How we spent our spare time


As a youngster, we spent a lot of time building model airplanes. The first World War hadn't been over too long (15-18 years) so the Boy's magazines had lots of articles about war planes, (G8 and the Flying Aces) and air battles. Airplanes were a big thing - they were not very common. If an airplane flew over, we kids would run outside to see it.

We also got to see dirigibles because we were not too far from Lakehurst Naval Air Station were most airships were based. We also spent many hours building model airplanes. Clarence Heaton (Clink) had a small room in a garage that was in back of his house where we often did our model building. His house also had a 3rd story attic where we would take our balsa wood -tissue airplanes to fly out the window. If a plane didn't fly well or got damaged, the most fun was setting it on fire and launching it from the attic window.

As I got older I continued to build models and at one point in High School had a gas engine for a model though I never really got it running in a plane. One of my friends, Larry Paxon had an air rifle and we had fun shooting that in his back yard. He also had an old Ford Car magneto which we hooked up so it would produce shocks. He had a big chemisty set and we made such exciting things as gunpowder.

But I think one of my major hobbies was reading. I really enjoyed reading books and magazines. My Dad gave me a subscription to a Literary Guild program for children. I still have a few of those books. I especially liked books by Albert Payson Terhune who wrote stories about a Collie dog named Lad (long before the Lassie TV shows). Later on, in high school, I got veryinterested in electronics through my uncle Matt.