Mary G. Engle

By the time my mother, Mary G. Engle Richardson, died last October, most of the memorabilia and the possessions she had collected over ninety rich and fruitful years had been distributed to those she thought would be interested and appreciative of them. Among the small collection of papers remaining with her when she died, Mary's cousin Alma and I found an envelope containing a few pages of a journal she had kept of a road trip she and her siblings had taken to the Chicago World's Fair and back in June 1934.

Alma recalls the trip vividly, and describes crossing the Allegheny Mountains after dark, with Jake swerving to and fro on the tightly winding roads to avoid potholes when heading west, while Mary's sister Elizabeth recalls how hard she had to work to keep Jake awake at the wheel on the same treacherous stretch on the return trip. Within minutes of discovering the journal, Alma had produced this photograph to document the journey, and with it a opened priceless window into a fragment of the Engle Family History for the rest of us.

I am publishing the relevant pages of Mary's journal here in hopes that others in the family will find it as interesting as I do. I've added a few contextual notes and will be happy to add more information if readers care to provide it.

Mary Lynn Richardson
March 2001

Monday, May 28: Downtown on my hours off today. Bought material for blouses. Mrs. B. told me a of a lady who would make them, and Alma and I walked out to Lititz Avenue to see her tonight.

Tuesday, May 29: Had afternoon shift today. [In evening] Jake, Emma & I drove up to Messiah Bible College to attend annual Alumni Banquet. Had a nice time. Saw old friends.

Wednesday, May 30: [Worked] hours 7 to 10 today. Home last night. Tonight President Roosevelt stopped at Lancaster. Spoke a few words from his train at the railroad station. I was over with Alma tonight, heard president over radio.

Thursday, May 31: Commencement exercises tonight at Hensel Hall. Prizes given. Highest Average in the class: Mary G. Engle. To reception at Iris club. Rev. Mulder had Invocation & Benediction at Exercises.

Friday, June 1: Hours 10 to 12, sitting on the lawn to get some sun. Had light treatment also. Alma & I out to Lititz Avenue tonight for blouses.

Saturday, June 2:
Off-duty at 10:30 A.M. Papa came in for me. Home for dinner. Esther & I went shopping in P.M. Took Esther to barber. Clara Stoner in Lancaster, and phoned home. I met her and we went to Pequea Love Feast this week-end. Average this year (95th).

Sunday, June 3:
To Sunday School in Lancaster, then down to Pequea for services. Dinner at Pequea, then drove awhile before returning home. Spent afternoon and evening at home.

Monday, June 4:
Busy all day getting ready to go on trip. Had a lot of dresses to day,
was to town etc. Alma down this P.M. Jake busy working late on chicken house.

Tuesday, June 5:
Left Lancaster at 5 A.M. Arrived at Fries' about 10 P.M. Stayed only a short while, then on to Kittie's home. We all stayed there for the night. Had lovely weather and a grand drive out to Ohio. Kittie & Joe are just grand and are the same as always.

Wednesday, June 6:
Breakfast at Kittie's home, then on to Conference at Ludlow Falls. Meeting lots of old friends and I am enjoying myself greatly. A group of us drove to Peoria to meet Aunt Anna. Had a flat tire returning to Conference.

Thursday, June 7:
At Conference. Having a very nice time. Kittie and I had a rendezvous this afternoon for several hours down by the Falls. We had a grand chat.

Friday, June 8: Breakfast at Kittie's home. On to Conference. Stopped a few minutes, then drove on to Covington to visit a former patient. Found that he had died. Left Englewood [close to] noon for Wheaton. Arrived at Wheaton about 10:30 P.M. Saw
Elizabeth. Girls stayed with her; boys to camp for night. Had a nice day. Weather ideal.

Saturday, June 9:
Waited at Wheaton until 10 A.M. for the boys. Arrived at Fair after noon, got separated very soon after arrival. Saw Field Museum, Horticultural Building, Belgium Village, Planetarium, Ford Building, General Motors, Travel and Transport Building, Electrical Building, Hall of Social Science, etc. Also we took a boat ride on the lagoon. Were very tired but had a fine day. Spent the night at the Mission.

Sunday, June 10:
Drove to Wheaton from Mission. Attended Baccalaureate Exercises at Wheaton. Ate dinner in College dining room and had lunch at Eavey's. Visited them in the evening. Also attended Sacred Concert in P.M. at College Church. Eavey's about like always.

Monday, June 11: Attended Commencement Exercises at Wheaton. Elizabeth graduated with high honor. Met Prof. D. and liked him lots. After Elizabeth finished packing went in to Chicago Mission for the night.

Tuesday, June 12: Spent today at the Fair. Had a very nice time in Halls of Science & Religion, General Exhibits, Llama Temple, Federal Building, Court of States, etc. Back to Mission for night.

Wednesday, June 13: Left Chicago Mission about 6:55 A.M. Drove all day. Ate lunch for breakfast, stopped and cooked dinner and supper. Having ideal weather.

Thursday, June 14: Arrived home about 7:30 A.M. Did some laundering today and didn't get any rest. Down to Hostetter's this P.M. and went along to Prayer meeting at Claire Slaymaker's.

Friday, June 15: Slept until noon today. I must have been more tired than I realized. The family drove to Grandpa Hostetter's this evening and I accompanied them . . .


In 1934 both Mary Engle and Alma Engle were working as registered nurses at Lancaster General Hospital.

Kathleen and Joe Aiken of Englewood, Ohio.

Anna Ruth Engle (daughter of Eli Musser Engle and Barbara Ostot Engle, 1896 - 1991).

© EngleFamily.Net, 2001