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  • I've talked about the library. It was really a living room for all of us. We congregated there. In the evening, Grandpa and Grandma were always there. The newspaper was there beside Grandpa's chair. The desk was available for writing or whatever desk work one might want to do. And then there was the library table, a large, heavy, rectangular mahogany table with one drawer. Its base was comprised of two solid mahogany piers, about 4 inches thick. There was a shelf which bridged across the two piers, about 4 inches off the floor. This table was a place on which to do homework, to color books, or to sit beside while reading or studying. It was a fun place. You could play store or house on the platform underneath. You could hide things on the mysterious ledges behind the drawer. That table could sustain many people around and under it, all at the same time.

    I remember studying my reading there and helping a succession of younger sisters with their reading of "Bo Bo and Zan", our first reader.

    It must have been about 1925 that Grandfather bought his first radio, a Superhetrodyne (whatever that is). Of course it went into the library. It sat to his left, beside his chair on a rectangular table. The radio was about 12" by 24", and 15" high, with a metal loudspeaker sitting on top. For power, on a shelf underneath, were a storage battery and two large "B" batteries. On that shelf also sat the battery charger. Frequently, you had to put the storage battery (just like ones found in an automobile) "on charge". The "B" batteries simply had to be replaced from time to time. In order to tune in the stations you had to adjust three separate dials. Two additional dials were needed to adjust the volume. It was a bulky affair.
  • But it was a wonder, a miracle, really. Lowell Thomas gave us the news after dinner. With Myrtle and Marge, Amos and Andy, Fred Waring and his Pennsylvanians, Fibber Magee and Molly, Jack Benny, Fred Allen, the Lucky Strike Hit Parade, and Kay Kaiser to entertain us, whole new worlds opened for us. We all gathered around it after dinner each night. On Sundays at four in the afternoon, Father Coughlin, a priest from Royal Oak, Michigan, came on the air. He spoke rabidly on political matters. Both Dad and Grandpa listened to him, even though they differed on all political issues. Grandpa was a long time Republican. Dad was a strong Democrat, even when Democrats were almost non-existent in our area. However, when Roosevelt, a Democrat, was elected, everyone in the area suddenly became a Democrat. Dad still wasn't happy. He groused about Roosevelt like an old conservative Republican did. He accused him of stirring hate between the races and of being a War Monger.

    Wonder of wonders were the times our Dad sang on that radio! In those early days, the stations had neither full programming nor sponsors to fill all the hours of an evening. To fill in, they had "sustaining" programs. Often Dad was called to come down and sing for a half hour or so, just to fill in the time. I remember the thrill of excitement as he "came on the air", singing Bartlett's "A Dream", or Berceuse from Jocelyn.

    We did a lot of living in the library. It was the focal point of activity in the house.
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