Sunday, November 25, 2012

Two Chances

Back to the scrapbook, where I find once again that I usually have two chances at something.  The next page was a mess and I wondered how I’d ever make sense of it.

What a mess – things were glued haphazardly and in most cases, torn.  I gave up on the article on the left since more of it was gone than was there but then I thought what would a Levy do?  Well, of course, they’d have multiple copies of the same articles and I’d have my second chance!

Yep, that’s one of Sig Levy’s scrapbooks and there was the same article that was torn in Loraine’s scrapbook!  One thing I’ve learned about my family – THEY SAVED EVERYTHING!

Here’s a close up of the article.  And look at that – this one even has the date on it.

Sig Enters Business January 3, 1917

Becomes Partner in Firm of Levy Bros.; 11 Years with Republican

Sig Levy, former advertising manager of the Fresno Republican, announced yesterday that he would become associated as a partner in the firm of Levy Bros., real estate and insurance brokers.  He will take up his new work at once.

Levy severed his connection with the Republican at the close of 1916, after eleven years in its employ.  He has been very active in civic affairs in recent years.  At the present time he is director of publicity for the Commercial Club, which position he has held since the organization of the club, and secretary of the trade promotion committee of the Merchants’ Association.

In his new work, he said yesterday that he intended to continue his activity in civic affairs.  As a member of the firm of Levy Bros. he will specialize in business property.

So now the firm was complete and all four brothers – Herbert, Leon, Sig and Ben – were involved in the business and each was a specialist in his respective department.
This is an interesting clipping about the Shriner’s Dance.

Shriners Dance

The article itself isn’t that interesting but the list of participants is.  First on the list is F.W. Ast which to most probably means nothing.  But my husband’s family name was Ast (changed to Austen in 1955) and there is F.W. Ast at an event with Ligmund (ha!) Levy.  Was this one of “our” Ast family? 

Looks like Sig passed his Air Pilot test!

Sig Aviator School Republican Oct. 20, 1918Sig Levy Passes Air Pilot’s Test in U.S. School
Fresno Man Ready to Begin Army Flying

Sig Levy of Fresno was graduated from the United States training school for aviators at the University of California at Berkeley Friday.  He telegraphed to his brother, Herbert Levy, here of his success.  He has been studying at Berkeley for months, and hard work was rewarded by his completion of the courses yesterday.  He will become a pilot, and is eligible for immediate training at the flying fields.  He will spend a few days in Fresno on furlough.  He is in squadron 61.

And here is Special Orders No. 157 which ordered Sig into active service on July 6, 1918.

Special Order 1 Special Order 2 Special Order 3

Special Orders, No. 157
Headquarters Western Department
San Francisco, Cal, July 6, 1918

The following named privates first class of the Aviation Section, Signal Enlisted Reserve Corps, are ordered into active service at such time as will permit them to comply with this order and will proceed to Berkeley, California, to arrive there July 20, 1918, and report to the commandant, School of Military Aeronautics, University of California, at that place for aviation training as candidates for commission:

And there on page 2 is my grandfather’s name and pertinent information:  Sigmund Levy (875409), 1716 Van Ness Avenue, Fresno, California

And after the names are listed is this:
The Quartermaster Corps will furnish the necessary transportation and pay such of these soldiers as may be entitled thereto commutation of rations as provided by paragraph 1228, Army Regulations, it being impracticable for them to carry rations of any kind.  The journeys are necessary for the public service.
BY COMMAND OF MAJOR GENERAL MORRISON: H.C. Benson, Colonel, United States Army, Department Adjutant.

Whew!  And what I know from transcribing the letters between my grandparents during that time is that my grandmother, Loraine Gunzendorfer, was working in Oakland while living with her great uncle and his wife, Rachel Letter and Samuel Steen, hoping that Sig would end up in Berkeley so she could, hopefully, see him.  Looks like her wish has come true!

And here it is again – two chances!

Boys Chances

My grandmother saved some interesting things! 


  1. The "Two Chances" clip is hilarious. I love how that little paragraph connects to your own "two chances" to get the story about your grandparents. Fantastic scrapbooks!

    1. There are not enough hours left in my lifetime for me to go through all of my grandfather's scrapbooks.

  2. I haven't found any Asts yet with those initials, but then I rarely get info on any siblings, just parents, grandparents, etc. I'll have to dig deeper!!

    1. Just looked - Frederick W. Ast (1902-2003) was Rita's half brother. Wonder if he was a Shriner?

  3. Fab family treasure, Debi - and TWO copies! :-) Jo

    1. In many cases there are even more than two copies - my family saved everything!

  4. Debi, what treasures you have in that scrap book. Yes, your grandmother did save some unusual things--but that last clip is definitely a keeper!

  5. The scrapbook is such a wonderful treasure--and the Two Chances clipping is priceless.

  6. Your scrapbook is a treasure! It will certainly keep you busy.