Dollars to Doughnuts (FGK 251)

This was a friend from the hospital.

Postmarked 1955

Dearest Coppie (mom)

“Hi ya kiddo!!!” I decided to write you instead of wasting money by phoning (Scotch you know!!)

I haven’t even been home for the last week! I’ve finally ditched Bowness for a while to come and stay with my grandmother on the North Hill, a block from our old house at that.

I’ve just been debating on whether to go see Bill Haley on the 22nd or to go to a show. I’m dying to see him! We should get together and to Marg!??!!

I haven’t’ been doing much during the day except to study!!! Big deal eh?? What you been doing lately besides study “Coppie”??? Will you be going to a high school next year or what? Man!! I’d sure love to go to one for “ten” but I’ll bet a dollar to a doughnut, I’ll end up doing it by correspondence. Bah!!

Any parties or dances lately?? I never get to do anything at dear old Bowness. We probably won’t get to Calgary ‘til August!!

Gosh! Im dying to hear your records “Coppie”!! I’m tired of having “jazz sessions” so my self. Any new (I can’t make this word out – it looks like Bastics but according to urban dictionary – the only definition I could find- that means someone who is both a bastard and a spastic. Will be tucking that away in my memory but I’m pretty sure that’s not what she meant).?? Guess you would’ve told me when I saw you last.

Do you ever hear from Janet or any of the old gang?? Marg fried, Valerie, Zoe, Donna, etc?? I don’t.

Any “dolls” you can introduce me to Marg? Desperate galoot (?) aren’t I?

Guess I’ll end her here since I’ll be talking to you on Tuesday. I hope to be hearing from you kiddo!

Bye now

Oodles of love



It’s such cold soup (FGK 250)

It seems these (not so) passive aggressive nudges about letter writing and the quality of letters is genetic!! I’ve often thought that in the 1950s Vulcan probably felt as far as Florida, just sans a long plane ride. But not being able to phone, or the luxury we have now of FaceTime must have made the miles seem so much longer. Was the saying “cold soup” something that was a thing in the past and somehow got lost? Because I’m going to revive it in my vocabulary. Cold soup bothers the heck out of me, I thought it was a really good description.

I was always so mad at mom for forcing me to go to Brentwood, I didn’t want to go and I believed in my heart of hearts that it was just because they didn’t want me at home (and I still think there’s some truth to that). But mom always swore that it was because she loved her time at boarding school. These letters help me see that there’s probably some truth to that as well. Grieving is a complex process.

I don’t usually read letters in advance, but I did see one ages ago that I think may have explained the situation mom is talking about here. I wasn’t sure of the context so I shelved it for a later date and that may be now. I’ll have to go searching for it again.

1061 Volusia Ave

Daytona Beach

December 11, 1956


Well!! After a week of dead silence I at last got some letters but alas only to find them composed entirely of questions! No news. You know the affair a la Rich is such cold soup to me now it is rather boring to write about it now but dear folks here is a letter composed entirely of answers. I hope you enjoy it.

I’ll send Janet something for Christmas, Mrs Franks home is much more convenient for me than Rich’s was – only one story three shallow steps into it and I can climb all but steep steps myself now. I have a bedroom to myself. There is no one else living in the home. Mrs Franks says the only reason she didn’t take me before was we had the arrangement with the Rich’s and she didn’t know how to get me to school. She wouldn’t tell an untruth and she said it’s convenient. You know I was only going to stay here temporary and the Colonel had some other places hunted up but she said it was lonesome before (she doesn’t go out except with the other woman secretary, and her daughter at the office) and everything worked out so well she asked me if I would like to stay here permanently. Of course I said yes because she is so much like a real mother and we get along so good.

The expense of all this would certainly be more if you came down. I hate to bug you but you know I”m a much better business woman than you are. Since I’ve started running my own life i”m paying $60 or more dollars less in a month than I was when you set me up. You’ll be more expensive of course if you come down and set up housekeeping because then there’ll be two of us. You wouldn’t save physio money because Mr Walsh is paying that for me. By the way it would be very nice of you to write him at 701 south Beach Street and thank him.

