Previously in Dot's Diary: Dot celebrated her 17th birthday with her currrent boyfriend Jim Parks at her side... A sad nation mourned when President Roosevelt passed away... Lights-out at Hal's for Jim's birthday... Dot, Sis and Sunny went to see that “adorable man”, Woody Herman, in concert... Dot donned her Englewood High gym suit to do the Ox Dance, and she also went to the circus with a guy she doesn't much care for.
Tuesday May 1 1945
“Didn't do much in school today. Pretty dull day.
Bob Dusold called; wants me to go out Saturday. Jim also called; wants me to go to the Canteen with him Friday.
Later on we went to Parnell. Bill Swims came to our booth & was talking to me & kidding me about Stan; told me a little more about the old boy.
Hal came over around 9:30 and we talked about this and that. He called up Jim from my house. Went to bed at 1:30.”
Dachau: Germany's most dreaded extermination camp, has been captured and its surviving 32,000 tortured inmates freed by outraged Amercian doughboys who killed or captured its garrison in battle. Correspondents and infantry men found 39 open type railroad cars on a siding. At first glance the cars seemed loaded with dirty clothing. Then one saw feet, heads, and bony fingers. More than half the cars were full of bodies, hundreds of bodies.
Red Flag Over Reichstag
Final Berlin Assualt On, Stalin Says
Russia Lines Up More Votes for Global Control
Bombings Ended, London Dismantles Its Shelters
Sports: White Sox 5, Tigers, 0, in Detroit.
Birthdays: singer/songwriter Judy Collins (6), Tonight Show host Jack Paar (27), Anna Jarvis, the founder of Mothers Day (81).
Came home, and who should be over but Johnny (sailor) and his younger brother Bob (17) from Gary, Ind. (a senior in High School), and he is so keen. 6'2 with a gorgeous physique, although he was quite bashful.
We went for a ride, had some beer and went back to our house and talked til 3:30. He's so nice. Gave me a wonderful good nite kiss.”
James Brown is 12 years old today. The future “Godfather of Soul” was inspired after watching Louis Jordan and His Tympany Fiveperform “Caldonia”, a hit tune during 1945. [More on James Brown here]
Thursday May 3 1945
“Jim called me up after school, wanted to know about Friday night and if I could come over his house Saturday night. I said reet.
Went by Sunny's house, fooled around. She treated us to supper.
Went home and met Totten, so he and I went back to Parnell and called up Viola and Ginny. Pete's going to pick us up tomorrow. Hal and I had a Cherry Coke and talked about marriage. He kept teasing me about Jim.”
“'Well, all reet!' Haven't heard that expression in a long time.
We referred to Hal as 'Totten' more than by 'Hal'.”
Hitler Suicide—Reds; Goebbels Also Dies; Nazi Capital Won in 12 Day Battle
Dresden Raid Killed 300,000, Say Ex-Captives
Odor of Death Still Pervades Dachau Camp
Birthdays: Singers Frankie Valli (11) and James Brown (12), film historian and TCM host Robert Osborne (13).
Top: Hal Totten
Above: May 4, 1945: The Stan Kenton Orchestra records the song Tampico for Capitol Records. With vocalist June Christy, the song will become a major hit and a signature tune for Kenton's progressive jazz band.
Later in the eve., Jim and Hal came, then Pete picked us up with Ginny and Lill. We really had a wonderful time dancing and drinking Cokes. The orchestra was tops.
Left the dance at 11:00. Sat on Jim's lap coming home. Then Pete left us off by Ginny's house. So Hal, Ginny, Jim and I went to see if we could bowl. It was closed, so went to Karson's and had pie and coffee. Goofed around till 1:00 and then walked home.”
“I told you Pete was a popular guy with that car. Not too many guys had cars because, besides gas rationing, tires were hard to come by unless you had a priority (a war-related job).
Pete drops everyone off at Ginny's... and then they all go out for fun and games!”
Dot's dance might have been at Kelly High; she and Sis had gone to Friday night dances there back in February.
Nazis Collapse in North; Reds and British Join; British Planes Attack Fleeing Nazi Vehicles
U.S. Casualties on Okinawa Rise to 16,694 Total
Germans Quit in North and South: Under control of the U.S. Army, more than 160,000 German prisoners are concentrated somewhere in Germany.
Trend Toward Pre-Packaged Foods Grows: Housewives after the war will be finding more and more foods already wrapped and waiting for them in the grocery as the the trend toward pre-packagin reaches further into fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats.
Stock Market Higher on Fall of Nazi Cities; Peace Rated Issues Lead Advance
Birthdays: Katherine Jackson, mother of the Jackson musical family (15), Audrey Hepburn (16).
Hal and Jim
Saturday May 5 1945
“Well, another swell day.
About 7:30, Jim came for me and we went to his house. Jane was home, and Pat. We danced, ate and Hal put out the lights.
Jim and I had a little argument, but he finally came up to me and said, ‘Aw, let's be friendsgood friends.’ So naturally I said yes.
Left Jim's house at 1:30, then went to Karson's again.
Oh, what a life.
Got home at 2:40 a.m. Had a hard time getting in.”
“Dot had a hard time getting in!? Gee, it was only 2:40 a.m.! Boy, I never realized how liberal Mom and Dad were. Didn't appreciate it then.”
I don't know if Jane and Pat were siblings, parents or some other relatives of Jim's.
