Letters from India and other news ~

Original Boomerang, March 31, 1918

Original Boomerang, March 31, 1918

Another week, another fascinating original Boomerang! First of all, it’s interesting to see that March 31st was not only a Sunday back in 1918 just as it is in 2013, but it was Easter then as now as well (which also means that March 31st was the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox that year just as it was this year)!

The headline story in this issue is that Patty (the Enos’ 1915 Hupmobile, first introduced here) is back in working order. Last we heard (here), Patty was having trouble every time Beth drove her, which meant she had to take her to the repair shop where a certain someone she might have enjoyed seeing happened to work!! As Fred Eno the limericist points out, Patty’s running but not passing any Fords, but that still beats walking!

Next up, one’s curiosity about the photographs mentioned in last week’s Boomerang is further piqued with this wonderful list of their titles!! A Sunday School paper bought them — hmmm!! Also in this item: readers will recall that “twenty-eight thirteen” was the house number of the Enos’ residence on Cottage Grove Avenue in Des Moines.

It seems that the Boomerang man has been mailing issues of this “Little Newspaper for Our Own Family” all the way to India! But of course he would be doing that since that’s where Enola, the oldest of the Eno girls is, and this is her debut in that “Little Newspaper”! What was Enola doing in India? Working as a Christian missionary! She’s mentioned in the Northwestern Christian Advocate of September 22, 1915 as being ready to go (see below).

Enola Eno bound for India, 1915

Enola Eno bound for India, 1915

According to various notes I have from Dick, Enola eventually got a PhD from the University of Chicago along with her husband (unless the notes mean that along with the PhD she acquired a husband?), and the two of them published a Methodist newspaper (lots of newspapers in this family!) in India: Lucknow, to be precise. According to other notes I have, these dated June 30, 1977 and written on stationery from the Town House Motor Inn in Cedar Rapids, which means they must be from the lips of Beth, the one mentioned later in this issue of the Boomerang as having awakened early for the Easter service, Enola also had an Austin named Shesa!

Returning to th news item on Enola in this issue of the Boomerang, though: it’s exciting to hear that her letters have been arriving at 2813–in “dray loads”–and that the Boomerang is making it to India. It is a big world — and nigh-on a hundred years later, even as it’s smaller in some ways, it’s gigantically intriguing and wondrous, what with being able to find Miss Enola Eno in a 1915 periodical and publish it, along with her dad’s news of her letters, to the whole wide world! (Now to find those photographs!)

NB: Just as a reminder, a (growing!) archive of all the original Boomerangs that have been featured so far is available at this site at the tab labeled “Fred Eno’s Boomerang.”

Spring-time busy-ness of all kinds (Original Boomerang for March 24, 1918)

Fred Eno Boomerang, March 24, 1918

Fred Eno Boomerang, March 24, 1918

On the topic of spring-time busy-ness, a full commentary on this issue of the Original Boomerang is forthcoming tomorrow, probably posted from 40,000 feet or so if my plane has in-flight wifi!

. . . actually, just from a cafe in the sea-level airport (see photo below)! Among the busy-ness related in this issue of the Boomerang, a couple items particularly pique a researcher’ interest: the one about the Boomerang Man’s publications in “a New York printer’s paper” and the one about “twelve different subjects of our home collection of photographs” having been sold recently — along with the implication that some of them pictured the “five pretty girls” — which paper is this and who bought the photographs? The new Boomerang is on the case (or is at least standing in wonder of the case)! From the later mention of the pictures taken of the three soldiers, it at least seems clear that the photos that were sold were taken by Fred (and developed by him too, perhaps?).

Other items of interest: Here we get an update on the 42nd infantry; the regiment from Camp Dodge has departed, probably for France. We also learn that Mamma and Mabel (Mamma’s sister) have four lots out north of Highland Park College . . . what is a “lot” in this instance, one wonders? The mention of a pie factory and growing beans (for bean pies?) makes one think of pea-patch kinds of lots, but maybe they are lots of the more honest-to-goodness residential building size? “Quite an attraction” indeed! We also learn of Beth being at the Joneses and having “several calls among the neighbors every week” . . . calls for babysitting, I’m thinking? She would have been sixteen-going-on-seventeen at the time of this issue. That hotel going up on 10th and Walnut? I reckon it became what they now call the “Historic Hotel Fort Des Moines”; check out the “history quiz” at the hotel’s website  here. Finally, for that mention of Mamma going to Indianola and getting there in time to come home: Indianola is 18 miles due south of Des Moines, so I guess the Boomerang man’s comments here leave lots of room for a person to think that Mamma got off to a late start, whatever day she left! The reason being that she was busy about many things, no doubt!

Speaking of busy, it’s just about time to board here!

At San Francisco International Airport, March 25, 2013

At San Francisco International Airport, March 25, 2013