Mar 032022

I spent yesterday working on The Hard Years, the fourth book in my Tinder Street family saga, and the title of today’s blog says it all. Today’s chapters included real-life events from the gang wars in Toledo, Ohio in the early 1930s, the life of a soldier between the two world wars, which could sometimes be just as deadly as the battlefields of the past and those to come, and a love story to balance things out a little bit.

It’s uncanny and somewhat chilling to research that time period and realize just how much history is repeating itself right now. When Hitler was rising to power in Europe and the Empire of Japan was expanding its reach throughout the Pacific in the years before the onset of World War II, the rhetoric was very much like what we are hearing today with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. And just like we are trying to avoid an outright global conflict today, and Lord, I pray that we do, there was no appeasing those power-hungry dictators of the past. Yes, my friends, history does repeat itself unless we take whatever action is necessary to stop it.

With all of that being said, in researching what life was like in America just 90 years ago, we have made some great strides. Not that we don’t have a long way to go yet, because we do, but back then, married women were not allowed to work in many states. Did you know that the Economy Act of 1932 required the government to fire one member of each married couple working in government? And, of course, it was almost always the wife. Or that Frances Perkins, President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Secretary of Labor, referred to married women, whom she disparaged as mere pin-money workers, as being a menace to society, selfish, shortsighted creatures who ought to be ashamed of themselves? Or that all the way into the early 1950s in more than half the states, a married woman could not be a school teacher? As the old Virginia Slims TV commercials used to say, we’ve come a long way, baby!

And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.

It’s Thursday, so it’s time for a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Ken Rossignol’s Pirate Trials: Dastardly Deeds & Last Words, the stories of bloodthirsty pirates brought to justice for their barbarism on the high seas.

To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.

Thought For The Day If a cookie falls on the floor and you pick it up, that’s counted as a squat, right?

Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  One Response to “Gangsters, Soldiers, And Lovers”

  1. When I first started teaching in 1971, women could teach, but if you got pregnant, you had to quit before you started showing. And pregnant students couldn’t be in the normal school population . . . they had to attend the “pregnant girls’ school.”

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