Will Rogers' Weekly Articles
WA325 March 17, 1929
HERE’S TO MEXICO
Well, all I know is just what I read in the papers. Of course as I write this about all we are reading in the papers are about Mexico. We got Hoover all set now for four years.1
After that he will have to hustle for himself. There is an option clause in his contract, but we will look him over carefully before we exercise it.
But he is starting out pretty good. The night he was inaugurated why Mexico broke out. So this ain’t going to be one of those “Let Nature take its course” Administrations.
And Calvin is just settled down up there in Massachusetts.2
He has wanted solitude and it looks like he will get it. Just think of having a breakfast in the morning and not having to feed some senator.
But the thing I want to take my text from today is “Mexico.” Now it was just a little over a year ago that I was down there for weeks, and it looks like every fellow that I met and got well acquainted with down there is now mixed up in all the headlines on the days news, some are on one side and some on the other.
Now take General Escobar.3
He is the Leader that is operating in the North East. I have been his Guest at his home in Mexico City. He is one of their most popular generals. He is the one that took me to the Bull Fight. He got a great kick out of it for every time the bull was anywhere near the horse I would bury my head down on my arms and look down at the floor. (We were sitting in the front row and there was a big concrete ballustrade where our elbows were resting on). Then he would tell me when to look up again.
Finally it got to be the laugh of everybody around there. My friend President Calles and his Party were kinder around the circle almost facing us and Calles got to kidding me about not looking up.4
They had pictures in the Mexico Papers the next day of “American Comedian enjoying Mexican Bull fight,” and all you could see was the top of a hat buried on a couple of folded arms on the railing, and General Escobar laughing and pointing to me. I could stand part of it for there is some very clever things done in the ring. But when it come to the horses I sure couldent go that, and say by the way the most famous fighter in Spain now is a fellow that fights the Bull from his horse and dont get his horse hit at all. He has splendidly reigned horses, and he gives a great exhibition. I think he was to be in Mexico this winter. Now that is worth seeing cause that is real work.
But let’s get back to personalities, when you read this you may be reading on the front page of the same paper, “Cross marks spot where Rebel Leader General Escobar stood when he faced the firing squad.”
Now he is an awfully nice fellow, well educated, speaks English. Very fine personality. He told me the whole story of how he had captured the Leader of that Revolution. (For one was just being finished when I was there.)
That’s the one where Serano, and Gomez were the Leaders and were shot.5
Gomez was the last one. He had been hiding in the hills for weeks and Escobar was the government General that caught him. He captured him one night on a trail as he was coming down to the house to try and get something to eat. He had lived in the hills and was about half starved and weak. Escobar took him to his tent and had him shave and put on some of his clothes and clean up. Gomez couldent understand why he dident take him out and shoot him then, (as he naturally thought he would be shot on arrest).
He and Escobar had gone through Mexico Military School together (their West Point), and had both been Generals in the Army for years, but had never been particularly good friends, and Gomez couldent understand Escobar showing him this much courtesty.
From what I could gather from it Escobar wanted him to look well at the funeral.
He turned him over to another General who shot him the next morning.
Now it had been reported that Gomez dident die game, and just the day before Escobar told me this story, why Gomez’ Mother and Sister come to Escobar’s house and asked him to please tell them the real facts of his death.
You know that is one thing you got to hand to those Mexicans. They do know how to die. Course I guess they get a lot of practice out of it. But when they line em up against the wall, the most they ever ask for is a cigarette. There is none of these Alabis, and “Oh honest I dident do it” thing.
They got no excuse to offer, they lost, and they die like a man.
Well, he told these two ladies that the report was not so, that Gomez died like a real man, and he told me that they put their arms around him and cried and thanked him and seemed to be relieved as much to hear that as they would to have heard of his escape.
Now he is in the hills, and he will be the one to get lined up. Well I bet he don’t flinch. And another Gerneral Almasans, he is the one that is hunting Escobar.6
I got awfull well acquainted with him, in fact I had he and Escobar to dinner one night and they took me to a “Teater” after. He is a dandy fellow kidding and full of fun.
Then there is a General Limon, that was defending Juarez.78
He is a great little fellow. There was two of them brothers, Limon Grande, and Limoncito. I always called em big and little Lemon. He was a Polo Player and when I got back to Mexico City he mounted me and I played several times with him.
It makes you sick to hear of these things happening down there. For they are no difference from us. They love Peace just as much, they love Life, and they want to be let alone. But these Leaders get overally ambitious, and think they are not getting a square deal from somebody, and there is just enough adventure in em to take the chance. But I think they are on the way to good Government. These Revolutions are getting more useless all the time. This one is Not Popular. If it was it could win. I hope they get straightened out, for they are an awful nice people. Hospitality is their middle name. If I wasent acting a Fool here in New York and have to stay I would be in Mexico in 24 hours. I would try to kid em out of fighting. So Viva Mexico.
1Herbert Clark Hoover, Republican president of the United States from 1929 to 1933.
2John Calvin Coolidge, Republican president of the United States from 1923 to 1929. At the end of his term, Coolidge returned to his adopted hometown of Northampton, Massachusetts, where he lived in retirement until his death in 1933.
3José Gonzalo Escobar, former general in the Mexican army and commander-in-chief of rebel forces in Mexico from 1928 to 1929.
4Plutarco Elías Calles, Mexican military and political leader; president of Mexico from 1924 to 1928. Several Mexican military officers, unhappy with the imposition of the official presidential candidate, rebelled in early 1929 against the government and the strongarm
rule of Calles. Calles took charge of federal military operations and by mid-April had quelled most revolutionary activity.
5Francisco R. Serrano, Mexican military leader and politician. An instigator of a short-lived rebellion in 1927, Serrano was captured and executed on October 3, 1927. Arnulfo R. Gomez, Mexican general and leader of the 1927 rebellion.
6Juan Andreu Almazán, Mexican medical student who abandoned his studies in 1910 to join the Revolution; federal general who opposed the Escobar rebellion; unsuccessful presidential candidate in 1940.
7Gilberto R. Limón, Mexican revolutionist who led a brief, ill-fated rebellion against the government in 1929.
8Dwight Whitney Morrow, United States ambassador to Mexico from 1927 to 1930; lawyer, banker, and Republican politician.
WA326 March 24, 1929
A HISTORY OF MEXICO
Nothing has gained as much Publicity and is known as little about as this Mexican Revolution. Hoover hadent been sworn in over three-quarters of an hour till the desire to be President on the part of half of Mexico broke out.1
It just looks like his being inaugurated kinder put the same idea into 34 generals’ heads in Mexico. So they started issueing ammunition to their men and said, “Come on Boys lets be inaugurated, how would you like to be personal bodyguard to the President of Mexico?”
Up here in our country every boy is taught by some old disappointed spinster that “Every one of you boys have the chance of becoming President, provided you were born in the right part of the country, and were not born of Democratic parents.”
We are taught that from birth, and some of the most feeble minded ones take it seriously, and start to preparing, by reading what Washington did, and what Lincoln did, and what Roosevelt did.2
And as a matter of fact, no one of the whole thirty of them that we have had ever did what any one of the others did.
All of the prospective candidates study what to do, and who to do it to, and here comes Coolidge and does nothing and retires a hero, not only because he hadn’t done anything but because he had done it better than anyone.3
Now in Mexico they have their fairy tales that are told to their children, the same as we do here. Where we are taught that every boy has a chance to be President, they are taught, “If my ammunition holds out, and I can get them before they get me, I not only can be President, but will.”
Now we have come to look on a Mexican revolution the same as we have come to expect the farmers to cry for relief. We may not know just what day it will be, but we do know that it will come as soon as enough notes come due with the farmer, and in Mexico as soon as enough generals have had a dinner together, got full of mescal (Mexico’s TNT) and decided on who would be President first out of the bunch.
Mexico used to have these things years and years ago, and then along come a fellow named Portfolio Diaz.4
Now nobody has ever to this day discovered what’s in a Portfolio. (Boston carried more of them for no reason than any city in the world.) But this old Portfolio down there it dident take long to see what he was loaded with. He just sit and waited till one of the generals got too full of “Teculia” (that’s mescal before it’s been diluted).
Well, old Portfolio would just play a little trick. He would see if this certain over-Patriotic General could stand up in front of a “Doble” wall while some other fellows playfully tried to bowl him over with a series of Mauser bullets. In that way he kept what has since become known as the Peace for about thirty years.
A Revolution under his administration just dident seem like it could get organized. The fellow wouldent any more than get an idea that he would like to be the God Father of one than the last words he would seem to remember would be spoken in his native tongue, “Ready, Aim, Fire!”
There was no disarmament of Conferences, no League of Nations, no World Court. Life in Mexico was just perpetual peace outside of just burying Generals. One day instead of the usual routine of “have you any Message you would like to leave to your folks,” why he give a fellow a jail sentence instead. That was his first mistake in thirty or forty years. He was getting old and his judgement was getting faulty. Instead of relieving this fellow of his over abundance of patriotism in the usual way why he put him in jail.
That was a fellow named Madero.5
Now a jail will detain you for an indefinite period, but a firing squad will just practically ruin you. Now it’s never been quite clear how Madero got out of there, neither has it ever been any clearer how Portfolio Diaz got on a Boat. You see he had broke his rule. The best way to keep a good man down is with Bulletts.
Well Madero hadent any more than got in till a Guy named Huerta come along, and Poncho Villa saw that the stage needed a new Character for Holbrook Blynn, so he charges into Columbus, New Mexico, one night and that gave us a chance to see Mexico first, before seeing France.6
So our troops went down and used that as a rehearsal for the main event overseas. Someway or other Madero and his Vice President Suarez were being transferred from the White House to the jail and come to an accidental death by murder.7
Huerta was supposed to know nothing about it, and he was very much surprised on appointing himself President.
Well then when the whole of Mexico saw that all you had to do to be President was to shoot the one that was, why that brought on some pretty fancy marksmanship. Carranza started him a school of marksmanship.8
Villa joined him. Villa would join anybody that had any ammunition.
Then Obregon comes into the picture.9
Up to then he was an Amateur, but he entered in earnest now. Huerta saw that old man Diaz knew more than just how to rule a Country, he knew how to leave one when the leaving was good, so Huerta used the same Ocean for the same cause. He decided to get seasick instead of shot. Carranza moved into Chapultapec Castle, whiskers and all.
Another revolution bobbed up in the State of Sonora, whose principal product is Revolutions. Villa and Obregon were sent to either assist it, or hinder it, but at any rate not to let it stay dormant. They fell out with each other on the way and started one between themselves, had a battle, Obregon lost an arm and Villa lost the battle.
Then Zapata come along.10
(That means shoes.) Well he walked into a personally conducted Revolution of his own. Then another Huerta, Adolpho.11
(Not any relation to the other one.) He takes out a Revolutionary permit, and starts revoluting. About this time Carranza died what is a natural death in Mexico, he was shot, practically totally.
De La Huerta (he was only supposed to be Provisional President). That is president until he was shot, banished or thrown out. Obregon however comes in by an election, something unheard of up to then, that was a new way to get to be President. So everybody wanted to try that so another man from Sonora, Plutarco Calles, follows in Obregon (as a Mexican President can’t succeed himself even if he is living he can’t do it).12
Calles served and Obregon was to follow back in, (you can go back in if you stay out awhile) same idea that Coolidge has. But Obregon died a natural President’s death. Then they appointed Portes Gil.13
(Pronounced Heel.) Now Escobar getting tired of this back to the old way of electing Presidents by the Bulletts instead of the ballotts.14
So it’s just a question of whether he will be shot before he becomes President or after.
1For this and all further references to Herbert Hoover see Weekly Article (WA) 325:Note (N) 1.
2Theodore Roosevelt, Republican president of the United States from 1901 to 1909; Spanish-American War hero, Progressive party candidate for president in 1912, and world renowned sportsman.
3For this and all further references to Calvin Coolidge see WA 325:N 2.
4Porfirio Díaz, Mexican military leader, politician, and dictator; president of Mexico from 1876 to 1880 and 1884 until his ouster in 1911.
5Francisco Indalecio Madero, Mexican revolutionary and politician; forced Díaz’s resignation in 1911 and served as president of Mexico until his ouster in 1913.
6Victoriano Huerta, Mexican general and politician. Huerta supported the Madero revolution in 1911 but then deposed Madero and had him killed. Huerta served as provisional president from 1913 until his removal from office by force in 1914. Francisco “Pancho” Villa, Mexican bandit and revolutionary leader; opponent of the government after Madero’s death. In 1916, hoping to draw the United States into war against Mexico, he raided Columbus, New Mexico, killing sixteen persons and burning much of the town. He was assassinated in 1923. Holbrook Blinn, noted American dramatic actor and theatrical director. Blinn, who made his stage debut in 1878 at the age of six, achieved personal success as a loosely-disguised Pancho Villa in The Bad Man. He died in June 1928.