I meant what I said about getting into the house myself. I can get up the steps. There is room for my wheelchair. Carharts drove me to Mrs franks the day I left Rich’s and offered to anything for me, left me their address, and made me feel much better. I guess i can give them a try.

Mrs Franks gives me physio at the office now and naturally does a much better job than Mrs Rich and I am showing a marked improvement already. Charlie drives me there after school and I do my homework until it’s time for me then she does it after I get dressed we come home (to save another question Charlie is a boy from school and a safe driver).

Mrs Franks and Mrs Jenny (her secretary friend) went and got all my stuff from Rich’s. Hank (leave me tell you about him sometime!!) offered to get my board for me but I preferred to hire somebody so Mr Ollenlike gave me the name of a man who does that sort of thing so he did it for $1.25.

Mrs Franks lives by the arch on Valeria Ave a few blocks from the hospital. She doesn’t leave me alone in fact tonight she was scolding (teasing) me about having to curtail my social life ‘cause I”m leaving her alone. I’ve always got invitations to places to go even if she did want to go out.

I can get to church now too. She doesn’t have TV but I’d never have time to see it anyway. I never have to stay alone at school becuase I always come home and go to schoo with one of the boys.

There!! That’s all the questions answered. Your letter sounded as if you were frantic. Mrs Frank and I were laughing away over a joke last night and we thought after just how it’s too bad you can’t see us. I feel guilty having such a good time when you up there are so worried. Cheer up1! I don’t supposed you’ll be pacified until you see it yourselves.

I just love Daytona. I don’t know what I’d do if I didn’t think I”d be coming back to Florida next year. To think I almost went to Cochrane and I never would have known all of these kids! By the way we’ve had our senior class (12th grade) elections (which are lifetime) and I”m class treasurer. Ah the life of a senior!!!

I always have my lunch with the rest of the kids from school at Robbies and Tony is always inquiring about you and says to say hello to you.

I’m sure getting teased about my accent you know either me or them has one – they say I say aboot and they say some words so funny to me.!! Great fun! Running out of paper so must go

Love Marg xxxxx

PS ordered your Christmas gifts last week but they may be late. Am enclosing pictures of the house please return when finished with them. Guest room is mine.

Got my blue coat today. Thanks a lot.


Love Letters in the Sand (FGK 248)

Wait… Mom liked pin-up/muscle boys? This is not the woman who raised me!!! Haha. Oh how she mocked me for buying Tiger Beat. I could tell I am not a 16 year old girl because now I am much more interested on the things that were on the back of the clip outs. Lots of them backed onto a comics page and I kinda wish that they’d included all the comics. Remember the weekend comics – the “colour comics” – what a big deal they were!! And then when they started printing them as their own little book!!! Oh I loved that. Anyway, I included some of the backs of the clippings as well.

32 Dix Ave

Ormond, Florida

June 25, 1957

Dear Margaret

By now you have probably gotten my postcard. Marilyn’s baby was born on the 21st. It’s a little girl. She weighs 8lbs 4 oz. I haven’t seen her yet.

I got a letter from Barbara yesterday. It was very nice to hear from her.

It is raining out now.

I am going to the show tomorrow to see “The Wayward Bus”

My newest records are:

Jenny, Jenny – Little Richard

Searchin’- Coasters

Elvis’ new one is really cute. “Love Letters in the Sand” is still number one.

I am sending you some more pin-ups of the Mr. America contest. Boy that Deanne Cates is in everything. I think I am finally getting a little tan. I haven’t been to the beach for a couple of days now.

Well Margaret, I will have to close now, for the mailman is coming. Will write later. Write me soon.

Love to all



We’re all so nervous (FGK 246)

32 Dix Ave

Ormond Beach

May 18, 2958


No letter at all last week but I guess you’re busy. I know i sure am. I got an average of 4-5 hours of sleep every night last week and went about 48 hours without any sleep at all. I had to put my term paper in and typed straight through from 3pm Thursday ‘til 1pm Friday stopping only to eat supper and to drive to school in the morning. All the seniors are the same – we’re all so nervous that our hands actually shake all the time!

