What You Get in Chicago for $60 a Month

Monday, Sept. 28, 1942

Catching up with the Sunday paper after his turn On Duty, my father could not help but notice the Tribune’s front page headline about gas rationing set to begin Nov. 22. In addition, the speed limit would be lowered to 35 mph beginning Oct. 1. My father already had a fraught relationship with his beater; gas and speed were among the least of his worries. Rent was a bigger problem.

Home, Sweet Home

Home, Sweet Home

He had bought the car with a loan expecting to pay it off quickly. But as many newlyweds discover, two don’t always live as cheaply as one. Marriage meant moving out of my father’s inexpensive group accommodations to an apartment for $60 a month – one with hardly any furniture — on a salary of less than $2400 a year. And they hoped to get a house, which would mean higher rent.

As he wrote his sister, “I need money for furnishing a house etc. After all, I have a family now… It’s pretty tough. As a matter of fact, I’m arranging to extend my loan on the car so that I won’t have to pay so much each month…We haven’t found a house yet that we like – but we have hope.”

Also in the paper, news of a plan “to retain men in service after war.” “New Deal Aims to Reeducate Them.” My father couldn’t have guessed it then but he would one day be a beneficiary of what came to be the G.I. Bill.

Continued cold, freezing with lowest temperatures near 30’, moderate to fresh winds. No letters today.








This entry was posted in Chicago during WW II, Jewish life in America during WW II, Music and Media, WWII, Uncategorized, World War II. Bookmark the permalink.

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