Helen's Diary

This is a transcription of some diaries I bought at an antique store near Toledo, Ohio. When the diary starts in January 1937, Helen is a young wife and soon to become a new mother. If you wish to read it, it's best to start with the first post - January 1937 (my oldest post) - and then follow along with her everyday life.

August 13, 2008

April, 1939

Saturday, April 1, 1939 – Frank’s Birthday [He’s 31]

31 – Sent Billy to show – took Baby for ride bought her a rocking chair – gave Frank 2 shirts & ties – Show Paramount – Jane Withers & St. Louise Blues – coffee & Sandwiches at Michals

[The Jane Withers film was probably Arizona Wildcat, a comedy/western starring Jane Withers and Leo Carrillo. St. Louis Blues is a musical-comedy starring Dorothy Lamour and Lloyd Nolan]

Sunday, April 2, 1939

Took Billy home – Baby slept there then we rode around looking at new houses – Supper home – made some blocks

Monday, April 3, 1939

[shorthand] Betty came here early so I washed even curtains and hung them outside – Billy went to show – Frank gone til late so I made some blocks

Tuesday, April 4, 1939

While I ironed Billy washed all the windows inside and out I did some woodwork – visited dad in hospital – Show Granada – Taylor

Wednesday, April 5, 1939

Billy helped wax floors then left for home after lunch – lamb chops for supper – Jean stopped over for a minuet

Thursday, April 6, 1939

Sewed all day on blue suit – Walked down to point got some ivy plants – eggs for supper – Frank swell

Friday, April 7, 1939

Frank took his dad to hospital & made me go with him – left Baby with her grandmother – got a pretty Powder Blue hat – Brought Bill back

Saturday, April 8, 1939

Made a cake too Norma out to Mothers for night – Went to Detroit – Chinese food at Pergoda Inn – Show Michigan – Colbert & Amaci Midnight

[Midnight is a comedy starring Claudette Colbert and Don Ameche]

Sunday, April 9, 1939

Easter Sunday – Breakfast at Dobbs dinner – Went to Zoo to see Bunnyville – Dad sick Norma cross Frank gone even.

Monday, April 10, 1939

Too tired to wash or clean – Ripped Blue skirt apart & put together

Tuesday, April 11, 1939

Frank has cough & sore through so miserable & mean to me

Wednesday, April 12, 1939

Dad is really sick – Mother called Dr. & Dad on milk diet for a good while now.

Thursday, April 13, 1939

Washed clothes and hung them outside – Walked down to point & got Birthday present for Lennard – Dad still quite sick

Friday, April 14, 1939 – Mother’s Birthday [She’s 41]

Washed my hair & Norma’s – Supper out to Mothers – gave her an electric clock – Dad is sick in Bed – Stomick trouble – serious

Saturday, April 15, 1939

Rushed around to get ready for Lennard’s Birthday Party – he was 3 years old – Frank went to bed early - Billy and I went to show at Westwood

Sunday, April 16, 1939

Pretty nice day in places – delisous spring chicken for dinner – Frank very sick yet – made & took over cake to Shermans – Stopped at w’olks

Monday, April 17, 1939

Rained all day – sewed & cleaned out drawers – rest of chicken for supper – Frank had to get New glasses – Norma broke them

Tuesday, April 18, 1939

Washed Bathroom – Baby got into spry can & was she a mess – Had supper at Edison – Norma at Shermans for awhile – Bed 9 PM

Wednesday, April 19, 1939

Sewed all day mostly on pink slip at last I’m satisfied with it – Walked down to point with Mrs Brow – Still weigh 150 lbs

Thursday, April 20, 1939

Left Norma with Mother and went down town – got a robe and more dress material – Frank throat is still sore so hes so cross

Friday, April 21, 1939

Took Blue dress apart & put it together again pretty soo I can start on new dresses – Sewed 2 rows of blocks together Bed 9 o’clock

Saturday, April 22, 1939

Walked down to point & got groceries – afternoon with Frank am catching a cold – Many & Virg here all night – played cards – midnight bed

Sunday, April 23, 1939

Manny & Virginia here – ride after Breakfast and after chicken dinner – they stayed here while we went to the show – Paramount – Yes My darling daughter

[Yes, My Darling Daughter is a romantic comedy starring Priscilla Lane and Roland Young]

Monday, April 24, 1939

Wonderful day – Washed – cleaned up house & yard – Bath & went along with Frank to deliver hits – cold much better – Even got Sunburned

Tuesday, April 25, 1939

Did all of ironing and walked to point – Bacon & Tomatoe Sandwiches – Frank went down town for evening – made some blocks & went to bed early

Wednesday, April 26, 1939

Sewed all day – making over & mending – Went around run delivering hits – Stopped at Mothers for awhile – Frank so honary

Thursday, April 27, 1939

Worked out in yard til noon – afternoon Bath & cleaned up left Baby with Shermans & had supper out to Edison – Frank out all night

Friday, April 28, 1939 – Billy’s Birthday [Her brother Bill is 13 today]

Walked to point & got Bill some pajamas had hair set – lamb Chops for supper – terrible – Rode out there & got Bill – He went to Show

Saturday, April 29, 1939

Billy & Frank doge up garden planted seads – Evening went to show – Valentine Kid from Texas

Sunday, April 30, 1939

Bacon & eggs – Bill helping – Frank did garden – hurt F’s finger – Nice Sunday dinner – Billy went to Show – We went for ride – Frank took him


Norma has 10 teeth

just like pearls

[There’s a sketch of a dress, and next to it she wrote:] Navy blue cotton dress – made price .75

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