ORAL HISTORY RAYMOND W. TRIETCH

HOLGATE, OHIO 43527

Interviewed by Charlotte Wangrin, August 17, 2007

CW: What happened?

Ray Trietch 2007RT: Because the minister back then said it had to be a saint's name. I was named Ray Wahl Trietch. The Wahl was her maiden name. The minister said it would have to be Raymond, because that is a saint's name. So that is what he put on my baptism. Well then, I never knew any different. So in '37 when I went to the post office to send in for Social Security, that is what I had put down, Raymond Wahl Trietch. Well after I came home from service in World War II and we were going to get married, because we started before I ever went in 1940. At her graduation in Miller City School, I had been graduated from up here and I was working at Zeller Corporation in Defiance. Well, I worked about a year, and I made a foreman. I had just turned 20 and I thought, boy I am doing pretty good. I started at 35 cents an hour, and then I went to 50 cents when I made foreman. The reason I think I made foreman is because I tried to do a good job. Bob Zeller who owned the place knew me pretty well. He used to come up here sometimes to pick his future wife up which was my English teacher, Virginia Seible. She really liked me as a young guy and I got a job real easy up there when I went up. Later on they started over in the Pacific, the Japanese in the World War, '41 I think it was. Bob built on to the big room, and pretty soon there was a bunch of new machines come in.

(The above photo was taken of Ray Trietch in July 2007.)

CW: You mean Mr. Zeller?

RT: Yes, the Zeller Corporation. The plant. So my head foreman which was Ted Drewes at the time, he came and got me to come over and help him. We put all those machines together so we could run parts for the government. Well we got it started and everything and then he left and I said, "Where are you going, Ted?" He said well I have some materials in the back room to take care of. I said "Who is running this place?” He said "This is yours now.” I said, “You have to be kidding. Me run three shifts?” I said I didn’t even hit 21 yet. He couldn’t believe it. Well we had three shifts. I run 6:30 in the morning till 6:30 at night, twelve hours, and then we got two foremans under me. I went to 75 cents and hour. Boy did I have money!

CW: You thought you were rich.

RT: Gosh, yes! You didn’t have stuff to pay for like you do today. So then it wasn’t long till I got a notice that Uncle Sam wanted me. I had hit 21. Well, I got $20.00 a month, and then they took $9.85 out for insurance, so I had $10.15 left. Then I took basic down in Alabama, Fort McClellan, then they shipped me up to Massachusetts and put me in the 36th Texas Infantry National Guard. Now I had to fight the Civil War over because I was a Yankee. There weren’t too many of us in there. Then we took basic training for amphibious. I could never figure out what they wanted that for because they shipped us out to North Africa to chase Rommel on the desert.

CW: Oh yes.

RT: That is a 600 mile stretch. It was 120 degrees in the shade and no shade and you lived on it. It took me probably four months I’d say to get across that and then we went on up into Tunisia and Algeria, then came back and they put us on a boat and sent us towards Naples, Italy. Then I found out why we took that amphibious training. We waded in the Mediterranean up to our chin with our rifle on top of us walking in while they were shooting at us. We made the invasion in Salerno, which they really shot us up.

CW: Yes I remember reading about that. That was pretty bad.

RT: That was very bad. So then we fought all the way up the hill to Monte Cassino, Rapido River, Aldevilla, and all the rough stuff.

CW: What was that like trying to fight your way. Was it mountainous?

RT: Yes, there were mountains, not as bad as some places, but it was bad enough.

CW: Was it hot there too?

RT: No, it was more like it is here in Italy. Then about eleven months later they brought us back and got us on a boat and took us to southern France, so we invaded that on the 14th of August in '44. Salerno was on September the 9th in '43. We went there all the way up to Sigfried Mines we went across that and they said we couldn’t do that, because of the concrete bunkers. We made it, we went through it. When the war ended May 8 in '45 I went in to, I was close to kind of a hill like, beautiful trees and everything. Hitler’s sisters mansion house.Ii went through that. She wasn’t there. We went through some places to check and see stuff.

