Music - Music - Music
Elsie Johnson, 2015

Music has always been a big part of my life - from learning nursery rhymes through the wonderful years of the 40s! Music and dancing was a wonderful combination. I took tap and toe dancing and even enjoyed the recitals when we wore wonderful costumes. In high school we even had after-school lessons when I learned the “jitterbug” and “Lambeth Walk”. Music of the era was played by record - loudly! My best experience with music was when Glenn Miller was scheduled to play at the Val Air Ballroom - a wonderful dance hall in Des Moines. Our group planned to attend. We drove 40 miles to Des Moines in a Model A Ford. What a memorable time! The music was wonderful. “Tuxedo Junction”, “Moonlight Sonata”, Chattanooga Choo Choo”, etc. We danced and listened to the wonderful music and we stood and swayed near the bandstand. What a wonderful evening! I was also lucky enough to receive an autograph of Glenn Miller. What a treasure!!! I kept it for years but somehow it got lost. However, I’ll always have those wonderful memories of special music!!!


Elsie Johnson 2015
Being Sixteen In The 1930s
Elsie Johnson, 2015

School Activities - Girl Reserve Club - an athletic cub with after school games. Cheerleader - would practice after school. Social Activity - Rainbow Girls - we had meetings and dances on the weekends. Dancing lessons - Tap and Toe Saturday and Sunday Activity - worked at Woolworth’s for $0.15 plus a fraction an hour. (I could buy a nice blouse for $1.00) Babysat for neighbor girl for $0.35 an evening (from 7-12pm and sometimes doing dishes) Usual Saturday home chores: Dusting the staircase Cleaning my room which I shared with sister. Other jobs that needed to be done, ie, dishes. Sweeping the kitchen floor, helping my father too. Fun Times - Riding up and down main Street looking for the action (there wasn’t any!!!) going to “The Lake” in the corn fields - there wasn’t a drop of water, but good music!) Going to the skating rink - “Round and Round”. Once I fell and a dozen skaters skated over me. I still had fun in my teen years - stealing watermelons in the fall and taking them to the Public Park to eat them after we stopped at my mother’s house to get her large butcher knife. Is one of my fondest memories! Of course boys were always on our minds and talked about!


Elsie Johnson 2015