Naperville Days: A Memoir

A brief telling of what happened to us all later in life.

When I was 16 my dad had a vision, and had a unique house built on the shore of the Little Quarry near the river, and we moved there. It was a great place to live.

We lived on Mill street. It seemed more than just a street. It was where we played, and it led directly to the river, the woods and to "the beach".

Thirty miles west of Chicago, in the '40s it was then a small town of 5000 people. This is how it seemed to me when I was a boy.

It was my dad's life, and a big part of mine when I was young. I still have vivid memories of it, both the blacksmithing and later, after my dad "modernized" it.

The focus of my early life, as I grew older I began to see her as a person: a "flapper", a nurse, and a very modern mom.

A few blocks from our house a modest river, the Dupage river, bisects the town. It drew us kids like a magnet, winter and summer.

A strange twist in the human genome insists that boys, and maybe girls too, join clubs. We were free to do as we wished, and we did.

The great Burlington train wreck of 1946, and two children who seemed to be missing in the big quarry.

Grandma had had three boys and eight girls. Many were gone when I was young, but often on Sundays, and always on holidays, we went for a big family dinner.

William Marshal Goetsch   2006