7José María Pino Suárez, Mexican Lawyer, poet, and revolutionary; vice president during Madero’s ill-fated administration.
8Venustiano Carranza, Mexican revolutionary and liberal political leader; president and virtual dictator from 1917 until his assassination in 1920.
9Alvaro Obregón, Mexican military officer, revolutionary, and politician; president of Mexico from 1920 to 1924. Obregón was elected again to the presidency in 1928 but was assassinated before taking office.
10Emiliano Zapata, Mexican revolutionist and champion of agrarianism. Active from 1911 to 1916, Zapata was independent of all other rebellion movements; he ultimately was defeated by Obregón.
11Adolfo de la Huerta, provisional president of Mexico from May to November of 1920; minister of finance from 1921 to 1923.
12For Plutarco E. Calles see WA 325:N 4.
13Emilio Portes Gil, provisional president of Mexico from 1928 to 1929.
14For José G. Escobar see WA 325:N 3.
WA327 March 31, 1929
WOMEN ‘PURIFY’ POLITICS
Well all I know is just what I read in the papers, and what I run onto around the old Opera House here in New York. It’s been so warm and nice that most of the people have been coming here from Florida to spend the winter. There hasent been five overcoats sold here all winter. Tammany Hall held the Comedy record all last week trying to nominate somebody to have his name on the stationary saying he was head. Course to an outsider we don’t know what all the shooting is for, we don’t know what it is. What is it he is head of, why and for what reason. There has been more people try to explain what Tammany Hall is and fewer succeeded than there has that have taken a shot at the Einsten Theory.1
It’s just a bunch banded together under a Constitution which says, “Get these Jobs and stay with `em, and if the time ever does come when you have to give it up, give it up to another Tammany man.”
Well the first time they had a meeting to elect a Leader why the Women come in and wanted to vote. Well they had never considered that, they had forgot about the Nineteenth Amendment on account of being so busy thinking about the Eighteenth. Well nobody knew what to do with these women. Then somebody thought of the idea of adjourning. When a meeting ain’t running right why the thing to do is to adjourn, reorganize and meet some time when the ones that are against you don’t know when you are going to meet.
You know Women are getting into more things that are embarrassing to them men. You see the first idea of giving them the vote was just to use the vote. But the Women contrary like they are, they wasent satisfied with that. They started to take this equality thing serious. They begin to think they really was somebody. The women figured that “While we may not be as good as a Man, we are at least as good a Politician.” So the Scamps commenced to want to get in on the loot. As soon as they found out a Political Job took no experience to hold, that it only took experience to get, why they commenced to making themselves rather embarrassing around the Political employment Bureau, and now every one of them call themselves as a Number 2 Company of Mabel W. Willerbrandt.2
It was all right with the men when the women took the little Committee assignments where there was NO salary connected, but when they started to want to put their powdered nose into the feed trough, why that brought on complications. Now they are wondering, “Was the Women’s vote worth what they are asking for it?”
It’s not only that way with Tammany, but it’s getting that way all over. Women that used to wouldent think of gossipping anywhere but over a back fence, now won’t say a word about you till the meeting has been duly called to order. It’s scattered Scandal around more. It’s brought it more into the open. It’s changed lots of things around. Families that used to dident know there was a Restaurant in town are looking over the Menu cards on days when the Ladies Auxiliary of the “Pork Barrell Political Society” is in session.
To us fellows that are not in Politics we are tickled to death, to see the Women folks dealing such misery to the Politicians. And in the long run it’s good for humanity. Every job a Woman can grab off it just drives another Politician to either work or the poor house.
And you know this next Congress that meets now pretty soon. Did you just notice the amount of Crepe De Chine and Laungerie there was mixed up in it? Why pretty near every prominent man we ever had in Politics has got a Daughter entered in that Congress. Course that’s another trouble with Politics, it breeds Politics. So that makes it pretty hard to stamp out. The only way to do it is at the source. We got to get Birth Control among Politicians. We have to do that in order that they don’t bring more Politicians into the World. They may not purposely mean too, but it just can’t be helped. Now you take some of these very Women that I am speaking of that are entered in this forthcoming Farm Relief Burlesque. Their Fathers worked hard and saved, and thought they had left them so well off that they would never have to resort to Politics. But here they are, you see that the breeding crops out, and that’s why we are going to have to do something about it. You see there is no stopping these Women when they get started. Why I wouldent be a bit surprised that it won’t be no time till some Woman will become so desperate Politically and just lose all prospectus of right and wrong and maby go from bad to worse and finally wind up in the Senate.
Now you know that no Father or Mother ever had any idea that the offspring would ever darken a Senate door. Course up to now there has been no need for anything resembling a Woman in actions in the Senate, especially an Old Woman, for there is more old Women in there already than there is in the old Lady’s home. But they been in there on a pention for years, and they are awful nice old fellows, they don’t do any particular harm to anyone. Course they don’t do any great good. But they about break even and if they was out maby somebody worse would be in.
But this Nineteenth Amendment is worrying more people in the Country than the Eighteenth. It’s not only caused millions of men to go hungry, (by their wives being away at a rally) but it is causing a lot of them to go Jobless, all because the whole thing was misunderstanding. The men give `em the vote, and never meant for them to take it seriously. But being Women they took the wrong meaning and did.
1Albert Einstein, noted German physicist who received a Nobel prize in 1921 for his work in theoretical physics, notably on the photoelectric effect.
2Mabel Walker Willebrandt, assistant attorney general of the United States from 1921 to 1929, in charge of cases arising from federal taxes and prohibition; played a prominent role in the enforcement of federal prohibition laws during the 1920s.
WA328 April 7, 1929
PROHIBITION HAS ITS INNING
Well, all I know is just what I read in the papers, Politics, Innaugarations, Base Ball training, Cabinets being sworn, Indignation over Vanderbilt book in Reno, Mexican persuit race, and all those things are all as nothing in the press the last week or so compared to what has happened along the prohibition enforcement lines.1
Sinking that Boat down in the Gulf of Mexico come pretty near being another sinking of Tea in the Boston Harbor.2
You know we had a World Series with England over that little incident, and when we sunk this one it looked like the Dollar a year men would be out again.
The whole argument was, “How far out away from land was the boat when they first took after it?” The old time law said three miles was the limit that a Country owned from its shore, then when Prohibition come in we wanted to take in more territory. We was enforcing it so good out as far as three miles that we had a Treaty made with England. For it has always been considered that England practically owns the Ocean. So naturally, in dealing with anything that comes up regarding water, (especially if it is salt water) why we have to confer with England. Not on account of her importance as a Nation, for perhaps they are no more important than France, or Germany, but it’s their Navy that makes the difference. It’s like a rich man in a Town, he may not really be as important, or know as much as dozens of others, but it’s his dough that makes the difference.
You give Equador England’s Navy and right away Equador’s ambassador would be seated next to the President at official functions, and England would go to the foot where Equador is now. A country is known by its strength, and a Man by his Check Book. So we met England and made a treaty with them that would give us about 12 miles to enforce in. In other words we were just enforcing so good that we figured in order to keep the boys from just laying off all the time why we would give them nine more miles. Well we took care of that so well that we met England again and asked for some more of their Ocean, so we drew up a Treaty that give us something like this, “It’s our Ocean out as far as a Boat can go in one hour’s travel.” It dident state how the boat was to travel. It dident say whether it was as far as a sailing boat could go in an hour with no wind, or whether it was as far as the same boat could go if it had 25 Wright Whirlwind Engines in it. It was just to be an hour’s travel. Now evidently this “I am Alone” this one they sunk could travel pretty far in an hour, for it went so fast that it took our Coast Guard Cutters the biggest part of a week to catch up with it and sink it. Well they shot at him for days before they could sink the boat. If they had taken all the bullets they shot at it, and put them on the boat it would have sunk immediately from the weight.
Well, we was just getting over the excitement of all that in the papers when away out in Aurora somewhere they shot a woman, beat up her husband and then their little boy shot one of the officers. Well that caused more arguments than the boat sinking. I don’t know which side you are on in that argument. But you got to admire the kid. He come through when his parents were in danger. Whether your parents are good or bad, that’s not your business, but stick with ’em when they are in trouble.
Well then to cap it all and make 100% prohibition week why a bunch of Congressmen landed in New York from Panama Canal where they had been at Government expense to see if it really did connect the two Oceans, or was it just propaganda. Well they got back here to New York and they only searched one of their baggage and found four quarts. He had forgot to claim Government privalege. (That’s a gag where if you leave the Country, you can come back with anything you want and they can’t search your baggage.) The other 14 had claimed it and they got home with theirs. All but Congressman La Guardia, an Italian American (and a good one).3
He admitted that he had had started from down there with a few steins of Grog, but had drank it up be fore arrival at quarantine, purposely. Now he will be ostracised in Congress for honesty.
Then all this was no more than happening than this fellow Wesley Jones that put in the Woolworth bill 5 and 10, five years in jail and 10 thousand fine, he up and says that he has never seen any drinking either among Congressman, or TOO MUCH drinking even among Senators.4
Some young lady interviewed him in Washington and what the man hadent seen is almost
On the same day our great author, and Dramatist, Booth Tarkington had admitted that he was blind and had been for some time.5
Well to Mr. Tarkington’s statement and to read Wesley Jones, (author of the Jones Bill) you would have thought that it was Jones that was blind, and had been for the course of his natural life, and you would think Tarkington was the one that
And by the way wasent that wonderful what he said about the blind, (I mean Tarkington, not Jones.) He said it was so wonderful to be blind and not have to look at a lot of things that he dident want to see, wasent that great? What an encouragement to the blind! What a real love for his fellowman!
Jones is all right too. We wants to give this fellowman free room and meals for five years, and all he has to pay for it is ten thousand bucks. That’s two thousand a year. Well that’s about as cheap as you can live outside. Course what I have always thought was that Jones could have improved on his bill by making it Ten and Five. You see if you get ten years in jail and only have to pay five thousand why you get your rent and board five thousand cheaper. It’s a great world though, watch her go by.
1Cornelius “Neil” Vanderbilt, IV, American journalist, author, lecturer, cinematographer; member of one of America’s wealthiest families. Vanderbilt embarrassed his family with the publication in 1929 of Reno, a sensational novel about the Nevada divorce capital.
2A Canadian-registered vessel, I’m Alone, was sunk in the Gulf of Mexico by a United States Coast Guard patrol vessel on March 22. The “rumrunner” carried a cargo of more than 2,400 cases of liquor.
3Fiorello Henry La Guardia, Republican United States representative from New York from 1917 to 1919 and 1923 to 1933; mayor of New York City from 1934 to 1945.
4Wesley Livsey Jones, Republican United States senator from Washington from 1909 until his death in 1932. The Jones “Five and Ten” Act of 1929 raised the maximum federal penalties for liquor offenses to five years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine.
5Newton Booth Tarkington, Pulitzer prizewinning American novelist who wrote such well-known works as Penrod, The Magnificent Ambersons, and Alice Adams.
WA329 April 14, 1929
THESE EXPLORERS ARE SO SHY, THEY
Well, all I know is just what I read in the papers, or what I can pick up as I try to keep an ear to the ground. Had an awful interesting evening a week or so ago.
Mr. Putman the Publisher had a Dinner party.1
It was given I think to this man Wilkins, that’s just been prowling around down near the South Pole.2
Around the table was just about everybody that we had ever seen in the Sunday supplement with a coonskin Coat on (not for fraternity purposes). There was men there that had eaten more meals with Esquimos than Mr. Stearns has with Mr. Coolidge.3
This Guy Putman he kinder messes around on the fringe of the Arctic himself. I reckon he is about the only Book binder that knows the difference between a snowshoe and a La Crosse racket. There was Guys there that had flew over the North Pole, walked over it, jumped over it, and here was this Wilkins announcing that night, (at this very dinner) the fact that he was going to “Dive under it”. He was going down in a Submarine and see what the pole was really anchored to underneath.
Sitting right by me was a mild, rather meek voiced individual, that I kinder wondered how he got in this bread line, he didn’t look like he had ever been any further away from 14th Street and Fourth Ave than a Tammany Leader, and here he had spent more years in the Arctic than any man living. He had spent nine winters and 13 summers with a floating Iceberg for a putting green. It was this fellow Stefansson.4
He is the one we have been reading about for years.
Then right across was Martin Johnston and his wife (the best looking woman that ever had her picture taken with a foot on a dead Lion).5
Here they had been years in Africa, and the South Seas among the Canibals. A Canibal is a good deal like a Democrat, they are forced to live off each other. Come to find out this Johnston and his wife both come from right up above where I was raised.