CW: It must have been really tough trying to fight your way through places like that.

RT: We wound up, our division, I found out just two years ago that we had the most combat days of any, Pacific or Europe because when we started in. I have a book of our division, but they never made anything out of, or put in it about North Africa, where we started.

CW: You spent quite a bit of time there.

RT: Oh, yes. It think the reason that was because they started at Salerno, Italy where we made the spearhead invasion. I think that’s what they done. So the part of down in North Africa where the old desert is and that stuff, there were very few trees and nothing. Way off in the distance if you could get close enough to the south end of the desert you might see a little forest with some trees, but never a drop of rain there.

CW: Did you have a sand storm?

RT: The funny thing of it is, no, because that desert sand does not blow. It looks just like that blacktop. That hard. Our big trucks that pulled stuff, they would go over that and you couldn’t see any tire marks. It was just like running on a blacktop. I never saw a drop of rain.

CW: Isn’t that where Rommel was?

RT: Oh yes, we were chasing Rommel.

CW: Rommel was Hitler’s general.

RT: I don’t know what they would call this in. What Army when we were there. When we made the invasion into Italy and up into southern France we were in the Fifth first, then the Seventh in Europe. I don’t know what they called the Army, and I know there were some other divisions that come to North Africa, there had to.

CW: Yes, Bob Downey was in North Africa.

RT: Yes I heard that, I don’t know him, but I heard that. I was there and the funny part of it is, as I am so young now, I don’t remember names like I used to up here, but I can see everything, every place I was is right here.

CW: I bet you can remember what you felt like too.

RT: I went through Aiginol Forest, which was a rough one.

CW: What was that like?

RT: Well, a thick forest with enemy shooting at you, and we were shooting back. When we came off the one field and we got to the east end there were a thousand German soldiers that came out, threw their guns up in the air and they was done, and there was a bare spot.

CW: Where did you say this was?

RT: The eastern part of France. I am trying to think of the doggone hill. The hill I can see it just as plain and they came and they threw their guns up with no fighting. It was a field that looked like clover, and green grass, about ten acres. They went in there, we had a man at each corner is all, four guys with their rifle. They didn’t go no place or do nothing. They wanted to give up.

CW: Now was this near the end of the war?

RT: Oh yah, yah.

CW: They had enough of it. You were not in D Day though.

RT: D Day was two years after I was getting shot at. What they call D Day was Normandy. That didn’t start until the sixth of June of ‘44. I started in ‘42.

CW: You kept them on the move then.

RT: Yes, we pushed them up toward Normandy. I very seldom ever said anything, in fact I talked more now than I ever have since I have been home going on 62 years. It was something you just didn’t talk about. There are some things I do talk about. I get a little disgusted with the situation at hand and everything because I don’t agree with what we are doing.

CW: I don’t either.

RT: I wouldn’t say what I am thinking, well it’s recorded. I am not that kind of guy. When I came home, there was approximately 214 guys in my unit when we went over, and when I got home, I left over there the first of October in '45, because I wasn’t married or anything at the time. The guys that were married had more points, so they left first. When I left, I was one of five of the original 214, because we lost so many. We do have a cemetery over in Italy. I saw the figures here, I was checking something one day and we lost like 16,000 to 17,000 in our division, and 7,000 in the war, and 2,100 in Italy at Salerno. I know my wife doesn’t like it when I say things, and I said well if they had went through the h--- I went through for this country, they would probably feel the same way I do, because you don’t take and do and I can’t stand the idea of being in Iraq. It has nothing to do with this country.

CW: Events are proving that true too.

RT: Iraq, what they are fighting is, even before GW took over, when Bill was in there eight years we wasn’t down there fighting. His dad had troops down there before, because I had friends with the Ohio Guard that he had sent down there. When they came back, this one close friend of mine was a son of a guy from up here in New Bavaria. He lived in New Bavaria, well he still does, and he said we had no business being there. He’s a smart well educated guy.

CW: Excuse me for interrupting, but now you went into France. Was it southern France?

RT: Yes, it was southern France.

