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180813 August 13, 2018



Back in My Days: Readin’
(Part Two)
Tommy Towery
LHS ‘64
    Though we never “subscribed” to many magazines I do remember having several issues of Look and Life around the house. The most memorable one which still stands out in my mind is the September 14, 1959 issue of Life which featured the seven astronauts from 1959. A one time I could name them all. Of course all of Huntsville was deeply concerned about the men who we would one day be put into space. I held on to that magazine for several years and think it finally went away when I packed up and moved to Memphis after graduation.

To me Look was a more glamorous magazine and I remember it more for the photos of the rich and famous. Whether or not that was true I don’t know, but it is the way I remember it.

Another magazine made a rare appearance at our house – National Geographic. It was noted for its great photography, and I seem to remember you had to join the National Geographic Society to be allowed to subscribe to it. As a side note, one of the journalism professors I worked with at the University of Memphis had been a photographer for them before he moved to the academic world. He is probably the best photographer I have ever met. Of course many boys moving into their puberty years took a great interest in the photographic coverage of some of the South Sea Islands and African natives because of the bare-breasted natives which inhabited them.

Another magazine which sometimes showed up at my home was TV Guide. It was the only way we could plan out our TV schedule for a week in advance and see not only who and what was going to be on but when and where. The only variable missing from the journalist quest was how. But back then in the stone ages, before cable, it was a source of knowledge. Even though I was not very good at spelling or other variables of the English language, I do remember trying each week to work the crossword puzzle. Click on the image below for a full size image of this puzzle from 1959 and see how many answers you can still recall.

    Pictures were the most important things to me in most of the magazines I "read" back in the Fifties, but sometimes I did read the articles. There was one class of magazine which my family loved for another reason. When songs became popular back in my days, before the internet, it was sometimes difficult to be able to recognize or learn all the verses of the songs. Hence, a group of magazines became popular by printing the words (not the music) of the new hit songs. My mother especially loved those magazine because she loved to sing along with the songs on the radio. Two I remember are Hit Parader and Song Hits.

    Above is the format for the songs listed in the magazines. Again, it was just the words and not the music to go with it.  This page is from the June 1956 issue, featuring "Eddie My Love" and"Blue Suede Shoes."

Blue Suede Shoes

Continued Next Week

        Memphis, TN - Although Lee's Traveller was originally designed for the Lee High classes of 1964-65-66 in 2000, over the years it has evolved into reaching out to not only other Lee classes, but also other Huntsville schools as well with over 300 weekly viewers. 
    Okay Lee High School Class of 1968, where's my story and pictures?  I was contacted by members of your reunion committee back in May asking for my help in spreading the word about their 50th reunion. At that time I not only started advertising their upcoming reunion but also posted a link on the Lee's Traveller website for their registration form and other updated information.  A while later I was  asked if I would share the drawings and logos I had developed for the Class of '64's 50th reunion so you could use them too - which I did. I continued to advertise their upcoming reunion until the week it happened. 

    Anyone who has read the Traveller in the past should have seen that all I have ever asked when helping out with reunions, get togethers, and other such things in the Traveller is to be provided with some photos and information about the event when it is over so I can share it with our readers. Well, two weeks have passed and I have yet to receive any input from anyone about how things went or anything else. So, what happened '68?

    On another subject matter, the email to was bounced back to me last week. If you have a new email address please let me know if you want to continue to get publication notifications.


From Our Mailbox 


Subject:    Birthday Cake

Marty Phillips

LHS '66

    This my birthday cake for my surprise 70th. My wife had family members from all over the country come to Denver to surprise me. She asked me to take her by the church on Sunday afternoon. Not uncommon since she is part of the praise team. As we entered, friends and relatives came out from every nook and crannie. I was shocked as well as surprised. 

Semper Fi.


Subject:    Lee's Traveller
Tom Provost
LHS '66

    I was googling an old classmate and a 2003 copy of the Traveller popped up!! It contained a story from Eddie Sykes (66) about drive in movie theaters in Huntsville and several other intriguing articles. It reminded me of the UNBELIEVABLE job you have done FOR US with this site for sooooo many years. I couldn't help but click on the "Last week's issue" button SEVERAL times to feed the exciting visit to the past.

    Thank you, Tommy - you are truly a gift to the classes of 64,65 & 66 and also those more recent that enjoy your site.
    Thanks, Tom

Subject:    Magazines
Joel Weinbaum
LHS '64

    "Dick and Jane,” Mad magazine, and Boy’s Life were such contradictions. The first was exploration and adventure for 1st graders; Mad magazine was for the disgruntled students in revolt. I remember the punishment that came with the discovery of reading Mad magazine. And Boy’s Life, perfect reading for a young Scout. The NRA advertised their membership opportunity and always had a 22 rifle in their ad regarding plinking at targets to learn manly responsibilities that came with gun ownership. I was so literal I thought that was what they were about, helping young people understand gun ownership, until they showed up defending machine gun ownership. Then we learn from others mistakes. The Indian stretcher that's dragged behind a horse to carry someone unable to walk is called a “Travois.” A French word, but it was spelled “Travis” in one of the issues. So for many years afterward I thought it was called a “Travis!” And that lasted way into adulthood, I hate to admit. Thanks for the fond recollections of some great reading.


Happy Trails to You


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