September 22, 2003
Hanson: This is Joyce Hanson for the San Bernardino Oral History Project. We're interviewing Caroline Blair Schuiling today, September 22, 2003, at her home in Redlands. Good afternoon Caroline.
SCHUILING: Good afternoon Joyce. Welcome.
Hanson: So you are a long-time resident of San Bernardino who recently moved to Redlands, so why don't you start off by telling me about your recollections; your fondest recollections of San Bernardino.
SCHUILING: Well I don't know that it would be the fondest, but the earliest is walking from "E" Street to "D" Street with Mother carrying a six-month-old baby. We climbed onto the streetcar and came over to Redlands for the doctor to take care of the baby. He was having difficulties, but he recovered and we adored the doctor, so that was fine. The next one that I remember is with little brother sitting on well, back on the sidewalk I guess, while 14th Street was paved between "D" and "E".
Hanson: When was that?
SCHUILING: Oh that must have been maybe '20.
SCHUILING: Because I was born in Redlands and then we moved to San Bernardino before I was a year old. So, it was shortly after '20 because Richard was born at home in San Bernardino on 14th Street.
Hanson: Tell me about growing up in San Bernardino. What did the city look like when you were growing up?
SCHUILING: Well from 14th and "E", we could look right down "E" Street and see the tower of the old courthouse. Our eye level was the top of the steeple on the courthouse. Then, along with the courthouse, when it was to be torn down and it was all empty, they had a wonderful circular fire escape we used to climb up struggling and then slide down that old fire escape; that was fun. Dad worked down at 5th and "E" so frequently Mother would put us in the little red wagon and down we would go. Then Dad would walk us home; that was fun. I remember a one-foot high wall along a big old house just above Eighth Street and it was great sport to get up on the wall and walk along it. That was big stuff. Other than that we were pretty much within our own neighborhood and our own friends and church activities. Oh, I remember one Sunday school morning I was sitting on the little kindergarten chairs and a dear friend was sitting in front of me. I reached forward to pick something up off the floor and she leaned back and squashed my finger. That was the morning that I was to give a recitation at church. So, Dad got water on his nice big white hankie and there I stood with my little six-year-old hand, five-year-old maybe; that was fun.
Hanson: That doesn't sound like fun. That sounds painful.
SCHUILING: It's fun to look back at.
Hanson: Absolutely. Tell me about some of the things the kids did in the neighborhood. You said mainly in the neighborhood and church...
SCHUILING: Oh the little girl across the street and I had tricycles. We were not allowed to cross the street, but we could ride our tricycles back and forth at the same time. That was fun. Eventually I remember a family moved in with two little boys and the older one, when I was in third grade, had measles or chicken pox, which I had already had. So I went over and to keep him entertained I read the Wizard of Oz to him. That was fun. His Daddy then became mayor.
Hanson: Oh, who was that?
SCHUILING: Ira Gilbert. In fact, he may have been mayor along about that time, because Sierra Way was Gilbert Creek before it was paved.
Hanson: Oh I didn't know that.
SCHUILING: Oh yes. It was "A" Street, but it was Gilbert Creek.
Hanson: There were a lot of creeks in town; a lot of people talk about all the creeks.
SCHUILING: Warm Creek and Town Creek, which came down under the old Congregational Church at Ninth and "E' and then emptied out across the street. I remember an automobile agency went in on the southwest corner and they had a big opening, their service department was down on the level of the creek. The house facing north, just in back of it, had a very short lot, but they had a big bank down to the creek. That was fun.
Hanson: So how important were these creeks? Did a lot of people congregate around them or?
SCHUILING: No, no. Warm Creek down in Meadow Brook Park was the only one that had people playing around it, as I recall. The others were just flowing and through farmland or whatever, except Gilbert Creek. Warm Creek is still used for "Baseline Laundry" natural hot water.
Hanson: So how much of the area was developed about the time we are talking about, the 1920's.
SCHUILING: Oh we were out in the country at 14th Street. The streetcar of course went up to Arrowhead Springs. It went up "D" Street and then over to Mountain View on Highland and then up a beautiful divided roadway, but the trolley was in the middle and up it went. Then of course all the water trains from Arrowhead came down that same track until about; I think it was along in the '50's someplace.
Hanson: So they would bring water down to sell?
SCHUILING: Arrowhead Springs Water, uh huh. And now they do it all in trucks. The spigots used to be open; you could see them ready to load the trucks. Now that's all underground and done with hoses that go way down into the tank.
Hanson: That's interesting. I remember growing up where there were springs and there were places where you could just turn on the tap, same thing, and get your water bottles full if you wanted to. So it used to be free if you went up there to get it?
SCHUILING: Oh, no! We had city water. My brother did an experiment when he at the University of Redlands of a comparison of Arrowhead Spring Water and San Bernardino City Water, and they were almost exactly the same. So people in San Bernardino were paying money for Arrowhead Springs Water when all they had to do was take it out of the tap. [Laughing]
Hanson: [Laughing] That's interesting. It's amazing how we can market just about anything. So, tell me about going to school. Where did you go to school?