CW: From there you pushed him towards…

RT: All the way up into Germany.

CW: Oh, all the way in to Germany?

RT: Oh yes, I was in Germany you better believe it, Ardennes Forest. My great grandpa Wahl came from Vollinheim and Hessedorm Stadt is where my great great grandpa Trietsch came from.

CW: Now my brother in law said when they got in to Germany they could tell right away because each cellar had a ham hanging in it in Germany. In France there were no hams.

RT: No food in France. They even had potatoes in a big wooden barrel which I stole.

CW: That would keep you alive for a while.

RT: Well, I took the steel off my helmet and built a little fire and cooked the potatoes in it. I bought a ham bone, I just happened to think of this, in Italy because we hadn’t had any food for a long time. I bought a ham bone, I paid $2.00, which over there at the time, and even here probably wasn’t worth fiftty cents. I remember cooking that in the steel helmet. I stole some potatoes from a barrel peeled them and put them in there and cooked them so I would have something to eat, because I do cook.

CW: I bet that was a good meal.

RT: Yes, they didn’t put too many medals out back in my day like they do now. I see a lot of these young people, they have not been on the front lines like I was with all these medals sticking on them and what little bit I did get I went through h--- for.

CW: War is like that, awful.

RT: I was lucky enough in Italy and southern France we were in five of the worst battles any place that they had, and I was in them. I got a bronze star for each one of those.

CW: Now would Salerno be one of those?

RT: No, for that I got a spearhead oak. So I got seven oaks altogether. In Southern France it was a spearhead.

CW: Where else did you get the medals from?

RT: From Italy.

CW: You don’t remeber the names.

RT: No, Mount Casino was one I know, that was on the other side of the Rapido River, Rome, and I think Altevilla was one place I can see the places, but I can’t think of the names of them now..

CW: Well, it is not important.

RT: I was lucky because I made it through and it was just like I tell people when they say things, or get to talking about things I say, "Well there is one thing about it, I believe in praying. I said I prayed all the time. I thank the good Lord every night that I have lived as long as I have, and I am as good as I am at my age, because I know he pulled me through there.

CW: Yes, He gave you strength when you needed it too. I’ll bet there were many times when you needed him to lean on.

RT: You are not kidding! Yes, I have the book on the 36th, and I never could figure out why they didn’t start out with it in the book from North Africa. They didn’t say a thing about that, and we were chasing Rommel. He was shooting at us, and we were shooting at him.

CW: The Italians at that time were under Mussolini and they would shoot at the Americans.

RT: Oh yes, Mussolini gave up the day we invaded, the 9th day, well I waded ashore 5 am in the morning on the 9th of September in '43. They put us on, what do they call them boats, we got off the big boat and went

CW: You mean the front of the boat lets down and you walk off.

RT: I can’t think of the name of it. You walk off and water was up to here, put your rifle up there. The third day I helped bury cause the people that done that wasn’t in yet and they’d take a couple of us at a time off the front up a ways we were probably eight to ten miles at the most those three days. Of course they dug them all up later . They would put one dog tag in and the other left on and sent home or the government took care of that. That is why there is two dog tags. One you are buried with.

CW: And one for them to keep track of who you are. I always wondered why there were two tags.

RT: They got this little, I call them pins, good conduct medals, I think the one is called European something, which takes care of North Africa.

CW: You mean European theater of operations.

RT: I have a book that has all that stuff in. They call them medals, I call them ribbons. I can’t believe all those that I see some of these guys have, and I know they’ve never been in combat. Not as long as I was in. Six months would be about the size of it. They replace them and...

CW: Now let’s go back to you pushed them up into Normandy, so they were ready for the D Day invasion. Did you know the D Day invasion was coming? Did you have any news about it?

RT: No, we knew there was a bunch of GIs and stuff there in England. We all got to ship over across the water. They hit southern France about three weeks after they hit Normandy.They hit Normandy because they knew where we was at. The big boys did. They went in the 6th of June and then on the 14th of August we spearheaded this from Italy on up. That’s when we started pushing and by the 5th of May, which is just eleven months after they went in, it was over with.