One had come from Independence Kansas, and she had come from another little hay barn right near, Coffeyville. It used to be our Post office from our old home down in the Nation. It was forty miles away, but then we didn’t get much mail anyhow. In fact I have known some of us to make the whole trip and never get an oil circular. That just shows you, us down in the old Indian Territory, (now called IMPEACHerino.)
We always did know those Kansas people was queer. Imagine two fine young people going and spending their life trying to make a Rhineosoris look pleasant in the Camera!
Amelia Earhardt, the Girl that flew the Atlantic Ocean to escape Boston Society, well she was there, a very charming young lady, one of the few Aviatrixes whose excapades have been with a Plane and not with unappreciative husbands!6
Mrs. Kermit Roosevelt, a might pleasant little Mother was there by us.7
I wondered how she got in with all this “Safari.” Then I happened to remember being out to their home the Sunday before her Husband and his Brother Ted started for some outlandish place called Tibet, to shoot some specimens of queer things for a Chicago Museum.8
You would think if Chicago wanted to see some queer things that was shot they would just go to the Morgue.
It begin to look like Mrs. Rogers and I were about the only ones who had never said, “I smoked your Cigaret and really found it took all the danger out of my entire trip.”9
The furtherest I had ever been from a Cooks guide was just hollering distance. I had visited some strange places in the world, but it was always so full of Tourists by the time I got to it that the Tourists were stranger than the place.
Then I happened to spy Jesse Lasky (the big Close-up and Long shot Guy of the Movies) and I thought well he has never been out of sight of a head Waiter, and here I happened to remember a trip he took floating down the Colorado River away down into the wilds of Mexico.10
They floated down and dident have energy enough to row back, so they just kept on going. It was a mighty interesting group.
This Stefansson fellow told me he was in the Artic for five and a half years, and that they didn’t know the war was on till it was a year old and dident get home till away after it was over. Think of coming out and asking, “Well, what’s the news, anything happened since I been away?” “Oh no, the boys had a little argument, and there was some pretty cross words between a few of the countries, but nothing much come of it, outside of a little war.”
Then Wilkins and him got to talking about this submarine Gag. Wilkins said he would come up every day for air. If the Ice was over them, they would bore through it with an auger, or with some kind of Chemicals. Chances are the chemical he would use would be some bootleg liquor. That would melt the ice and leave a scar on the Pole. He figured he could go across in 21 days from Spitzbergen to Siberia, or Seattle or one of those northwest towns.
Stefansson suggested they should go the other way on account of the current (those Guys know everything). But Wilkins said it would be too hard to get his Submarine around there to start, have to take it through the canal. The Pole has been flown over three times with a Plane, and twice with a Dirigible. So just being no. 6 don’t get you anywhere. Peary made it with a pack of flea hounds, Cook found it twenty miles north of Duluth.11
What a scenic trip this will be, 21 days under the water! That will be just like wanting to see something on a train and a bunch of Box Cars in your way. I want him to lay out some place there at the pole, for I want to hold the next Democratic Convention there. Course that won’t attract much attention to it. Wall Street wants to take up a collection and send the Federal Reserve bank members up there. They couldn’t dissrupt the Icebergs with any statement. But they were all a mighty nice pleasant bunch of people, and I am awful glad I went over. Course on account of having to work in the Theatre I didn’t get there for the dinner, and didn’t get anything to eat, so that’s why I could remember what everybody said and did.
1George Palmer Putnam, American publisher, editor, author, motion picture executive, and explorer; treasurer of the publishing firm of G. P. Putnam’s Sons from 1919 to 1930.
2George Hubert Wilkins, Australian aviator and polar explorer who directed several Arctic and Antarctic expeditions and who authored numerous books about his exploits.
3Frank Waterman Stearns, wealthy Boston merchant and ardent supporter of Calvin Coolidge. After he became president, Coolidge provided a permanent suite in the White House for Stearns and his wife.
4Vilhjalmur Stefansson, Canadian-born explorer, ethnologist, and author.
5Martin Elmer Johnson, American photographer, explorer, and naturalist. With his wife, the former Osa Helen Leighty, Johnson made an extensive expedition to Africa in 1923-1927, returning to the United States with an invaluable photographic record of the then largely
6Amelia Mary Earhart, American flier who in 1928 became the first woman to cross the Atlantic in an airplane. She married George Palmer Putnam in 1931.
7Belle Wright Willard Roosevelt, wife of Kermit Roosevelt.
8Kermit Roosevelt, American soldier, businessman, explorer, writer, and hunter; son of President Theodore Roosevelt (see WA 326:N 2). Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., American soldier, writer, politician, and explorer; eldest son and namesake of the twenty-sixth president.
9Betty Blake Rogers, wife of Will Rogers. The couple was married at the Blake family home in Rogers, Arkansas, on November 25, 1908.
10Jesse L. Lansky, Sr., American motion picture producer; co-founder of Famous Players-Lasky Corporation and executive of Paramount Pictures Corporation from 1916 until the depression of the 1930s.
11Robert Edwin Peary, American arctic explorer and naval officer who led the first successful expedition to the North Pole in 1909.
Frederick Albert Cook, American physician and arctic explorer. On his return from an arctic expedition in 1909, Cook claimed that he had reached the North Pole in April 1908. The claim was denounced and rejected by scientists.
WA330 April 21, 1929
PLOTTING AGAINST HEFLIN
Well all I know is just what I read in the papers. Texas Guinan has been so busy hugging and kissing everybody over her aquittal that the old Town just can’t seem to get organized again.1
She said she had no idea that drinks were served in her Night Club, and twelve jurymen agreed with her.
President Coolidge surprised us all again by joining the Board of Directors of a big life Insurance Company. I had always said you would never see him hooking up with any big Company, that it might be brought out against him in 32. But it seems like he is not to do much for this one. He only gets $50.00 when the Board meets, which is about once or twice a month, unless he calls it oftener. He certainly will not give much for that wage.
So it’s really kinder hard to tell just what he is supposed to do. He was supposed to take Mr. Herrick’s place on the board.2
Well Mr. Herrick was Ambassador to France, so if he takes his place he evidentally won’t be supposed to do much. I wish he had taken some real job where there was something to do and it would look like he was really doing something. Course if you can get into enough of these Companies at fifty bucks a gathering why it wouldent be bad employment. You know these big Companies are having a hard time trying to get names on their list of Directors that look BIG. It’s kinder like trying to find somebody to give a dinner to. There just ain’t many that look important enough to be fed free. Funny thing, on the same day that Mr. Coolidge signed up with the Insurance Co., why some fellow committed suicide because he couldent get rid of an insurance Agent.
Poor old Tom Heflin, he no more than gained quite a bit of sympathy with the statement that he issued about his Son, “I wish people would not exploit my Son’s weakness but try and help him, and I will be ready to meet him when he comes with open arms.”3
Now that was lovely and very fatherly. But he come right back and spoils it all with, “It was the Son of a Roman Catholic that give my Boy the drink, and then insisted that he take another.” Tom even insinuated that the Liquor was made by the Benedictines. It just seems that Romans won’t lay off Tom. The Christians in the early days wasent chased around by the Mountain Lions any more than Tom is persecuted by em today.
Course if this Roman Catholic did give his Son a drink, it don’t seem to signify much only that they must be an awful liberal race of people. And if the effects of that round of drinks lasted till they got back to New York, it looks like an awful good add for the brand turned out by the Benedictines.
But he is all right Tom is, and I bet the Boy is all right, and Tom will sure go to bat for a friend. When it looked like they was going to make the Curtis Family eat at the second Table Tom come to the front for ’em. He forgot for the moment that Charley was a Republican, and he broke Democratic precedent by complimenting him.4
Tom figured that it was really the Vatican that was trying to make Charley eat in the kitchen, and he wasent going to stand by and see ’em get away with it. If they hadent given Charley the rating that he deserved, Tom was going to put a Bill in Congress to make ’em all eat at an Automat, and the one with the most Nickles would be the Head Man. But they got it all fixed and they had a big Dinner last week at the Chilean Embassy and everybody got their Chili Con Carne according to the latest Emily Post standard.5
But poor old Washington, that’s all they got to think about. When you pay your tax there it really is nothing but a gossipping license. Nobody has anything to do but just sit and Gab and Gab, and have dinners. That’s why so many of them stay there after their term of office expires, they just havent got through talking about everybody yet.
Secretary Stimpson got out of that thing pretty slick.6
He left it to the Ambassadors from all the other Countries. That’s about the only thing they had ever been called on to decide since they been there, so they was glad to get something that made it look like they were doing something. He must be quite a fixer this Stimpson fellow. He got out of Nicaragua alive, lived through a Taft Cabinet, arrived in America two days ahead of a Phillipine Deligation looking for freedom.7
He seems to be quite a fellow.
Well we had some more argument started here lately. The Leviathan left here after being sold to private parties and they decided they would peddle a little Liquor on the way over to kinder help keep the Wolf from the Gangplank. It seems they are allowed to have seven hundred Bottles of Medicinal Joy Juice in case some of the passengers dident drink water. Well then the howl commenced coming in, and now the poor fellow that bought the Boat may have to switch it and put it under the Nicaragua flag instead of ours. They are not supposed to sell till they get twelve miles out. You have to bring enough of your own to last that long.
When this gets to you Congress will be in session again helping the farmers, so if you have a farm don’t sell it for there is no telling what a farm will be worth when we find the amount of relief they are to get. Why they may have the Federal Reserve give as much to the Farmer as they do to the Stock Market. That would make farms be worth more than General Motors.
Now that Marion Talley the opera Singer is turned agriculturist things look bright even without Congress.8
I can see Marion winning all the Hog calling Contests around among her mortgaged neighbors.
1Mary Louise Cecilia “Texas” Guinan, Texas-born stage and night club entertainer renowned for her conflicts with prohibition agents and her brash greeting to each customer: “Hello, sucker!”
2Myron Timothy Herrick, United States ambassador to France from 1912 to 1914 and 1921 to 1929; Republican politician from Ohio.
3James Thomas “Tom” Heflin, Democratic United States senator from Alabama from 1920 to 1931. Virulently anti-papist and anti-liquor, Heflin blamed Catholics for his son’s highly-publicized bout with alcohol.
4Charles Curtis, Republican vice president of the United States from 1929 to 1933. Curtis was the central figure in a social precedence controversy involving his half-sister and official hostess, Dolly Curtis Gann, and the matrons of Washington society.
5Emily Price Post, American writer and columnist, famous for her advice on manners and social etiquette; author of the bestseller Etiquette (1922).
6Henry Lewis Stimson, United States secretary of state from 1929 to 1933. Stimson earlier had served as secretary of war in the cabinet of William Howard Taft, as special presidential representative to Nicaragua, and as governor general of the Philippine Islands.
7William Howard Taft, Republican president of the United States from 1909 to 1913; chief justice of the United States Supreme Court from 1921 until his death in 1930.
8Marion Talley, American operatic soprano who created a minor sensation in 1926 by being selected at the age of nineteen for a role with the Metropolitan Opera of New York City. She “retired” in early 1929, purchasing a Kansas farm with her earnings as a singer.
WA331 April 28, 1929
PAUL REVERE HAD A RUNAWAY
Well all I know is just what little I read in the papers. Benn up among the Yankees in New England for a couple of weeks. They are mighty fine old folks, and they take a joke on themselves great too. I was kidding ’em about not making Coolidge a present of a home when he returned to the old State from serving as President. I really always felt like they ought to got Mr. Coolidge a nice home. They laughed heartily at my little quips on it, but no one started a collection. But they are mighty loyal, well read and a dandy audience.
I was here last week during the celebration of “Patriots Day,” that’s a thing they just have up here. It has something to do with the time when the English overestimated their fighting qualities and they started a Revolution. Well that’s the time Paul Revere unhitched an old Buggy Horse, jumped on him bareback and announced, “This is Paul Revere broadcasting from Bunker Hill Station, shut off your sets and grab a musket. The British are coming and if they don’t stop to get tea they are liable to be here any minute. This programme is being brought to you through the courtesy of George Washington, a Virginia Planter. A farmer that needs no relief. But just wants to clean the British out, and figures we can run it ourselves and cut out the overhead. Wake up Pilgrims, and shake a leg, and when you see a Red Coat coming don’t shoot till you see if they got white eyes. Any of you Birds know the road to Concord. Loan me a pair of spurs or I never will get anywhere. Good night Patriots, remember this is station B. H. (Bunker Hill) broadcasting Goo-oo-d Ni-g-h-t.”
