End of Childhood

My childhood lasted until I was eight- years-old, when I landed a job at the Sayre Headlight Journal working for a marvelous boss W.J. Bacon, owner and publisher. He held together that little town newspaper with its 10 or so employees all the eight years I worked there. After he died (many years later), it never amounted to much again.

I started out delivering papers; I did this for six years, sometimes with the help of my little sister Phyllis. She covered one side of the street and I covered the other. For her help she got 10 cents per round and when we got to the top of Fourth Street, half-way around our route, I treated her to a five-cent Nesbit Orange Crush at the filling station. This work was her early introduction to a paying job.

Many an evening I would hang around in the alley behind the newspaper plant waiting for the paper to come out. The paper was often late. The press would break, the paper wouldn’t feed right, or it wasn’t composed in time because the typesetter or the linotype machine had a problem. But there was a prevailing motto: “The paper always comes out.” Somehow, someway, there was always a paper.


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