LONG COULBOURN, Army of the United
Young Private Coulbourn on bivouac with Co. E, 124th Infantry Rgt., 1917
(In third tent on right.)
Long Coulbourn, was
busy all his life, always in a hurry, and yet he lived to be 98
years old. Dixon
He was born in a little
Virginia town on Chesapeake
Bay on January 27, 1899.
His dad ran an oyster business.
The employees were all African-Americans, and I am sure some of the
older ones had been slaves at one time.
Watermen raked up tons of oysters and brought them back to Morattico to be processed. Black oyster shuckers worked all day, filling barrels with fresh shucked oysters, which were iced down and rushed to customers all over the eastern
. United States
It was hard work, and a typical shucker made $6 a week. They piled up mountains of oyster shells.
1,500,000 young men boarded troop transports and were soon fighting in
. France was among them. The
shells exploding near him permanently damaged his hearing, so he spent the rest
of his life with very poor hearing. Dixon
On November 11, 1918, Armistice was declared. People went from unit to unit, announcing the news.
remembered that vividly, especially because
a cook wagon came to the front lines and started cooking pancakes for the
soldiers. “Man, that was the most
wonderful thing!” Dixon
used to say. Dixon
As it has done for most men, and now women as well, combat made a lasting impression on
He was proud of his service. Dixon
When the war was over, all the soldiers returned to
, and suddenly all those
young men were looking for jobs at the same time. America Dixon and his
brothers went to work in central ,
packing strawberries and trying all kinds of schemes to make a living. Florida
was gaining notice all over the country because oil wells were popping up, new
refineries were being built, and workers were needed. In 1927, Texas Dixon
got himself on a freight train headed for .
He made his way to Texas Port Arthur, in the
southeastern corner of . Real estate developers financed with money
from the Texas
had begun building a town here to handle shipments of locally grown rice. They
located the Kansas City Southern Railways terminus here, and Dutch settlers
came to live, followed by Americans. Then a huge oil discovery at Spindletop,
right where all the Dutchmen were living, led to creation of several refineries
here. Texaco and Gulf Oil companies were created. Families began streaming here
to make their fortune in this oil boom town.
Gusher at Spindletop, Jan. 10, 1901
Courtesy of American Petroleum Institute
For a young man, veteran of The Great War, looking for work, this looked to be the place, and
landed here. Dixon found a job as a bookkeeper at a local
grocery store. Dixon , who enlisted in the Army before he had
graduated from high school, now enrolled in correspondence courses to learn to
be an accountant. He earned his
He met a young woman at a
social event. Katherine was the
daughter of a doctor and a strong supporter of the local Methodist Church
and the Women’s Christian Temperance Union.
Dixon and Katherine were soon married. Methodist Church
I was born a couple of years later, in 1934, and my brother Dixon Wall Coulbourn was born two years later, in 1936.
In 1944 my sister, Martha Louise, was born, and our parents looked at the neighborhood where we lived, just over a mile from downtown, and decided that now, with a little girl, it was time to move to more idyllic surroundings. So, in 1945 we moved to
. Here we had a cow pasture beyond our back
Park Dixon ordered a flock of Plymouth Rock
chickens from a supplier in ,
and soon we were in the chicken business.
Dixon’s family, 1946
L to R:
Martha, Sam, Katherine. Dixon
We collected the eggs each morning, and cleaned all the chicken mess up, and fed the chickens.
started his own accounting firm, leaving
for work after he had made sure that we were doing our chicken chores. Dixon
He had a friend who owned a store that sold outboard motors for boats and all kinds of appliances, from washing machines to record players.
Dixon bought an electric deep freezer, and then one of the new Bendix washing machines, with the window, so you could see the clothes swirling around inside. He bought my mother an electric ironing machine (mangle), which turned out to be a total waste of money.
When a new voice recorder came out, that you could record on a paper disk, he brought one home to try out, and took it back. Then a wire recorder came out that made a recording on a slim silver wire on a spool. He brought that home, and then took it back.
However, we were one of the last families in the neighborhood to buy a television.
Even though he loved gadgets, Dad was no spendthrift!
Dad kept his accounting business until he was 73 years old, then with all of us kids with families of our own, he and mother moved to
where he opened up another accounting business, and wrote a book, “Control Your Finances”. Georgetown, Texas
All his adult life, Dad was a loyal member of the Kiwanis Club and the American Legion. On his 90th birthday the local newspaper ran a front-page story of this crusty old World War I veteran. Dad wasn’t pleased about the publicity, because he thought the fact that he was 90 years old might turn away some of his accounting business.
