Williams Family from Evansville, Indiana

Walter and Marie's home on Lafayette Avenue, Evansville (cir. 1984)

The depression hits everyone in 1929 and dominates their lives for the rest of the decade with over 1/4th out of work. But life goes on and Marie and Walter meet, thanks to a neighbor of Marie’s who works with Walter. They love dancing and are a dashing couple. They marry in 1931 with strong desire to establish a home that is quickly paid for and some savings in spite of the depression. They live with her mother for a year and a half and then rent across the street. Then they buy across the street on W. Eichel (likely 24 or 26 W. Eichel Ave. They wait that $1700 two story home to be paid for before having their family of three between 1937 and 1943. Henry Bollinger loses his job at the mine in the early 30’s due to the drastic reduction in need for coal. A funeral record at Lowe and Son shows he was despondent over unemployment and commits suicide with a gun. Also that he was divorced a month previous and likely homeless. He was buried at Campground Cemetery (now Salem) near his birthplace. It lists his only sibling as Mrs. Homer Bristow (Lydia, who owned the grocery store—perhaps on First Ave.).

Marie quits her job at Plumbers Supply in 1936 or in 1937, the year Howard is born. Walter and Marie buy a home at 2517 N. Lafayette just north of Negley. Her sister Ruth and husband Frank live several blocks west and for a time live next to the Evansville Country Club on the hill on Stringtown Road.

The latter years of this decade are a time of war again, this time in both Europe and Asia and becomes a full world war. With a family started, and Walter already at age 33 when we are attacked at Pearl Harbor, he is spared going to war overseas. Instead he works at International Steel making ships and bullets. Marie stays home to raise the growing family. They move to a larger home in the suburbs on Lafayette Street and other relatives follow suit moving to nearby homes. The houses are heated with coal, no air conditioning, the streets are gravel and driveways cinder. The home are neat, modest and well kept to this day.

 

 

 

Williams photos of the 1930s

Howard Williams

Walter, Marie and Howard Williams

Walter Williams

Marie and Walter Williams on the river bridge

 Copyright © 2001 Williams Family from Evansville, Indiana