Ester is 103 years old. When she was 16 years old she worked at a candy factory and a knitting factory. When she got married she stopped working.
When were you born?
I was born on September 23rd, 1903.
What were some of the jobs you had?
I worked at a candy factory, when I was working there; no
one was allowed to talk. I was 16 years old when I started working there and I
had to get a permit at the courthouse before I could start working. One night in
November when I was trying to catch the 6 p.m. bus I ran across the street to
try and get on the bus when a car drove out and drove over both of my legs and
broke both of them. I was laid up all winter because of that. The next job I had
was at a knitting factory, we could talk there, and the pay was $0.25 per hour.
Once I was married I only worked the first two weeks because I had given them my
two week notice and then I never worked outside the house after that.
What was your
We were married at 7p.m. and we didnít tell anyone and once we were married, he went back to work and I went back to the restaurant and worked the rest of the night. That weekend we went down to Madison for a Badger game together. One main thing I remember from my wedding was I had to bake the bread for the party and I had to use substitute flour. There were many food substitutes at the time and many rations; for instance, I had to go to the court house for 2 pounds of sugar, and that was all we could get for so long of a time period, thatís how it was for a lot of food.
What were some of the things you did after you were married?
Well I remember being at home and listening to the radio a lot, it was shaped like a table, or like a box. I loved to dance, my husband would take me to Wausau so I could dance, but he would rarely dance with me. Another place my husband would take me was to the roller rink is Wausau; I loved to skate with him. I also loved to shop, so I would come to Wausau and go shopping a lot, not always buy anything, but I loved to shop.\
What did your husband do for a living?
He had his own Butcher shop in Merrill at the corner of Grand Ave and Prospect.
How many children did you have?
I have one son named David, he went into the Marines and went over seas to the Korean War, and he never married. I also had many foster children because my husband did not want me to have any more children of my own because I almost lost David at birth, so thatís when I started taking in foster children.
What are your most memorable memories of the 1920ís?
The thing I remember the most is this one time I went to Wausau looking for a new rug, all day I could not find any but I went to a fur coat store. At the fur coat store I found this coat, it was on sale for $1,500 but I did not have that much money and I knew I did not need it. So when I went home that night without a rug my husband asked me what I found, and so I told him about the coat and how I did not find a rug, the next day my husband took me to Wausau after he was done working and bought me the coat I wanted, even though we could barely afford it at the time; I never did buy the rug I was truly shopping for, but my husband treated me like a queen.
How long were you and your husband married?
We were married together for 74 years, and we had no arguments because I always got my way.