Archived Story

Cardinal Charlie/When boots were galoshes

Published 5:27pm Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Here is something I recall of my early school days at Oak Street School.

When we got home in the afternoon we had to change our school clothes and put on our play clothes.

In the winter, my mother used to hang her wet washed clothes on a folding outfit and you could tell the smell when you came in the front door.

Remember when boots were called galoshes and a frying pan was a spider?

During World War II there was a price freeze.

Sure wish we had one on drugs now, huh?

I can remember when I thought anyone who was 70 years old was really old and I wonder what I’m considered these days at 83 1/2 years old.

I think “antique” is a good word for old Charlie, don’t you?

We kids used to take the stems off dandelions and put the small end into the larger end and make them into chains linked together.

In all my years I don’t remember ever having a ride in a street car, but I did fly an airplane, flew in a glider, helicopter, trains and jet planes.

Also, I’d like a balloon ride before I die, but doubt it will be a reality.

In my garage hangs my old Pitcher Lake Pioneer green-and-white flag to remind me of our happy years and days out at the lake and our trailer we had there at the campground.

I can sit down and come up with 40 or more who were campers when we were there.

So sad to know they have passed on.

I remember one Saturday in the morning in late winter, I heard the ambulance going out M-41 North with a screaming siren.

I said it must be an accident, but later found out it was my next-door neighbor here in town and trailer neighbor, Ted Yauchstetter, and another Pitcher Laker, Abe Krizinski, who had fallen through the weakened ice.

Thank goodness they were saved to live and fish again.

Once, on a trip down south, we stopped at the Jim Beam distillery, as Maurice Oppenheim told me he had a friend who was a big shot.

When we told the guard at the gate we would like to see this man, he said the place was closed, but the man was there and he came and took us all through the place and showed us some of the famous Jim Beam bottles.

He said be sure and tell Maury hi for him and we did.

I also sent a letter to the Jack Daniels distillery to ask them if it would be possible to get some whiskey bottle labels for my collection.

I received a nice letter from a Roger E. Brasher, who was in the office and he sent me some labels.

I sent him a thank-you note and sent him a few of my 1990 and 1991 articles.

Would you believe I got a phone call from Mr. Brasher’s secretary and she told of how the whole office enjoyed them and sent me a lot more labels.



“Cardinal Charlie” Gill writes a nostalgic weekly column about growing up in the Grand Old City.

Email him at


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