Lot 255 of 522:
Trip through Southwest just after Pearl Harbor  

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Lot closed - Sold For (Includes Buyers Premium):$360
$300 - $500

Handwritten diary recording an automobile journey through the Southwest during the weeks after the attack on Pearl Harbor


Various places




[45] pp., handwritten on both sides of leaves in a small notebook. 20.5x12.5 cm (8x5"), spiral-bound wrappers.

Captivating travel diary recording a trip from Modesto, California to Texas and ultimately the J.A. Ranch, headed "Log of a Trip to San Antonio. The unnamed writer, his wife Rose, and daughter June, leave on December 16th, 1941, just as mobilization is under way, as evident by the entries. Vivid descriptions are given of the various auto camps, diners, drive-ins, and other characteristic stops on an American cross-country motor trip, even to this day. 

The trio pass through Bakersfield, Pasadena, Santa Anita, Blythe, Salome, Phoenix, Tempe, Lordsburg, Florence, El Paso, a side trip to Juarez, Carlsbad Caverns, Fort Bliss, Pecos, Fort Stockton, Sanderson, El Rio, Uvalde, San Antonio, the Alamo (with a three-page description of it and the battle that took place their), Austin, Georgetown, Wichita Falls, Fort Worth, and Waco, winding up at the the J.A. Ranch (which is described in detail as June’s uncle is foreman – he is a ‘true Texan… 6’1” tall and there is not a pound of fat on him anywhere’)

Passages incude:

"A sad commentary on the fact we are at war was reflected in the unfinished bleachers that enterprising promoters had started to build along Colorado Ave, the street down which is the line of march for the Rose Bowl & Tournament of Roses Parade. Our unpleasant relationship with the almond eyed brown man makes the bleachers unnecessary this year."
"…Near Santa Anita we ate at Etons. It is a very ornate 'drive in' arrangement where the girls who carry the trays wear attractive slacks. Their fight to hide their age must be a continuous one – no quarter given!"
"I forgot to mention that just north of Bakersfield we met 32 army trucks proceeding northward. Also just north of Bakersfield is a flying field – numerous planes were circling overhead as we drew into town…”
"The man at the border [to Arizona at Blythe]… apparently believed we were leaving California to get away from the war. He stated that since the bombing at Pearl Harbor traffic increased 50% from California east and that 64% of the travelers readily admitted that they were getting away from the coast to avoid possible bombing from then on we were not so proud of our California license."
At Lordsburg, “three large troop trains go through this town as we eat. Some of the troops are uniformed and some in civilian clothes, selectees.”

Lot Amendments

Wrappers faded, a few repairs to minor nicks and tears; very good.

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