SCHUILING: I went to Riley and not until I was almost seven because Mother refused to put me in kindergarten and had a battle with the principal. I was going to stay home until first grade, which I did. And then I went on through second and I was such a good reader that I was promoted a semester, which made me a winter graduate. Then I graduated from sixth grade with our beloved principal Emma Knight; the same one that Mother had argued with. And later, after I was teaching, I was transferred to Lincoln School Emma wanted to get a smaller school than Riley (where she had been all those years), and so she came over to Lincoln. So, I not only had her as a principal as a child, but also as a colleague. She was a dear friend, a dear friend. And then I got up to high school - oh, well in between, Arrowview was just brand new and they gave those of us who lived between 16th and Baseline a choice of going to Sturges or Arrowview. Our next-door neighbor had gone to Arrowview and I thought that's for me, so up I went. Then into high school and I got all of my college requirements, and they came along and said, "We're not having any more winter graduation so-bingo-graduate - get out." I missed all of my music and art, which I had bypassed in order to get my requirements.
Hanson: Oh, that's too bad. That was the fun stuff.
SCHUILING: There were four of us who went from Riley to Arrowview and then we all graduated together. One of the fellas had been in first grade with me; he skipped, too. The others had come later on. But he and I went all the way through first grade through high school graduation together, so he was kind of a big brother.
Hanson: What is his name?
SCHUILING: Russell Young. He became a Navy pilot. A fella who lived on 14th Street down toward "D" and I walked home from Riley School every once in a while. He went into the Army and it turned out that Russell was the pilot for the plane that took Randy over to the Asian battle.
Hanson: So tell me about high school.
SCHUILING: High school was very calm because I was working for my college requirements. I walked to school everyday unless it rained-then Mom picked us up! One day I got to school and it was a cold one so I had my coat on with a belt. I went back to my locker a little bit later on and here was our puppy dog sitting at my locker, I tied him to it because I didn't want him to run home and get hit. But somebody let him go. He got home all right. My belt was hanging on the locker door. We had wonderful north winds and one of my delights was walking home against the wind - it was wonderful. By that time we were out on Ladera Road, so I was walking north. Fun.
Hanson: That's kind of hard to walk into the wind here.
SCHUILING: Good exercise.
Hanson: Oh yes, lot of resistance there.
SCHUILING: Uh huh, uh huh.
Hanson: So what did you guys do for fun in high school?
SCHUILING: I didn't. I didn't.
Hanson: Okay, let me ask you this.
SCHUILING: I was very calm and at home and that was it.
Hanson: Okay. If you went out on a date?
SCHUILING: I didn't go out on dates.
Hanson: You didn't go out on dates?
Hanson: Never? I can't believe that.
SCHUILING: The closest I got to it, well two things; Mother insisted that I go to dancing school. I didn't want to go to dancing school. But Russell came along to dancing school, so that made that. That was about as close to a date as I ever came. And that certainly wasn't planned on my part. But he's a dear friend. We have seen each other at reunions until the last one that I missed. Coming this next one in October I'm going to get to. But I understand Russell said, "Where's Caroline?" because we had done all of them before (and I made it!).
Hanson: You had told me one time - well I had heard at one of the luncheons that I was at that you said you were very politically active and you always vote.
SCHUILING: Absolutely. The first thing I did when I was 18, down to the courthouse and I registered. I have missed one primary. [Laughs] Well there was no party interested in that particular election, because I was in Boston teaching, and unbeknown to me, Dad was running for mayor and he took it in the primary. I had neglected to file for an absentee ballot, so that's the one election I have missed.
Hanson: Your Dad's election.
SCHUILING: My Dad's very own election. I didn't help him get in.
Hanson: [Laughing] So you went to college at the University of Redlands?
Hanson: And majored in music?
SCHUILING: History and sociology with a Teaching Credential.
Hanson: Oh, my kind of person.
SCHUILING: I participated in a lot of music and loved it dearly. But Dad had gone to Redlands as a charter student. So that was one thing that I had to do. I had an aunt who had gone up to Stanford from Redlands High and that was my second choice. That would have been fun to do, except I wasn't ready for it. Redlands was much better for me.
Hanson: And where did you teach?
SCHUILING: And then I taught in San Bernardino, beginning in September 1941. We issued ration books and December 7th, bingo. So that was interesting. And something interesting happened there. I was at Mount Vernon School and it's right on the old highway. I was headed home, walking, and an Army convoy came along. "Caroline!" And it was one of my college friends. I had dated him.
Hanson: Oh, so now we start to date.
SCHUILING: Going to a concert was the extent of it, but that's all right.
Hanson: So how did San Bernardino change, or did it change during the war. What was going on?
SCHUILING: Oh yes. San Bernardino was San Bernardino with all of its notoriety. Up until the army decided to come in, and they said, "You either get rid of that red light district or you are out of bounds." So it was moved, now it's all over town. Except it seems to be coming back to Baseline and Fifth Street.
