July 15, 1920 letter to Nancy Brown from Willis Brown

July 15, 1920

To: Nancy Brown

From: Willis Brown

Has been out to his farm in Wood Dale to harvest vegetables. They have built a screen porch onto the shack. Writes about his sons and their cars and sounds like they’re trying to see who can get out to the farm in the shortest amount of time. Was sorry to hear about Clara Clark’s death.

1274 Ardmore Av
Chicago 7-15 [1920]

My dear Sister Nan

It seemed good to get such a nice newsey letter and I will try to write a little tonight.

It is delightfully cool here and as we have plenty of rain. Everything is doing fine. Ralph[1] and I were out to Wooddale[2] last night and brought in the raspberries, peas, beans, and currants as well as a few potatoes. Everything is doing well there and we ought to have quite a lot of stuff. Our corn is just beginning to tassel.

Last Sunday Lew’s[3] folks were out and we had quite a good time. Have built a screen porch on to the shack.

There is a street car strike on here now but Broadway cars are running – the trouble is with the maintenance men at the stations – somebody is always taking the joy out of life.

Mrs. Walker wrote she expected to come up here about the 15th for a few days visit but we have not heard definite.

Perry[4] is on a construction job at St. Louis and expects to come up here when that is finished.

I expect now to get my vacation about the 25th of August and will spend a few days in Michigan hoping to get some kind of a fix up at the old burying ground.

Harold[5] has bought a fliver[6] and I may drive it up there. He took me out to the “farm” in 55 minutes one morning and Ralph took me out in 47 minutes last night, now Ray[7] is to try to beat that record but I guess I’ll have to do it myself if its done.

We have not heard any thing from Mrs. Davis since Roy called up and said he’d been down thare and that she was nearly gone with Pneumonia again but he’d left her somewhat improved.

The P. O. Business here is all balled up and we[8] are trying to get along during vacation periods with the help of high school boys and it’s a tough game and the service people are getting is very poor.

I was sorry to hear of Clara Clark’s[9] death and it seems too bad for him Charley and the boy to be left as they are but not more so than many other cases where we can only say why? why? why?

Ray and Esther[10] are out riding in their “Scripps”[11] about every night I guess and having great times. Ruth[12] and Ralph do some riding but he has to go to Lak Forest every day so has it so much time as Ray. Well I will stop now and mail this. Give my best to Ethan[13] and Hannah[14] and keep a lot of love for yourself.

Your brother

Willis A Brown[15]


[1] Will’s son-in-law, Ralph Kroscher (married to his daughter, Ruth)

[2] Wood Dale, Illinois

[3] Believe he is referring to Nancy’s daughter’s family – Louis and Lela (Brown) Mueller – who very often went out to the farm

[4] Will’s second son

[5] Will’s youngest son

[6] An American slang term used during the early part of the 20th century to refer to any small car that gave a rough ride, especially one that was small, inexpensive, and old

[7] Will’s oldest son

[8] Will was a mail carrier

[9] Clara (Youngs) Clark, wife of Nancy’s cousin, Charles Clark

[10] Ray’s wife, Esther (Carlson) Brown

[11] A three-passenger torpedo (streamlined body) roadster

[12] Will’s daughter, Ruth (Brown) Kroscher

[13] Nancy’s brother, Ethan Keith

[14] Nancy’s sister, Hannah (Keith) Towne

[15] Nancy’s late husband, Henry Brown, and Will were brothers

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