroom, 1 bath model.