Hanson: So before that it was there and everyone knew it was there?
SCHUILING: Yes, it was "D" below Second and Stoddard in the same area, and that was great fun to drive through and see the girls hanging out the windows.
Hanson: [Laughing] So they did that? See this is news to me. They did that; they hung out the windows.
SCHUILING: Uh huh.
Hanson: Because everyone who has talked about this, I get this vision of this place where there were houses and no one saw these girls until you went inside.
SCHUILING: Oh no, except my brother. He was reading meters for the Edison Company during summer and the location of the meter was always on the slip, but he pretended he couldn't find it, so he walked clear through the house.
Hanson: Oh [laughing].
SCHUILING: Curious guy.
Hanson: I guess. So how big was this red light district, would you say, roughly?
SCHUILING: Probably no more than four blocks. "D" and Stoddard and from Second maybe down to Rialto. So that's only four sides of one or two blocks. It wasn't big, but it certainly was notorious. San Bernardino Straits for the Navy was giggled about because some of the kids knew San Bernardino.
Hanson: Wow. That's a wide-ranging reputation.
SCHUILING: Oh it was. It was. It was. Speaking of that area, the '38 flood deposited four feet of mud at the corner of Mill and "E".
Hanson: That's a heck of a lot of mud.
SCHUILING: Four feet of mud.
Hanson: Yes. I'm just picturing where that is.
SCHUILING: I had a friend who was digging it and it took quite a while.
Hanson: Do you remember there being a Chinatown?
SCHUILING: Vaguely, no really, on Third Street. The Chinatown that I remember was the laundry on "D" just catty-corner from the new post office at Fifth and "D".
SCHUILING: Because I went in there to get some equipment for the operetta that I was in at junior high school. I don't know that it was Chinese, but we thought it was Chinese.
Hanson: So when you were young and you would go shopping downtown, what were the major stores that were down there and the way people would interact.
SCHUILING: Edison Company where Dad worked was just below Fifth on "E". The West Coast Theater came in across the street. The Platt Building where Lyndon Johnson was the elevator boy was on the corner. Going down "E" Street on the west side, there was a bakery and a mortuary in there someplace and a photographer who eventually did our high school graduation pictures. He was in the upstairs of the corner building. That takes us down to Fourth Street. Woolworth's was in there, but I don't believe they were on the corner. I think they moved later. Bank of America was on the corner of Third and "E", which is now the northeast corner of the mall, the Andreson Building, but that was Bank of America. On the other side, going north now was Town Allison Drug Store at Third and "E". I don't know when the area actually stopped, but eventually Vondey's Jewelers was in there, which gave me my pitcher. Not gave me. My first money bought my tea set.
Mrs. Garth, Marie Garth, had a cafeteria in there someplace between Third and the courthouse, which is why we played on the fire escape. That was my introduction, almost, to almost living with a black person. Because her kitchen boy was a dear guy and we just all loved Ed. He was our Ed and that's all there was to it. Then, I don't know what was in there between the cafeteria and the courthouse. I don't remember at all what was north of the courthouse above Court Street. The First Presbyterian Church was on the northeast corner of Court and "E." I do remember when the Sun Company came in and while we were playing with the Courthouse fire escape we also stood over the vent from the Sun Company. It was on the south side of Court Street, and that was fun - nice warm air -- blew our skirts up. Oh golly. The printing facility was on the north side.
Hanson: Little things used to make us happy.
SCHUILING: Yes, yes. Harris' built in '27. Before that, on Third Street east of "E", Louis Wolf had a men's store. Harris' had been in that block and the little Chinese restaurant next to the new city hall, not the latest one, but the new city hall, was in there. The old Rialto Theater was in there and that's where we saw Citizen Kane. The only time I went into the Rialto Theater, it was not the place to go.
Hanson: Oh. I didn't know that.
SCHUILING: And then going west from "E" was the new Harris' building and Penney's was on the north side and P.E. train station was on the south side. The Railway Express Company had their office there and a friend of mine worked there. And then on the other side of "F" there was the old Army/Navy store, which was all kinds of stuff. But just west of "E" and west of the Andreson Building was the Chocolate Palace, which was quite a spot.
Hanson: I've heard of that, someone else had talked to me about that.
SCHUILING: The father of one of my dear friends, school friends, owned it. That was fun because our graduation from Arrowview we went down to the Chocolate Palace for afternoon ice cream - the whole class. That was fun.
Hanson: Yes, I imagine. Who owned it at that time?
SCHUILING: Mr. Pease, and I don't remember what his first name was.
I remember going into Harris' to get a new sweater - the old one on the south side east of "E". Mother went to the record department and bought "It's 3:00 O'clock in the Morning" and we played that on our old wind-up phonograph time after time after time. Then when I was dating later on, Mother said, "and what time is it?" I said, "It's a quarter of 12," it's a quarter of 12, which of course meant 3:00 o'clock in the morning. She didn't think it was funny.
