1.9 Chicago, Here We Come -through 1960

July 26, 1957

The house is sold (conditional on the purchaser acquiring his mortgage).

Next week-end we expect Drell parents for a visit prior to their flying to Palo Alto to live near Sid & his family.

Immediately after their departure, we hope to drive to New England for a two-week vacation trip, visiting Ackerman’s, Darrows, the Lees, and touring the White Mts. Then we’ll return here to finish packing and move our things to Chicago.

Sue needs preparation in arithmetic to enter Univ. of Chi. Lab. School, so Phil has been holding “home school” several mornings every week.

Phil is waiting with some anticipation of disappointment for a contract with the ONR. No word on this yet, nor on his long-delayed and much questionned security clearance application with Navy Research. These matters are shadowing a summer otherwise happy and interesting. Thea has been very “edgy” about the clearance holdup and about the delayed sale of the house.

Sept. 4, 1957

Arrived in Chicago by car & moved into Apt. 602, Cunningham Hall, I.I.T. After the New England trip, we returned to Stewart Manor, sold the house, moved out, & then drove by way of Niagara Falls (where Betty was too young to go “under” the Falls) & visited Malverns in E. Lansing, Mich. The apt. has 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, a large living-dining room, & a small well-arranged kitchen. The main rooms each have a full window-wall & the general impression is of space, although the apt. is of minimum size for 5 people.

The trip was very good throughout. Philip set up a “pajama wagon” for Willy so that Betty could nap & Sue & Phil could rest. Good kids! Good family!

Now we are Chicagoans, Philip is Professor of Mechanics at the Illinois Institute of Technology at a base salary of $12,000 for 4 days a week, 9 months; the children, Sue and Philip, have been accepted at the (Laboratory) Elementary School of the University of Chicago, a private school that has a population of largely gifted children (the average I.Q. is 130); Betty will attend kindergarten on the I.I.T. campus (she will be 5 on Nov. 21; just under the school age deadline).

Summer 1958

PG session chairman at 1st Naval Symposium on Structural Mechanics at Stanford. Whole family by train to Glacier Park, then to Portland. Conductor tried to give our reserved rooms away on train but we got them back. Portland too many roses for Thea. Lived with Drells in Palo Alto very crowded.

Summer 1959

Thea & EM to Palo Alto to visit Drells. Sue kept house for 2 men. PG, Sue, & PT went to Porcupine Mts. to camp. Thea & EM joined them later by plane. (dates?)

Earlier in the year: whole family to RPI (by car & camping). Lots of PG’s friends there with children.


PG salary steadily going up.

PG organized the Midwest Mechanics Seminar last year. It has caught on as a good idea, filling a hole, will continue.

Date? PG & T to Atlantic City for ASME meeting (? Dec. 59?)

Sunday, April 8, 1960

Last evening Sue went to her first boy-girl party. She was very uneasy and nervous about it right from the reception of the invitation. In fact, she put off accepting or refusing the invitation until she realized her friend was assuming her acceptance; then it was too late to refuse. Although the party included dinner, she had supper with us first and was indignant when we suggested she not eat a full meal at 5:30 preceding a party-dinner at 7:30!

At 6:30 she dressed and Thea helped her put on one of Mommy’s red lipsticks. When Sue saw the result, she grabbed a Kleenex to take off the lipstick. But she was persuaded by her father to blot it but leave most of it on. She wore an all-blue dress the color of her eyes, nylons & black suede shoes. Her hair was freshly washed and it curled about her face. The only thing missing from this enchanting picture was a happy look as her father escorted his frightened little lamb to the car to take her to the slaughter.

Two uneasy parents waited four hours. But when she returned home, the picture was different. “It was fun.” “The boys were so funny and silly!” “Mommy, I finally realized why you made me learn to dance.” Our beautiful girl was happy, she had fun, the party wasn’t too sophisticated. (Sue: 12 ½)