Now I just want to show you how much smarter these New Englanders are than all the rest of us. We thought Paul was the only Western Union Messenger Boy that night, we had never heard of another one. (Not in Oklahoma History there ain’t.) Well there was another fellow, that worked a different territory that same night, his name was Dawes, and he had a Horse too.1
I don’t know where he went, I think he went down to Newport to see if he could interest any of the Millionaires in Local Government control. Now how many of you that knew that there was a Dawes that made the race? Course it attracted no more attention than a Vice President, but he did it. He had a long Corn Cob pipe and here was his appeal against Taxation without Representation, “Wake up there you Plymouth Rocks, and stop laying and go to crowing. Hell and Maria what do you think this is, a United States Senate? Get up and do something for your country. If you havent got a Country get a Gun and make you one. Come on, after fighting the Indians all these years, fighting the British will a fiesta. Hell and Maria, you think I am lopping through this Country in the middle of the night for nothing? If we can get the British out of here maby we can get the Senate Rules changed. Who’s got a pipe full of good smoking tobacco? I want you all to clean these British out back here, I don’t want to have to go out to my home in Chicago and bring them back here. They would kill all the British, and all the minute men too. How’s that road to Lexington now, have they still got those detours? Remember as I told you when I first gallopped up to the bar here and got off, the British are coming. If that’s of any particular interest to you. No thanks, had enough, got to be getting on. Goodnight everybody.”
Well now last week here in Boston on Patriots day April 19th, they went through this whole thing. It was a big Holiday up here. Well you might know it was a big Holiday when the Braves won two games. They had all the patriotic Societies out, and had a wonderful parade, and they reproduced Paul’s and Charley’s ride.2
Well Dawes he got lost, there was a traffic light against him so he started off another way, and the crowds along the way never did get a peek at him any more. He was supposed to have an escort. But none of them had ever made the route before, they were picked more for historical than geographical knowledge. Paul did a little better, he made the trip but his old barrelled headed Army Horse run away, and just delighted on running into where there was the most people located. This old Jug head had never heard bands playing and people hollering before. Some cops finally caught his horse, but Paul hadent had any time to yell the British are coming. He finally changed horses with an escort, and I think finally reached Concord in a Ford. So I guess if the war had been held this time, we would have lost it, so I doubt very much if our present generation is an improvement over the old Forefathers.
It’s quite a leap from anything historical to Congress. But did you see where already there has been over 1,000 Bills introduced in there? Now it was supposed to just be for Farm relief, but they got ’em in there for everything from Birth Control to Mass Production. Congressman Louie Ludlow from Ind., he used to be head of the press club in Washington and is a fine newspaper man.3
Well Louie’s contribution to farm relief is to do away with “Slugs” in beating vending machines. He figures if we can just prevent lead nickles, that it will pay every mortage in Indiana. Representative Fish of New York introduces a Bill to stop war.4
That’s an original idea. Another Representative wants a bill to stabilize money. It can’t ever change, no matter whether the Country is rich or poor, the money is the same. Bills to build over 300 bridges are in there. Those old Babies in there want something to get back into Congress over. Nothing beats a bunch of bridges as a National graft. Some Guy from Minnesota wants to make the home a “Nuisance” if liquor is found in there, and Linthicum of Maryland wants to make the Star Spangled Banner the National Anthem.5
And then they ask, “Will, where do you get your jokes from?”
1William Dawes, American revolutionary patriot who rode with Paul Revere on April 18, 1775, from Lexington towards Concord, warning residents of the approach of British troops.
2Charles Gates Dawes, United States ambassador to Great Britain from 1929 to 1932; Chicago financier, Republican politician, and former vice president of the United States. “Hell ’n Maria” was one of his favorite expressions.
3Louis Leon Ludlow, Democratic United States representative from Indiana from 1929 to 1949. As a correspondent for Indiana and Ohio newspapers, Ludlow was a member of the congressional press galleries for twenty-eight years prior to his election to Congress.
4Hamilton Fish, Jr., Republican United States representative from Maryland from 1911 until his death in 1932.
5John Charles Linthicum, Democratic United States representative from Maryland from 1911 until his death in 1932.
WA332 May 5, 1929
PEACE ON EARTH —— AND WAR IN
All I know is just what I read in the papers. Now let’s see what has taken place since I communed with you last week. Tom Heflin lost his encounter with the “Heirachy.”1
Tom wanted the Senate to go on record that it condemned the action of the Town of Brocton Mass for not paying strick attention to one of his adresses. Well he could have come nearer getting the Senate to go on record that they sympathised with Brocton. For Lord the Town of Brocton only had to listen to one, while the Senate never gets over ’em. Well anyhow this longwinded drawn-out thing afforded the one best line and laugh that has been pulled in there for this session. Senator Gillette of Mass told Tom, “The State of Mass. regrets it.2
The Town of Brocton regrets it. The Mayor regrets it, the Police regret it, and the Man that threw the bottle, and MISSED you, regrets it.”
Well farm Relief would get a little help in between. Grundy would try to get some higher tarriff on anything Manufactured in Pennsylvania.3
But Tom would bob up the next day during lull and say, “You’ve got to make this Country safe for United States Senators to speak in.”
Well we finished our Theatrical engagement up in Boston and are moving over to Philadelphia for a couple of weeks, then one week in Detroit and one more in Pittsburg and then on the old Plane and out “Where Men are beginning to be heard.” We had some laughs in the Theatre in Boston last week. One night Babe Ruth was in and I introduced him and his new Bride, and then sitting near him was Charles Francis Adams, Our new and very distinguished Secretary of the Navy, a real blue blood.4
The only living American that has had two American Presidents that he descended from, John Adams, and John Quincy Adams. Then I introduced them to each other and Babe got up and went over and shook hands with Adams. It was a big laugh and applause, then I told the audience you wouldent think after having the two men as great as these, One a Descendent of two Presidents and the other the greatest Sports favorite that we ever produced, you wouldent think we possibly could have a BIGGER man here tonight than either one of them, in fact, BIGGER than both of them put together. Well I just want to introduce you to the Giant of the Ringling show, and sure enough there he was.5
The Circus was to have opened there the next day. He was sitting in the back of a Box and no one had noticed him. It was one of the biggest laughs I ever heard in a Theatre. These Adams’es, and Lodges, and Lowells, they are just about the whole thing in the way of Tradition up there.
Well I see where we have offered some plan at a Dissarmament Conference over in Geneva and everybody is all excited about it. So I suppose we will be kidded into entering into another sinking. We are just about to live down the humiliation of that last one in 22. I told the Secretary of our Navy right from the stage, that I wished we had the biggest Navy in the World, the biggest Army, and by all means the biggest Aeroplane force, but have it understood with the taxpayers that they are ONLY TO BE USED ON THE HOME GROUNDS. Now how in the world will you tell me is there a better way to prevent war than that. Be ready for it and stay at home. When they know they can’t lick you they certainly are not coming away over here to try it. He applauded it, and I believe he thought it was all right. In fact it looks like the League of Nations could just about prevent war by deciding “Who starts a war?” Well just have the League pass the following resolution, “We consider the first Nation that sets military foot on the other is the starter of the war.” Now you put that on ’em, and they won’t be in such a hurry to grab up a lot of men and start prancing into Belgium, or somewhere. Then they can be as sore at each other as they want but they will know that the first one that invades the other is the starter of the war, and they will be leary of that, and as long as each one will be waiting for the other to start it, why neither one will want to carry the ultimate blame, so the first thing you know they will calmed down and meet on the line and have a drink. Personally I can’t think of anything that would encourage a war more than for a couple of Nations to know that they had Equal Navies. If you know your Navy is equal to the other fellows, you will always figure that your men are superior to theirs, so you are ready to go to any time with him. There is enough sportsmanship in every Country to want if they knew they had an equal break to take a try at the other. So this old thing of regulating Navies so they are equal is the Houie.
Did you ever notice how much more peaceful it is all-around when our Marines are at home instead of prowling around? Why if we keep at home awhile why we are liable to get out of the habit of wanting to send ’em away off every time we heard that some little Nation was about to pull off a local Amateur Revolution. I believe this fellow Hoover has been around the World so much that he won’t think it’s any novelty to have them away off in all those places.
Say here is one that Coolidge pulled when someone was telling him about Mr. Hoover moving the six White House saddle Horses away, and sending them back over to the Army Post. You know it had been reported how much this move of Hoover’s would save, the feed and care of the Horses, and when the fellow got through Coolidge said, “Guess they will quit eating when they get to the Army Post.” So as a matter of fact it dident save anything, and also the Mayflower going out of Commission, the Government has to pay all those men just the same, they are all Navy men.6
They just as well be on the Mayflower as the “Robert E. Lee.” We kinder thought Calvin might come down and see our little show while in Boston, But I guess the prices scared him out.
1Heflin (see WA 330:N 3) unsuccessfully sought Senate condemnation of a person who tossed a bottle at him following a Ku Klux Klan rally in Massachusetts in March 1929.
2Frederick Huntington Gillett, Republican United States senator from Massachusetts from 1925 to 1931; one-time congressman and speaker of the House.
3Joseph Ridgeway Grundy, American textile industrialist and banker; president of the Pennsylvania Manufacturers’ Association from 1909 to 1930. A leading protectionist, Grundy was elected as a Republican to the United States Senate in late 1929; he served for less
than one year.
4George Herman “Babe” Ruth, popular professional baseball player who achieved fame as a home run slugger with the New York Yankees from 1920 to 1935; inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1936. Charles Francis Adams, American lawyer and financier; United States secretary of the navy from 1929 to 1933.
5John Nicholas Ringling, wealthy American showman who with his several brothers entered the circus business in 1884, eventually assembling one of the world’s largest circuses.
6The Mayflower was the presidential yacht that Hoover decommissioned early in his administration as a move to cut expenses.
WA333 May 12, 1929
WILL TURNS LITERARY
Well all I know is just what I read in the papers, and I kinder went out of my way while I was up in the City of Culture week before last and I decided to improve myself literarily. So I says I got to do some real highbrow reading. I am sorter like Al Smith, I never was much on this Book reading, for it takes ’em so long to describe the color of the eyes of all the Characters.1
Then I like my sunsets from eyesight and not from adjectives. Congress has got more fiction in it in a day than Writers can think of in a year.
Old Henry the eight might have been a Bear according to the Book of the month Club.2
He broke loose from the Holy Church at Rome and went at it with nothing to back him but an Axe and a series of Wives. But listen, that’s five hundred years ago. Why old Henry with all his portfolio full of marriage certificates never saw the day he ever broke off relations with Rome any cleaner than Tom Heflin has right here in our own generation.3
Tom may lack the sex appeal that Henry had but he can go him two to one on denouncing qualities. He has got no Cardinal Wolsey to advise him.4
But the old Alabama Kleagle has handed him over some circumstantial evidence that has kept him on his feet more hours than Farm Relief has occupied. But being up in Boston why your mind naturally turns to “Higher things.” The week I was there they had just barred the “American Tragedy” from being sold over the Bar, And the Committee was then reading Pilgrims Progress, to see if there wasent some underlying meaning in it.
So I said well up here what Book can I get that I won’t be breaking any City ordinance, and at the same time will improve my mind, and I started looking through the adds and I saw a Girl sitting straddle of an old Gin case with her toes wrapped around the lower spokes of a steering wheel and her hands assisting her toes to guide the ship. Her hair was blowing in the breeze, and she had on one of those hats you wear with a slicker. But there was no strap under her chin, so I don’t know what held it till the photographer could get the Picture. The adds all said it was a true story of a Girl that went to Sea when she was eleven months old, and was finally Shanghied ashore at the age of seventeen. The adds had some samples of the cussing in it, and I wanted to see how Sea cussing compared with New York stage cussing during the past season, which really reached its heighth in high grade profanity. I guess there was more good straight away cussing this year than ever before. But most of it had been confined to scenes on land.
Well I go literary and say never mind all this Fiction, I want some facts, and all the things I had read about this book said here is the real McCoy. Here is a Gal that was Born in the Crows Nest, Weaned on a Porpoise, Cut her teeth on an Anchor, Learned about sex from the Statue of Liberty, Could spit in a Shark’s eye, and him under water. Her bottom was Whale hide, but her Heart was Gold. She could swim the Channell with a litter of Cats on her back, and never dampen a Kitty. The Northern Lights was nothing but a lightning Bug, and the Southern Cross was religious propganda. The Equator was an extension of the Dixie Highway. A storm at sea was music to her ears, and a Typhoon was a Buggy ride. A Shipwreck wasent even a punctured tire. She combed her hair with a live Shark’s tooth, and wore a couple of Octapuses for Garters.
She was just a female She Serpent that had vaulted up on deck and was ready to take out a stack in anything that come along from scuttling a Ship to poisening the ocean.