Hanson: [Laughing] So then Harris' was the place where you would go to get...
SCHUILING: The only thing we went to Penney's for was sheets. Sometimes some yardage, but Harris' had anything and everything that we needed. And of course it was friends. Mother knew the two Harris boys, Leslie and Harold. We didn't know Melville quite so well, and we also knew Mr. Arthur, whose daughter was in high school when Richard and I were. That brings me to Mr. Herman. He was a devout Jew, as were his whole family. But he went into Mrs. Garth's cafeteria time after time. That was his favorite spot to eat. He went in one day and saw a nice slice of ham and he said, "Mrs. Garth I want some of that fish." He was the one who saved the bank, because he took the receipts from that day at the Harris' Company over to the Bank of America and deposited it right then and there and he stopped the run on the bank.
Hanson: During the depression?
SCHUILING: Uh huh. I don't know what year it was, but I remember his doing that. And there was a water fountain at the corner of Third and "E" right by the bank. A policeman was usually standing there. My brother got lost one day and he decided he wasn't lost, he knew where he was, but where was Mother?
Hanson: Mother was lost.
SCHUILING: Mother was lost. He knew exactly what to do. He stayed right there with the policeman and the water fountain. Fun.
We did have a little bit of rural life because Mother's cousin owned a ranch over on Muscott. He had oranges and grapes and cotton and some - it must have been alfalfa, because I don't believe he bought the hay. But we got to go up in the barn and jump down into the soft hay from the rafters. We got to ride on the tractor and go through the vineyard. That was fun. And then they had bats in the barn. That was fun. And our area, on Ladera Road -- now this was when I was 12, so that was about '30, yes I know, because Dad bought the house in '30. But there was a big streetlight out in front of us. We used to sit on the curb and watch the bats turn around and the owls came once in a while. We could see the stars - believe it or not, even with the streetlight on.
Hanson: Clear skies then.
SCHUILING: [Laughs] And of course the big '33 earthquake was exciting.
Hanson: Tell me about that.
SCHUILING: The Long Beach earthquake.
Hanson: No one's told me about that.
SCHUILING: Oh really?
Hanson: Uh uh.
SCHUILING: 1933, I was just beginning high school. Mother and I were standing at the kitchen window getting supper ready and I don't know whether the refrigerator went on or off, but all of a sudden everything started shaking. The car was parked out in the driveway going east and west and it started rocking back and forth. Then pretty soon we heard that there really was a big one, so we spent the next day outdoors. Seems to me I did a jigsaw puzzle on a card table. But that was something else. Long Beach just went down in a hurry.
Well interesting to me was my freshman year at college. One of the girls in my class, who became a very dear friend, had come from Long Beach. She had gone through the earthquake and one of her papers was telling about it.
Hanson: It must have been frightening.
SCHUILING: Oh it was horrible. And fortunately it had happened less, well no more than an hour after school was dismissed. So, if it had happened a little earlier it would have been really tragic.
Highland Avenue at Waterman was the cemetery and the line of Eucalyptus trees period.
Hanson: That's it?
SCHUILING: That was it. Nothing beyond. Someplace over that way there was a riding spot where one day a couple of us rented a horse each and went tearing off through the field in back of our house on Ladera Road headed out toward Cajon Road and the railroad. I got scared silly because I was afraid that the horse was going to step in a gopher hole. I've never ridden a horse since. When we went out on Ladera in '30, John Ralphs, who had been or was eventually mayor, had a vineyard and there was nothing between us and "I" Street until he put some houses in as war houses. They were all limited to 900 sq. ft. and it's quite an area in there - Bussey Street and Lomita and Lincoln and what's the other one? There's another one that goes up and down. That was interesting because we watched all the houses go up.
Then, when I was teaching down at Mount Vernon, one day I was riding my bike home -- I was down at Mount Vernon only one year. But I would go up Mount Vernon to Highland and then over to Ladera. Sometimes I went up to 27th Street, which is where the airport was, where Lee Miles had his plane. Amelia Erhardt landed there. We saw her. This time there were men up in the empty grounds, so I didn't ride my bike up in there again. But it turned out to be the Trusdale Development, which is Lomita and 27th, 28th, up to Marshall. But that was all wide-open field and from our house west, when we went up there, that was all empty. Even the field in back of us was just wild grains and fun to walk through.
Hanson: So things really started changing then after World War II.
SCHUILING: Oh yes.
Hanson: Because you had a huge building increase.
SCHUILING: Yes. Well we had those two developments - the Ralph's Development and the Trusdales.
SCHUILING: Right there around us. And of course we had the bomb factory that was named the Stove Factory, but it was a bomb factory. Right at the end of Marshall Boulevard at, well I don't know what it is now, but it would be Mount Vernon and Marshall, but even further west. The bomb factory was between the end of Marshall and the railroad.
SCHUILING: And that's all housing now.