I had to to to Mr Bailey’s yesterday for a meeting. I am head of the planning committee of the senior banquet and prom so I had to work out the seating arrangements. I have to make a short speech that night too. That is the night after our exams and the night before our graduation ceremonies and afternoon reception. I have to be at the reception all afternoon because I am a class officer and in the receiving line.

There was a barbecue for all the seniors last night so we all had to go. The sophomores and juniors were giving it. I had a pretty good time. It was a lot of fun. I wish I didn’t have to leave here.

Adam’s say to tell you their invitation still holds. Mrs Franks called to say she has an extra room with twin beds in it and will be glad to accommodate you all, meet you at the plane and all that. Cal Sampson was inquiring about your place to stay too so I guess you won’t be sleeping on a park bench anyway.

Our exams sound as though they are going to be very tough, most of us are scared to death about them.

We tried on our caps and gowns last week. It sure was a good feeling. They look so nice. They are white with a blue tassel on the Moros board. I wish you all could see me in it. I look like a very scholarly person if I do say so myself!

Adams invited me over to the country club this afternoon. I don’t know whether I’m going or not.

I have a mound of English and Latin this afternoon.

Must go

Love Margie

I think I will probably have a nervous breakdown before the end of the month!!!!


Sitting on the front step waiting for the postman(FGK 245)

So what was the parcel Uncle Marshall sent???? Cliff hangers all over the place with these letters! Did grandma and grandpa find a good place? And why was mom at the age of 15 allowed to be out until 3:30 am???? I have questions haha!

1061 Volusia Ave

Daytona Beach

Jan 5, 1956


Marshall’s parcel hasn’t arrived yet and I’m consumed by curiosity so I’m sitting on the front step waiting for the postman to come by so I can ask him about it. I’ve spent almost the whole morning here so it had better come today!! I also owe him some money so….

School started Thursday thank heaven, terrible to say but I was actually getting tired of the holidays and I’ll have to tell you this, by the end of them I was so tired of movies I refused to go to them!! I know you’d like to hear that!

I went over to Adam’s New Years Eve for dinner and then went to a drive-in it was one of those marathon affairs and we didn’t get out until 3:30am – you can see why I’m sick of them!!

New Year’s Day I didn’t do anything except sleep and write thank you notes – I could have gone to a movie but for some queer reason didn’t.

I’ve done some looking around for a place for you to stay but it’s rather hard without a definite date of your arrival as most of the places are booked up for February. The Shaliman may have a room for a few days but it is doubtful, it would amount to about $30 per week. Mrs Franks and I went to see a motel down Volusia a way – a few hundred yards from the airport entrance. They’d be quite close to us but not near the school and you’d need a car. The linen and everything is furnished for $40 a week and it has quite a nice kitchenette. There’s a bedroom – living room combined. It would be about the cheapest you could get and still be in a good clean etc place. I phoned Mrs Adam’s about it and most of the places over there (if there’s vacancy) are $60 to $75 a week. I could probably get you some on the ocean if you like but it’ll have to be soon because you just can’t get anything good in this town unless it’s in advance that’s whyI want to know the date of your arrival. Mrs Franks doesn’t recommend the Shaliman because their best rooms are taken and you would only get one on the third floor and of course you couldn’t cook. Tell me about how much you want to pay and that will save a lot of time and whether on the peninsula or the mainland.

The Colonel gave us our report cards the other day. He said I could sign my own, I’ll send it up to you all but don’t sign it because I already have but I thought you might like to see it.

We’ve gotten over our cold snap now and it’s back to 75 degrees. Which reminds me, Mrs Franks says not to send down any more warm clothes because except for a very short spell I’ll never get a chance to wear them


The mailman never did come so all my waiting was in vain. I went over to see Jetty after lunch. We went on a walk on the beach and had a nice long talk. We don’t see each other very often but make up by phoning ever day. We had a lot of lost time to make up for though. She’s doing just fine and has a good place to stay. She always asks about you and sends her love.

Mrs Franks was sure pleased with the pastry forks. They were a bit late arriving but I was glad you got something so nice for her. She deserves it.

Did I tell you we took the clock I gave her for Christmas back and got a lawn chair instead. She also got an extra one so when you come down you’ll have a place to sit out in the sun and get a tan.

