From the ongoing series, Diary of Helen Hussey – Golden Gate International Exposition Years, 1939 – 1940.
Saturday October 7, 1939. “Downtown with Jeanne + To the Fair with Tony – Went through many buildings again. Coffee at Brazil + and saw Gen there. Beautiful day + clear nite. Home early.”
Using Opening Day of the San Francisco Oakland Bay Bridge to illustrate a long wait on the bridge.
Sunday October 8, 1939. “Warm day. With Tony, Jeanne, and Dodo to the Fair. One hour over the bridge. Biggest day of the Fair.
Image Source http://theredlist.com
“Saw and heard Bing Crosby. Nite – Brought Ted back and we stopped at his apartment for drinks. Met William Saroyan’s cousin. Went to Cat Show.”
Dodo and her brother Mark. They were the niece and nephew of Helen’s friend, the downtown San Francisco dress shop owner, Tony Schmidt. Tony’s the wife of Phil Schmidt.
William Saroyan was an American dramatist and author. He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1940, and in 1943 won the Academy Award for Best Story for the film adaptation of his novel The Human Comedy.
An Armenian American, Saroyan wrote extensively about the Armenian immigrant life in California. Many of his stories and plays are set in his native Fresno. Some of his best-known works are The Time of Your Life, My Name Is Aram and My Heart’s in the Highlands.
He is recognized as “one of the most prominent literary figures of the mid-20th century.” Stephen Fry describes Saroyan as “one of the most underrated writers of the [20th] century.” Fry suggests that “he takes his place naturally alongside Hemingway, Steinbeck and Faulkner.”
Monday October 8, 1939. “Very warm today. Tired! Lazy day today – short walk in the park. Nite: to library. Read + bed early.”
Helen with the Hussey/Martin household pets, Bijou (left) Pancho (right).
Tuesday October 10, 1939. “Another warm day. Phoned Kathleen – wrote Ruth, Carola, M. Tinney. Sent Shakers. Bathed Bijou. Shopped for turkey for tomorrow. Got Pancho from hospital. She acted so cute! Nite: stuffed turkey and made cranberry sauce.”
Wednesday October 11, 1939 “Hot Day! Cleaned house. Tony + Phil here for turnkey dinner. Tony brought port + beer. Sam and I up late drinking port.”
Gayatri Devi often styled as Maharani Gayatri Devi, Rajmata of Jaipur. She was the third Maharani of Jaipur from 1939 to 1970 through her marriage to HH Maharaja Sawai Man Singh II. She has been counted in ‘The Ten Most Beautiful Women of the World’ along with actress Leela Naidu by the Vogue Magazine.
Thursday October 12, 1939. Another hot day. Jeanne and I to the Fair. Saw miniatures + rifle drill. Maharajah of Kaipur there. Met Tony + Ethelwyn at Brazil. Drinks at the Island Club. Jeanne and I home early.”
Friday October 13, 1939 “Nice Birthday. Jeanne gave me a lovely amethyst necklace, Sam a bracelet. Tony over in the evening with plaid skirt. Home most of the day. Fog in the evening. Jeanne out with Duke. Kathleen phoned in the A.M. Ross called at night.