The Book had a time table on its folder and it told just when profanity, and Sharks’ insides, and murders, and loads of Guano, would be run onto each 15 minutes as you read the Book.5
Well I was going along on schedule, a little leary right from the jump as to how a Mother could part with a seven month old Baby Girl, But not knowing sea people much I thought well maby they part with their young young. When she would pull an extra scary one it might arouse your doubt, why she would drown you in Latitude and longitude, so fast you would overlook whether the thing could happen or not. Well anyhow I got through it, and I was a saying to myself that’s a pretty good tale even for a Able Bodied Male Seaman to go through. I was just a complimenting myself on what a great mental improvement it is to read Books, and that I must read more of these REAL life experiences. And the next morning a paper screams a headline across the page that they had just discovered the Boat out in Frisco tied up and rottening at the docks there, the one where she said sunk off Australia and she swam with the cats. They found the log of the boat, that’s sort of a history of it. Her Father had been Captain but he seems like he always had a weakness for a family of Females at sea. Her Mother and sisters had traveled on the boat more than she had, for they was older. Seems like it used to ferry parties of Girl Scouts from Frisco to Honolulu, and Sydney.
Why from what the log said it was men that would get lonesome on there for the companionship of other men. This old “Stitches” why they find out now that he was an old Dame, a kind of “Hostess.” She was the Texas Guinan of the Pacific.6
They are figureing out now where most of Joan’s Deep Seaing was on the Ferry from an Apartment in Jersey City over to her Publishers. And that profanity was all gathered from two trips to the “Front Page.”7
So it’s been an awful blow to me. Here I start in on my literery carreer and have my hopes shattered right on the first jump. How am I to know anything if I am not able to rely on the Publishers? How do I know that Shakespeare had a beard and wore knee breeches? I can only go by the pictures on the front of his books. Now wasent that funny that I should have my ideals shattered right on the first book I read? So me back to the Congressional Record where they ain’t supposed to be doing nothing but lying when they say it. I am going to look mighty throughly into Coolidge’s life before I start reading it.
1Alfred Emanuel “Al” Smith, Democratic political leader; governor of New York from 1919 to 1920 and 1923 to 1928; unsuccessful candidate for the presidency in 1928.
2Henry VIII, king of England from 1509 until his death in 1547; known for his break with the Catholic Church and his many wives.
3For Tom Heflin see WA 330:N 3.
4Thomas Wolsey, English prelate and statesman who served as Henry VIII’s lord chancellor and adviser.
5Cradle of the Deep, the romanticized tale of a young girl’s life on a South Sea schooner. Originally purported to be the autobiography of Joan Lowell (Mrs. Thompson Buchanan), the 1929 bestseller proved a hoax.
6For Texas Guinan see WA 330:N 1.
7The Front Page, a newspaper melodrama produced for Broadway in 1928 by Ben Hecht and Charles MacArthur and twice adapted for motion pictures.
WA334 May 19, 1929
‘PHILLY’ COPIES TULSA
Well all I know is just what I read in the Papers. There’s been an awful lot of printing in ’em lately but not much news. Personally I been over in old Philadelphia for a couple of weeks, and you would be surprised at the life the old Girl is showing. They are organizing and trying to raise $1,300,000 dollars to advertise Philadelphia, to make it known outside of sonambulastic circles. It’s always been known as one of the first places of where our Capitol was located, and it’s been fairly well established that Washington slept here in not only one but various beds.
The old Liberty Bell is here. It’s cracked but it’s here. Washington crossed the Delaware (with everybody rowing but him) somewhere near here (wherever the Delaware is). I don’t remember whether he crossed it to get to, or away from Phila. In fact I think the Constitution in its original form, (without amendments) was cooked up and signed here. In fact there has just been so much old History took place here that the place is practically saturated with our early scandal.
But what these boys is taking up this Million for is not to buy more Histories and distribute ’em among the night Clubs. It’s to try and live down this History. They don’t want it known that Washington slept here, what they want it known is that everybody here is not doing just what Washington did, sleeping here. They want it known there is more alarm clocks here than sleeping powders. They are not appealing to the poor straggler with “Nowhere to rest his weary head,” they are after the Tourist and the prospective business man that rest is the last thing he wants. In fact they are doing just what Tulsa, and Claremore, and Los Angeles did twenty years ago. They want to show you that the great Pennsylvania Railroad goes through here, but that it stops. They know that we know from our great learning at Kemper Military Academy that Benjamin Franklin started the first tabloid newspaper here and called it the Saturday Evening Post, and originated the idea of making the Story be continued over among the pages with the adds on ’em.
A story run it till it went by all the adds and then it was “Concluded in an early issue.” Franklin grabbed off all of William Penn’s advertising, and that kept him going till Wanamaker come along and opened up the first glorified Drug Store (a place where you sell everything).1
William Penn through this press sheet of Franklyn’s, become so well known that I was named after him. Course it was kinder second handed. I was named for the smartest Cherokee Chief we ever had. He had been named for William Penn, and he give me that and his too, William Penn Adair.2
So there is really some dignity about my name when I really cut loose and want to use it all.
William Penn got pretty well linked up in early Philadelphia Real Estate and tradition. He was just about the Boise Penrose of his day.3
Franklyn in this little American Mercury of his got to giving so much favorable publicity to George Washington and his dappled gray Horse. In fact it was in the Saturday Evening Post where the Cherry Tree Story first broke. It was originated by Lincoln just to show you could “Fool all of the people enough of the time to get away with it.” Well Washington made Franklyn Ambassador to France in return for this favorable publicity.
Franklyn made the best Ambassador since Alexander Hamilton, who wasent really an Ambassador but was the man that originated the “Put and take” system into our National Treasury. The Taxpayers put it in and the Politicians take it out. Hamilton was going good till he run into Aaron Burr, who wouldent pay his income tax, and that turned into a feud that had never before been equalled only by Andy Mellon and Jim Couzins.4
Burr and Hamilton had to use guns as the United States Senate had not been invented then as a means of attack. When Franklin went to Paris that left nobody to run the Saturday Evening Post, as Brisbane was working with Webster on a book called, “Don’t sell America short.”5
Well Hearst had not thought about selling it at all.6
He said, “I will keep it and some day I will worry Horace Greely and Munsey to death.”7
So Franklyn heard of a fellow out in what was called Chicago, (for want of more ammunition.) This fellow was named George Horace Lorimer.8
The George was for Washington the Horace for Greely and the Lorimer was a combined family contribution. He was then working for Armour.9
Those were the days when we eat meat and not lettuce sandwiches. Armour was doing fine in those days, there was no tarriff to help him or no Federal Reserve to handicap him. Big Bill Thompson was in good favor with the Court of St James.10
Sam Insull was in his infancy and the whole City of Chicago was happy.11
Lorimer come east with a double page colored add from Wrigley, and Sam Blythe.12
Sam Blythe had managed Dolly Madison’s campaign and knew as much about Politics as Alice Longworth.13
He lived a long and useful life and died when he quit drinking while listening to a Keynote speech at the Houston Democratic Convention.
But it’s these modern things that Phila wants known. They don’t want to drag up that old historical stuff of what the SusqueCentennial lost in 1926, what they charged the Government for Hog Island just to stable our silk shirts on away back in the war is not the things they want known. They want to coax some boats up the River. Their advertisements call it a Port of Call for European Liners, and they want to call some of them loud enough to get up here. It’s only a hundred miles down to the Ocean. But what’s a hundred miles to an add Writer?
There is very few Democrats here. That, if I was them, would be my main focus of attention. It’s the only State that only has ONE Senator. That should be a sales argument. It’s got all kinds of Baseball, Both the Athletics and the Phillies. It’s the only Town too tough for a Marine. Smedley Butler left here and joined the Bandits in China.14
But it’s a great old Town, in a great old State, the Cradle of Political Corruption.
1John Wanamaker, Philadelphia department store magnate and philanthropist; United States postmaster general from 1889 to 1893.
2William Penn Adair, Georgia-born Cherokee tribal leader.
3Boies Penrose, longtime Republican “boss” of Pennsylvania; United States senator from 1897 until his death in 1921.
4Andrew William Mellon, United States secretary of the treasury from 1921 to 1932; financier and industrialist from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. James Couzens, Republican United States senator from Michigan from 1922 until his death in 1936; industrialist and former mayor of Detroit.
5Arthur Brisbane, American newspaper writer and editor whose column, “Today,” appeared in more than 200 daily and 1,200 weekly newspapers. Brisbane, a leading booster of the United States, often wrote on the theme “Don’t sell America short.”
6William Randolph Hearst, powerful American publishing tycoon and Democratic politician; proprietor of a large chain of newspapers and magazines.
7Horace Greeley, nineteenth century American journalist and political leader; founder in 1841 of the New York Tribune. Frank Andrew Munsey, American publisher; owner of the New York Evening Sun and Evening Telegram newspapers and Munsey’s and Argosy magazines.
8George Horace Lorimer, American editor and publisher; editor in chief of the Saturday Evening Post from 1899 until his death in 1937.
9Philip Danforth Armour, American industrialist; founder and head of the meatpacking firm Armour & Company.
10William Hale “Big Bill” Thompson, Republican mayor of Chicago from 1915 to 1923 and 1927 to 1931. A devoted Anglophobe, Thompson was a founder of the “America First” movement.
11Samuel Insull, II, Chicago public utilities magnate with vast holdings throughout the Midwest. Overexpansion caused the collapse of his empire in the 1930s.
12William Wrigley, Jr., Chicago industrialist who in 1891 founded William Wrigley, Jr. & Company, manufacturer of chewing gum. Samuel George Blythe, American editor and political writer; longtime contributor to the Saturday Evening Post.
13Alice Roosevelt Longworth, daughter of President Theodore Roosevelt, wife of Speaker of the House Nicholas Longworth, and prominent Washington hostess.
14Smedley Darlington Butler, United States Marine Corps officer. A former head of the Philadelphia Department of Saftey, Major General Butler commanded the Marine Corps detachment in Nicaragua in the 1920s.
WA335 May 26, 1929
QUIET ON THE POTOMAC
Well all I know is just what I read in the papers, and in addition you have to do a little outside observing or you won’t know much. I was in Philadelphia for a couple of weeks and I went so far as to decide to spend Sunday there. I stood it till about two o’clock in the afternoon when I discovered that I was the only one there, so I called up the Airport and asked Bob Hewitt, a splendid Pilot, if he had anything that would get me out of this isolation.1
He says where do you want to go? I says, Well let’s go to Washington. He says, “Well there is not much doing in Washington on Sunday either.” I told him I knew that outwardly Washington was pretty dead on Sunday, but inside the homes there was many a “Conference” and “Huddle” and deep plans against the taxpayer.
So it was a beautiful afternoon and we flew down to Washington in about an hour and a quarter, landed at Bohling field. Just missed quite a sight as there was 18 big Martin Bombers had gone out of there on their way to Dayton Ohio for a big war maneuvers they held there. Met an old Marine Pilot there, that said, “I got it in for you. When we was fighting down in Nicaragua you wrote a piece about us going out and shelling the Nicaraguans from our Planes, and they was fighting us back by throwing sticks and rocks. Say listen Comedian, I wish you had been in one of those Planes some time. We have come in with more Machine gun bullets through our wings and fuselage than you ever told jokes about Coolidge. Don’t you think those Guys dident have modern guns, and listen there was no place to land either.”
Well I guess the Boy was about right at that. Course we dident like the idea of us fighting them with Planes and them have to defend themselves with nothing but what we thought was bean shooters. But it was the system that sent them there that most of us was hollering and not the Boys who really had to do the fighting. You know you can be killed just as dead in an unjustified war, as you can in one protecting your own home. We lost lots of fine men down there, for what? To make Nicaragua elections as pure as Chicago’s? We are always going out to catch some native Bandit like Villa, or Sandino, and if we caught him we wouldent have anything to do with him.2
After a Senate Investigation he would wind up in vaudeville. You can’t go back in those native mountains and Jungles and catch one lone man.
Somebody killed Arnold Rothstein in a big hotel in the heart of New York and we can’t even catch him, so what’s the use sicking the Marines on somebody away off in those bush League Countries, where if we lose ONE Marine we are loser more than if we had caught old Sardino and even sentenced him to our Senate.3
So I am glad for once in our lives we got our Marines back home. I know they are laying off waiting for some war somewhere. There is one in Alfagistan, or Alfalfa, or some joint away over near Turkey. But we got nobody in Washington that knows where it is, so the Marines will have to stay till Hoover tells the war Department where this place is.
