Donuts, WWI, and the 1930’s Depression

WWI 1914 to 1918 

Nine million combatants and seven million civilians died.

<<<  >>>

———————————————————————————————————————-

The following is from an article by Michael S. Rosenwald Washington Post Fri., June 2, 2017,

A century ago, not long after the United States entered World War I, the Salvation Army deployed hundreds of volunteers to France to soothe and bolster American troops.

The boys were homesick. They were hungry. They wanted a slice of apple pie.

But that, of course, was impossible. The many indignities of war include this undeniable one: A fox hole is a terrible place to bake.

So the Salvation Army troops improvised, frying dough in soldier helmets, producing such delicious donuts that when the war was over, when the troops finally came home, the government produced a guide for veterans to open donut shops.

Salvation Army volunteers (mostly women) who comforted the boys were called, “Donut Lassies.”

“As they dipped donuts for their boys, they dispensed motherhood,” John T. Edge wrote in “Donuts: An American Passion,” a seminal volume in the genre of historic deliciousness.

The recipe called for:

– 5 C flour;

– 2 C sugar;

– 5 tsp. baking powder;

– 1 ‘saltspoon’ salt;

– 2 eggs;

– 1 3/4 C milk; and

– 1 Tub lard.

The most important instruction: “Dust with powdered sugar. Let cool and enjoy.”

“As the nation slid into economic depression, the industry feared that donuts might go the way of the street corner apple,” Edge (a food historian) wrote. “So they aligned themselves with America’s emerging aristocracy, the ladies of gentlemen of Hollywood.”

Frank Capra put donuts in his movies. There’s that scene in “It Happened One Night” where Clark Gable teaches, as Edge puts it, “donut etiquette.” On Shirley Temple’s list of works is this: “Dora’s Dunking Donuts.” Laurel and Hardy posed for photos holding donuts.

And you know what?

Donuts survived the Great Depression. Hooray for donuts.

While their nutritional value is questionable, their patriotic value is as certain as the round hole at their center, through which eaters can look back through time and see not just food history, but the story of America – of our boys fighting for what’s right, fueled by what would become the country’s favorite pastry. Read more.

<<<  >>>

 

“GYPSIES ORDERED TO VACATE CITY” The Marion Star Saturday. March 15, 1930

by Phil Reid, Sentimental Journey Published 5:00 p.m. ET May 25, 2017

“Mayor Jones Issues Ultimatum When Rovers Overstep Bounds of Phrenology.”

It took a band of gypsies just one week to find out they are not wanted here.

Orders to vacate the city by 12 o’clock today were issued by Mayor L. Don Jones in no uncertain terms. The orders were directed to the “chief” of the gypsies, and were forwarded to T. E. Sonnanstine, directed of public safety, who with the aid of the police department will see to it that the mayor’s orders are carried out.

The gypsies made themselves a nuisance when they stood on the sidewalks in front of their “booths” in several vacant business rooms in the uptown district and “beckoned” for trade, officials explained today.

This, and offers to “tell your fortune” exceeded the bounds of “phrenology,” which they were legally entitled to practice here. But fortune telling is barred by ordinance except with a permit and orders to travel were consequently issued. Read more.

Phrenology: a psychological theory or analytical method based on the belief that certain mental faculties and character traits are indicated by the configurations of the skull.

<<<  >>>

Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Article from the Kiowa County Signal, March 13, 2017

Franklin Delano Roosevelt was born and raised in a privileged family in Hyde Park, New York. He was tutored at home until age 14, and after attending a private school for his high school years, graduated from Harvard College.

FDR became governor of New York just before the stock market crash in 1929. He was re-elected in 1930 with the Great Depression underway, and his leadership in New York during that difficult time was part of the reason he was elected president of the United States in 1932.

President Roosevelt promised a “New Deal” to help lead America out of the Great Depression. This included, among other aspects, stabilizing the banking system and creating jobs. His administration created the Civilian Conservation Corps and the Civil Works Administration, which provided jobs building bridges, roads and airports, cleaning beaches and planting trees. The Tennessee Valley Authority created jobs that helped bring electricity and roads to parts of the country that didn’t have them.

FDR communicated with the country through “fireside chats,” speaking often to the American populace over the radio. FRD had integrity and his words had meaning.

Read More

<<<  >>>

 

This car expert loves old Fords and rebuilds all the classics (photos)

Syracuse.com

By Kenn Peters July 21, 2016

Bridgeport, NY — If you’ve driven east or west on Route 31 through Bridgeport, you’ve passed an auto repair shop with very old cars parked in front. The shop is Chuck Nelson Auto & Truck Restorations, a shop that’s had a car show in its front yard for as long as anyone can remember.