Million Nazis Surrender; War Races Toward an End
Enemy Whipped, Says Eisenhower
Plan Discharge for 2 Millions After V-E Day
Propose Easing Cripples' Way Into Buildings: The use of ground level entrances or specially constructed ramps in public and private buildings was advocated yesterday. Long flights of steps, high curbings, revolving doors and lack of hand rails constitute an almost insurmountable barrier to the average cripple.
Given that she and Sis went out to eat at 10:30 p.m., I guess “quite early” was around midnight.
400,000 More Nazis Quit; Army to Discharge 100,000 a Month After V-E Day
U.S. Flag Waves Over Ruins of Hitler's Chalet
Senators Firm in Demand for U.S. to Keep War Bases
Reds Discover Underground City in Berlin; Adolf Hitler Street Now Called ‘Kaput Strasse’
FISH FURNITURE TO ENLARGE ITS 63RD STREET STORE: In addition to the four-story and basement building which [Fish Furniture] will build for Lytton & Co. at 818 W. 63rd St., the Fish building adjoining at 822 W. 63rd St. is to be enlarged and modernized [...] The Lytton's [...] has been leased for 20 years at a guaranteed rental of $50,000. [It] will be completely air conditioned and will have an acoustically treated ceiling first floor. The Chicago Tribune, May 6, 1945.
Cubs Triumph, 5-1; Sox Whip Indians, 3-2
Weather: Fair and warmer (yesterday was cloudy with a high of 64).
Birthdays: Orson Welles (30), Willie Mays (14).
Monday May 7 1945
“V-E day and what a day, altho it hasn't been confirmed.
Boy, it rained all day today. Let up about 6:30.
Went to the library and came home and fooled around.
Later, Helen, Sis and I went to Parnell. Had a Cherry Coke. Pat Flodin and 3 other guys were in there.
Came home and Hal dropped in. So we talked about having a hayride and about Jim and stuff like that. Went to bed at 12:30.”
The official, confirmed Victory over Europe is on Monday, May 8.
Expect War's End Hourly!
British Think Germans Will Give Up Today
Move on Last Nazis Fighting Allies in West
Montreal Mayor Sees War Against Russia ‘Tomorrow’
Reds' Attitude on Berlin Irks U.S. and British; Fear Communist Regime Will Be Set Up
Public School Centennial to Be Aired Today; WIND, WBEZ Help Open Observance
Cubs Lose Two; Sox Beat Indians, 3-2, 6-4
Birthday: Actor Darren McGain (23)
Author John Hersey is awarded the Pulitzer prize for his book, A Bell for Adano.
Tuesday May 8 1945
“OFFICIAL V-E day. Got up at 8:00. No schoolwent to bed.
At 11:00, Jim and Hal came over. They wanted me to play baseball, but I didn't want to.
Sunny came over. We had a little snack of fudge cake and root beer.
“V-E day was really special as we knew the War was winding down and all the servicemen stationed in Europe would be coming home and that they were safer, too. Dot and I didn't have any friends over there, but a lot of our relatives did.
The Three Caballeros was a special movie and one of my favorite Disney films to this day. I have had the video for some time, and love all the color and the songs. It started me sketching characters and scenes from it, and it didn't hurt that I was taking Spanish, too. I believe this movie was one of the first to include [live] actors and cartoon characters.
Where did this sailor come from? I guess Mom or Marge called the USO to have him over in honor of VE day. I wonder why Dot and I didn't stay home to meet him?”
A scene from Disney's Three Caballeros
Today's Chicago Tribune, page 1:
BIG 3 PROCLAIM VICTORY AT 8 A.M.; Truman to Address Nation by Radio This Morning [transcript] [audio]
Chicago Turns to Next Step: Lick the Japs
With emotions wrung dry by a series of war climaxes, Chicagoans will receive the official announcement today that victory has ben achieved in the war in Europe.
It will be a sober dayalmost a sorrowful daybecause of the realization that another war needs to be fought in Asia and because of the memory that the price of V-E day was paid with the lives and blood of many Chicago sons.
Churches will be open. The call to prayer will be sounded by the great bells of Holy Name cathedral [...] War plants will operatefull speed aheadturning out weapons for V-J (Victory over Japan) day. [...] Taverns and liquor stores [and] downtown retail stores will be closed.
Elaborate precautions have been taken to prevent a repetition of the riotous Armistice day celebration of 1918...
Police Commissioner Allman expressed regret that the formal announcement of victory was delayed until today. Yesterday's rain would have helped curb unruly celebrants, the commissioner said.
Judging from the solemn mood after yesterday's announcement of Germany's surrender, there is little likelihood that today's celebration will get out of hand [...] Bars reported little extra carousing before last night's curfew.
One thousand or more Algerians are killed by the French Army in the Sétif massacre.
President Truman's 61st birthday.
President Truman: "I only wished President Roosevelt could have lived to witness this day". [audio]
Listen to the V-E episode of the Fibber McGee & Molly radio programs here.
Aunt Lill; Kelly Library; Dot (left) and Sis having tea in their dining room
Wednesday May 9 1945
“Today we really worked hard in school. Went to the library, stayed in there for 2 hrs. Came home and worked like a horse on my history. Aunt Lill came over later on and we talked and had some tea. I finished my work at about 1:30 and went to bed.”
