Saturday, October 16, 2010

Patchogue to Riverhead

Filling in with some background information during a letter-writing hiatus from October 6 to November 9, 1949, as June recuperates at the hospital from a ruptured appendix…

June Anderson,
circa 1939.
June spent her early childhood in Patchogue, a small village midway out on Long Island’s south shore.

In 1935, when June was 6 years old, the family bought a house in Riverhead, an easy walk from her father’s job at the regional telephone company office in town.  Approximately 15 miles east of Patchogue, Riverhead is located at the point where Long Island’s two forks meet.  The Peconic River flows into Flanders Bay and the Great Peconic Bay here, with the river functioning as a sort of dividing line between the resort communities of the South Fork and the less developed lands of the North Fork.  Flanders Road was the main route to the Hamptons, a series of villages which stretched along the south shore.

The Anderson family, circa 1938:  Teddy in his mother's lap
and June with her father.
June's brother Teddy (Theodore Carl Anderson, Jr.) was born in 1937.  To June, the eight-year gap between their ages felt large.  She made friends with the local girls and settled into a happy life in Riverhead.  Bright and interested in many subjects, if a little inattentive at times, she did well in the Riverhead public schools.

Most evenings, June's father would take a walk to Tepper Brothers, a popular soda shop in town.  There he would buy the evening paper and a quart of ice cream, fresh scooped from the big tubs, to bring back home for dessert.  June frequently accompanied her father on these evening walks, joined in later years by little Teddy.  June and her father liked the chocolate ice cream the most.

(On Monday, Art grows up in the Hamptons…)

Countdown:  Correspondence resumes in 24 days.

© 2010 Lee Price

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