I’ve got some more parcels this week, a manicure set from Aunt Nan, a pen from Kumlin’s, gloves from Geordie, lamp from Janet, soap from Donna, nylons, pen, candy and jigsaw puzzle from the Red Cross, china figure from Raymond, wallet from Joan Whittle, and necklace from Lou and Kay Copithorne. Aunt Annie and ? And is on gave mea toilet set.

I can’t think of any news. Mr Adam’s is still in the hospital but will be out sometime next week – that’s about all – I sent him a card.

We’re going to have a steak dinner tonight!! So I must go and get ready – let it never be said we don’t eat well!!

thanks for your letter Marshall, it was very good.

Will try and write you again soon.

Love Marg xxx

PS Sheila sent me another $10!!! Goll-ee

Am enclosing letter I received from Mr Vaughn today

The Shaliman Hotel *Daytona’s most distinctive hotel*


Miss Copithorne

Mrs Goodale tells me your mother and father plan on being here during the month of February and would like to get a small housekeeping apartment or efficiency but if they cannot they would like rates on a twin room with private bath for the month.

Since February is our heavy month and since the auto and motorcycle races consume nearly the entire month the reservations are always completely filled for the month.

It will be next to impossible to get an apartment of any kind unless our folks do so very soon and then the rates for Feb are very high.

We do have a nice corner room on the third floor which is two short flights up. It has twin beds and private bath and we will rent it to your folks for $37.50 per week but that of course would depend on knowing they wanted it waiting say 10 days from now for undoubtedly we will have a great number of requests very soon.

So will you write your folks and send this letter along then they can write back and I presume the room will be available by the time they answer.

Sincerely The Shaliman hotel (Sherrod N. Vaughn)


I’ve lost all track of time (FGK 244)

Kind of cool to get a little update on some of the friends mom had while she was in the hospital. I often wonder how their life stories turned out.

Suite 3

933-18th ave w

Calgary, Alta

May 15, 1956

Dear Margaret,

I am sorry I have never got in touch with you before now. I have heard news of you through Janet several times but don’t know what you are doing now. I was talking to Lillian the other night and she is finally going to start walking. I suppose you knew Maryanne had to quit University at Christmas because she fell. She had another operation at the General Hospital and was moved back to the hospital at Ponoka this week. I also talked to Isabel but haven’t seen her yet. Anne Pettea is in the RC but I don’t know if they’d let me in to see her or not. I work every day except Sat afternoon and Sunday so maybe I could be sneaked in some night.

I am working out at the Provincial Labortories out at the Sanatorium for the summer. I am really enjoying my work and the staff is wonderful to work with. I enjoyed my university year very much but had to study a lot. I am sure glad for a rest now.

I like Calgary but after Edmonton I can get myself well lost. I’ve only been here a week so haven’t got around too much but it won’t take long to get to know the city. I have a lovely place to room and board. If you’re in the city any evening or weekend with nothing to do let me know as I would love to have a visit with you. My phone number is 446753.

Did your sister graduate last year or this year? I’ve lost all track of time since I left the RC. I suppose you can still go back for a check-up but the rest of the old gang are over the age limit and have to call on our doctors downtown . George Lane and Carl are out teaching and Don Farmer is going to take commerce at Varsity. I also heard what Willard was doing but I forget now.

Maybe you can tell me some news abut the kids.

I am writing this letter during lunch hour. We have 1 1/2 hours off each noon so we have a lot of free time. When the weather gets nice we hope to play tennis, golf, or swim. Meanwhile I am still crocheting hankie edges. I think I am working on the one I was doing when I left the hospital.

I hope to see or hear from you when you get time.

A friend, Verna


Rome is a charming city (FGK 243)

Goodness mom had some fascinating friends. Whatever happened to them? I don’t recall hearing about most of these people but I would have loved to have met them!! This letter is before mom travelled to France herself (she would have been 15 when this letter was written – and it was sent here to the ranch), clearly she made friends with other women with the travel bug!