Nazis Sign New Surrender
Peace Ratified in Berlin
‘Festival of Victory’ Declared Today in Moscow
Rush to Grab German Lands Is On At San Francisco: Germany's unconditional surrencer opened the floodgates tonight for territorial claims against the third reich which eventually may divide ore than one-third of her pre-war land holdings among the allies.
2 Hour Flights, N.Y. to Chicago, Are Predicted: “It will be possible to leave New York at 8 a.m. and start the business day in Chicago at 9 a.m.”
War's Cost to U.S.: 950,000 Casualties and 275 Billions
Birthdays: Actor Albert Finney (9), author Richard Adams (25)
Thursday May 10 1945
“Today, Sis and I went by Sunny's house. Had a swell supper. Then we fooled around trying on hats and wishing we were going to a Prom this June.
Later on we went to the Greeks on 47th & Western and had a Coke. Came home about 10:30. Got a letter from Bud today. He's overseas.”
“You would have loved the ice cream parlor on 47th. Marble tops, booths with mirrors, dark panelingand what a soda fountain! Even in '45, it was what you thought a typical soda fountain should be. And oh, what great home-made ice cream! I wonder why all we had was a Coke??”
No further information on the “Greeks“ ice cream parlor, or on Bud's relation to Dot.
3,100,000 Yanks Back in '45: It will take about a year to reduce our forces there from the present 3,500,000 to the 400,000 that will remain as a garrison force.
Plan to Cut Up Reich; Zones Assigned to 4 Nations in Occupation
Victory Days Mean Kisses for Chicago Soldiers in Paris
Berlin a Dead City and Weird Desert of Ruins; Center of Fallen Capital Nothing but Rubble
400 Super Fortresses Begin ‘Bigger Raids on Japan’
Birthdays: Actress Nancy Walker (24), movie producer David O. Selznick (43), Fred Astaire (46)
ALLIED AIR POWER ELOQUENT IN BERLIN; Capital Four-Fifths Destroyed by U.S. and British Bombs, American Writer Says
Berlin is dead. As a city, it no longer exists.
The proud capital of Germany ... has been wiped from the map of Europewholly and irrevocably. [...] a hideous, nightmarish labrynth of ruins beyond all hope of repair or rebuilding.
The Russians are everywhere. The only transport is Russian. ... At every main intersection there is a smart Russian WAC in khaki uniform and beret flagging the traffic along with a red and yellow flag and giving a snappy parade-ground salute to each vehicle as it passes.
There is no running water in the city and the electricity supply has not yet been restored. Along the main streets in the less-blitzed areas you see men and women trudging along, pushing hand-carts, baby carriagesanything on wheels, in factloaded down with dining-room tables, wardrobes, chairs, beds and other pieces of furniture.”
Except for an occasional Russian Army car or the gentle trot of the small, steppe horses drawing Russian Army carts, there is a complete silence over the city, and the air is filled with rubble dust.” —NY Times
Larraine and Lillie; Dot and Ginny.
Friday May 11 1945
“After school today I met Jim in the library, so he walked me home. Later on Hal called and asked me to meet him at 11:00.
Pete came about 8:00 with Ginny, Larraine and Lillie and her brother Wilbur. He's ok, but that's all. The Canteen was pret-ty lousy tonight. Must have been the orchestra.
Got home at 11:00 and then Hal came over and we talked again and then had coffee at 2:30. He went home at 3:00.”
Frost Forecast for Today; City Has a May Snow: Early yesterday mixed rain and snow fell in Chicago, with snow in perponderance in western suburbs.
FM Radio Music Just What the Doctor Ordered: Frequency modulated (FM) radio music is proving useful in relaxing and soothing patients in physicians' and dentists' offices.
Plan to Build Super-Road on Canal Pushed [This would eventually become the Stevenson Expressway in 1967.]
Birthdays: Louis Farrakhan (12), designer Valentino (13), composer Irving Berlin (57)
Top: the McVickers Theatre in the late 1920s, with the Marshall Field's clock at the corner of State & Madison; Above and below, To Have and Have Not was in its first Chicago theatrical run at the McVickers Theater. The second feature was House of Fear.
“I can't place all these eating spotsSouthtown, Myrt & Henry's, etc.but the names are familiar. So many restaurants, so little time! We made them all, I bet. No wonder I couldn't lose weight, although Dot didn't have that problemlucky her!”
The first two McVickers buildings were destroyed in fires, in 1871 and 1890. The theatre Dot and Sunny visited in'45, at State and Madison, was built in 1922 and demolished in 1985. It sat over 2,200. From cinematreasures.org:
The theatre’s facade, resembling an ancient Athenian temple, with its chunky Ionic columns, pediment and freizes depicting mythological creatures and heroes, also had a marquee stretching the full length of the building along Madison Street, as well as an enormous vertical sign, rising above the building’s cornice.
No information about the Southtown Restaurant.
Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall in To Have and Have Not
The trailer for House of Fear
Washington: Dictator Stalin startled his western allies today… frankly declaring there is no possibility of co-operation between Russia and Britain.
May Try Millions for Germany's War Atrocities: The setting up of a tribunal for the actual trial of war criminals awaited the attention of foreign ministers… Strong sentiment also exists for the trial of industrialists who used slave labor as well as those who formulated the policies which made it possible.