Hanson: So they actually made bombs there for the war?
SCHUILING: Uh huh.
Hanson: Do you know anything about Camp Ono or the prisoners of war that were here?
SCHUILING: Yes, the prisoners were allowed out and they were work crews for the streets. I remember seeing them up on Kendall Drive when that was being widened or whatever. By the time I was teaching, well that's of course the same time - but one of my college friends was in church with us at Calvary Baptist, and we were in choir together. The guards at Ono became members of the community and she married one of them. And Jean Van Osdel, because Boyce was our minister at the time, sang "Always" at choir rehearsal the night to announce Mary Catherine's engagement. She's still a friend. I saw her not long ago at one of the University affairs.
Hanson: So there were a lot of things going on.
SCHUILING: A lot of things going on.
Hanson: How many Japanese citizens were here?
SCHUILING: How many what?
SCHUILING: Japanese? I don't know. Our cousin out on the ranch had the Sokomoto family and Benny was in school with us. I didn't know Masako then, but dear friends of ours knew the Hurata family and when they were to leave from Riverside Railroad Station, we went over to say goodbye. Turned out that one of the Hurata's and I, Masako, had been in swimming class together over at University. So it really pulled a punch, really. She was fortunate though, she had graduated. She was a year ahead of me, and she managed to get from Poston to Chicago and taught there for a while - even during the war.
Hanson: Yes, a lot of the young women were allowed to leave and move east, as long as they were moving east, I remember that.
SCHUILING: Another little interesting thing - one semester in early school I was transferred from Riley over to Lincoln; it turned out to be just the one semester. The principal was Mr. Wierwille. My practice teaching was down at Metcalf, and his daughter, Winnifred Wierwille was principal down there. When I started teaching in '41, she was my principal at Mount Vernon.
Hanson: Small world.
SCHUILING: Small world, but that's the way the town was.
Hanson: It was more like small town America.
SCHUILING: Uh huh.
Hanson: When did that change do you think?
SCHUILING: Influx of humanity. People came to California because they didn't want neighbors knowing what they were doing. So the front porch went away, people went into their back yards. Neighbors were not neighbors usually. We had a wonderful neighborhood, but it was unusual. It was just masses of people coming in wanting things that we hadn't necessarily needed or wanted.
Hanson: Just bringing in their own cultures from other parts.
SCHUILING: Yes, their own escape from society. Of course we had a lot of military, and they were pretty stable, but there were others who weren't. Then when we lost Santa Fe, when we lost the railroad, that really hit. They moved all the yards out to Barstow.
Hanson: When was that?
SCHUILING: Late '50's, '60's, along in there someplace I think. It might have been later than that. When we lost Norton and we lost the railroad and there was something else that went kerplunk - oh the highway. The freeway came in and broke up the town.
Hanson: When did the freeway get put in?
SCHUILING: That was interesting. That was along about '50, because Dad signed the papers between Santa Fe and the state to take out the loop track and have the main line come down under 16th Street, because the loop track had come along there someplace. Well, Highway 30, the cross-town freeway, actually followed the loop track, so it was way up north. The light on the old train used to come through and hit my bedroom window. We were just right there. He was maybe half a mile away from us, then he went down "I" Street.
Hanson: So pretty much there was a confluence of events that changed the city?
SCHUILING: Yes, yes.
Hanson: You have the military...
SCHUILING: Any one of them we might have managed, but everything hit with a bang.
Hanson: All within a few years of each other - within a decade really.
SCHUILING: Oh absolutely, yes.
Hanson: And then there was more, when the military bases start closing up in the 90's then you have even more problems.
SCHUILING: That was awful, uh huh.
Hanson: Especially since this area depended on military for a lot of employment.
SCHUILING: Right. So that has changed the town. Then the Carousel Mall went in.
Hanson: And when did that go in? Same time roughly?
SCHUILING: It was after Dad had been mayor, so late 60's, early 70's maybe. I remember going down to the open house.
Hanson: So what did putting in that mall do to downtown?
SCHUILING: Ruined it. Closed off Third Street. Made "F" and "G" kind of wiggley and I still get lost when I get down there. It changed the whole complexion of town. It killed Woolworth's right there at the corner of Fourth and "E". Coulter's Dry Goods Store was at the east south corner of Fourth and "E" where they had pumps going 24 hours a day because of Town Creek.
Hanson: Did a lot of people support the mall going in?
SCHUILING: I don't know. I was busy and it just went down. As long as Harris' was there I went to Harris'. Once in a while I'd go a little bit further, but it wasn't what - well here again, Harris' had what I wanted, so that's where I went. But it sure killed the rest of the town. Of course, we had the California Theater with all of the previews. The Old West Coast had previews too, and they'd have searchlights. Irwin Stump and his Dad had those big searchlights and they'd go out. See the searchlight going around, oh there's a preview tonight, let's go down and see what's happening. So once in a while, not often.
Hanson: So did the movie people come out here then for the premiers?
