Tuesday, August 18, 2015

July 4, 1970 The Singing Birds, The Woodsy Park, The Rock Show, The Last Speech and The Woman in Missouri

Dear Mother & Daddy,

"It's a beautiful, cool morning. We have had some really hot weather so it's a relief. The birds have been singing their heads off this morning.

We spent yesterday in Chicago just doing some things we wanted to do. In the first place, we wanted to check on the title for our car. We never got it and it must have just been lost in the mail. Sometimes our mail is addressed to Norman, Illinois and we think this may have happened. Anyway, we got that taken care of.

On the way, we stopped at the Morton Arboretum which is a big woodsy park where they are trying to grow and preserve every kind of tree or bush in the world which will grow in this climate. We've heard about this place for years but had never been there. It was started by the son of the man who started Arbor Day on their home property. There are growing collections of all sorts of things. You can walk or drive thru but it would be a mighty long walk. Sometime I want to go when the lilacs are blooming. It must be something to see.

 Then we went to a Japanese store which we've been to many times but they had moved into a bigger place and we just went to look. On the way home we stopped at a shopping center to browse and it was just a fun day not to have to hurry.  We usually have to watch every minute when we're in Chicago.

Today we plan to go to a rock show in Rockton. That's a little town in northern lllinois and then we're going to drive thru the Northern Illinois U. campus. It seems strange but we have never been on that campus.

I wrote Mildred a letter and sent back the clippings she'd sent me about her Jim in Vietnam. He was decorated several times and she sent me these in her 1968 Xmas card. I'd kept them but was afraid to send them back until I knew he was home.

Did you hear Nixon's last speech? Our TV went bad right at the beginning and didn't straighten out until the last 5 minutes or so. I guess I didn't miss much from the reviews I've read. I can hardly stand to listen to him but I can't miss his speeches, either.

Yes, we knew that Mary Lou was moving and we're glad. Does she sing in the church now?

I don't seem to get much done. With Ann home I have lots of extra laundry and especially since it has been so hot and since she goes to school every day. She seems to be making good grades on her tests and is always so happy with a good grade. Part of her classwork is back in the grade school with Bob's third grade teacher. I think they enjoy one another.

Bob & Pat won't be going to Greece. They are in France now and the last several days will be in London. We didn't get to see anything much in London so that will be new for Bob. This whole trip has been quite different from ours.

I don't think I told you about Bob's work on the Belshe family tree--that is, his latest work. He's been writing to a woman in Missouri who traces families for fun and they have become good friends and her letters are real interesting. He'll have to bring all of his papers so you can see what he's done. The woman is a teacher and has put a lot of time into hunting information for him. He offered to pay her but she said no so he sent her some prints of Williamsburg buildings.

Hope you both are fine. Happy Fourth of July."



NOTE: I've been thinking that food ad photography was beginning to improve in 1970, but I've since reconsidered.


  1. Another interesting collection of anecdotes. I was intrigued by the Arboretum and their attempt to grow and preserve all trees & bushes that are common to the climate; as this was in 1970 have they been successful in their endeavours yet I wonder?
    The Coca Cola bottle is a modern icon and reminds me of a car I once had. Vauxhall Motors made a car called the Vauxhall Viva and the first edition was quite successful. However, the next 2 versions sold less and less and Vauxhall were intending to end production of it. But then a very clever car designer revamped it and redesigned it copying the lines and shape of a Coca Cola bottle, with it's slim waist and flowing lines and, hey presto, they had a hugely successful car that sold in it's millions! I loved mine. :-)

  2. I had fun looking up images of Vauxhall cars! They are unfamiliar to me.

    The Morton Arboretum has grown a lot and is still going strong and is known for its regional tree and plant collections. I'd say they've been more than successful in meeting their goal. The Arbor foundation as well has a fabulous park, gardens and lodge and on Arbor Day, many schools send children home with a small tree to plant.

    Thanks so much for writing! Always good to hear from you.


I welcome your comments!