Manuscripts/Mixed Material Interview with Mary J. Chiavarini
Q: Yes, 1934. And your brother-in-law's notes say you worked for a few years on a school project with the wife of a school superintendent.
CHIAVARINI: Yes. I remember I had to take some dictation from her, and I did a lot of typing.
Q: Had you studied typing and dictation?
CHIAVARINI: At night school. And I was very good at it.
Q: Did you do that after high school?
CHIAVARINI: No, it was during high school. I used to say they prepared us to go out and work. Of course, my mother and father had nothing to do with it. That was what I was to do, and I did it.
Q: Was there any thought of going to college?
CHIAVARINI: Oh, I knew that was impossible. My father earned under $25 a week, and he had four children at that time.
Q: Well, this was in the depths of the Depression.
Q: Were you personally affected, was your family affected, by the Depression?
CHIAVARINI: No, my father managed to work. The most he ever made was $25 a week. That was considered a pretty good wage. With that money, they borrowed from the bank, the Farmers and Mechanics Bank, enough money, I think it was $5,000, to build a home. We lived in that house a long, long time.
Q: Do you still have the family home?