Forest Grove Elementary School

Frank’s Visit with Forest Grove Elementary School

Frank visits via skype with the elementary kids in Mrs Vandenburg’s 4th grade class. As a child Frank loved to make things and take things apart. In his book, I Wanted To Be A Pilot – The Making of a Tuskegee Airman, he shares some of the toys he used to make. Frank’s co-author, Elizabeth Harper, is from Michigan. So she had many friends and relatives asking her to come visit with Frank. Unfortunately at the last minute Frank was unable to make the trip. Liz and her daughter went ahead, but not before setting up skype on Frank’s computer!

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Colorado to California for WORK!

Why did Frank travel to San Francisco when he was a child? Today most of us go to work in one place all year, though many still travel frequently for their jobs. It may seem strange that in the 1930s people would travel a thousand miles to where the seasonal jobs were, but the adults in Frank’s life did just that. They took the train from Denver to California and back, taking advantage of more need for service workers in the tourism industry in California during the summer. It seems expensive, but it was worth it for them.

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1930s Shopping

A Few Dimes Will Do Ya!

How much did food and daily items cost when Frank was young? We find it so fun and interesting to ask people how much things cost when they were young, it always seems so much cheaper than today. So, we asked Frank if he remembered what his Aunts had to pay for the household staples. He remembered a few of the items and we looked a few items up. What seems so different today, is that it is rare for anything to only costs, cents. Now many people don’t even carry cash, let alone change. Here are a few examples of what a family might spend their pennies on in 1933.

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1936 NASH

Frank Drove at 12!

What do you mean, Frank could drive when he was 12?! Frank’s family had the famous Nash. The Nash was very stylish-green body with black running boards. Every few years it was updated with the latest innovations in safety and comfort. It is said that the Nash had the best heating and ventilation system available anywhere for over twenty years. Not sure if Frank cared about the heating system. He preferred taking the neighborhood kids on a joy rides-windows down!

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Carbide Shenanigans

What did young boys do for entertainment in the 1930s? Shenanigans with carbide is what was happening in Colorado Springs for Frank and his friends. Franklin talks a lot about carbide in his book and the mischief that he and his friends got into with it. But, what is carbide and how was it used? When Frank was young, he could go into the grocery store to buy carbide. The miners used it in their lamps. Frank and his friends used it for other mischief!

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