Charges Russia Seeks Death of Poles as Nation
Russia Starts Conversion of Vast Industry
Chicago Tops Tokyo, Berlin; Now 4th City: Chicago now stands fourth in the ranking of the world's largest cities. Chicago now has an estimated population of 4,574,692.
Detroit: When new automobiles start coming off the assembly lines they will be much improved over the 1942 models… War developed synthetic rubbers will be used because they do the job better than natural rubber.
Birthdays: George Carlin (8), Burt Bacharach (17).
Dot; Bob Dusold
Sunday May 13 1945
“56 degrees. It was beautiful outside today.
About 1:45, Bob Dusold called up and asked me to go for a ride and I said sure.
He came for me at 4:15 and we went to pick Alice and Carl up. Then went all the way out to Maple Lake and Pulaski Woods. I told them I had to be home by 6.
Got home and Sunny was over, so we took our pictures and then went to Parnell. Jim, Hal and Bob were in there.
Later on I saw Hal and he said he and Jim want to take Viola and me to the Prom.”
“Dot sure was happy about going to the Prom. I can't remember Viola and Hal as a couple (but what do I remember all that well?!) I always thought it was Hal's girlfriend, Janice, I believe, who he invited. I knew they took a Prom picture, but I never had it.”
Pulaski Woods and Maple Lake
Maple Lake and the adjacent Pulaski Woods are part of the Forest Preserves, and are located in the southwest suburbs, not too far from the location of the March 31st hayride. During the 1960s, when I was a high school student, Maple Lake had a reputation among the students as a popular “make-out” spot.
Alice and Carl are friends.
This is Mothers Day.
39 Yanks Left Behind by Japs Freed in Burma
Globe Trotting Becomes a Fad With Senators; Few Averse to Seeing Far Corners of Earth
First Fighting Yanks Return to Homes Under New Army Discharge System
200 Fighters Discharged at Fort Sheridan
Washington: President Truman “opened the door to a Japanese request for peace” by giving assurances that the people are not to be destroyed.
CAMP FIRE GIRLS TO PAY TRIBUTE ON MOTHER'S DAY
Chicago's Cafes Are Back on Pre-Curfew Schedules
HONOR MOTHERS AS NATION BOWS IN PRAYER TODAY
General Dwight D. Eisenhower, Omar Bradley and George Patton inspect stolen art treasures.
“Today was cold and rainy, so Sis and I went to the library after school, and later on went to Parnell. Met Hal in there, so he sat with us.
The only catch in the Prom deal is getting a car. We kept fooling around about how we're going to act and dress. Jim called later on and wanted to meet me in Parnell, but I couldn't. Aunt Lill came over later on, so we stayed up till 1:00.”
500 B-29s Bomb Ngoya: A spokesman for the command expressed the hope that today's attack will prove a devastating blow to war industry there.
CAA HEAD BACKS CHICAGO ISLAND AIR PARK PLANS;Proximity to Heart of City Cited: T.P. Wright, civil aeronautics administration head [said] a landing place near the “business-industrial, banking-hotel center of a city attacks the air transport problem... affected all these years by the necessity of locating airports far away from business centers.
“Unless the airplane can pick up its passengers and cargo from points close to their origin, and deliver them close to the final destination, air transport cannot perform its greatest service to the public”
Wright said he believed the lake front area of Chicago presents a promising location [...] He mentioned in particular a proposed sight on Northerly Island.
“It is our recommendation that the site be selected and landing strips laid out to permit take-offs over clear areas such as rivers, parks, golf courses, and fields.”
[This would eventually become Chicago's Meigs Field]
“Helen was funny. She wouldn't go out with Italian guys (like Larry), claiming they weren't as nice to heran Italianas they were to non-Italian girls.”
Colleen is in Dot's gym class. She is the sister of Irene DavisStan's girlfriend. (Stan and Dot had broken-up sometime during 1944.)
I can find no information about the White Mill restaurant. Dot may have gotten the name wrong.
By this time, Ralph seems to have all but dropped completely out of my mother's life.
Crisis Feared Over Aims of Reds, Puppets
Raids on Japan by 800 B-29s Are Now Possible
Navy Planning 30% Reduction, Senators Told; Size to Depend in Part on World Peace Plans
Lull in Rain Due Today, But May Not Last; 11 Rainy Days This Month
Birthdays: artist Jasper Johns (15), future Chicago mayor Richard J. Daley (43).
“Ration Roundup Peanut Butter Is a Versatile Bread Spread: There's no shortage of peanut butter, an excellent meat and butter replacer, and one of the best sandwich spreads ever invented. Homemakers who have lunches to pack are discovering the dozens of peanut butter combinations which please their lunch carrying husbands.”
Dell (right) with her sister Pauline (Dot and Sis' mother), at Jackson Park beach in 1949.
Wednesday May 16 1945
“Today was rainy as usual. Sis and I walked down 63rd intending to go to the show, but found out we didn't have enough money*.
Went home. Johnny and Dell were over. Johnny really looks swell. He bought Sis and I a necklace and bracelet from Italy. We promised to watch their kids Saturday night. They went home about 12:30.”
“We always had fun talking to both [uncle] Johnny and [aunt] Dell. We wrote V-E letters to Johnny when he was overseas.
Uncle Johnny was in the infantry and had seen some rough times. He'd gotten frostbite when there and almost lost a few toes. He used to write to Dot and me, warning us about boys and dating.”
*Average movie ticket price in 1945 = 35 cents.