CW: That’s right, rather suddenly, maybe because they gave up by the thousands.

RT: Yes, because we had them on both sides.

CW: Did you have close buddies there in the war?

RT: I had, yes, I lost my closest one just two years ago in February. He lived out in Nebraska. He got in like I did you know and of course he was married, but we met when we got in up at Cape Cod, Camp Edwards, and we became good friends and he had his wife up there at the time. She stayed in his colony. .

CW: That was Massachusets.

RT: Yes, Camp Edwards. Cape Cod goes out and that is where we done the basic . We were always close. I went out a couple of different times to see him. We would talk on the phone every once in a while and write. His wife died in January and the first thing you know in February he died. So that ended that. He and I always went around together. I went into the draft with a guy from Indiana . His name was Wade, and while we were down in camp in Alabama we’d associate together. We were two close ones then. He went someplace else and I went up there. I don’t remember where he went. He came to see me after the war was over with. I saw him a few times and first thing you know I got a letter that he died. I don’t know what happened to his wife after that, she had heart failure for about a year and that was it.

CW: I think I misunderstood. I thought you said his wife died and then later he died. Oh, this was a different guy.

RT: This was a different guy from Nebraska. He was in my division. Anyway to get back to this name business. Do you remember a Doc Bolles in Napoleon? Well, he was in Holgate. He brought me in this world, and when, after I came home I bought the little gas station over here, because my uncle wanted me to have it. He was in the insurance business here in Holgate at the time, Harry Frost in Napoleon.

Bob gave me a job and he told me when I left I had a job. So, it wasn’t the work I was doing, anyway I bought it and started the first day of April in 1946 then. Well, I came home the first day of October. I left France and came home the 15th of October of '45. So, my wife and I decided we would get married a little later because we had gone together since 1940. I left and she was here with her folks. We decided to get married on the 4th of July in '46. We couldn’t get any church, so we had to take the third. We got married the 3rd of July in '46. Well, I had to go and get my birth certificate, because I never had one from him. I went over to the courthouse and they told me it was at Wesche-Hagen Furniture Store across from the hardware store. I said you got to be kidding. Nope, that’s where they are. Well, I went there and I got it.

CW: Why were they keeping courthouse records in a furniture store?

RT: I don’t know, but they did. So I took it and went over to the courthouse. I found out what my name was that Doc Bolles gave me. Baby Boy Trietch. So I couldn’t argue.

CW: Oh good grief!

RT: I had Raymond on my birth certificate, so they put that on my new one then, Raymond Wahl Trietch, but I am Ray.

CW: Then you didn’t have to get married as Baby Boy Trietch.

RT: No, It burns me up that it couldn’t be right, but I am Ray to everybody, that’s my name. That’s what my mother named me. Then he came out on the farm where I was born and which is two miles and three fourth from Holgate.

CW: Were you born on the kitchen table? A lot of people around here were.

RT: No, it was the bedroom where I was born in, on the bed.

CW: So you grew up on the farm.

RT: Yes, I am an old farm boy. I went threshing in the old days. I started, well I took the team and wagon and pitched bundles on it when I was 12. And I got a dollar a day. I thought I was good. I have my fork yet that I pitched it with. I brought all the stuff we had out on the farm. I got a hoe out there that I hoed our beets with which you don’t see sugar beets around here anymore.

CW: That was hard work.

RT: And then the handled one that you thinned the rows out with. I got $2.00 an acre for doing that.

CW: Isn’t that the hardest work where you have to bend over.

RT: You have to bend over all the time when you thin them out so they grow. I have my beet fork which is the big boy that you loaded them up with.

CW: Were they heavy?

RT: Yes, we could get a whole bunch of them on there. I was as stout as an ox even when I was a young kid.

CW: Well, the farm work would make you muscular.

RT: I used to lift stuff over here in the garage when I was working on cars. Lots of guys bigger than me couldn’t even move. I would pick it up and they’d say, “How do you do that?” I would say very carefully.

CW: And with your feet out of the way.