Grand Hotel Continental


3 Feb 1956

Dear Margie

Somehow I have a horrible suspicion that I’ve not thanked you for the lovely “travelling brush” you sent me for Christmas. May I now rather belatedly, say a huge “thank you”! The brush is lovely and believe me it is being put to good use.

As you will realize upon receiving this and the odd postcard I’ve sent I am again “wandering”. I left Oxford the first of January to join my friends in Boulogne for a wee motor jaunt in Europe. That, I would say, was starting the new year with a bang. We went first to Paris where we spent six days. Wow! What a city. Like good tourist-types we “did” most everything. Then we jogged our way to Spain – stopping hither and yonder odd spots in France. In Spain we went to Madrid, carried on southward to Granada, then to the coast and travelled backup to the Mediterranean coast to Barcelona. When returning to France we spent some time around Carcassone before going to the Riviera. By that time the weather decided to be good to us and the Riviera was absolutely glorious. Of course I tried my hand at gambling in Monte Carlo but fortune did not come my way. Then we came along the Italian Riviera which appears very shabby in comparison to the Côte d’Azur – and finally arrived here in Rome the first of February. Rome is a charming city in spite of the bitterly cold weather. I shall probably be returning to England toward the end of this month. My address there is the same as before – do drop me a line about how you are. I’m truly sorry about not writing sooner but I seldom have time to do even half of what I want to.

ok love to your family



I am doing just fine so you can relax (FGK 242)

I can say that 60+ years later many Americans still have some weird ideas about Canada. Sooooo many people used to call it Canadia – I could understand a couple people doing it for a joke, but in Roanoke it seemed that the general public thought that was the name. They’d also sell hats with the Pom Pom of a certain style and call them toboggans. When I tried to explain the different between a toboggan and a toque I was laughed at like I was making it up. And I also was asked in a taxi on my way to the airport if I spoke the language up there in Canada. I responded by saying yes, and in fact I’m speaking it right now!!! On the other hand it was pretty humbling to see how much about the States I didn’t know or had misunderstood.

618 N. Halifax Ave

Daytona Beach

November 7, 1956


Sorry I didn’t get enough time to write you yesterday. With the elections and all it was quite a day! I’m telling you I’ve never been as utterly sick of anything as that darn election for a month or more now that’s all anybody I’ve met has talked about.

i went and saw Mrs. Franks yesterday and she thought I was doing just fine so you can relax.

I’m having an awful time trying to decide what collage to go to. Everyone says I should go to Rollins college in Winter Park, the university of Miami has sent me a lot of literature about the University and it looks very good. Ug Florida (?) thinks it is suitable and wants me to go and see them and Queens has sent me catalogues and even the application papers – nothing like rushing things.

Honestly, Jetty and I are just starved. It’s a long time between 12:30 and 6:00 when all you have at noon is soup and I haven’t enough money to go down Seabreeze and buy something to eat. Times are tough.

I haven’t had my nose off the grindstone since Monday long enough to do anything exciting. Monday morning Jetty and I slept in an hour. I broke all speed records getting ready to go to school luckily just as I came out the gate one of the boys from school was passing in his car so I got a ride and wasn’t late. The Colonel kicks us out for the rest of the day if we’re late. Last nite I could have gone to a views (?) but decided at the last minute not to. From what I hear I didn’t miss much anyway.

Nancy hasn’t been around hardly at all lately. I guess the novelty is beginning to wear off. I must go over and see them one of these days.

I’m starting to educate some of these Americans about Canada. I get quite a ribbing from some of the kids in class ‘cause some of them have the oddest ideas about Canada I’ve ever heard. Some just won’t be convinced that I’m not British because I’m from Canada!!! also I happened to say I hoped they’d knock Nehru’s head (block) off. Somebody should have done that long ago. American’s just don’t see it that way and Im not saying they’re not right, but I do despise the man so.

Are you still having snow and cold weather? I sure hope it soon gets better. Jetty just got drove out into some shade on the verandah to get away from the heat! How does that make you feel?

Say “hello” to everyone around there and don’t forget to tell me “what’s up”. You all should feel honoured you’re pretty well the only ones who get letters from me! Be good and don’t work too hard!

Love Margie xx

Jetty sends regards.