Well before I forget it, you must fly over Washington. It’s beautiful. Flew right down over where the old “Mayflower” used to dock, in the days when we had a real Sailor in the White House, a man that knew how to take his recreation in a gentlemany way, with the old Cap and white “Panties” on, not with a pair of rubber boots, and can full of worms.4
Went up to the Willard Hotel and staked me out a room, picked up quite a bit of local scandal from the clerks, who know more about what’s going on down there than anyone. Went out to “Friendship” to see the McCleans.5
They got a thirteen year old Boy, “Jock” named after their race horse, and say he beats grown men Tennis Players.6
But the hit of the outfit is the little Girl, Emily, about six.7
She must have 15 dogs, no two anywhere near alike, all sizes, all colors all breeds. There is just sixty legs equally distributed among fifteen dogs, all following this kid. Went to Mrs. Longworth’s and made my jokes string out till after Dinner had been served.8
Her and I tried to get some news out of Nick as to just what relief would be delt out to the Farmers.9
He just kinder smiled. He had been there a good many years, and he had never seen the farmers go away with anything yet. But he hoped they would this time. He seemed sorry that the Tarriff had been dragged in as he said that was just like argueing religion, no people of opposite beliefs ever agreed. Somebody asked him how long he thought this special term would last and he said, “See the Chaplin, he is in more direct communication with God than I am.”
Nick was against the Die-Benture, and said it would Die in his hall of Horrors.10
Saw the two branches of fun and amusement operate the next day. Some Guy in Nick’s fun factory was trying to make the “Star Spangled Banner” the National Anthem. I couldent see where the Farmers would get much nourishment out of that. So I went over to the Senate, The Mack Sennett end of our Legislative Body.11
Brookhardt of Iowa was supposed to denounce Fess of Ohio.12
Well as everybody knew there was plenty of subject material for him to work on, why the place was packed.
Well in the meantime, Mr. Hoover had got ’em to the White House and fed ’em the day before, and you feed a Senator and he is just like an old stuffed house cat, he is no good for practical denouncing. You got to keep ’em hungry to make ’em work good. In the meantime Alice and Mrs. Gans happened to come up on the same Elevator and into the Senate Gallery and sit down together.13
Well Farm Relief, National Anthem relief, Smoot and his Sugar relief, it all vanished.14
If Mabel Willerbrandt had been caught going into Texas Guinans with Bishop Cannon it wouldent have caused any more of a commotion.15
What a Senator does is of no interest in Washington for he will do the same thing over again tomorrow. But what Alice does at anytime is news to the World. If Tom Heflin had been caught at Mass it couldent have been more front pagy.16
So I happened to hit the old Aquarium on a day when the fish wasent doing much but the Visitors saved a bad show.
1Robert P. “Bob” Hewitt, licensed transport pilot from Philadelphia.
2For Pancho Villa see WA 326:N 5. Augusto César Sandino, Nicaraguan revolutionary who supported a liberal insurrection in Nicaragua in 1926 and waged guerrilla warfare from 1927 to 1932 against United States Marines who intervened in the conflict.
3Arnold Rothstein, prominent New York City gambler and racketeer who was murdered in a Manhattan hotel room in November 1928. The case was never solved.
4For the Mayflower see WA 332:N 6.
5Edward Beale “Ned” and Evalyn Walsh McLean, Washington society figures. Ned McLean was the publisher of the Washington Post.
6John Roll “Jock” McLean, eldest son of Ned and Evalyn McLean.
7Evalyn Washington “Emily” McLean, only daughter of the McLeans.
8For Alice Roosevelt Longworth see WA 334:N 13.
9Nicholas Longworth, Republican United States representative from Ohio from 1903 to 1913 and 1915 until his death in 1931; speaker of the House from 1925 until his death.
10Under the debenture plan for farm relief, exporters of agricultural products would receive debenture certificates that would equal one-half the tariff duty assessed upon a comparable import.
11Mack Sennett, Canadian-born American motion picture producer and director, known as the “king of comedy”; creator in 1913 of the famous Keystone Kops.
12Smith Wildman Brookhart, Republican United States senator from Iowa from 1922 to 1926 and 1927 to 1933; member of the maverick progressive faction of the Republican party. Simeon Davison Fess, Republican United States senator from Ohio from 1923 to 1935. Fess and Brookhart were feuding over Brookhart’s alleged lack of support for the Hoover administration.
13Alice Longworth and Dolly Curtis Gann (see WA 330:N 4) were embroiled in a bitter battle over the social precedence issue.
14Reed Smoot, Republican United States senator from Utah from 1903 to 1933; Mormon church official and Utah sugar beet producer; proponent of high tariffs, especially on foreign sugar.
15For Mabel W. Willebrandt see WA 327:N 2; for Texas Guinan see WA 330:N 1. James Cannon, Jr., bishop in the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, from 1918 until his death in 1944; an ardent and active prohibitionist.
16For Tom Heflin see WA 330:N 3.
WA336 June 2, 1929
WILL HAS READ ANOTHER BOOK!
Well all I know is just what I read in books. You remember a few weeks ago I was telling you about starting in to improve myself with some book learning and I started in on that Girl’s book “The Cradle of the Deep.”1
She was the Girl that would just walk up and slap a Shark in the face if he started pulling any wisecracks at her. Well buying that Book got me into a Book Store. Well I had no idea there was as many books as there must be. Half the world that don’t know what the other half is doing well they are writing books. Busy men that you would think would have something important to do, have got some book that they have written.
Well I had heard in a round about way that Henry the 8th was a having a revival year, and as I was headed for Hollywood for a couple of years I says to myself I will read about old Henry, and see where all these Movie gang got their idea.2
I knew a little about him for years ago in Ziegfeld Follies we had a Shakespeare revival.3
(All the sketches were about things he had written about.) And Sam Hardy the fellow that is so good out in talking Pictures, he was Henry 8th, and we had six beautiful girls as his wives.4
Marion Davis I remember was one of them and she had one line to speak, “And a hell of a King was he.”5
And I always did say I am going to read about this old Bird, if Congress and Heflin, and Reed Smoot and his sugar tarriff will give me time.6
There was a fellow named Hackett, they said he had spent practically a lifetime, (course everybody has their own idea of what a lifetime in England is) just working on material for this book7
Well I don’t know how long he spent. But he sure come out with something. Talk about suppressing books. I would think they would extinguish this one in England. Not because the book is bad, but this old Henry, Why if the English nobility have gone down in a direct line, and if King Edward and George, and The Prince of Wales are all direct descendants of that old reprobate, I would rise up and say, Folks you got me wrong, I am not of that strain at all, He was no forefather of mine.8
Why if somebody told all those things about one of my ancestors, I would take it up with the Al Capone gang and I wouldent care how much it cost me to extinguish him I do it.9
This old Henry was just an old fat big-footed chuchled-headed Baby. He had an older brother named Arthur.10
Oldest brothers got everything in those days, a younger Brother was just a Democrat, he had to take what was left. This Arthur wasent well and he dident know much even when he felt good. England wasent much of a country. It stood just about like the Red Sox in the American League. They wanted to marry this Prince Arthur off to somebody with a pedigree. They looked in the Stud book and found there had been a filly colt sired in Spain a few years ahead of Arthur, but that whos mating might add to the prestige of a fast slipping Organization, so they got ahold of Queen Isabella of Spain.11
She was about the Mabel Willerbrandt of that administration.12
There was a King along with her, I think it was Ferdinand.13
But they kept him sitting on the bench season after season. This Isabella is the one that a Dago from Italy come up and got her to back the first non-stop flight of the Atlantic. He went in for safety, he wanted a three-motored job, he wouldent take a chance on one ship going dead on him, so he made her fix him up with three. He missed the whole of the American Continent, but found San Domingo. The next man to find it five hundred years later was Charley Dawes and a Commission of financial experts.14
For Dawes discovery he was made Ambassador to the tea parlor of St. James.
Well this Isabella not only had jewels to pawn to back these cross-country tours, but she had children to distribute around where they would bring in the most revenue. She had landed one in France as a king’s wife, and one in Rome, (whoever had it that day). When Nations in those days had nothing else to do they would take Rome, then sit and pray for somebody to come and take it off their hands.
Well they had a Daughter Catherine, so about the best they could do with her was an offer from England.15
That was kinder like slumming for it dident mean much to Spain who was the General Motors in those days. But they sent her over and married her to Arthur, who I think was about fourteen years old. They wanted to get him settled down before he had a chance to start running around too much. Well Arthur was disgusted with the whole proceedings, and to get even with all of them, he just died.
Well that brought this old round fat-headed boy into the proceedings. For a second Son in England only has one chance in the world, and that’s for the older one to die. So that was Henry’s first good break early in life. He not only inherited the direct line to the King but he took over all Prince Arthur’s estate, including a wife. In order for Henry not to marry a widow, why they dug up a Guy named Woolsey.16
He was a Lobbyist to Rome and the Pope, and anything like old Marriage ceremonies, or dates or deeds, why he could arrange and change them to fit the times, so he thought of the bright idea of saying that Prince Arthur and Catherine were never married, that it was two other fellows. So Henry took her over. I think he was about twelve. He had to start in marrying early for he had a lot of marrying to do. About all you could say for him was that he was big. If he had lived in these days he would have been a wrestler, or a Doorman outside some New York Hotel.
Catherine couldent speak English and he couldent speak Spanish so there was no chance of an argument.
His Father whoever it was, I forget his number, (you know they have numbers on these Kings like they do on race horses) well I forgot whether it was a George the 7th, or Edward the 11th. Well anyhow he died, and left young King Henry a disease in one leg and Cardinal Woolsey, that’s the only two things he willed him. Well Catherine seemed to have been all right as a wife for a Prince of Wales. But for a King, well she just wasent the type. No male heir had been born, and of course everybody was to blame but Henry. To have a Girl baby in those days was not only a total loss but practically a social disaster. It wasent that Boys were anymore comfort to you, but if there was no heir to follow up the graft might slip out of your Families hands and into some other. It was the days of high ideals and square dealing.
Well lookout now the story is getting hot. Ann Boeyln was a local Vamp, and don’t fail to follow up and read how Ann took Henry.17
She made all the fat go to his head, so don’t fail to read the greatest love, graft, corruption, murders, wars, and be-headings galore. Remember History in minature, you don’t have to read. Let me do your learning for you. Remember 15 minutes every Sunday with Professor Rogers, and you will be able to be the life of the Party at any Rotary, Kiawanis, Or Lions luncheon. Remember next week, Anne, two more Katherines, and a Jane.
1For Cradle of the Deep see WA 333:N 5.
2For Henry VIII see WA 333:N 2.
3Florenz “Flo” Ziegfeld, Jr., American theatrical producer, best known for the Ziegfeld Follies. First produced in 1907, these elaborately -staged musical revues featured a bevy of beautiful chorus girls and many of the leading stage performers of the day. Rogers appeared with the Follies from 1916 to 1925.
4Sam Hardy, American actor featured on stage in the early 1920s and in scores of motion pictures in the 1920s and early 1930s.
5Marion Davies, blonde American comedienne who enjoyed a long starring career from 1917 to 1937 in vaudeville and motion pictures.
6For Tom Heflin see WA 330:N 3; for Reed Smoot see WA 335:N 14.
7Francis Hackett, Irish-born American novelist and biographer whose works include Henry the Eighth (1929).
8Edward VII, king of Great Britain and Ireland from 1901 until his death in 1910. George V, king of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from 1910 until his death in 1936. Edward Albert, prince of Wales from 1911 until his succession to the British throne in 1936; extremely popular as a bachelor prince.
9Alphonse “Scarface Al” Capone, notorious Chicago gangster leader who became a symbol of lawlessness in the 1920s.
10Arthur, prince of Wales and eldest brother of Henry VIII; died in 1502.
11Isabella I, queen of Castile from 1474 until her death in 1504; chief benefactor of Christopher Columbus and his expeditions to the New World. By her marriage to Ferdinand of Aragon in 1469, the modern nation of Spain was founded.
12For Mabel W. Willdebrandt see WA 327:N 2.
13Ferdinand II, king of Aragon from 1479 until his death in 1516; joint sovereign of Castile with his wife, Isabella I.
14Dawes (see WA 331:N 2) headed a special commission in Santo Domingo in 1929 to audit the finances of the Dominican government.
15Catherine of Aragon, daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain; first queen of Henry VIII; abandoned by Henry in 1531 after she failed to produce a male heir.
16For Thomas Wolsey see WA 333:N 4.
17Anne Boleyn, mistress of Henry VIII. She secretly married King Henry in 1533, prompting the nullification of his marriage to Catherine of Aragon.
WA337 June 9, 1929
KING HENRY’S WIVES
All I know is just what I read in history. Last Sunday our lesson was Henry 8th, the John Barrymore, Jack Gilbert, Mussolini, Heflin, and John Roach Stratton all rolled into one.1
I told you about his first wife, Catherine of Arragon.2
Arragon translated from our old College days latin means, “Somewhere in Spain.” Well Henry just “lost his taste for Catherine.” He was trying to raise him a bunch of Boy Babies and Catherine’s inclination ran more to the effeminate.
Now we get Anne Boelyn.3
Ann was the Greta Garbo, Peggy Joyce, type.4
Catherine was a devout Catholic, and dident believe in a divorce. But Ann could regulate her religion and her morals to fit the situation. She just said, “If this big fat round headed Bird is going to start in on a series of promiscious weddings, why I better get in early, while he is really only an Amateur.”