RT: Yep I was one of 88 businesses when we started on the first day of April in ‘46.

CW: When you bought this?

RT: No, when I started. It was on a Monday.

CW: Started what.

RT: Over at the garage.

CW: Oh, started working there.

RT: Then we built the lube room on which is 20 feet, and come '68 there was a house just on the other side that was on a small lot. I knew the old lady that had it years before because she was a close friend of my great-grandma who lived in town here. I used to go with her to see her. Then Harvey Rettig and Rudy Brown built the Ford garage which is now the library. Harvey Rettig lived in the house there. He had bought that little house. He was only five feet from my lube room. He decided to move it down at the west end of town, he had bought a full lot. I bought that partial from him. I added 30 feet on.

CW: What did you put in that 30 feet?

RT: I got the other two doors for cars to work on, because I done mechanic work. I spent 40 years there doing that and then I retired. Twenty-one years later I find out that it was not the best thing to do. I should have stayed working for somebody else because my little Social Security takes 60% of it to pay for the health insurance. They don’t understand why I don’t have money to pay the bills. The high priced gas that we heat the house with now. I was on city council when they had Suburban Gas put in Holgate. I used to heat this big house at that time and raise four kids. They were upstairs and all over. 450 bucks a year took care of it. Now, in my old age, with a very low income it takes most of it for health stuff. I am on the ten month budget deal with the gas, $207.00 a month. Just for gas. Then you have your other stuff to buy yet.

CW: At least you have Medicare, don’t you, that helps.

RT: I’m paying for it. Yea, then I pay AARP for the other 20%. I’m paying it in taxes. And then I gotta pay $159.00 for the D part medical.

CW: Look around. Try Humana. They don’t charge anything for the D part.

RT: It takes $600.00 in insurance for the month, just for Pauline and me.

CW: Yes, of course you do have double. It’s not easy.

RT: No, and I do know that people that gets things that didn’t go through what I did. How they do it, I don’t know. The 88 businesses that I started with, there are 19 today in Holgate left. It’s about like all the other little towns, there isn’t nothing left. Businesses can’t keep up.

CW: I heard somewhere that in these little towns, including Napoleon that it is going to become more and more expensive to live as time goes on.

RT: It is, it is because I know for a fact that being an old business man that the big boys can buy the stuff for a lot less than the little guy.

CW: Witness WalMart.

RT: Yes, you get all these other places, that’s just like, I can’t figure out Eric Hench who owns Chief. I knew his dad and his dad’s brother up in Defiance when they had the little grocery store. Hench Grocery years ago. We were on the farm and would go up there every once in a while. We’d go on Saturday nights. That’s when you went, and that was it. Not everyone but maybe once a month or so we were in there at different times. I knew them, and now since he’s a multi millionare and owns all these. An old friend of mine from Holgate, they used to own stock in Chief, you probably knew him, he had a grocery store right across the street from where the hardware is.

CW: Florian Sauer?

RT: Sorny Sauer, that was his nickname here. His folks lived right out of town. His younger brother graduated with me, went to school and we were good friends. He had a sister, besides he was the oldest. I’ve known him ever since he and he lost his wife here not too long ago. I was told from a friend that I know in Napoleon he was in the hospital. I don’t know what his problem was here sometime back. He’s out now. He’s 95 now I think.

CW: I had such a good time interviewing Gertrude Mengerink.

RT: She’s my old friend.

CW: Is she!

RT: Her dad was our mail carrier out in the country.

CW: Now I have a picture of her dad in that mail carrier cart.

RT: No kidding, I’ll be darned.

CW: If you want to see it, go to the historical house there in Napoleon, Maybe it’s upstairs in the office.

RT: My oldest son became an attorney for the Federal Trade Commission. Chief attorney from Holgate High School. They think Holgate didn’t. My mother, my dad, their brothers and sisters all graduated from Holgate. I graduated from Holgate.

CW: Gertrude Mengerink was telling me about that fire when she was a girl in the hatchery. Do you remember that?