SCHUILING: Oh yes, the cast came out to see what it was all about.
Hanson: Do you remember any in particular?
SCHUILING: No. I wasn't interested.
Hanson: All right, just curious.
SCHUILING: I was busy in high school along about there. Because I remember when the California Theater opened and three of us, dear friends, went down. Mom and Dad drove us down and they sat in back of us so that we would be watched and we were perfectly okay. I don't remember the movie. I have no idea what we saw. But that was exciting. And then of course the California became the spot for the previews, and West Coast went second runs. Annabil's Drug Store finally closed up. They were on the corner of Platt Building.
Hanson: No one's ever mentioned that before. Town Allison I've heard of.
SCHUILING: Yes. On the north side of Fourth Street, have you heard of Mark B. Shaw?
SCHUILING: No? Oh the mortuary was right in there. And then they moved out onto Waterman and the furniture store I think built the new building that is still there. It may be empty, I haven't gone by recently. That was still a residential street when I was teaching. A friend of mine had her house down there, and we went to meetings and stuff not very far from the mortuary. And then of course the post office got dedicated. We didn't have to wait for the opening like Redlands did. Redlands had to wait for the dedication because the snow shovel hadn't arrived.
Hanson: Oh. Why did they have to wait for a snow shovel?
SCHUILING: Government regulation. They had to have a snow shovel.
Hanson: Do they know it doesn't really snow here?
SCHUILING: That didn't make any difference; it was a government regulation. You know how those go.
Hanson: Yes I do. I know all about government bureaucracy. Well, that's interesting.
SCHUILING: I know about that because I was over for the dedication. Having been partly Redlands, because we were back and forth a great deal. Dear friends were here. What else?
Hanson: Do you want to tell me anything about your teaching career?
SCHUILING: Oh that was fun. I had a wonderful time. I started out at Mount Vernon and Ben hollered to me from the convoy, and then I transferred to Lincoln where Emma Knight came and then I went back east to visit my brother one summer and decided I would like to see all of a New England year. He had gone to some agencies and he said, "It doesn't look very good." Well each summer that I had been back with him, which was three, I had gone to Boston University for summer school. So I went to the Director of Placement and he said, "May I make a telephone call?" I said, "Sure." "Charlie I have a girl for you." So I had my one year back in Boston. Actually I was in Newton, one of the 14 villages. That was fun. A completely different environment than I had ever known -- such as the vice president of the Gillette Company and his little girl was in my class. And the president of the Wool Association was in my class. That was interesting because we had no class on afternoons Tuesday or Thursday. Those were social days. You could go ice-skating or go to the ballgame or boy scouts or girl scouts or whatever. So that frequently became the day that this teacher was invited home for lunch. That was really something. Parent-Teacher conferences and planning were for me. No baseball game for me. That was fun, and then I came back.
Hanson: I know you said you majored in history and social studies. Did you teach a particular grade?
SCHUILING: Usually third and fourth. Sometimes a combination. When third grades got out at 2:30 and fourth grades got out at 3:30, a combination was great because you can do everything in the morning with everybody and then that one hour with just the older youngsters -- that was California History time, so that was fun.
Hanson: Is that where you would want to be -- third and fourth grade? Is that something you chose or?
SCHUILING: No, not necessarily. I did a very interesting one that didn't last. There were parental complaints we were discriminating. Grades four, five and six, half of the youngsters spoke English. The other half spoke only Spanish. Of course the whole gang was Spanish background. That was something else. But it was interesting.
Hanson: What did they object to?
SCHUILING: The parents objected to the segregation, which of course was done by the children themselves out on the playground. Of course, the idea was for the Spanish speakers to learn English.
But the English speakers wanted to speak English; they didn't want to speak Spanish. So it didn't really work quite the way it - of course that was only 10 minutes a day for recess, but the rest of the time it was English. We had a Cuban fellow for the language arts and I did social studies and arithmetic. That was fun. That was fun.
Hanson: So let me ask you this. When you father was mayor did people treat you differently?
SCHUILING: I don't think so. I was busy and going on. The only thing that I remember of being the mayor's daughter was one night when we needed to go to Harris' and it was council night. Dad drove us down and then we decided that we would ride the bus from Third and "E" up home. Perfectly okay, but we got to the council meeting and Jim Ellis, the Chief of Police said, "How are you getting home Mrs. Blair?" "Oh we're going to take the bus down here at the corner." "Oh no you're not." So we went home in a police car. That's the only time that I remember anything that - Oh! I guess mom and I rode in the second car in the Centennial Parade because Dad was riding with Miss America. But sitting in the backseat of the car, no different treatment than anything else.
Hanson: I was just curious because sometimes when a parent or a relative achieves some position of power, all of a sudden their life changes, and not necessarily for the better.
SCHUILING: But not for us. We stayed right there.
Hanson: So that still has kind of a small town feel to it though?
SCHUILING: Yes it did.
