25 March 2012

No. 18 -- 26 Oct 1931

Mr. N.A. Hughes,
C/o Y.M.C.A. College,
5315 Drexel Avenue,
CHICAGO. Ill. U.S.A.

My dear Noel,

Your good letter of 13th September came to hand a week or so ago. We were very delighted to hear that you had secured a number of small jobs which had helped to "keep the wolf from the door".  Mother was rather interested in hearing that you had been doing some house cleaning at 50 cents an hour. Evidently the training at home has not come amiss after all.

Naturally, we are anxious to hear exactly what has turned up in the way of a job that will keep you going during your college work. The uncertainty leaves us a little perturbed at present, but no doubt something will eventuate for you.

It is certainly remarkably good of the Lincoln Belmont Y to look after you as they have done. Will you please express my appreciation to all concerned. I must drop Larry Bowen a note expressive of my thanks.

We were also interested to hear that you had been out to Harry White's home, and also that Alex. Moodie had been with you in Chicago. We have had several letters from Pontius, Peck, and others, telling us of Moodie's movements. And so you also had a time with Norman Weston. All of these good friends will make you feel that there are at any rate a few homes where you can go for an odd hour or two if you feel so disposed.

Your experience with the dentist will surely act as a warning that you must make such visits as seldom as possible. With your limited means we have been wondering how on earth you have managed to pay all the necessary amounts which entrance on college work demands. What about your room rent, athletic and other outfits? Then, the question of text books. Surely you have found it difficult to meet all that is required.

We were very please to hear that you had secured so many credits towards your entrance status, and I sincerely hope it will be possible for you to clean up some of the arrears of credits so that you will not lose any actual time in your college course.

The Argus (Melbourne),
Monday 26 Oct 1931, page 7
I will see that some newspapers are sent on to you from time to time so that you may be able to keep in touch with conditions in Australia. The only news we get of Chicago is when Al. Capone appears before the courts on some charge or else there is a shooting up incident which is attributed to the gang element in Chicago. If we get only that type of news about Chicago, it is certain you will get very little news concerning Australia in the Chicago papers.

All the folk at home are well. The kiddies are growing very rapidly. Last evening they had the competitions in connection with their gym. work at the Girls' Guild, but neither of them this year was successful in securing a place. Ruth was in to see me yesterday and we expect here home for the weekend. She was very "peeved" because some one had stolen her fur at the hospital. She kicked up the dickens of a row about it but so far the fur has not turned up. I suppose it will not be returned at all. Keith has had a week's work with the Texaco Company and I think has still a day or two next week. Mother is keeping very well and so am I.

Rex has gone away on another job into the country in connection with the installation of some talkie apparatus. He expects to be away for about four or five days.

The Argus (Melbourne),
Saturday 26 Sept 1931, page 21
I have intended in several letters to ask you to give us some idea of the number of gramophone records you purchased from that English boy, and also a list of any others that you bought subsequent to that time. As I look over the records,  I am certain that we have quite a number missing. I wonder if you could give a rough estimate of the actual number there should be, and also if you can remember the names of any particular ones so that we may check up the list, and find out whether any are missing or not.

Margaret Park was over at the home last weekend, and so was Milly Harris. Both of them wish to be remembered to you.

There is great excitement at home just now as we have had a very large addition to the family. Several hundreds of silk worms have come out of the eggs that Joy had from last year and every night there is excitement in changing the silk worms from the old mulberry leaves to the fresh. I don't know whether the kiddies will maintain their interest in the silk worms if they demand too much time and care.

You will be interested to learn that on Sunday morning, November 1st, I am to be inducted into the Eldership at the South Hawthorn Presbyterian Church. Three of us will be added to the Session of the Church and this, of course, will mean additional responsibility for me, but I think I shall be able to carry out what is expected of me in the new job.

I have not got a great deal of Association news to give you apart from the fact that we have been having some splendid initiation ceremonies in connection with the Boys' Department. Another one is to be  held tonight. These ceremonies are exceedingly well attended and have created quite a large amount of interest not only among the Boys' Department members, but also with our Board of Directors.

I have commenced a series of Bible studies with the residents on Tuesday evenings. We meet in the Memorial Hall at 8 o'clock and there has been quite a good group of fellows present on each occasion. I am taking a series of seven studies in the life of Peter.

Our staff group on Monday morning has been studying McCandless's book "Association Administration". We expect to complete the studies at the end of November. It has been a splendid thing to review the chapters of this book as they have given us a lot of valuable material to consider in relation to our own problems of administration.

We are holding the final meetings in connection with the number of our winter activities, and by the end of next month or early December, the wind up dinners and other functions will be held.

Matron and Miss Ray are both keeping well. Wally Muston, Reg. Gray are likewise, although Muston has been away ill with influenza. Charlie Jutsum and Audrey Catterall are both away with flu' and have been for the past week. We have had quite a lot of illness among the residents and old Mr. Whittam was sent away to the Homeopathic Hospital with appendicitis.

Ruth mentioned that you wished to have the birthdays of the members of the family. They are as follows: --
Edith on May 7th, 1920; Joyce on August 31st, 1917; Ruth on Feb. 18th, 1912; your own, December 11th, 1909; Keith, Nov. 5th, 1905; Mother's, May 27th, 1881, my own, Sept. 15th 1878.
Ruth said she would be writing you by this mail, so that I expect you will hear from her as well. She is still enjoying her work at the hospital. She thinks it is quite possible she will be sent down to the children's ward before very long. She has practically completed her work as a "pup" which is the abbreviated form of pupil.

Last night we said farewell to Ragnar Lundqvist, our best all-around athlete in the Athletic Club. He is returning to Sweden. We shall miss him a great deal as this year our fellows go up to "A" grade. Ru. Dorr has also injured his leg very seriously at Rugby. It is doubtful whether he will be of much use to the club for some time ahead. Tom Place had an accident with his leg some little time back, but it seems to be mending again and I think he will be alright. Jim Ralston is just the same as ever, and as keen as mustard on his club and I think the prospects of the Athletic Club are quite good.

The Hockey Club won the premiership of their grade; ditto the Lacrosse Club and the Baseball fellows were runners up in their grade so that we have had quite good results from our winter's sports.

There should be an American mail in next week, and we are expecting a further letter from you.

We all unite in sending our warmest love. We are confident you will work hard and that you will achieve success in your studies.

Please remember me to Clive and May.

With warm love from us all,

Yours affectionately,

Dad