RT: Oh yes, it was right beside where the house is built now. Her house was south of it. Right along the alley is where the hatchery was. Across the street where the houses are today you see that was a little woods. They had chickens over there back in the 20s and early 30s. I used to go over in Napoleon a lot in the 20s. My Grampa Wahl was a commissioner at that time. I used to go up to the courthouse with him and on his second time in, four years was the end of the 20s. Ferd Dettmer from Elery, had a little store over there. He was commissioner and when he knew I was over he would bring me the little licorice drops, because he knew I liked them. He’d bring me a bag of them.

CW: You were just a little kid at that time.

RT: Then he had married a lady, a Mrs. Weber her husband had died and I knew all the kids that she had and his wife had died over there. Then about ten to twelve years later they both got married. They lived right across the street from him. Every morning he’d come over and talk to me when I worked at the garage. She was a Muntz. Her dad’s brother carried mail on the one route two. At that time there were three routes out of Holgate. We were always good friends and then her husband, I was a sexton at the cemetary for years and years, buried people, and I had gone to school to be a sexton and all that stuff so I was the church sexton. Her husband after he retired they moved back here to Holgate. He was down around Lima where he worked. He done all that kind of work, I can’t think, I lose track. He measured stuff.

CW: Surveying?

RT: Surveyor, Yes, he was a surveyor. He was a good friend of mine too, just like she was. She just turned 90.

CW: Oh, did she. I didn’t realize that.

RT: I said Happy Birthday to her a couple of weeks ago. Anyway he said, Ray, We’ll go over that thing and get it straightened up because it was in one heck of a mess.

CW: What thing?

RT: The cemetery.

CW: I see what you mean.

RT: Because of the way it was taken care of. Everything was crooked. I don’t think anybody had ever surveyed it. I went out and resurveyed it. It took about a week to do it. Then I put stakes every twenty-four feet, and that gave me six burial plots for a section. I had everything straightened up. Well, I done that work probably for twenty-five years at least.

CW: Did you have to move any of the markers when you surveyed it?

RT: I couldn’t, the people was down there. But I could put markers where it belonged. It had two rows. It started from the South and went North sixteen feet like it was supposed to. When they got to the North it was twenty-four feet. I said, how could people be so stupid. So, I could make a row part-way in where we could put small, like kids and stuff. I marked that off. Yep, I had it all straightened up. Didn’t make much off of it either.

CW: Probably just like volunteering your time.

RT: Well it’s like when I was on the council here. I used to do stuff and for a while a couple of us guys we used to be a night watchman. After I’d lock up, instead of going to bed I’d change and put my gun on and take my billy club on and put it in the car and and take off and keep everything checked.

CW: You didn’t have police.

RT: Well yes, but he had that day off, like one night or so. They worked six nights and were on twenty-four hour call too when he wasn’t working. It wasn’t like today.

CW: Do you remember anything about Joe E. Brown? A lot has been said about him.

RT: He was a good friend of mine.

CW: He was!

RT: Here I will show you something. He was born in 1892.

CW: Was that your uncle or Joe E. Brown?

RT: Joe E. Brown and my uncle both were born in 1892. My uncle was born in March, and Joe E. Brown was born in July. He has relatives here yet too. These are my two sweet daughters. He held them while I took the picture. This was Memorial Day of ‘62. Shortly after that I forget just what date it was ‘70 something he died. But I'd always see him every year. He’d always come down to my garage while I was here.

CW: His mother was here. Didn’t he come to see his mother?

RT: She lived in Toledo. His mother was Annie.

CW: Did he come to see a relative?

RT: No, he came for Memorial Day. He was down to his mother's. See, when he was-he started school probably seven at the time when they moved to Toledo. So he wasnt here anymore, but his house that he was born in in still down here on Randal Street.

CW: So then he started school here.

RT: First year, yep he was my old buddy.

CW: So they probably had a parade here every year.

RT: They had a parade, yes.

CW: Now there was another big fire in Holgate.

RT: Oh, in the old days the old grist mill.

CW: Where was that?