Hanson: Because it wasn't someone special, it was your neighbor. He was your neighbor and you knew him before. SCHUILING: Uh huh. It was fun because the fellow that Dad defeated was the father of a youngster that Richard and I played with. Because the Johnson family lived down Ladera Road just a block or so, and then poof. We didn't see the Johnson's very much anymore. We were past the playing age by that time. Because that's when I was teaching and had been for a couple of years.
Hanson: That's interesting.
SCHUILING: We had friends. Well this was small town. John Ralphs was a friend. Ira Gilbert was a neighbor and friend. Cap Johnson was a neighbor and friend. In fact, his wife was Red Cross and we worked quite closely. Then Dad was from the same neighborhood. Then Mike Kramer lived just back on Muscupiabe. You know that doesn't happen everyplace. That was kind of fun.
Hanson: You said something about Red Cross.
SCHUILING: Oh, she was Mrs. Red Cross I guess. I didn't actually work with her, except one time and I don't know why. There must have been some other things that I was doing with her, but in the '38 flood she drove me down to Tippecanoe where the bridge was washed out. We just kind of grew a friendship and then Dad defeated her husband.
Hanson: Okay, we're almost to the end so let me stop this and see where we go from here. [End of Tape 1, Side B]
[Begin Tape 2, Side A]
Hanson: Were there any special community groups that did things that were active, or was it just the usual kind of women's club/men's club kinds of things?
SCHUILING: Well, the women's club of course grew and then it went ker-flop.
Hanson: Oh it did? SCHUILING: Yes, but they had to wait for me to perform on the stage in my piano recital at age nine.
SCHUILING: But the depression broke them. The building is still there, but it's used as the, what is it? Assistance League.
Hanson: Yes I think so. I know the building is still there with the sign on it.
SCHUILING: I was in B.P.W., Business and Professional Women. We did fashion shows almost every year to get money. And then Bingo, that died out. I don't know that anybody is B.P.W. anymore. AAUW was active. Redlands formed its own chapter about 1948. I am still in Delta Kappa Gamma, and we used to put on big wing-dings for the new teachers in San Bernardino. That was fun. We had a big luncheon.
That's when we had Redlands and Colton as part of our group. Then Redlands broke off and Colton kind of stayed, but it isn't what it used to be, like so many organizations I guess. Of course church activities were important all the way through. You know where the old cafeteria is at the corner of 14th and "E", across the street from McDonald's original?
SCHUILING: We used to fly our kites on the corner of where McDonald's went in. That was a wonderful old weed patch. But the little church was developed by the minister at the First Baptist Church, which used to be down on Fourth and "G". The parsonage was right there on the corner of 14th and "E". Mom was witness to many weddings. In fact, I think the house is still there. He developed this little community Sunday school, whatever. Well, we went there for Sunday school and then went down to First Baptist Church for services. One morning we came out and Mother had the car and she said, "Now we're not going to the same place for church today." Turned out we went to the basement of the Y.M.C.A. for the first meeting of Calvary Baptist. So that was interesting. Then we bought the old big mansion sort of thing that had been a doctor's chiropractic office. I think he was a chiropractor. Anyway, 19th and "E" and Dad signed the loan papers with the Bank of America with his signature, that's all.
Hanson: That's it.
SCHUILING: That's all. John Oakley did it. Anyway, then we were at Calvary Baptist for a long time.
Hanson: And you were part of the choir.
SCHUILING: I sang in the choir. I taught Sunday school. I didn't go to ladies or Missionary Society because I was teaching. But, oh one thing, way back when we were still on 14th Street, so that was before '30, they were having a dinner and Mother had made a casserole to take up for the dinner. She walked into the kitchen and said, "This was cooked with currents." And the ladies, "Oh I wonder how it tastes." We had just gotten our electric stove.
Hanson: [Laughing] Those kind of currents.
SCHUILING: Very, very. Actually, we had just gotten a new gas stove, which had to be replaced because the Edison Company wanted their employees to be cooking with electricity, so we complied. Dad got hold of a pickup truck some way or other and packed the gas stove into the back of the truck. Richard and I sat back there too. Nobody ran 60 miles and hour in those days. We brought the stove over to our very dear friends with whom Dad had roomed before he was married. So Auntie Grace got our new gas stove. But we cooked with currents from then on. Riding in the back of the pickup truck was fun. Couldn't do it now. Have to have a special seat and belts to hold you in. Not everybody does it, but they're supposed to. Now what?
Hanson: Anything else I haven't covered.
SCHUILING: We used to walk all over from 14th Street. A group of neighborhood kids and Mom walked to see the new courthouse. We used to walk over to "D" and get the Big Red Car and ride all the way down to 10th Street for my music lesson. During the war I was leader of a small group of Campfire Girls. We decided we needed to go to the beach, so we went down to Third Street Station and got on the Big Red Car and rode all the way out to Santa Monica. We had our day at the beach, got on the streetcar and came home. That was fun.
Hanson: How long would it take you to go on the car, to take that drive? How long a drive was that on the streetcar?