Happy Birthday, Dad!
The Personal Navigator offers these books and papers:
Our Army--and How to Know It and Our Navy and How to Know It edited by Albert A. Hopkins--Reversible book 1917. New York, NY: Munn & Co., Inc. Scientific American Office Little book describes modern World War I Army with 310 illustrations--maps, ranks, insignia, how to salute; Reverse the book at it describes modern Navy with 275 illustrations, insignia, uniforms, weapons, etc. 124 pp. 10 x 14 cm. Paper booklet bound with Army on one side, Navy on the other. Cover missing, pencil writing on Navy title page, thus poor. (6225) $30.00. World War I/Army/Navy
Portfolio of the World War-- Rotogravure Etchings Selected from the Mid-Week Pictorial of The New York Times. 1917.
New York Times Company. Excellent collection of photographs from World War I.
28 x 41 cm. Cloth on board, very nice cover. Sepia-toned, high-quality photos.
Front hinge broken, but binding intact. Fair condition. (0392) $60.00. History.
Scientific American, August 25, 1917
: Munn & Co., Inc. Publishers. Cover
painting shows U.S. Army Motor-Truck Kitchen. Story p. 137 describes new
vehicle, costing $7000, may find favor with the military authorities. "Canning Tomatoes in New York, NY " by
Arthur L. Dahl. " California Gas
Engine Drive for Submerged Submarines," with
photos, by E.C. Crossman. Lead story: "The Neglected Water Power of New England."
"The War of the Specialists-- The Machine Gunner" with
photos, by Captain Louis Keene, C.E.F.
Photo and story about Giant Bombing-Planes--Italy's Contribution to
Aeronautical Progress. Triplane carries crew of three, and 2750 lbs. of
explosives. Newly-invented trench weapon combines automatic pistol with bayonet
in single instrument. Full-page Ad: Now women can drive with pleasure, in Delco-equipped automobiles.
Full-page color ad for Bulldog Mack trucks, from one to 7 1/2 tons capacity.
Full-page ad for Pierce-Arrow Motor Trucks.
Week's Review of the war by our military experts, shows map of
operations in .
24 pp. 27 x 39 cm. Paper periodical, minor wear and soiling, good. (7230)
$24.00. World War I/History Rumania
Treat 'Em Square: The National Ex-Service Mens Magazine, May 1922 Haimes, Robert, Editor.
: Treat 'Em
York, NY 33 Union Square.
Cover shows soldier holding flag with Capitol in background. Lead story: "Politicians
Tricking Soldiers on the Bonus--Declares Francis"--"the plain truth
about the bonus is that the (Harding) Administration is afraid to pay it in the
right way." "Canadian Pension
Board Makes Generous Provision for Disable War Veterans, Their Dependents, For
Children Yet Unborn". "Baseball
booming, says Judge Landis". Editorials:
President proposes sales tax to pay for bonus.
Treat 'Em Square is distributed exclusively by ex-Servicemen. On
Sporting Page is photo of Babe Ruth demonstrating his batting stance for
Belgian General Baron Jacques. Ad for "Knights of the Ku Klux
Klan" -- an institution of chivalry, humanity, justice and
patriotism. 32 pp. 20 x 27.5 cm.
Periodical, slight wear, very good. (7846) $45.00. World War I/Propaganda
World War I Postcard: Drafted Men receiving their first physical examination, Camp Devens, Mass. 1917
2 sides 14 x 9 cm. B&W photo
shows men milling about, still in civilian clothes, while Army medics check
them out. On reverse is message from young soldier to his mother in Turner's
Falls, MA. Postcard, good. (5687) $12.00. World War I/Postcards/ephemera Camp
World War I Postcard: Arrival of the drafted men, Camp Devens, Ayer, Mass. 1917
: Postcard. 2 sides 14 x 9 cm. B&W photo shows men
standing in loose ranks, still in civilian clothes, most in suits and felt or
straw hats, with soldier at their head. On reverse is message from young
soldier to his sister in Turner's Falls, MA. Postcard, good. (5690) $12.00. World War
I/Postcards/ephemera Camp Devens,
World War I Postcard: Soldiers under arms, running "double time." 1917
: Postcard 2
sides 14 x 9 cm. Color photo shows
soldiers with rifles at port arms and blankets over their shoulders, running
double time. On reverse is message from young soldier to Mrs. Arthur Brodeur in
Turner's Falls, MA, thanking her for the cigars which he received. Postcard,
good. (5693) $12.00. World War I/Postcards/ephemera Camp Devens, MA
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