The owner is Chuck Nelson, a guy who is arguably as much of an expert on old Fords as anyone’s going to find.

He’s fixed, repaired, rebuilt, figured out, painted, put back on the road, made look pretty and saved more Fords than he can remember.

Why Fords? “As a kid I was crazy about old Fords. In fact, I had an old Model A when I was 15,” he said. When Nelson was 15 lots of kids his age were wild about Fords, and Chevys and Plymouths, but for the most part they were cars that had V-8 motors, fancy two-tone paint jobs and loud glasspack mufflers.

READ MORE.

<<<  >>>

Alcatraz 1934

On this day in 1934, the first federal prisoners arrived on Alcatraz Island

By Katie Dowd Thursday, August 11, 2016

Eighty-two years ago today, Alcatraz went from a rock to The Rock.

On Aug. 11, 1934, the first boat loads of federal inmates arrived at Alcatraz Federal Penitentiary, entering American lore in the process.

alcatraz-prisioners

alcatraz-3

Alcatraz had been a military prison since the turn of the century, but it wasn’t until 1933 that it was purchased by the Department of Justice to serve as a maximum security facility for America’s worst criminals. It was, officials and newspapers declared, utterly escape-proof.

Most of the first inmates were transferred from Leavenworth in Kansas. They were bank robbers, murderers and counterfeiters. “Although the total population of Uncle Sam’s new fortress for incorrigibles will run into the hundreds, the 47 now ‘on hand’ will be sufficient to give Attorney General Homer S. Cummings an idea of the situation,” the Chronicle wrote upon their arrival.

Among the first shipment of prisoners was “Red” Kerr, a Chicago gangster who stole over $200,000 from a Sacramento post office and John M. Stadig, a “counterfeiter and escaper.” Its most famous inmate, unbeknownst to him, was being prepared for a similar move.

“Unusual precautions, it was learned, will be taken to safeguard several nationally known figures in the world of crime from Atlanta and Leavenworth penitentiaries to the prison in San Francisco bay,” the Chronicle revealed.

Nationally known was an understatement: On Aug. 20, the Chronicle found out that none other than Al Capone was on a heavily guarded train from Atlanta.

Capone had been secretly packed onto a custom steel-barred train car in the dead of the night, but word quickly spread that the Chicago mobster was traveling across the country.

The Chronicle reported that an onlooker called out to the other prisoners, asking if Capone was on the train. Another inmate pointed to a coach window. “The man in that window, who resembled Capone, grinned when asked whether he was Capone,” wrote the Chronicle.

Early on the morning of the 23rd, the train arrived in San Francisco. Capone and 52 other convicts were loaded onto a barge in Tiburon. Accompanied by an armed Coast Guard cutter, they sailed to Alcatraz.

“Al Capone, who iron nerve he boasted would never break, quailed when he viewed the escape proof ramparts of Alcatraz yesterday,” proclaimed the Chronicle.

al-capone-alcatraz

Indeed, Capone never attempted an escape from Alcatraz. His health declining, he spent much of his last year in the prison hospital. He finished his sentence at Alcatraz on Jan. 6, 1939. READ MORE.

<<<  >>>

 

 

Chicago Crime 1925 – 1932

Scarface, Tommy guns and Chicago’s gangster mystique in film

by Michael PhillipsChicago Tribune

Al Capone 1931 at a football game AP

Al Capone 1931 at a football game AP

In a a few, bloody years — 1925 to 1932, from the rise of Al Capone to the release of the film borrowing Capone’s nickname for a title — Chicago cemented its image in the popular imagination. The Cubs come and go; Chicago’s gangster mystique remains steadfast.

Here are six stops on the timeline of those key years in the making of Chicago’s corrupt, violent popular image.

1925: Brooklyn-born Alphonse Capone, later nicknamed “Scarface” by a Tribune reporter, takes over the Chicago activities of New York racketeer Johnny Torrio. By 1927, Capone is the world’s most revered and famous gangster, coddled by Chicago mayor Big Bill Thompson until Thompson considers Capone a drag on Thompson’s political advancement. By 1928 Capone relocates to Florida and spends most of the ’30s behind bars.