SCHUILING: On the streetcar?
SCHUILING: Probably not much more than an hour and a half.
Hanson: That's not bad.
SCHUILING: About the same thing we can do on the freeway.
Hanson: Sometimes not [laughing].
SCHUILING: Sometimes not [laughing].
SCHUILING: Well you see they had very few stops and a straight line down. Maybe we had to change trains at the old subway station on Hill. Subway because the streetcars went in on ground level, the office building was up above. I don't think there was any digging for the streetcar. But anyway it was a subway - still is. I don't know why, but the day Japan surrendered, some of the kids and I were at the corner of Highland and "E" at Hilbig's Drug Store, which is another thing. That was interesting too, but Hilbig's is all of two blocks, maybe three blocks from the high school. Well one of the fellas had an old Overland touring car and the three girls, very close ones, (one of us was dating the driver of the Overland) piled in and we drove up to Hilbig's for lunch. That was fun.
Hanson: Was that allowed?
SCHUILING: Yes, it was open campus. Oh yes. There was a cafeteria in the bottom of the old Classics Building, but that wasn't very interesting. Sack lunches were better, and going to Hilbig's was very grown-up.
Hanson: So did you get to sit at the soda fountain?
SCHUILING: Absolutely. Cliff Nielson was our soda jerk. But they had hot meals for us, which was interesting. Then of course Haywood's Ice Cream wasn't very far away.
Hanson: I've heard someone talk about Haywood's.
SCHUILING: That was ice cream.
SCHUILING: Made right there. And wonderful sodas. Of course Cliff did a pretty good job too over at the drug store.
Hanson: It's funny how some things are pretty consistent across time. Not so much anymore, there aren't soda fountains anymore where kids can go.
SCHUILING: We didn't do it after school, and I don't really know when, but we used to go to Mack and Puthoff, which was on the southwest corner of Baseline and "E". They had a soda fountain and you mentioned the cherry coke, yes... and chocolate coke. And Mack and Puthoff is where Kodak picked for dispensing the 50th anniversary cameras for 12-year-olds. They celebrated with this pretty little gold Brownie box, and Dad and I went into Macinputoff and I got my camera -- 12 years old. That was fun. I used it for a long time.
Hanson: That's exactly what they wanted you to do.
SCHUILING: That's right, that's right. We used to go out Rialto's Riverside Drive and pick juniper for Christmas decorations. It was county land, it wasn't forestland. They had nice juniper plants out there. We used to pick wild flowers up on Kendall drive.
Hanson: You won't find them there anymore.
SCHUILING: No. Lots of things have changed, but it was a good place to grow up.
Hanson: From what we've talked about, there's a mix. You could be in a small city and then just a few minutes later go up the street and be in rural America.
SCHUILING: Right, right.
Hanson: You could be out where there were ranches and cows and fields.
SCHUILING: Well you see, we went out to Ladera in '30 and John Ralphs subdivision didn't open until after that. But that brings me back to the neighborhood. We had just a block from Colima up to Marshall. There were Paul and Sue Bell, we knew at University. Yvonne and Dave Wood, I had known Yvonne when we were little and she came down to visit her grandparents on 14th Street. Al and Jo Johnson, he was the appraiser for one of the - I don't remember the name of the company. Marlyn and Carol O. Smull, who built their own adobe house. The Graham's who had the house next door to us. And then the Judson's who came in and then the Rehwalds were in there for a while and then the Goritzs, a Greek family. Then there are a couple of families that weren't really as involved across the street. They kind of moved a little bit more than the rest of us did. But we started having New Year's Eve parties and then one or two of them - no I guess that was it. Then one of the hostesses died and by that time I was married (before Walter), and I set up a January 6th party instead of New Year's because people were getting older and not driving at night, especially on New Year's Eve. So, I picked Epiphany, January 6th, and we did our afternoon parties. I did that for years and years up until this Christmas I have done it for the neighborhood. So wherever I was in the neighborhood. That's been fun.
Hanson: That's a nice tradition. It gets people in the neighborhood to get closer. It paves over a lot of problems that could arise.
SCHUILING: It was such a good neighborhood that they gave Mom and Dad their 50th anniversary party.
Hanson: That's a close neighborhood.
SCHUILING: That's a close neighborhood. It really is. The Bells are still there and Yvonne Wood is still there. Mr. Goritz died and she has never come to the parties. But I guess that's the old neighborhood, because the Johnsons are all gone and the Smulls are all gone. So then, when I came over to Redlands I included the original group and the neighborhood within my condominium area, the little quarter. Then when I came over to Plymouth Village I did it for the originals, the condo and the Village, just the courtyard of the Village. So I don't know where it's going to go this year.
Hanson: Parties are getting bigger, geographically.
SCHUILING: Well, as I said, there are only three of the original neighborhood left, so.
Hanson: Thank you so much for doing this.
SCHUILING: You're welcome Joyce, it's been fun.
[End of interview]