1942: High Cost of Living

Wallace Adams, Training For War Plant Job, Pays $100 a Month For $25 Apartment, and Is Lucky.

Mr. and Mrs. Wallace Adams, who are living temporarily in Middletown, Conn., are paying $100 a month for a three-room apartment, “much like a $25 apartment in Moberly,” and apparently are fortunate to get it, as many persons there are offering a $25 bonus for an apartment, Mr. Adams writes Moberly friends.

Mr. Adams is one of 300 men from this area chosen by Pratt and Whitney, arms corporation, for special training in Hartford. He will be sent to Kansas City in February, where he will be assigned to personnel job.

“We live 22 miles from Hartford (where I go to school),” he writes, “in an apartment on the third floor of the Sears-Roebuck building. I go to school at night from 11:30 until 7 o’clock in the morning. Everything is plenty high here: eggs are 59c. a dozen and milk is 15c. a quart; and meat is a luxury only the rich can afford.”

“The weather up here is similar to Missouri except that it rains almost every day. I believe Connecticut is the prettiest state in the union, but it is also the most expensive to live in.”

“Anti-aircraft batteries are located on almost every vacant lot and are manned day and night. If you drive within 20 miles of the ocean, the upper half of your headlights must be covered with paint. We went through a blackout about two weeks ago and it sure was weird. The town where we live has a population of about 30,000, and during that blackout it was as quiet as it is out at dad’s farm. Every car stops right where it is and every person walking stays where he is. Until you’ve been through one, you have missed something.”

“I’m due back in Missouri February 1, 1943, unless Pratt and Whitney fires me, which I hope they won’t do. This training course I’m taking sure is tough and I spend lots of time studying when I should be sleeping, but I suppose it is worth it.”

Adams, before leaving Moberly, was associated with his father, R. O. Adams, in the Conoco Service Station at the corner of Coates and Johnson streets.

From the Moberly Monitor-Index (Moberly, Missouri), Tuesday, October 6, 1942.
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