Monday, January 17, 2011

The Life of Hazlette Brubaker :: Part 14 ~ Adult Life

If you haven't already done so, you may want to read The Introduction to this series of posts.

Adult Life, continued

Vic was in very poor health [1] and about 1931 sold his business and we moved back to Columbia City. At this time we had only a very small income from the government so I went to work at the Oriental Show-U Sauce Company from six till midnight. Later Vic got total disability from the government and we moved to the country. There was no electricity or any conveniences, just old fashioned living. It would have been nice if everything had gone well, however, things became bad and after Shirley Ann was born in 1934 we moved to a country home near Larwill. Vic was working back in Fort Wayne again and we decided to try to buy a place of our own.

Matters became worse, I filed for divorce and the kids and I moved to Elkhart. There I baked pies for my brothers restaurant, cleaned houses, took in a boarder with two little girls, and eked out a living for us. Then my grandmother Brubaker-Bower died and left me an inheritance of $500.00. This allowed me to purchase the little house in Larwill and we moved there in 1938.

After a couple of years on an unbelievable small income, I was given the chance to buy a larger house. I took that chance; we moved into the big house, it was 1940. I got a few jobs, remarried Vic, tried working at Blue Bell with Phyllis but I was terrible. I worked for a trucking company in Fort Wayne for a while, and then finally went to work for Jewell Tea Company. I drove a truck for them for two years during World War II then went to work for an insurance company.

Vic and I divorced again [2] and I moved to Auburn. Another marriage, to Harold Dunn, fizzled out and again I was alone. Phyllis and Pat had both married while Ginny, Billy and Shirley stayed in Larwill with Vic.

I worked for a dry cleaning business, then a milling company in Butler. During this time I took a high school course and learned the double entry system of bookkeeping. Changing jobs once again, I went to work for a Chevrolet & Buick dealership in Auburn as head bookkeeper. At last I was earning a decent salary and had a new home built and had a very good life. I belonged to and was an officer in BPW (Business & Professional Women), worked in the Methodist Church, and had numerous friends. During this time I did some traveling; went to visit my son while he was in North Carolina, went to Traverse City and to Niagara Falls.

BPW Fashion Show.
She's got a tiara on so perhaps she was the Queen of the show!

Since I was getting older I thought I should get closer to my family. Both Bill's wife and Patricia were expecting babies and neither of them were very well. So I sold my home in Auburn and went to work for Bill at a weekly wage as his bookkeeper and helped out the girls, as it was needed. After little Billy Phend was on his way to being better and Ralph Victor Reiff was going strong, I took a job as the manager of Miller's Ice Cream Store at Five Points in Fort Wayne. I kept this job for three years then moved to North Webster where I opened a restaurant of my own.


And, this (about 1961) is where she ended her story...


[1] Grandpa Vic was gassed during WWI.

[2] Court records show that they were divorced July 7, 1937 and remarried on October 15, 1939. On July 17, 1945 they divorced for the second time.


Jasia said...

Hazlette did a great job of writing up her life story and I really enjoyed reading it. What a life she had, always moving, always changing jobs. She must have known many people in her lifetime. Like most of us, she had some good years and some not so good years. She was a real trooper though!

Thanks for sharing her autobiography with us!

Greta Koehl said...

This has been an absolutely fascinating series, especially seeing things from Hazlette's point of view.

Nolichucky Roots said...

I have so enjoyed this series. Hazlette was quite a woman. She wrote with such clarity and without sentimentality. You did a lovely job incorporating the photographs with her words, adding a few notes. It's only January, but this may be my favorite series of the year.