1930-1945 Diaries of a Ford Motor Company Employee, Chronicling His Life from Childhood to Adulthood through the Great Depression and World War Two, Experiencing the Greatest Generation

By: Richard Allen Metzler

Price: $9,850.99

Quantity: 1 available

Book Condition: Good


On offer is a rare 14-volume archive of diaries that chart the course of an American boy's life through the Great Depression and World War II a classic member of 'the Greatest Generation'. This is an outstanding archive of diaries that document the life of a man throughout his boyhood in Midwestern America throughout the Great Depression and into WWII. The author of this archive is Richard Allen Metzler. He was born in 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska where his father, Clyde, was a dentist. He married Doris Cuthbert in 1946. He worked his entire career with Ford Motor Company. His wife taught with distinction in the Dearborn Public Schools system. He passed away in 2000 at the age of 80. His diaries begin at age 10 and continue until he is 25. This is a terrific collection. It traces this boy's growth as a young child, teenager, college student and young man through some of the most momentous years of the 20th century. As would be expected, his writing matures over the years as he begins to add reflection and nuance to his daily entries.. Taken as a whole, they offer a superb picture of growing up in the America in the pre-war years. The following excerpts will give a sense of the flavour of these diaries: "This afternoon, Paul {Richard's brother] went downtown with Bob Muchow and went to a show. Tonight, Eddie came over and we played down in the basement" [Mar 28, 1930]; "Tonight Paul went to the drawing lesson all alone and staid up to Story's and ate supper. Today altogether I won sixteen snurts*, one glassy* and three mossies* [*nicknames for types of marbles] [May 1, 1930]"; "This morning Paul went caddying but didn't earn anything. This afternoon Lary, me and Paul went swimming. We got a new car and went riding" [June 11, 1930]. Two years later, he has a paper route that he manages for the next several years (and takes very seriously) : "We had a short little moving picture on how to brush your teeth today at school. It snowed all day today. Story carried [newspapers] with me. Paul went to scout meeting. I made fudge, did homework and played with Tag after supper" [Feb 16, 1932]; "In homeroom assembly I had to get up and talk on "the industry of carrying papers". When I went to school this morning I locked myself out of the house so I ate up at 27th with Story ... I had to come home from Scout Meeting and go over to P. T. A. At North and demonstrate how to do beadwork in front of a pile of people. "Was I mortified! " [May 8, 1932]; "1 of us kids went on a hike to Stone Park this morning. The other 3 walked but I rode the bike and carried all the stuff. When I was going down a hill, I was in a deep rut and didn't have any brakes and there was a log slap bang in front of me ..." [Nov 30, 1934]; "Paul, Huntley and Bill slept out in Stone Park last night so I carried Paul's route. Snyder helped me carry my route and then dad took us out. Threw axes and knives at trees all day. Ate dinner out there. ... Found out that Huntley smokes. ... Typed some more chain letters" [May 5, 1935]; "... Eddie Meents is in my Chem class. He flunked Chem 2 last sem. & is going to flunk again. Bob Bierworth is back from reform school. He looks like the sea hag's dad…" [Sept 23, 1936]; "... Went to A. Y. McDonald and applied for a job. Fred Hagly even phoned up here for me. He said to start tomorrow. So ----- . Paul left for Beresford to work for three weeks…" [Aug 14, 1938]. His entries focus almost exclusively on his immediate world. He does make a passing reference to troubles afar: "... Got a cottage on Lake Carlos with electricity so now we can hear the war nes - it started Thurs. I guess but we didn't know about it" [Sept 2, 1939]; "... I haven't said a thing about the European War. Well, there is one and a real one. In fact, France is licked and Britain looks pretty sick. Looks like Hitler is on the way. Hadn't better come over here, bless his hide..." [June 18, 1940]; "... Just started on a letter to Marj when I was called to the phone by Mrs S. I just sensed what it was before she called up the stairs - Paul was phoning that he had gotten a telegram from Dad that mother had passed away at 5: 30 this morning. At 5: 30 A. M. July 18 1941 my mom ceased to suffer and is now with the Lord and waiting for me and Paul and dad..." [July 18, 1941]. Clipped in to a back page is a newspaper clipping of the announcement of her death. He notes the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and the fact that America will be at war. His Dec 9th entry begins with the laconic: "Well, they didn't bomb Detroit - yet…"[Dec 9, 1941]. He writes detailed entries about his life at college, especially his life as a fraternity member. 1942 however, finds him in Detroit, working for Ford Motor Company - a place he would work for the rest of his life: "... Johnson and I walked over to the glass plant but got kicked out because its been completely converted into government tool & die ..." [ Dec 5, 1942]And lest people thought that the war effort made other labour concerns fade away, he records this: "... We struggled to keep ourselves occupied - the whole foundry was on strike. Don't like the swing shift. The stinkers should be slapped into the Army…" [May3, 1943]; "... Foremen on strike at the Rouge. A negro-white race riot started on Belle Isle bridge last night. Several dead, lot wounded…"[June 21, 1943]. His last entry is rather poignant: "...Got a card from Dorothy Head. ... She asked me why I broke it up & I told her - that I was getting way too much involved & I was too yellow to get married. She told me she loved me at the time & would have married me, that I nearly broke her heart. I told her I had walked out on at least 3 other gals just the same way since. So we had quite a talk" [Apr 2, 1945]. Within the next 15 months, he would meet and marry Dorothy Cuthbert and they would be married for 50 years. For a historian, this is a simply outstanding archive. Its rare to find a large group of diaries started by a young boy and maintained through to adulthood. The diaries chart the not only physical growth of this boy but the development of values and character. It is an excellent longitudinal study of life growing up in Midwestern America - a classic example of a member of what Tom Brokaw described as The Greatest Generation. For genealogists, these diaries are a treasure trove. In many of them, he keeps detailed lists of people he knows with in some cases phone numbers and addresses as well as class lists. This is a rare and certainly valuable collection of diaries. This collection includes 14 diaries from 1930-1945. Only 1931 is missing. The diaries vary in size, most are hardcover, all are 100% complete and in good condition. Please contact seller for chart with a breakdown of the size and number of pages in each diary. ; Manuscripts; 8vo 8" - 9" tall; Keywords: handwritten, manuscript, document, letter, autograph, writer, hand written, documents, signed, letters, manuscripts, historical, holograph, writers, autographs, personal, memoir, memorial, antiquité, contrat, vélin, document, manuscrit, papier antike, brief, pergament, dokument, manuskript, papier oggetto d'antiquariato, atto, velina, documento, manoscritto, carta antigüedad, hecho, vitela, documento, manuscrito, papel, Richard Allen Metzler; Omaha Nebraska; Ford Motor Company; America in World War II; Labour Relations in World War II America; Tom Brokaw; The Greatest Generation, The Great Depression, strike, laborers striking, corporate America, pre-war America, intra-war years, post-war America, boyhood, manhood; Signed by Author

