Wednesday, October 21, 2009

WWII on the Geneva Homefront: Part One—Working in the Fields, By Aunt CB

Those readers with long memories will remember our posting on the Home Front by Eveyn Taylor, back on September 2nd , 2008. Look on the right of the blog, find ‘2008’ and click through until it appears to re-read it.
Here is another look at America during World War Two:

After Pearl Harbor, my high school years were spent in a froth of patriotic fervor. My sophomore year, 1942, began with an earlier school start—8AM—and shortened periods so that by 1PM, we were through classes and available to work at harvesting food for farmers.

There were very few young men who were not in the service and crops were ready to be picked. Each farmer called in for whatever number he needed and supplied transportation to and from the high school as well as paying the students. I pulled carrots and topped beets—eight cents a bushel.

The farmers provided gloves and I was used to helping in Lloyd’s fields so it was old times for me. It was just a super way to earn money, so I grabbed my crate and flew down my row, pulling beets and wringing the tops off as I went. So concentrated was I on the job at hand, that I did not notice that I was way ahead of all the rest until I heard, “Hey, Sea Biscuit”. Looking up, I saw they were calling ME the name, that name of the fastest horse of a few years before, Sea Biscuit! Somehow, this entwined with the ‘C-C Balls’ my nickname in our family club, ‘Celia’ which Es always called me, and became ‘CB’. By my senior year, my mother was the only one who called me ‘Lucille’!

We Americans were incensed by the Japanese—they were sneaks! We saved the tinfoil that gum used to be wrapped in, we collected pots and pans for the aluminum, we saved toothpaste tubes, in fact you could not buy a new tube without turning in an old one.

We bought war stamps, pasted them in books, until we had spent $18.75. That would one day bring us $25. We walked everywhere—again,this did not faze me, we'd always walked—Daddy took good care of his car. Such good care that in 1944, when all of a sudden our rented house was sold, and we were forced to move, he could sell it for top dollar ( it was a 1941 Dodge, the last year they made them before the war stopped production and turned to airplanes) and use it as a down payment for 427 West Main, a brick house in Waterloo.

Picture One: Children in the Field
Picture Two: 1941 Dodge, like Grandpa Taylor’s, except theirs was a four door
Picture Three: The Farmer is a Soldier Advertisement in Sears Roebuck
Picture Four: WWII War Bond poster ----Late Information!! Wrong--WWI Poster--See Comments!!
Picture Five: Another WWII Buy Bonds Poster


Pat said...


Thank you!! Love to hear your stories. And, this is a classic, as everyone, sooner or later, wonders HOW you got that name!!

Love you,

CB said...

Pat, I don't think the poster using HUN in it is WW2, I think WW1. Antbody else agree? Mom

Pat said...

Mom, you are right!!

My bad, as the kids would say.

I did google on 'WWII + war bonds" and got this poster, but searching the websites more closely, yes, this particular one was a WWI poster.

Why the name 'hun' in the first war and not the second? I think by the time WWII came around, 'jerry' or 'kraut' was a more popular slang term for the dreaded enemy.

Thanks for the catch!!

Judy said...

A great story about your nickname,
something we were always curious
about!! Thanks for sharing.
Love you,
Judy & Jimmy