RT: Where the, what do they call it, that little restaurant, on the corner of 108. I saw it burn from out in the country. I was told it was time to go to bed. I went up and looked out the glass window and I could see Holgate. The fire was going. I didn’t know what it was. I hollered downstairs to Dad. I said Dad, I think there’s a fire. That was in the 20’s.

CW: Could you see flames, or black smoke?

RT: Red flames. That was a mess, and finally they got it cleaned up and they built that restaurant there.

CW: That’s why there is so much land around there.

RT: Yep.

CW: Then there was another fire down this main street of town right by the railroad track.

RT: The hotel.

CW: Where was the hotel?

RT: The corner down there.

CW: Right by the railroad tracks?

RT: Well, you know where the fire station and stuff is today, that used to be Pet Milk and right across was the hotel.

CW: How did that fire get started?

RT: I don’t know, but we had our dinner there when we got married .Hey no, that was Knipps. That was where the Shell is today. That was when I was in the Army. I think that was Knipps Grocery Store.

CW: So you had a couple of grocery stores at that time.

RT: Oh there was five at once.Two meat markets, Voight’s Meat Market, good meat and homemade bologna like that. I would bring two slices of homemade bread to school in my dinner bucket which I still have. I would come up and get a slice of bologna for a nickel cut it that thick, that big around and homemade, good stuff. Voight’s and Knapp Brothers, where Mary Evans beauty shop is, that was Knapp Brothers grocery store, Where there ain’t nothing today except blacktop on this side of Hubers Chevrolet there, that was McGill and Zachrich grocery store. We went to Walt Meyers when he moved to town and up where the grocery store is today. Walt bought that and his son Marv he run it and he quit and died. Let’s see Ralph’s, he bought it, but there was somebody that had it before him.

CW: There was a movie in there too wasn’t there?

RT: Yes, that was right where the drive is where the bank’s got their window at, just on the side parking. Yes, we used to go on Saturday nights. Where the drive through that was Yenner Clothing Store before the bank took it over. It moved from that side over there. On the west that was where the counter was you went up to. A little office that was enclosed, and then on this side. Then they switched over on the other side, that’s where the drive in was, or where Aaron Yenner was. His folks lived next door.

CW: The drive in window for the bank.

RT: Yes.

CW: Do you remember when, Ed Peper was telling me about they used to have movies and the trains went through it would be so noisy and they would make sure they would have the doors closed.

RT: I used to go there before it was talkies. Hazel Mink, which became Hazel Hays played the piano while you read off the screen what they were talking.

CW: For heaven’s sake!

RT: Then they finally got the talkies. Then just down the road, it would be in the second block house, right across from Mary Evans were the Knapp Brothers, Carl Cummins was on the corner, where he worked on cars and painted and Bob Westrick . He died and his kids are running it now, plumbing shop. I visited with his daughter Hazel Mink, Hazel Hays lived on that side in the block house. Up where the little ice cream thing is at Jo Jo’s. Have you been up there and seen it? That was Barringer barber shop. The old man Barringer , right across the street where Youngman lived. They were both barbers. The old man lived in there. Then there was a house there close to the corner which was Doc Meeken department.

CW: Did Doctor Cooper have an office here?

RT: Yes, out where she lives.

CW: She is in a nursing home now.

RT: I mean June, his daughter. The log house where Donnie lived, yes she is in a nursing home. I don’t know who lives there now, but he on that side and he did here for quite a while had one up here and one in Napoleon. He went both places. Then when he quit, I called him. He was a close friend of mine. He had antique cars, and he wouldn’t let anybody drive his one old Hupmobile, but me. I used to drive it on Sundays. He used to have quite a few things on Sundays each year. Then I would drive it down to Kalida, and back. The old boy was a right hand drive.

CW: Is that right! It must have been made in England or something..

RT: No, it was made here. All the cars were made here in the old days. Just like the stuff we buy. It didn’t have China, that they’re calling in nine million now. Everything you pick up is, you know why that is. It’s on account of they want more money for this and that. That’s why all the big boys went bankrupt. They can’t keep keep paying.

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