But wait a minute, before we get to Ann, we got to stop and do something for Mary Boelyn, Ann’s sister four years older.5
Mary had a husband named Carey.6
But what’s husband between friends? Henry give him a job, it says, in the Court where he could see his own wife and Henry. I don’t know what job Mary had at the court, but it was nothing trivial for her and Henry raise a baby Boy, Carey was still around there. But Henry was the “Head Man.”
Now Ann comes in. Ann was nineteen, “Hen” was 35. Catherine his wife was 41. Now who of the two will win? You said it.
Ann had already been stuck on a young Noble named, Percy.7
But he was kinder of the drugstore type. This Cardinal Woolsey who was really the William Borah of that administration, He was the one that King Henry kept promising that he would see that he would be made Pope at the next vacancy.8
Well Woolsey had the backing of Hen but he lacked the vote of some 55 Cardinals. If it hadent been for that little oversight he might have been elected. Henry was for him on the platform of “Divorce relief.” Clement the Pope couldent see any reason why Henry should have a spare wife when he already had one, but if Henry could make Woolsey Pope he could have have given him a bill of sale to go out and marry who and what he wanted.9
Why there is practically no telling who all Henry would have married.
No woman would have been safe from becoming Queen of England. Woolsey would go to Rome when a Pope would die with what Henry thought would be enough votes, But some other King from France or Spain would send an entry with more “Doubloons” and before poor old Woolsey could cummunicate with Henry to make another Campaign donation, why the new Pope would be elected. Radio, or even a good Bicycle would have been a godsend to Woolsey in those trying hours. But it just looked like Woolsey was a Democrat in a Republican administration. So when Henry the 8th saw that Rome was going to veto his divorce bills, why Henry and Woolsey started a religion of their own.
It wasent exactly a free love religion, But they would listen to reason in case some “Gentleman” run onto a younger Lady friend. Had Rome given Henry a divorce there would have been no Church of England, For Henry wasent particular about what religion it was, all he wanted was, “Bigger and better Divorces.” So this Anne Boelyn really should be their Patron Saint. She not only started a row, but a Religion.
Henry kinder suggested to Ann that there really dident have to be any marriage ceremony, But this Anne had seen where her sister Mary had finished when there had been no wedding bells. So she just kindly informed the old King that there would be a session with the Justice of the Peace before he started any of his funny business.
This Anne lived in 1529 just four hundred years ago, but Boy she knew her Onions. She not only knew her Onions but her King.
Henry started a couple of wars thinking maby that would attract some attention to him and his Country and make it look so important that Rome would have to listen to reason. That’s when he issued that famous historic statement, “My Kingdom, My Kingdom for a divorce.” Anne stood pat, and the Catholic church lost England, which was of such little importance to them that it was about like Hoover losing Rhode Island. Martin Luther over in Germany was kinder kicking for a minority religion at this time, and I guess that’s really about where Henry got his idea from.10
Luther dident want to get married again, he just wanted to get free.
Well when he got his own Court and made his own laws, why of course he said that Catherine was not married to him. He had it annulled on the grounds that he had never seen Anne Boelyn when he married Catherine. Mistaken identity. So he grabs off Anne, and leaves Catherine and his daughter Mary, marries Anne and in five months she has a baby and it’s a Girl so he starts looking around again.11
This baby was Elizabeth, that we are later to hear so much of.12
What happened to Anne? The Ax. What had she done? Nothing. But Henry had run onto Jane Seymour, and in the meantime Catherine had died of a broken heart, so his batting average was met two, defeated two.13
Here is what Anne Boelyn said, “I heard say the Executioneer is very good, and I have a little neck.” That night Henry give a big party, he had found a better way than to divorce ’em. He married Jane who dident have much to recommend her outside of just being of the female gender. Well they hadent any more than got home from the church till they had a baby, and it was a boy, and she died at once, which was fortunate for her, for he was already in communication with Germany to import a new wife from over there. Her name was Anne of Cleves.14
His Ministers had picked her from a Holbein Portrait, so they brought her over and I will say one thing for old Henry, he had no conscience but he did have judgement.15
He went to the docks to meet Anne from Germany, and got one flash at her, and chopped off Cromwell’s head for being such a bad judge of beauty.16
But it looked like it would strengthen the Kingdom with Europe if he married her, so he shut his eyes and went at it. She had been what the Japanese call a Picture bride, all they see is the picture. But Holbein was a painter, not a camera. If Cameras had been in use it would have saved Henry that marriage. One snap shot with a No. 2 Brownie of her, would have kept her right at home. She had a lot of breeding but no class. She was a Princess 31 years old; she made up in virtue what she lacked in charm. Well Henry had never been very high on virtue. What he wanted was beauty, and how!! The only English word she could say was “Ja, ja.”
And Henry dident know what that was. Neither do I.
Cromwell said, “Yes, me Lord, but she hath a Queenly manner.” “Hen” wisecracking back, “Well she don’t need it to protect her.” She missed beheading, by his divorcing her and sending her home.
Now we get Katheryn Howard, a cousin of Anne Boelyn’s.17
She went to the block with these kind words, “I die Queen of England, But I would rather die the wife of a Culpepper,” (I wonder if he was any relation to the Virginia Culpeppers who owned a Court House).18
Well that dident make Henry feel any too good, to know that he wasent in as good favor as Culpepper, so he just hunted up Cul-pepper and off with his bean. Oh what a cheerful little ancestor our folks that come over on the Mayflower had in this Gentleman Henry.
Well he was death on Katherines. He gets another one, only they all spell their name different. This last one is Katherine Parr.19
She was a motherly kind of a soul and they do say, (and all hoped it was true) that she poisoned him, anyhow she beat him to the Ax. She had been married twice before, and you got to learn something in that time, course Henry had her Six to three, but her and that English Grog bumped him off before he could get her. She buried him and then married the man of her choice which was No. 4 for her. And then we say “What’s our Country coming too, we are getting worse and worse.”
Well it looks to me the only safe man in those days was the Ax man. So I just want to meet some Colonial Dame now that likes to claim she can trace her ancestors back to the Tudors. But don’t miss Henry the 8th by Hackett.20
They say it’s the best written book of this Generation. It’s the best one I ever read next to the Illiterate Digest, and my new one coming out called, “Ether and me.”
1For Henry VIII see WA 333:N 2. John Barrymore, distinguished American stage and screen actor; member of one of the foremost American families of actors. John Gilbert, American motion picture actor who first achieved success as a romantic leading man in 1924 in His Hour. Gilbert’s career was cut short by the advent of “talkies” in the late 1920s. Benito Mussolini, dictator of Italy from 1922 to 1943; founder and leader of the Fascist movement. For Tom Heflin see WA 330:N 3. John Roach Straton, Baptist ministerial leader from New York City who gained national prominence as a fundamentalist, prohibitionist, and anti-papist.
2For Catherine of Aragon see WA 336:N 15.
3For Anne Boleyn see WA 336:N 17.
4Greta Garbo, Swedish motion picture actress. Garbo, noted for her haunting beauty and sultry sexuality, arrived in Hollywood in 1926, where she soon became one of the highest paid performers in films. She retired in 1942. Peggy Hopkins Joyce, American vaudeville, stage, and screen actress whose six marriages and countless engagements brought her much publicity.
5Mary Boleyn, older sister of Anne Boleyn and mistress of Henry VIII.
6William Carey, husband of Mary Boleyn and attendant to Henry VIII.
7Henry Percy, suitor of Anne Boleyn and son of the earl of Northumberland.
8For Thomas Wolesy see WA 333:N 4. William Edgar Borah, Republican United States senator from Idaho from 1907 until his death in 1940; powerful chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
9Clement VII, pope of the Roman Catholic Church from 1523 until his death in 1534. Clement refused to sanction the divorce of Henry VIII from Catherine of Aragon.
10Martin Luther, German religious reformer; professor at the University of Wittenburg from 1511 to 1546; father of the Reformation in Germany.
11Mary I (Mary Tudor), daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon; queen of England and Ireland from 1553 until her death in 1558.
12Elizabeth I, only child of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn; queen of England and Ireland from 1558 until her death in 1603.
13Jane Seymour, third wife of Henry VIII.
14Anne of Cleves, German-born fourth wife of Henry VIII.
15Hans Holbein the Younger, German portrait and historical painter; court artist to Henry VIII.
16Thomas Cromwell, earl of Essex, English statesman who held many posts under Henry VIII, including lord privy seal and lord great chamberlain. He was beheaded in 1540.
17Catherine Howard, fifth wife of Henry VIII; beheaded in 1542 for adultery.
18Thomas Culpepper, cousin of Catherine Howard with whom he had an adulterous relationship.
19Katherine Parr, sixth and last wife of Henry VIII.
20For Francis Hackett see WA 336:N 7.
WA338 June 16, 1929
SATISFYING THE SHRINERS
Well all I know is just what I read in the papers. The best thing that was out of the papers in years was the Lindbergh Wedding.1
The old Boy certainly hung one on ’em. Talk about embarrassing moments, I can think of none that must have equalled all those Camera men and Reporters that were standing out at the Morrow’s front gate and Lindy and Ann drove out waved at ’em and drove on off. The gang dident even stop shooting craps long enough to notice ’em.
They just figured “Off for another ride.” Then three hours later have some one come out and announce to you, “They have married, boys, and that was their departure on their honeymoon that you just witnessed a short time ago. Too bad you was too busy to follow them.”
The Guys started eating their cameras, reporters were wondering where their next jobs were coming from. Well, they hounded ’em into it. The press wouldn’t give the family a minute’s peace since the engagement was announced.
Now, instead of having pages and pages of pictures of the bridal couple as they walk to the altar, why all they can do is dig up old ones showing him on his arrival in France, or flying the air mail to St. Louis. Tunney has the right idea, get on an island in the middle of the Mediterranean, even if you have to be pestered with Bernard Shaw.2
But at least there is no tabloids after you.
Now what else we had? We was pestered for a week out here in California with the Shriners. That’s a funny trait of Human Nature, especially American nature. You wouldent think a bunch of what is ordinarily considered a fairly smart type of men, would leave their comfortable homes, families, business, and right in the midst of a summer, gang together on hot trains, loaded in like sheep, and for four and five days cross the continent, just to get to wear badges and march in the heat.
Everywhere they move it’s a shove. Gang up in hot hotel lobbies. Do everything that is against all the laws of ease and comfort that we are supposed to be such a martyr, too. But they just eat it up, men that when there is no convention on have pretty fair intelligence and dignity. But just let a band start playing and give one a Fezz, and a badge and he is practically useless for the rest of the season.
But they do have a lot of fun, and it’s really a good thing for ’em, for if it wasn’t for fool things like that, they would all get too serious and business like. They are a great bunch, about the best I guess of the noisy organizations. There is some live bunches among them. It always struck everyone odd that Philadelphia should always furnish about the livest and most up-to-date Shrine bunch of all, LuLu Temple to the Shrine is just about what Chaplin is to the Movies.3
My own Shrine, Akdar of Tulsa, Oklahoma, a branch of the Claremore Lodge, they was just about as live a bunch as any. And by the way Claremore would be an ideal town for them to meet in another year or so. We are getting a fine Hotel there where they can rub badges against each other. We are building the only Indian Hospital in the United States right there in Claremore. Well these Shriners act like Indians when they are on a convention, so we will take ’em right out there and sober ’em up.
We made some pretty good real estates sales to ’em while here that week. We guarantee a Screen star with every lot. We turned on the “Unusual Weather” for ’em. Mabel Willebrandt layed off ’em, while here.4
The City Council got all the Rackiteers together and said, “Now Boys, go easy, keep the prices without reason. Make it up in amount sold. Remember two quarts at a fair price will make you as much as one Quart at an exorbitant figure. And of course you know it costs you no more to produce two than one, and the authorities will see that the overhead is kept within reason. Cost you no more for protection for a thousand quarts than one, so what we want to do is to send ’em away satisfied.”
So I will say this, that everything went off fine. There was no kick on prices. Course there was a little hollering on quality. But the cheap price enables the purchaser to procure enough quantity, that he soon dident notice the quality. So all in all everything was handled mighty nice, and they finally got ’em all carried to the station out of town. Course nobody got on the right train, but as long as we got ’em out of town why our responsibility ended. It don’t make much difference where one is anyhow. A Seattle Guy might just as well wake up in Jacksonville as at home; his summer is spoiled anyhow. But they are all dragging back home now and will start resting to get ready for their next vacation.
Well we better get some Comedy in this Article, so let’s get to Congress quick. Hoover put one over on ’em, when it commenced to get hot in Washington a couple of weeks ago, why they thought well we will just adjourn and go home for the summer and come back when it’s cool and take this up. Hoover says, “Who is going to adjourn to whose home till it’s cool?”