Go Throw a Snowball For Me (FGK 241)

I may have mentioned this before, but I remember as a little kid in school when my parents would send in a note to the teacher I would often be called up to their desk so I could read the note for the teacher. Mom said the handwriting was so bad because she was a lawyer and developed the scrawl because of all the notes she had to take in university. But reading a letter from her 16 year old self says that perhaps this handwriting issues had been going on for a little while longer than that.

Let me just say that when I skipped school it was a much different experience than it apparently was for my mother. Also, I never confessed to such acts of delinquency. But now I can haha.

I also want to know who TIBERIOUS and Cyril are? Dogs? Horses? People? Anyone know???

618 N. Halifax Ave

Daytona Beach

November 16, 1956

Dear Mom, Dad, and Marsh

Thought I’d better drop you all a line before the weekend started. Thanks for your letters. I hope you got the negatives I sent in my last letter. I flunked Latin today and only got 66% passing is 70%. I skipped 3 periods of school today with Cynthia and Ellen Paul. However, I spent most of it doing bookkeeping for the student council.

Was glad to hear Sheila got off to Vulcan ok but you forgot to tell me her address. I’m sure she’ll like it there.

Don’t worry about Christmas. I only mentioned coming home because I thought it would be handy if the company plane went to New York. Never fear, I’ll have plenty to do in the Christmas holidays. Believe it or not I’m not homesick.

I still haven’t decided what university I’m going to. Queens would be swell but it’s sure nice down here. What a problem!

Next day: Saturday

Well we didn’t do much last night. We went over and played cards art the place of a boy from school for a while then came home and watched TV. This morning I went over to the school for extra classes in algebra.

Guess what!! I know where i can get the neatest little sports car for only $400!! Let me tell you it’s a Bayan!! One of the boys at Seabreeze High is selling it.

I want to know what you want for Christmas. Give me hint at least. Don’t worry about me just give me clothes – not fancy party ones but just ones that bill be really liveable. Do you want me to buy gifts for all my friends up there or will you? I’m afraid the customs would take quite a toll.

Everyone says to say “hi” to you all and they’re all doing fine down here. Tell Lorraine Eklund she’d better hurry up and write to me or I’ll be really mad at her. What is she going to school for anyway? How is LaVerne? He’ll be so big whenI get homeI won’t know him and so will Marlene. Also say “hi” to Deloris and Ken for me and George and Mary and the girls.

It’s a lovely day here as it has been all week. About 80 degrees, calm and beautiful. You poor souls up there – hah hah!!! Go throw a snowball for me. The oranges are just getting right so I’ll pick one for you. Man!! Do they taste good!! The guava season is past though.

I’ve got simply tons of homework to do. The publicity committee advised he Colonel to be really strict with us and pile the homework on!! The Colonel never goes back on their advice. How is Buckles coming? AND HOW ARE TIBERIOUS AND CYRIL? Nobody ever mentions them. How could you.

Love Marg xxx


Oh what fun we had! (FGK 240)

July 25, 1957

Dear Margaret

Just a note to say “hi”. I was glad to get your letter and hear that you had such a nice trip home with the kids meeting you.

What have you been doing this summer? Have you learned to drive yet, or has that mean old mounty been in the way?

Dana and I went to the auditorium Monday night and saw John Ireland in “Picnic”. He played a young vagabond. It was a good show, we both enjoyed it.

Last week we saw Jerry Lewis’s “Delicate Delinquent”. We never laughed so much. Was he ever silly.

We haven’t seen any of the kids lately except Olga and Joan a few times. I heard Olga’s aunt got sick and they went up to be with her.

When you got home did they think you had changed much? We had all gotten so mischievous and silly. But Oh What Fun we had.

I have a chance to help in a florist shop this fall. Next month I am helping with the flowers for two weddings. So I am starting in Welsh School this Friday to study floristry. I will only get to go from four to six weeks and only three days a week. Maybe I will learn enough in that time to help a little.

There is a lot of good songs on the top thirty list. Am enclosing a list for you “Searchin’” has been number one for several weeks.

We are going to the Rock (?) tonight Dana will be coming before long so will close for now.

Hope to hear from you soon

Love ya