Title: 1930-1945 Diaries of a Ford Motor Company Employee, Chronicling His Life from Childhood to Adulthood through the Great Depression and World War Two, Experiencing the Greatest Generation

Author Name: Richard Allen Metzler

Categories: M. Benjamin Katz, Books & Manuscripts, 20th Century Manuscript, 20th Century Diary,

Publisher: Omaha, Nebraska, Omaha, Nebraska, Ford Motor Company, Labor Relations, Greatest Generation: 1930-1945

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Good

Inscription: Signed by Author

Seller ID: 0011013

Keywords: Ford Motor Company; America In World War II; Labour Relations In World War II America; Tom Brokaw; The Greatest Generation, The Great Depression, Strike, Laborers Striking, Corporate America, Pre-war America, Intra-war Years, Post-war America, Boyhood, Handwritten, Manuscript, Document, Letter, Autograph, Writer, Hand Written, Documents, Signed, Letters, Manuscripts, Historical, Holograph, Writers, Autographs, Personal, Memoir, Memorial, Antiquité, Contrat, Vélin, Document, Manuscrit, Papier Antike, Brief, Pergament, Dokument, Manuskript, Papier Oggetto D'antiquariato, Atto, Velina, Documento, Manoscritto, Carta Antigüedad, Hecho, Vitela, Documento, Manuscrito, Papel, Ameriana, Growing Up American, US Politics, European War, American War, Humor