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Are you one of these "Last Ones?"


Kirk W

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Nice link Kirk of the yesteryears. Wow, sure brings back memories of better times even being raised in the UK in the next generation but still with no TV, just radio and one old vehicle that hardly moved. Grandfather (born 1891) was blind but used to chop firewood to sell, weave foot stools, and had donkey and cart delivering paraffin and oil house to house. Used to play the mouth organ and accordion to us grandchildren as a treat. Mother and Grandmother used to take that same donkey and cart around the seafront hotels to collect their sheets and bedding weekly and wash in tin baths in the back yard and had numerous washing lines full of them drying to be starched and ironing every single one with a non-electric in those days and for the couple decades before I was even born. Didn't get handouts readily back then but equally didn't have the governments deep dipping in your pockets as much as they do today either.

 

In many ways times back then were or appeared hard, but people were proud, expected less and wanted much less than folks demand today. For some reason it seems right up until even the very early 80's folks were a lot more content, and everyone had more time and respect for each other than I witness today. Our farming families worked (kids as well!) with other farming neighbours sharing tools, implements and labour to avoid weather damage doing one persons harvest at a time. It worked well and there was a lot more laughter and smiles I recall than I ever see/hear today from folks generally. Rarely you saw money exchange hands as goods traded amongst each other, and the majority still enjoyed a warm bed, food in their stomachs and a roof over their heads. 1960's saw my grandmother offering the Doctor a chicken as payment for my great grandmother suffering suspected ovarian cancer - which he gracefully refused and there was never a charge. We used to collect our cows milk in Churns and take them up to the end of the lane for collection. Never once was any stolen over many years. Of course this was all pre-quotas and marketing control boards.

 

Nostalgic? You betcha I am, and I'd give up all this technology today in a heart beat, to have some of those warm and fuzzy feeling yesterday's back again. It was far from always like that of course, but back then it truly did feel that people cared about their neighbours and had more time for each other. Today, it just feels as though everything is focused around the almighty buck, we're all stressed still peddling on the hamster wheel, and with technology the way it is now, the art of face to face or even telephone communication is dying out drastically. Heck folks in the same room text each other = sheesh.

 

As that saying we heard from our great grand parents, grand parents and parents over the years goes, I feel the same as do my family and many friends in the same age group and slightly older "We're glad we're the ages we are now", usually coupled with a head shake, knowing the youth of today will never ever experience the more relaxed environments, family values and relationships we have in our life times. Heck you can't even find a place to park near the ocean any more or even a hospital without risk of your car being towed.

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I was sent a link to this memoir and after reading it, I just had to share it with you all.

 

Thanks, Kirk. I missed being a child of the 40's... by two days. Still, some of this applies... I grew up in Texarkana, Tx, Robison Courts, in the 50's... lots of Veterans there, with lots of memories. My Dad was DAV, and Post Commander of the local American Legion. No TV until mid - late 50's... movies at the Paramount, movietone... Yep, different times.

 

Do you think the Posting Header of 'New Caledonia'... is the same New Caledonia of of WWII history?

Jim

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Having been born in Sept.1942, I really remember very little about the war years. I do remember the veterans who came back and some of the ceremonies by the local American Legion at the war memorial in the community cemetery and stories of the war and of the war years and the shortages that went with it. I lived on a farm so my dad was not called and we had more fuel to supply the farm machinery but dad also did some of his farming with horses because the fuel supply was not unlimited. Since I was only 3 when it ended, I don't know if I ever heard any of the speeches and celebrations of the end.

 

I do remember polio and knew two kids who were crippled by it as well as the wide spread effort to get all of the kids vaccinated once the Salk vaccine was available. We all had it given in school, and there were no exceptions. I also remember the Korean war and the return of those who fought there. I remember the "duck and cover" drills in school in the middle 50's and the big push for fallout shelters. But the lack of TV and instant news coverage allowed us to be kids with little concern for the things happening in other parts of the world. And we didn't have storm warnings so we just went to bed when weather was bad, expecting to get back up come sunrise. With fewer people and smaller towns meant that far fewer people were impacted by such events and with no TV news we seldom saw any of it when something did happen. I think that much of our carefree childhood came from the lack of TV and instant news media. Growing up in Kansas farm country, the first TV available to us was not until the mid 50's and even when I graduated HS in 1960, fewer than half of my classmates had a TV at home and those only had programing available from 6 pm to 11 pm except on weekends when they broadcast for about 12 hours, before shifting to the famous test pattern for the other hours.

 

I also grew up with no exposure to drugs, gangs, or a lot of other things that are common place today.

Do you think the Posting Header of 'New Caledonia'... is the same New Caledonia of of WWII history?

I believe that it is, as that sure looks like the south Pacific.

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Lots of good memories there even if mine are a decade newer than that. I remember sitting by the radio and imagining the scenes I was hearing described. I remember my cousin winning a Duncan yoyo at the Saturday movies we went to while our parents did the weekly grocery shopping. I remember the fort we devised using the exposed roots of a tree along the sides of the ravine near the end of our street. I remember not being able to cross the street because a truck had just driven by laying down a new layer of tar. I remember my older brother and his friends playing "ditch" on their bikes. And pinning blankets to the clothesline to make tents where we read comic books. And having an inflatable pool in the backyard to play in on hot days. And oh so many other things it's fun to remember.

 

Linda Sand

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Hi Kirk !

 

Thanks for this, brought back a few memories, we,, you and me were what they called war babies, me born in 1943. I do not remember much from the 40s, I do remember we had an ice box, and the iceman would deliver, the neighbor kids would hope he would give us a chunk.

 

Carl

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  • 4 weeks later...

Interesting article. I am baby boomer....born in 1950. My mom would have been born in 1930 and she loves to reminice about those times. The interesting thing is that technology wise there were some changes in those decades but nothing like the explosion of technology that came later. So my experiences and memories arent that much different. Grew up using an outhouse, 25 cent gasoline, 5 cent ice cream. Horsed drawn milk and vegetable carts.

The thing that sticks out in my mind from my younger years was the cold war. I grew up on one of the most northern air force bases in North America......Cold Lake in Alberta, Canada. We were not far from the Soviet border north of us. We practiced diving under our desks in case of a nuclear attack...lol.

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We practiced diving under our desks in case of a nuclear attack...lol.

 

That didn't make sense to me even then. I think they were just trying to help us feel like we had some control over things we obviously didn't have.

 

Linda Sand

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  • 3 weeks later...

I remember the stories my parents told (seldomly) about growing up during the great depression. My FIL was also of that era, when he passed I began cleaning out his garage. One full pickup of old newspapers, two pickups of empty plastic milk jugs, etc. They didn't throw anything away if it had a possible use later.

I remember walking into the living room of my Uncles house where the casket containing his oldest son, killed in WWII, was sitting. Some things make such an impact you never forget.

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