1926: Ex-Tribune police reporter Maurine Dallas Watkins writes a comedy about a couple of Chicago killers. Originally titled “Play Ball,” the play is renamed “Chicago” and opens on Broadway. Cecil B. DeMille produces a silent film version in 1927; Ginger Rogers stars in a 1942 film adpatation, “Roxie Hart”; Bob Fosse directs and choreographs the 1975 stage musical; the movie version of the musical wins the Academy Award as best picture of 2002.

1927: Another Chicago crime reporter, Bartlett Cormack, writes “The Racket,” a play set in a police precinct on Chicago’s outskirts, about an honest cop beset by corrupt superiors and pliable politicians in league with local bootleggers. The character of underworld kingpin Nick Scarsi is a thinly disguised Capone stand-in. Edward G. Robinson plays the role on stage; when the touring production of “The Racket” is banned from Chicago, reportedly at Capone’s urging, it travels instead to LA and the movies discover Robinson, who stars in “Little Caesar” in 1930, after the medium learns to talk and spit lead at high volume.

Read More.

<<<  >>>

The Boxcar

15-Year-Old Buys 44,000-Pound Boxcar; Now Comes The Hard Part                                                                                               by Bill Leukhardt – Hartford Courant – Oct 27, 2016

boxcar-2

A country teen who paid $1 to buy a 1930 boxcar and save it from the scrapyard came here Wednesday to pick up his 44,000-pound purchase.

Orion Newall Vuillemot, a lanky 15-year-old from Woodstock who collects old tractors and makes maple syrup for sale, showed up at 7 a.m. at the Naugatuck Railroad Co. yard off Thomaston Avenue to collect his project.

“He’s always been interested in trains,” his mother, Jane Newall, said as Orion and a team of a dozen volunteers prepped the badly worn and weathered Boston & Maine boxcar – #72249 – from its longtime parking spot in the NRC yard. “When he said he was interested in this, I said, why not?”

boxcar-1

It led to Orion raising about $4,000 on a GoFundMe page, putting on a restaurant fundraiser in Putnam, and assembling a bunch of people interested in helping him bring his train car home to a 50-foot-long section of track he built in the family yard.

The Woodstock Academy sophomore calls the boxcar by its number, saying, “I plan to restore 72249.” He estimated the project might keep him busy until 2019 and said that once it’s done, he will likely donate it to a railway museum or someplace similar.

boxcar-3

The freight car now is mostly paint-bare wood, with blotches of faded red paint freckled on the boards and the exterior metal frame. So what color will it be?

“Boxcar red. It’s standard,” he said. “It’s almost brown.” READ MORE

<<<  >>>

UPDATE ARTICLE: Read what Planning and Zoning had to say when a kid put a railroad boxcar in his yard. 

<<<  >>>

 

Seduction Arrest – 1938

The New York Times 

frank-sinartra

From FBI report: Mr. Sinatra had a criminal record in New Jersey. From the Bergen County Jail in Hackensack, ”there was obtained an enclosed picture of Frank Sinatra and the following information regarding the two occasions on which Sinatra was held in the Bergen County Jail,” the report said.

The report read: ”FRANK SINATRA, Arrest #42799, Bergen County Sheriff’s Office, Hackensack, New Jersey was arrested on November 26, 1938 charged with Seduction. Disposition was marked, ‘Dismissed.’ FRANK SINATRA, Arrest #42977, was arrested on December 22, 1938, charged with Adultery.”

Neither of the acts with which Mr. Sinatra was charged is against the law today, but his initial charge in 1938 stated that ”on the second and ninth days of November 1938 at the Borough of Lodi” and ”under the promise of marriage” Mr. Sinatra ”did then and there have sexual intercourse with the said complainant, who was then and there a single female of good repute.”

This, the charge stated, was ”contrary and in violation of the revised statute of 1937.”

The report noted that Mr. Sinatra was released on $1,500 bond and that the complaint was withdrawn when it was determined that the woman involved was married. A complaint of adultery was substituted, with Mr. Sinatra’s bond being lowered to $500. That charge, too, was dismissed. Read more

<<<  >>>

Your Ticket to the Movies – 1926

“The General” 1926 Buster Keaton

In case you haven’t seen it, Buster Keaton’s “The General” is one of the greatest movies ever made. No hyperbole needed or used: the movie is the pinnacle of the silent film era, combining some of the most jaw-dropping stunts and hilarious physical comedy ever captured on celluloid. Read more from Jared Rasic’s article.

buster-keaton-train

The first talkie appeared a year later 1927 bringing about the end of an era.

<<<  >>>