I assumed that the boxes of old papers I found and sorted or stored after my father died back in 2010 were the end of his “stuff”. No such luck. Now that I’m going through the things my sister left behind, I’ve turned up more of my dad’s old, yellowed papers. Yet more letters, receipts, newspaper clippings, Christmas cards, birthday cards, and more, most dating back from around 1930 through the 1950s.
Here are a couple of items of interest.
So you think traffic and the high rate of traffic fatalities in Honolulul is a new issue? Think again.
Here’s a newspaper clipping, undated, although it appears to date from the years of WWII. It features a photo of my dad and other members of the Junior Chamber of Commerce painting what is described as a “death flagpole.”
“In cooperation with the city-county Traffic Safety Commission, the safety committee of the Honolulu Junior Chamber of Commerce is planning to erect on Richards and King Sts. a flagpole that will fly a black “death” flag whenever a traffic fatality occurs, as means of promoting traffic safety and keeping down Honolulu’s high rate of traffic deaths.”
And here’s another history lesson. Did you know Hawaii once had a poll tax? I didn’t.
It was apparently a $5 tax, paid annually.
If you’re wondering what that $5 would be worth in today’s dollars, here’s the answer: $81.92, according to one online
And there’s a small historical side note to the poll tax receipt. It shows my parents were then living at 1018 Kealaolu. They rented there for a few years before buying a house another block down the same street.
You probably don’t recognize the address, but some 70 years later it was owned by Honolulu Police Chief Louis Kealoha, and was the scene of the now-famous mailbox theft.
It is a small world!