U.S. Carrier Flyers Bag 357 More Japanese Planes; Destroy 83 in Sky Battles; Blast 19 Air Fields in Home Islands
Truman Calls for Free Press in Germany
Ike the Hero in London on 1st Night Out
Goering High on Primary List of War Criminals; German Border Closed to Bar Nazi Escape
General Motors to Build Light Economy Car
FORESEES ATOM SHIPS, TRAINS IN THIS GENERATION: Dr. Lee De Forest, inventor of the audion tube which makes modern radio broadcasting possible, declared that this generation will see atomic power so developed that it will propel ships and trains, and possibly even automobiles. [This power] “will provide the keys for more leisure, education, and for better living, with the era of ‘slave labor’ left behind.” Chicago Tribune, May 16, 1945
Giants Whip Cubs, 5 to 4; It's 8th Defeat in 11 Games for Grimm's Club
Birthdays: Liberace (26), Woody Herman (32), Studs Terkel (33).
“Don't you love the way Dot casually says ‘two soldiers walked home with us’?! Good thing uncle Johnny didn't get wind of this!”
1945 Goal: 200,000 Autos! 400,000 More New Cars by April of 1946
U.S. Retention of Pacific Isles Gets Support
2,771 Soldiers, 1,010 Marines Killed on Okinawa; Japanese Losses Total 47,543
Eating Places Due to Close in N.Y. Food Crisis; More Than Half of City's Butcher Shops Shut
Swim Suits Are Brief as Ever, and Eye Filling: Brand new fashion colors are the trio of white, black, and steel gray.
Marx Brothers Back, Zany and Funny as Ever in “A NIGHT IN CASABLANCA”: Been a long time since we've seen the Marx brothers, hasn't it? I'm happy to tell you they haven't changed much; they're just as insanely entertaining as ever. Harpo looks older and thinner, but he works with the same happily frenzied madness. Mae Tinee, the Chicago Tribune
Downtown-State and Madison (about 1950). Marshall Field's is on the left; Sis, Dot and Merle Lodding (wearing hat.)
The Southtown movie listing for this day
Friday May 18 1945
“Didn't go to school again. Sis and I went downtown to look for a formal, but couldn't find a darn thing.
Got home and at 7:30, Merle came over. We danced and went to Parnell. Saw Hal too. Merle went home about 10:30.
Jim called up at 7:00 today and wanted me to go to the Southtown with him, but I told him I couldn't. Larry also called; wanted Helen and I to go out with him and Bob on Sat.
My mom declined Jim's invitation to see a double feature at the Southtown (see ad at left.) The movies would've been Circumstantial Evidence, and what would later turn out to be one of my mother's all-time favorite films, A Tree Grows In Brooklyn.
Dot and Helen met Larry and Bob (not Bob D.) this past Tuesday, on a blind date.
Inferno Inside U.S. Carrier; U.S.S. Franklin Survives Bombing Near Japan; 832 Lost; Burned Franklin Sails 13,400 Miles to Reach New York [see video, below.]
Washington: A group of members of congress became interested in Office of Strategic Services [OSS] activities.
No Freedom for Burma Before 1948, British Rule
Future Airport to Be Parklike, Planners Told: As soon as methods of reducing the noise of aircraft are perfected, airports can be constructed as parkike beauty spots instead of purely utilitarian public works.
Sugar Scarcity Will Hit Drinks and Ice Cream
Giants Whip Cubs, 8-5; 5th Straight Loss
The Saga of the USS Franklin: a 24 min., US Navy Dept. film
Johnny and Bobby
Saturday May 19 1945
Sis and I went down Ashland, but still couldn't find any formals.
Later, Dell came with the two kids and the folks left. Viola, Hal and Jim came to help me watch the 4 of them (kids). Gosh, we had more fun dancing and tangling with the kids, and godwere they bratty.
About 2:00, Sis and Sunny came home, so Jim, Hal and I took Viola home. Then the 3 of us went to Tasty's and ate. Hal and I got a big kick out of Jim's bashfulness.”
“Yeah, Dell's kidsJohnny & Bobbywere good kids but a little wild. Guess Dell never was too strict with them, and even let them eat messy foods all over the housesomething Dot and I couldn't do.
Aunt Dell was a war bride, and with these children had no help. So I guess it was easier on her to give them a little slack.
But Son dreaded when they or any of our other younger cousins came over. Son took good care of his toys and his room was sort of ‘off-limits’ to them. Once in awhile they'd sneak in and you can imagine what all ‘broke loose’!”
The ‘kids’ were four boys. Two belonged to aunt Dell. One of the others was Son (Lou). The fourth kid might have been Junior.
Dot and Sis most likely went shopping around 63rd St. & Ashland. Ashland is 8 blocks west of Halsted Street, or about 12 blocks from Dot's house.
Inch On in Bloody Okinawa; Marines Fight 7 Days to Take 150 Foot Hill; Charge Nine Times Before Winning
Stalin Insists His Poles Must Control Poland
Japs in Burma Falling Back on Moulmein: It was estimated that 44,000 were involved in the general withdrawal.
Coast to Coast Television Seen Within 5 Years: Hollywood will have to produce more A pictures… if they want to lure people away from the good television fare they will be getting at their firesides.”
