February 16, 1934

The big boss's wife died, and once again we recall the old adage about no respecter of persons. He has been under a terrific strain for the past few years because of depression retrenchments, and we now wonder how he will meet this new burdon. From a human point of view it may either make or break him.

Met old man Schmidt down town this morning. He is inordinately proud of his fine sons, and once started on this subject, there is no breaking away. Clarence, the go-getter, who has been the tireless worker and noted for his public spirited boosting of all community activities, and who got the political job at Des Moines to keep the clothing store going - he has come to the end of his physical rope, and now has to learn the inevitable art of conserving his nervous energies. Carl, the mortician, has recently gained recognition for some fine work in supplying undernourished school children with hot soup, through the Junior Chamber of Commerce. The older one who is more or less wracked by the war, is a partner in the substantial quality shop for men, which bears his name. A fourth, and youngest, is the tallest of the tall quartet, and has not yet registered on my consciousness.

I am through buying coal on a cheapness basis. We have cursed and sweated and have been frozen, wrestling with klinkers and double shoveling - three tons of it. What a comfort it is to have fuel in the cellar again, even though paying therefor is a major operation.

Dick and I investigated the mysteries of the lineotype machines and presses in the newspaper plant today. What a beautifully sensitive touch those operators acquire on those extraordinary machines. We also succeeded in getting headline prominence for the church doings next Sunday. Mainly, I think, through the happy thought of obtaining Carrell to give the formal community welcome for Wayne.

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