life story books
Same last name
B
Same country of birth
United States


Written by Morgan Manter

Helen B

Country of Birth:

United States

Year of birth: 1400

Places of Residence:

San Francisco

Helen B. Born In: I’m old enough to be smart

Born: I was born in San Francisco.

Childhood: I had a wonderful brother and a great mother and dad but we lived through a couple of depressions. Living in San Francisco was fun because there was always something to see and do. In those days we could get on a street car and be safe and get places. My dates always took me on the street car because fella’s didn’t have cars in those days because they couldn’t afford them.

Depression: Oh, it was awful. My dad was out of work for a long time. But my mom was a miracle cook and she could make a meal out of almost anything. So we never really suffered. When I got out of high school my mother still put together my clothing. She always kept me well dressed and happy. But it was a tough time and I hope we aren’t merging into another depression and it looks like we might be. Woman hardly ever went to work in those days. “Woman’s place was in the house.”
My dad worked for a brewery in San Francisco; he was a salesman. They treated him very well and he joined a union. In those days that was the thing to do and it still is. The depression was over for us after he went to work for Golden Glen because they repealed probation and everybody went back to work, it seamed like.
Moving Out: I went to a junior college for a while. My brother became a dentist; he had to go to college. My husband and I moved down south and lived near the coastline and then we were there during the war. He worked for a ship chandlery company, so business was good.

World War II: My most vivid memory of that time was a truck going down the street and picking up all the Japanese people who were walking on the street and putting them in the truck. They brought them to a place out in the desert where they kept them until the end of the war. It sounded cruel at the time but we had been bombed by the Japanese and everybody was afraid. One night a Japanese submarine came into the harbor at San Pedro and shot off a bomb and that frightened us all so we were willing to go along with the roundup of the Japanese people. A lot of people that I was close to were drafted along with my husband, so he want to war.

Volunteering: I’ve always been a volunteer at something since I was old enough to volunteer. I was president to the San Carlos Garden Club for a while. I was president of the Sequoia Hospital Auxiliary for twelve years. I loved working at the hospital, it was very interesting and they were so good to me. I volunteered for a while at the military hospital in San Jose and it’s devastating to see the young boys hurt so badly.
What I wish we still had: I think that we all felt safe then. The woman could go on the street at night and shop and come home on the street car and I wish that life was that simple again.
End chapter 1

Words form Helen

Now I’m living at The Elms in San Carlos and loving it! A dear little lady comes in my apartment every morning at 8:00 AM and says, “Can I make your bed now?” And my response is, “Absolutely!” It’s lovely here- the food and service is so great and the help is exceptional, always ready to help! “Life has been good to me!” I have had good health, five wonderful and beautiful children and eight grandchildren and who could ask for anything more?
Helen Ward B.
End chapter 2

From the Interviewer,

I want to thank the people at the Elms for being so kind and helpful to me, while I was working on my Girl Scout Silver Award. It truely seems like a wonderful place to live.
Sincerely -Morgan Manter
End chapter 3
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