Prom Girls Get Their Men Now as Mounties Do: “Dates still grow on trees but only in the tropic climates, I guess,” declared one pert little miss who wasn't sure whether she was going to have an escort…
Dodgers Whip Cubs, 15-12; Sox Beaten, 2-0.
LONDON'S SHOPS NOW BULGE WITH PLENTY TO EAT
Birthday: Pete Townshend (The Who), born today.
Englewood High School
Sunday May 20 1945
“Aujord hui, Dell and Johnny came for their children at 2:30 and stayed for dinner. Larry called twice. Once I wasn't home. Asked me to go out. (Bob D., too, calledugh.)
Larry came at 7:30 and we went to see Winged Victory, then walked all around the neighborhood. It was beautiful outside.
Stopped by Englewood and sat on a window ledge by the railroad tracks and talked, etc.
He can never be beat in technique, if I live to be 200. He's the only fellow that thrilled me when he kissed me. Just can't be compared.”
“Let me know if you can figure out what aujord hui means. Dot took French so that's maybe where it came from. [It translates to ‘today’D.]
Oh yes, the window ledge by the railroad tracks at Englewood Highthe city's Lovers Lane! No cars, no lake, no open fields, so I guess the ledge had to do!
And ohas I was saying... about those Italians?? I rest my case!”
U.S. Casualties in Two Months Rise to 30,526
530,000 New Refrigerators Quota for 1945
Twin B-29 Raids Bomb Tokyo and Industrial City
100,000 Crowd Loop Center in Bond Rally
Bob [Hope], Bing [Crosby] and Big 10 Golfers Swing Saturday at Tam o' Shanter
Weather forecast: Partly cloudy and warmer; high today 76
On this evening, Dot went with Larry to see Winged Victory, a 1944 film with Judy Holliday, Lee J. Cobb, Red Buttons, Edmond O'Brien, Jeanne Crain, and others. “WW2 saga less stirring today than in 1944, but graphic depiction of young men's training for pilot duty is still interesting. So is opportunity of seeing future stars early in their careers. Script by Moss Hart, from his play.” [tcm.com]
After school today, Dot and her sister saw A Tree Grows in Brooklyn at the Southtown theater.
Monday May 21 1945
“Well, continuing from last night (which was his last night)... He knows my name and address by heart and asked me if I went steady or anything. Today he was still on my mind, and Helen kidded me quite a bit.
“That was a great movie. We both cried like babies.”
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn was one of a handful of movies my mother made sure I saw when I was young. I've watched it many times since then. She related to the story, I'm sure, being (like Peggy Ann Garner's character) an older sister to a young brother, living a similar, big city neighborhood, having a piano, and having a dad who had rough edges but who had a generous heart, and who loved his family very much.
A scene from A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
New York: The gigantic Idlewild airport in Queens will be ready for operations in ‘early fall,’ Mayor La Guardia announced today.
Marlene Dietrich Seeks to Learn Fate of Mother in Berlin
Cubs Win Pair; North siders Whip Dodgers, 4-2 and 4-1; Six Game Losing Streak Ends
White Sox Triumph, 4-2, 8-2
Married today: Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall.
Aunt Aggie (left), with Dot's mom Pauline
Dot's friend Sunny
Tuesday May 22 1945
“Today, Sis and I went to [aunt] Aggie's and [uncle] Joe's to get our pictures, then sat and talked to Lill.
Walked to the Olympia and met Sunny. We all had a sundae and walked her home up to Western, then took our car. Got home at 12:00.”
“I stand corrected. The show Sunny worked at was not the Ashland or whatever I said it was, but the Olympia. I never would have remembered that name if I didn't see it in this diary.”
The Olympia is a 500-seat theatre that was built in 1917. The building, at 4619 South Ashland Ave., was gutted in 1950, but still stands, currently, in 2018, as an appliance store.
Dot does not say what they saw at the Olympia, and there is no newspaper listing for the theater.
The Olympia theater
First British Election in Ten Years Looms
Japanese Mobilize 20,000,000 Students for War, Says Radio
House Approves Special Honor Medal for FDR
Latest Rumor on Jap Peace: Within 10 Days
Above: “Military police unit erects tents on Northerly Island [a man-made island off Chicago's Loop.] The troops moved into the city as reports were heard that the government might seize Chicago truck lines, which are tied up by a strike of teamsters.” –Chicago Tribune
Wednesday May 23 1945
“Didn't do much all day, just sat around, did some of my homework. Even Parnell was closed. Washed my hair and put it up. Didn't stay up very late.”
Capture Key Okinawa City
Eisenhower Promises He Will Send Freed Yanks Home Fast
Backless Dress Becomes Even More Popular: One of Chicago's smartest dress designers not only enthusiastically approves the cool summer backless dresses but predicts record breaking sales of these "presentably naked" teams of dress and brief bolero jacket. They went over with a bang last summer.
Cubs and Sox Hope Baseball Is Useful Work: The [teams] hope to benefit handsomely from yesterday's decision to grant deferments to men over 30. Chief beneficiaries among the Cubs would be Bill Nicholson, the National league's home run and runs batted in champion for two consecutive years.
From a Morris B. Sachs Amateur Hour souvenir program: “At the Morris B. Sachs stores you will see more famous name labels than at any other store in America.”
Cesar Romero stars as the Cisco Kid
Sign of the Cross
Thursday May 24 1945
“Today after school, Mom and I went down 63rd looking for my formal. Finally got a pretty pink one at Morris B. Sachs.
