Well, Christmas is over and slowly but surely we're returning to normal around our house. Everything is un-decorated, the cookies are gone, and you can even get into the living room now. I'll bet we women appreciate this time of year more than any other time of the year. Everything is so nice and read up. We're all much better here. Earl, my husband is getting back to good health again and working full time now. (He had a spell in the hospital in November). Elmer is perky and getting around now. So, we're very happy that things are looking up. I'd like to thank all of you fine folks for your Christmas cards, for your patience with us when we were slow or neglected to fill your order during these illnesses. Now we hope to get the office in tip-top shape again.
I received a letter from M.H. Smith of Long Beach, California who says that he enjoys the Album so much because it brings back so many childhood memories of when he was 'growing up' in Western Kansas. Mr. Smith has a secret ambition to attend the Mt. Pleasant reunion. Any of you Californians who are heading east next summer about that time ought to get in touch with Mr. Marion Smith, 4207 Charlemagne Ave., Long Beach, California. I'm sure he would appreciate it. Emil Belsky of Antigo, Wisconsin told me that the Album really kept him company during his recent stay in the hospital. If we'd have known you were going, Emil, we'd have sent you some samples and a few subscription blanks and you could have kept busy while you were there taking orders. Pretty soon I'll have everyone working, won't I?
Aubrey Bobbitt o f Uniontown, Kansas has a suggestion for you readers. He would like to see - and he feels many others would enjoy them -pictures and articles of the interiors and machinery used in shops and factories that used steam for power. He has worked all his life in shops that used engines. If any of you readers have anything like this and would like to send it in, we'd be pleased to try and get it in the Album.
Dell Grupe of 3929 Globe Avenue, Culver City, California has a Fairbanks-Morse Z engine - 3 bore -5' stroke - #586578. He would like to know what year it was built. Could any of you help him out?
Les and George Hutchinson have a problem. They have a 1910 Sawyer-Massey rear mount. Their engine had a lovely chime whistle on it, but somebody stole the dome and disc of it. At the base is stamped Kinsley Manufacturing Company, Bridgeport, Connecticut. Mr. Hutchinson wrote to them, asking if they could help him get the necessary parts to repair his whistle, but his letter was returned stamped insufficient address. If any of you readers know of this company or where they might be located, I'm sure Les and George would appreciate your letting them know. Write to Mr. Les Hutchinson, 249 Dunlop Street West, Barrie, Ontario, Canada.
Jacob Tiessen of Abbotsford, British Columbia told me of a locomotive that came through Abbotsford last summer. It was built in Scotland in 1865. It was very old fashioned in appearance, but Jacob says it was very interesting. Of course, he also says that he's partial to the locomotives of the Canadian and United States railroads.
Bruce McCourtney of Syracuse, Nebraska wrote to tell us about a little warm-up Steam Threshing Bee that he and a few friends decided to have last July. This turned out to be quite a 'little' warm-up. Over 7,000 people showed up. Next year they plan to have 2 days. Bruce says that they found out that there's a lot of work involved, but also that the nicest people in the world attend these threshing bees and Steam Engine Shows. Welcome to the club, Bruce.
A while back I received the renewal of Keith Valesh. He was late because of a recently acquired little daughter. Our congratulations to the family of Keith Valesh. Keith also wrote 'I do enjoy the magazine very much it seems to make these long Alakan winter nights pass more swiftly.' My, but we get around with our steam engine stories.
We've received many complimentary letters on 'The Praying Engineer'. Our praise goes also to Mr. Plasterer.
I'm still looking for Mr. James Hanna, Sr. and Mr. Anton Simanek. This month I have someone else whose address got away. Mr. Conrad Milster. If anyone knows any of these men, please let me know so that I can get their Album off to them.
Well it's back to work now. No more visiting. We have another Album coming out pretty soon and then things will hum around here. Until next month, friends, think about our Album when you have your 'Coffee Break'.