He just told ’em you stay right here and either give these Farmers relief, or something that looks like relief to them. But you are not going to meet here and just do a lot of argueing and then just because it’s hot go home. So now he has ’em there he is going to make ’em stick till they do something.
The Die-benture thing looks like it’s about washed up.5
The Gans vs. Longworth case is about over.6
The tariff bill, settling that is just like argueing over “who won the war.”
Mr. Hoover sneaks out every Saturday and catches enough fish to last through the week. Mrs. Hoover went up to Radcliffe College and pinch hit for the President and made a splendid speech, that’s about the first time we have had that, and she is liable to be in great demand.7
All invitations now will read, “Either you or your wife will be acceptable.” But Lord I guess to fill all the invitations that he gets he would have to have as many wives as a Movie Star.
And speaking of the Movies, they are going full blast out here, all “Noisies.” Everybody that can’t sing has a double that can, and everybody that can’t talk is going right on and proving it. You meet an actor or girl and in the old days where they would have just nodded and passed by, now they stop and start chattering like a parrott. Weather, politics, Babe Ruth, anything just to practice talking, and they are so busy ennunciating that they pay no attention to what they are saying.8
Everything is “Annunciation.” I was on the stage 23 years and never heard the word or knew what it was.
1Charles Augustus Lindbergh, American aviator who made the first solo, nonstop transatlantic flight in 1927. In June 1929, Lindbergh married Anne Spencer Morrow, daughter of Ambassador Dwight W. Morrow (see WA 325:N 8).
2James Joseph “Gene” Tunney, American boxer who reigned as world heavyweight champion from 1926 until his retirement in 1928. George Bernard Shaw, leading British playwright, novelist, and literary critic. Among his works are The Devil’s Disciple and Pygmalion.
3Charles Spencer “Charlie” Chaplin, legendary English-born comedian who starred in several classic American and British films. He was widely known for his portrayal of the “Little Tramp.”
4For Mabel W. Willebrandt see WA 327:N 2.
5For the debenture plan see WA 335:N 10.
6For the Gann-Longworth controversy see WA 330:N 4 and WA 335:N 13.
7Lou Henry Hoover, wife of President Herbert Hoover.
8For Babe Ruth see WA 332:N 4.
WA339 June 23, 1929
WALES SETTLES DOWN
Well all I know is what I read in the papers. What do you know about the Prince of Wales getting married?1
Looks like the Kid is going to settle down. You remember a couple of lessons back I was telling you about old Henry the 8th doing all his rough and tumble marrying, Well you know these Titled Birds seem to have one tradition that they are pretty jealous of, and that is that it is bred into them to try and cop off a Princess if possible.2
Course sometimes the Boys go out among the plebians and take a spouse to wife, but they just practically ruin themselvs with the rest of their family.
We had a lot of Gals over here that went practically haywire when the Prince was over here, and they would practically cut off a leg to even get to dance with him, and if he had been out strictly for money I expect he could have picked up more over here than anywhere else in the world. So it does go to their credit that they don’t always go out for a monetary consideration. It’s just as I tell you, it’s this “Grab off a Princess” idea that is so deeply rooted in them, that they are always out for that first. Now take two or more Princesses, and let one of them possess a little more of the World’s goods than the other. I am not saying that that would make any difference in his choice, but she would be the one that he would pick. Course that may be accidental but it always happens, so there is a chance that it is premeditated.
Here is the way the whole thing is done. King George and Queen Mary have one of the Privy council bring in a Directory of all the living royal Families, that are really operating now.3
When Russia and Germany dropped out that almost ruined the Directory; they had to tear out about 20 pages. I don’t care how royal your blood is, and how far your breeding goes back, if you are not at the present time employed in the business of ruling, why there is no more thought of marrying into your family than we have if all the members of a family happen to be at the time incarcerated in a jail.
Now there is just thousands of Russians that are eligible and their breeding is as about as it ever was, but as far as matrimony with some reigning family they are just what you might call null and void. England is especially handicapped in this present crisis, as they have always used Germany as a mating ground. In fact the English family have just learned to speak what little English they do in the last couple of generations. They was all kin, and they just kept their marriages in the family, a little thing like being a cousin, or an Aunt, dident stop them in the least. Well you see all that available talent is now out of the question. The late big war not only showed that civilization don’t pay, but it just eliminated over 70 percent of crop of available wives and Husbands that a self respecting Prince had to pick from.
Well now we have them eliminated, let’s get back to the ones left. The King and Queen take the list and go over it carefully. You would think they was looking for a telephone number. Instead of taking the numbers alphabetically, they start down in Italy; that’s about as far south as you can safely pick up a wife and not take a chance on her being a little “Off color.” You get any further south than that and you are liable to find that the hair grows out, turns around and grows back in again.
Now they take Italy. They have an awfully nice breed of Princesses. Their Mother was a Monte-negroian, and their Father an Italian. But they can’t consider them, Why? On account of a Gentleman named Mussolini.4
They never know when he is liable to get peeved at them and declare the whole shebang a Republic. Well that would do away with any standing that the Royal family had. Now suppose the Prince was betrothed to an Italian Princess, and Mussolini went on a rampage. Well, see, she would lose her Amateur standing, and become just a professional commoner. Well that would mean that he would have the right to annul the engagement, or even if they was already married, it would give him the right to be divorced, for he could prove that she obtained him by false pretenses. So that lets Italy out, and he lost a fine girl just really on account of Mussolini.
Now that brings us to Spain. They have two fine Girls there. But there again we have Primo Revira, the Amateur Dictator.5
He is a kind of second company of Mussolini. Kinging there is not what you would call a steady job. So it’s too unstable to monkey with. You couldent possibly take a chance on being linked with a Republic. Portugal is out, for they would have three Revolutions between the time of the engagement and the marriage. France, Nothing there worth while. Belgium, I havent looked over the chart but I don’t think there is anything available there.
Holland, They and the English don’t mix so much. When an Englishman is having his tea he don’t want to be interrupted by a clattering of wooden shoes clattering through the house. So that dident leave him anything but the Scandinavian Countries. There is three of them, Sweden, Norway, and Denmark. Well there was “Something queer in Denmark” so he dident go there, Norway sounded too cold, so that leaves Sweden, and a beautiful lovely Girl 19 years old, Who perhaps is in love with some nice young man of her own age and country, but the old heads must keep up the “Prestige” of this marrying business, and find somebody that will do Royalty the most good.6
It’s just like Queen Isabella told all her children, when she was doleing them out to Henry the 8th and King Charles, “It’s not a Princess place to love, it’s a Princess’ place to breed.”7
She sent ’em out to marry for their Country.
A Thoroughbred race horse breeding establishment is more in line with royal marriages than anything I know of. Only they are careful to never inbreed. But as far as the Love that’s a lot of Hooey. They think it brings Nations closer to each other to have the heads marry to each other. Well it dident do so much for Germany and England. But anyhow let’s get him married off and let the Girls all over the world get their minds on somebody else. It’s wonderful I reckon to be a Prince or a Princess, But they pay for it.
1For the Prince of Wales see WA 336:N 8.
2For Henry VIII see WA 333:N 2.
3For George V see WA 336:N 8. Mary, queen consort of Great Britain and Northern Ireland; wife of George V.
4For this and all further references to Benito Mussolini see WA 337:N 1.
5Miguel Primo de Rivera y Orbaneja, Spanish military and political leader; dictator of Spain from 1923 to 1930.
6Ingrid, princess of Sweden who was rumored to be engaged to the Prince of Wales.
7For Isabella I see WA 336:N 11. Charles VIII, king of France from 1483 until his death in 1498.
WA340 June 30, 1929
THAT WHITE HOUSE TEA
Well all I know is just what I read in the papers. Let’s just run over a few of the high spots that have jammed up the press in the last few weeks. A week or so ago there was quite an attempt to try and make something out of the fact that the colored Congressman’s wife got so far in the White House that she got three saucers of tea before anybody knew it.1
Now wait a minute, let’s get this straight. If there is one thing that this Country has been especially happy in it’s been the fact that we have been continually blessed with some fine charming Women in the White House. Some of the men might have been able to stand a little overhauling. But I tell you, there has never been a chirp of regret out of anyone about the Female occupants. It’s all right to say the Coolidges, the Hardings, the Wilsons, and all those dident do it.2
But the opportunity was not put up to them. There was no colored Congressman in their time. Dixie hadent reached Chicago.
Now Mrs. Hoover knows what she is doing. If it was a custom for the first Lady of the White House to entertain all the Congressman’s wives, then when a colored one come along there was nothing else to do. When he was elected and ready to be seated there was no one in a position to say they wouldent sit with him in Congress. No it was a custom and nothing was thought of it. So that’s just about the way that Mrs. Hoover looked at it. Neither party refuses their votes, and you got to give ’em a little consideration.
So that blew over pretty quick and we were in the throes of some other scandal. Some Bird made arrangements with the French Government to Stowaway and prevent their plane from making France. Suppose Lyndberg had taken somebody along for Publicity to write the Story of the trip.3
Pretending to hide on an Aeroplane trip strikes me as having about the same value as to jump on some friend’s back and ride them when they were in a foot race. That’s about the amount of aid you would be to them.
Well then that had no more than quieted down till some Professor (I guess it was Harvard, we always look to them for the freak things) he made the Boys a talk about not aiming too low. Said instead of marrying the Stenographer aim for the Boss’s daughter. Now wait a minute. Have you seen ALL the Boss’s daughters? You look ’em over and it will take quite a sacrifice to give up the Stenographer and take The Daughter.
Course when he advised the Boys to be as “Snooty” as possible and do anything they could to advance themselves, why that raised a yell that went round the World. Well there was no use howling about it. It was nothing but “An Old English Custom.” Englishmen have been working that system for years. They always aim above ’em. What really hurt was that the old Professor really had about the dope on it. He dident have to tell ’em to do that, they are doing it already. Higher education is doing more to teach it to them than all the professors that would tell them to do it.
Course everybody broke into print and said it shouldent be that way. But there was so much truth in the old Professor’s advice that it had ’em winging to answer it. What’s the use kidding ourselves? What makes ’em high hat any quicker than education? They got to be high hat to keep up with the rest of their gang, and maby it’s better that they are. It’s pretty tough on us but we just can’t have the children do like we do. We are always drilling into them, “When I was a Boy we dident do that.” But we forget that we are not doing those same old things today. We changed with the times, so we can’t blame the children for just joining the times, without even having to change. We are always telling ’em what we used to not do. We dident do it because we dident think of it. We did everything we could think of. We drove a horse and Buggy but we don’t drive one now. So we just got to sit and watch ’em go, and I tell you they got to go some to keep up with us. If anyone of us had a child that we thought was as bad as we know we are we would have cause to start to worry.
Well now I got Youth all set, and old age on the run, let’s see what our Government has been doing. Well it was the funniest thing. It commenced to get hot in Washington and they wanted to go home and they started to “passing.” Say, they would pass anything. They would have cancelled the debt if it had come up when the thermometer was hot enough.
Now they go home for two months, and that will give ’em enough time to think up some devilment. They dident get the tarriff fixed; they are leaving that. They go home and wait for offers, see which side will do the best by them.
Mr. Dawes opened his Campaign in England before the boat had docked and it looks like him and that Labor Government will hit it off pretty well.4
They havent got a laboring man in England that can do more work than Charley. We havent sent anybody to France yet. That’s a good idea, about the best way to get along with them is to stay away from them.
Prince of Wales marriage is declared off, which means I suppose that it will happen, that’s generally about the type of strategy that they always use.5
That’s called Diplomacy, doing just what you said you wouldent.
Owen D. Young, (AND A DEMOCRAT) is back, after a fine record in Europe.6
J.P. Morgan was with him over there.7
But kinder in the capacity of a Vice Pres. See where Mr. Coolidge is going to write for some Magazine.
That’s just about all there has been lately in the papers. Unless you want Murders, and those of course you got to order. Whatever kind of murder you want why just write to your favorite tabloid and they will, if you get ten signers, have the murder for you.
1Jessie De Priest, wife of Representative Oscar Stanton De Priest of Illinois, the first African American to serve in Congress since the 1880s.
2Warren Gamaliel Harding, Republican president of the United States from 1921 until his death in 1923. Thomas Woodrow Wilson, Democratic president of the United States from 1913 to 1921.
3For Charles A. Lindbergh see WA 338:N 1.
4For Charles G. Dawes see WA 331:N 2.
5For the Prince of Wales see WA 336:N 8.
6Owen D. Young, Chicago attorney and corporation executive; chairman of an international conference in 1929 that formulated the Young Plan for payment of German reparations.
7John Pierpont Morgan, Jr., chairman of the board of J. P. Morgan & Co., one of the most influential banking firms in the world and the major lending house to the Allied nations during World War I.