Mailing List:1999-01-27 06, "recollections" by Henry E. Whitney Sr., by Michele Painter

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Mailing List Archives > 1999-01-27 06, "recollections" by Henry E. Whitney Sr., by Michele Painter

From: Roy & Michele Painter <rmp6797 -at-> Subject: [WHITNEY-L] "recollections" by Henry E. Whitney Sr. Date: Wed, 27 Jan 1999 10:40:05 +0000 PART VI Norman was nearly ten years older than I so when he was in high school he used to work out some so had a little spending money. I inherited his bicycle and occasionally he would want some candy and would give me 10 cents to go to the store about a mile away to get some. Of course, he gave me my share of the candy. When he finished high school he went towork for the Maine Central RR at Northern Maine Jct. so had more spending money. Charlie Catells' store in downtown Bangor was a landmark. He roasted peanuts in a big roaster on the sidewalk in front of the store and you could smell them all over the city. Inside the store he had them heaped up on a counter about 15 ft. long. He also carried chocolate covered ice cream drops. Every holiday Norman would give me the money to buy a peck of peanuts and a pound of ice cream drops. That was big deal for me to go to town and get that. I guess I ate most of the peanuts and candy. I think peanuts were 5 cents a quart so you could buy a whole heaping peck for 50 cents. Catell's was in business for a long time and everybody in town missed him when he closed. Several winters father would take his team and work cutting ice on the Penobscot River. Also for 2 or 3 winters he would take his team and go to work for some big lumber company. Then he would only come home about once a month. I took care of the hens and mother milked the cows as I wasn't old enough for that. The first auto I can remember was owned by a farmer who lived in Hermon. It had high wooden wheels and just seats and an open body like a pick up truck now. It made quite a racket and did not go very fast. My Aunt Mae was a dress maker living in Bangor with my Uncle Norman (I'm still not sure what side of the family these two are from, Michele). They had a boarder that was a retired conductor for the Maine Central RR. He became a professional card player and made about $50 a week playing. He owned a big Buick car that was loaded with brass and when he got too old to drive he gave it to Aunt Mae and Uncle Norman. Uncle Norman drove it very little and brought it for us to store in the shed. I guess it was because I had never seen on that close that it looked immense to me. There was a fatal accident directly in front of home. There was a slight turn in the road with a telephone pole right there. One night two men in a large car hit the post and it tipped over and the steering wheel crushed the driver. The other man was thrown quite a distance across the road and was hurt badly. Father heard the crash and went out, found what had happened and phoned the police. I wasn't allowed out until morning, when the men were gone. It was a touring car, as were most of them at that time, with the top down which made it easy to be thrown out. A man by the name of Betts built father's new barn in 1911. He had a Ford touring car and he and his wife would come out Sundays and take my folks to ride. They would take me about 1/2 mile for a ride and then let me out to walk home. I always thought it was kind of mean. One time they did take me with them to father's farm in Hudson. The tires inthose days were pretty poor and one or the other of them would go flat. When we drove home in the yard the 13th tire went flat. The shoe had an innertube that would crack and let the air out. The shoe would not hold it. The shoe went onto the rim and then an iron piece went around the rim to hold the shoe on and then you pumped it up by hand. Everyone carried patches to patch the tubes and got so used to changing tires that you could do it quite fast.

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