“Dot's formal was a very pretty pink, which was her favorite color, I believe. She also looked good in pink.
I don't know how she put up with Hal and his pesty ways!”
A scene from Romance on the Rio Grande
1932's Sign of the Cross stars Fredric March and Claudette Colbert
The Morris B. Sachs store was at 6638 South Halsted Street, now the site of a White Castle's. In 1934, Sachs began broadcasting the Morris B. Sachs Amateur Hour, first from an auditorium near the store and, later, from the downtown radio and tv studios of WGN, WENR and WBKB. The popular show, which continued until the 1950s, helped launch the careers of Mel Torme, Bob Fosse, Frankie Laine, the Harmonicats and many other artists. Listeners and viewers were able to call and vote for their favorite contestants.
Truman Shakes Up Cabinet
550 B-29s Set Tokyo Afire in Biggest Attack: Striking before dawn, more than 550 Super Fortresses today dropped 4,500 tons of bombs on important Tokyo industrial targets, the greatest load of destruction hurled on the Japanese capital to date.
Suicide Planes Called Japan's Victory Weapon
Springfield, Ill.: Bill Makes Cats Lead Dog's Life; Would Be Unlawful for Them to Prowl
Vegetable Diet Indicated for U.S. by August; Eggs, Milk Due to Go On Shortage List
Advise Adding 6,000 Acrest to Forest Preserve
Birthdays: Priscilla Ann Wagner (Priscilla Presley), born today; Bob Dylan (4).
Jesse Spalding Public School for “Crippled Children.”
Friday May 25 1945
“Today after school, Larry called. He said that he had a weekend pass and asked me if he could see me tonite. I said no, cause I was going to the music festival at Spalding High School.
The festival was keen, and then we went down 63rd to eat and stopped in Parnell. Came home about 11:30 and stayed up till 3:00.”
“I believe I saved the program from this festival. Sunny played the violin, but I can't remember if that she played it during this evening.”
Dot's good friend Sunny was afflicted with a disability as a result of the polio virus.
I regret that I never asked my aunt if she did, in fact, have that festival program.
Spalding High School, 1628 West Washington Blvd., was founded in 1908. It was the first school in Chicago created specifically for children with disabilities. More information about the school's history is here, and here.
A Chicago Public School silent film from 1933, featuring Spalding School for children with disabilities
Himmler, Captured by British, Ends Life with Poison; Conceals Vial of Cyanide in Mouth 3 Days
American Casualties Since War Began Near a Million
Crosby, Hope Ticket Sale Passes 17,000: Tam o' Shanter Country club, accustomed thru the annual All-American tournaments to entertaining sizeable fairway audiences, will set an American record for a single day's attendance at a golf match tomorow, when Bing Crosby and Chick Evans tee off at 2 p. m.
The Oriental Theatre. At center is a view looking west on Randolph, with the Oriental and its large marquee just past the Old Heidelberg restaurant. Above, a present day view of the restored interior.
Saturday May 26 1945
“Today, Larry called up and told me about our date tonight. Then Sis and I went down 63rd and I got beautiful white sandals and had my dress altered. Sis and Sunny went to Riverview; I wanted to go too.
Larry came at 7:30, so we took an L and went to the Oriental. Saw Delightfully Dangerous and stage show. Came right home after the show. I told him I didn't feel good and that I was sleepy.
I guess a technique isn't all that counts, because without it, he's boring.
Sunny stayed over quite a bit, as you can read, but I'm trying to remember where she slept and haven't a clue.
Dot and I slept in a full-size bed and that's all we had in there for sleeping. No other spare bedroomsthey were all taken. I don't think Sunny would sleep on a couch, all by her lonesome downstairs. Maybe we had a folding cot in our bedroom...
Actor Ralph Bellamy, star of Delightfully Dangerous, lived in Chicago when he was very young, just east of Dot at 57th & Kimbark.
Suicide Raid on U.S. Fleet; Jap Planes Hit 11 Navy Units; 111 Shot Down
Delightfully Dangerous: Musical Movie Pretty Much on the Dull Side: Not particularly delightful and the only danger involved is the likelihood of suffering from acute boredom.
Post-War Job for Mothers: Homemaking
On the Solid Side, by Sheila Daly: Boys Express Their Opinion About Smoking: Here is some inside information from high school Joes: dating characters who know what they do and do not like, which may make the gals pick up their smoke rings and take notice.
“I used to think that I didn't like to see girls smoking cigarets, but the other evening at a local drug store a couple of girls draped themselves on the stools, and if they didn't haul out painted corn-cobs and light up! Now I don't even like girls!”
“If I see a girl smoking, my opinion changes automatically. And the way I look at itif a girl is man enough to smoke, she's man enough to pick up her own books, open her own doors, wait her turn in lineand I'm just man enough not to want to date that kind of girl.”
Birthdays: Miles Davis (19), Peggy Lee (25).
A scene from Delightfully Dangerous
Sunday May 27 1945
“Larry called about noon. He asked me to go out but I told him I didn't know if my Dad would let me and to call back after 5:00.
A little later, Jim came and told me he works at the railroad now.
Larry called again at 5:00 and I had Marge tell him I was out. Well, he was quite mad.
He called again at 6:15 and at 7:00 also. Came over at 9:15, but Sis and I had already gone to Sunny's house.
