A Move Not Made

I found an unused pack of business cards for Dad. Anaconda, Cincinnati, Ohio. Dad never transferred to the Cincinnati office.

He worked for Anaconda in St. Louis, transferred to Detroit, and again to Los Angeles. The family lived on Stanley Hills Drive in Hollywood in 1939 and during the Second World War. Not an easy time, but they liked the Southern California winters more than those in the Midwest.

Dad left Anaconda when they wanted to transfer him to Cincinnati. He took a job in San Diego with Pacific Wholesale Electric Company in 1945. I was born in San Diego rather than Ohio.

And that made all the difference? Who knows?

Hollywood Nights

My parents, Frank and Harriet Claycomb, moved to Hollywood California in 1939 – in time for their first born child to have that glamorous birthplace.  I think this was an exciting time in my parents’ lives.  They were in their early 20s and Hollywood star power was at a peak.  The Wizard of Oz was released that year and Gone With the Wind in 1940.  Mom said she often saw big stars at local stores.  It was almost a small town atmosphere.

Dad was a salesman for Anaconda and often entertained customers at night clubs.  These are souvenir photos from two of those evenings.

Folder for Florentine Gardens.

(about 1942) L-R: __, Sally Chamberlain, Frank Claycomb, Harriet Claycomb, __, Blair Chamberlain, __, __.

On the reverse of the Florentine Gardens folder, it states one can write for additional copies from Hollywood Nite Club Photos – $1.00 each plus 10 cents for mailing.

February 1940. L-R: Frank Claycomb, Cele Snow, W. E. Sprackling, Harriet Claycomb, Herbert Hawks, Win Snow, Mrs. Hawks, E. A. Casey, Mrs. W. E. Sprackling.

Jerry’s Joynt Chinatown 1941

JJ photo folderMy parents lived in Hollywood, California for a few years soon after they were married.  Dad was a salesman for Anaconda and often had to entertain clients.  It was a fun time to live in Hollywood before World War II.  Here’s one of the souvenir photos they had taken at Jerry’s Joynt in Chinatown near Los Angeles.  It was taken in early 1941.



jerrys joynt photo

On the reverse of the photo my Dad has written:  Jerry’s Joynt  about 1941, Ferguson Alley (Chinatown) – Los Angeles
L-R:  Blair Chamberlain (Cutler Hammer)
Mary Smedley
Frank Claycomb (Anaconda Wire & Cable Co.)
Sally Chamberlain
Doc (AB) Smedley (Anaconda Wire & Cable Co.)
Harriet Claycomb

JJ photo folder 2

And if they needed copies…

JJ photo folder rev

Dad’s Anaconda Wire & Cable Notebook

journal sharedMy brother choses great gifts – this year he sent many of Dad’s work related items.   Note pads and pencils with the company name, a magnifying glass, and address books with electrical industry contacts.  Nothing very personal, but still good fun and wonderful subjects to photograph.  And the very best thing to me was a notebook in which Dad kept notes when he went to Hastings, New York in 1934 for an introduction to Anaconda Wire & Cable Company where he had just started work.  He was 19 years old and had been living in

From Dad's Diary 10/1/1934

From Dad’s Diary 10/1/1934
(Not from this notebook)

Sycamore, Illinois and working as a gas meter reader for the local utility.

Now the entries here are not at all personal, they deal with wire manufacturing and annealing and weights of lengths of different sized cable.  But there are lots of blank pages.  I have decided to make this book my journal for 2013.  I’m going to write on the open pages.  This feels a tiny bit sacrilegious, but it also connects me to him.  A shared journal.

Journal page fec 2Frank Claycomb (1915-1999) worked for Anaconda Wire & Cable from 1934 to 1945 as a salesman.  He worked in St. Louis, Detroit, and Los Angeles.  When Anaconda wanted to transfer him to Ohio, Mom and Dad opted to stay in California.  Dad left Anaconda and went to work for Pacific Wholesale Electric Company in San Diego, selling electric supplies.

journal fec text