Came home at 10:00 and Marge said Larry was awfully mad. Jim and Hal came over at 12:30, till 1:30.”
TELL HOW FIRE RAZES TOKYO: B-29S BURN OUT TWO PALACES, SAYS JAP RADIO: American Super Fortresses almost wiped out Tokyo, at a cost of 31 of the big planes, in record fire raids Thursday and Saturday, reports today disclosed.
READY TO START VAST EXPANSION OF ILLINOIS TECH: The Illinois Institute of Technology will begin construction of its new 10 million dollar campus program as soon as materials and labor can be obtained.
Riverview Park Opens for 42d Season of Fun
The front steps
Monday May 28 1945
“Today at 7:00 a.m., Larry called. His train left at 7:30. He said he went to the show last night and then went home. He asked me why I did that*. I kept saying I'm sorry so he finally said he'd write to me, and said maybe I'd explain then. I feel like a dog, cause I never did that before.
Sis and I later sat on the porch and Jim came straight from work. Hal joined us in a little while and he called up Viola. I went in about 11:45. Bed at 12:15.”
60,000 Salute Heroes of U.S. Wars in Parade; 4 Civil War Vets Lead Big Annual March
GERMAN WOMEN TOSS BOUQUETS TO BEATEN ARMY Officers Retain Side Arms on Way to Camps: From Austria and Italy there moves an almost endless convoy of German officers and men on their way to collecting points where they are disarmed, screened, and in many cases discharged, to work on farms, in mines and other essential industries.
Syria Bristles With Guns As Tension Grows
Thunderhead, Son of Flicka, Is Grand Movie: If your patriotism in leaving any available train space for service men has resulted in an unfulfilled yen for the wide open spaces, you can get a nice taste of them in this film. You'll find mountains and pines and clear, rushing streams, all pleasingly photographed in color.
Sox Drop Two; 37,133 See Cubs Win, Tie
Birthdays: singers John Fogerty (born today) and Gladys Knight (1), NBA star Jerry West (7), author Ian Fleming (37).
Riverview Park, with the Chutes at left; Sunny, Dot, Sis at one of the park's photo booths. (Note that on this cold May 29th, everyone is wearing a jacket.)
Above: Tribune item about the 1945 season's opening.
Riverview historian Chuck Wlodarczyk talks about the park (14 min.).
Tuesday May 29 1945
“Today, Sis, Sunny and I went to Riverview and man, was it cold. I nearly froze to death. I do wish I had worn more clothes.
Fooled around down there until 11:00 and then Sis and I took an L straight home. Got home about 12:45. I was so tired that I went straight to bed.”
“Riverview twice within two days! Where did the money come from?? Maybe Sunny treated.”
Riverview was a very long L ride away--about 12 miles.
Hot Weather Styles Play Up the Bare Look: With the first real long holiday of the summer staring you in the face, out of doors clothes are tremendously important. All the sun tan fashions in cottons and jerseys are ready, with the one shoulder bare, the other covered model going strong.
450 B-29s Fire Yokohama; Jap Suicide Pilots Blast 13 U.S. Ships; 77 Shot Down
French Troops Fight Syirans in Two Cities
Asserts Poland Is Test Tube of Red Experiment: “There can be no settlement of the Russia-Poland controversy as long as the Soviet pursues its imperialistic designs and Poles face only a future of slavery…”
Chicago Is Expected to Make Fast Return As a Convention City
Sox Defeat Boston, 8 to 6; Cubs Win, 5 to 3
Weather: Today's temperatures: a high of 75, low of 50.
Birthdays: Navy Lt. John F. Kennedy (28), Mel Blanc (37), Bob Hope (42).
Above: scenes from The Three Caballeros and Belle of the Yukon. The latter featured a young Dinah Shore, and is notable for Best Musical Score and Best Song Oscar nominations.
51 SQ. MI. OF TOKYO IN RUINS - Super Forts' Fire Bombs Wipe Out Heart of Capital: The heart of Tokyo has been wiped out by Super Fortress fire bomb raids, 21st bomber command headquarters announced today while squadrons of the B-29s were returning from an incendiary assault on Yokohama, new target for the big planes.
Big War Plant Is Shut Down by Studebaker: Production of B-17 aircraft engines at the plant, 5555 Archer av., was terminated yesterday as part of the army air force's cut-back program.
2,900,000 War Jobs to End in Three Months
Post-War Plan May Delay Home Building; Competition for Labor, Materials.
Sox Lose, 6-4; Dodgers Beat Cubs, 10-3
Birthdays: Benny Goodman (36); Gale Sayers (2).
Thursday May 31 1945
“Very boring day, can't even recall anything worth writing about, not even the weather. Went to bed about 12:00, quite early for this chick.”
EVEN LESS MEAT SEEN FOR JUNE - PORK POINTS UP: The meat shortage will become even more acute next month, the office of price administration announced in Washington, D. C., last night, as point requirements for some pork cuts were raised from one to three points effective Sunday. Chicago Daily Tribune
WARN CONGRESS MENS CLOTHING FAMINE IS NEAR - Summer Wear Scarce, Retailers Say: Manufacturers of men's suits, who assert that war production board restrictions are tying the industry in knots and will cause an acute shortage of clothing next winter, have opened a campaign in congress to ... assure an adequate flow of goods to retail. Tribune
Birthdays: Joe Namath (2), Clint Eastwood (15), Don Ameche (37).