I have written in detail about my interests,
both past and present. This material, which is on
another web site,
is only accessible to members of my immediate family, however.
For those who do not know me, and/or who are interested, here is a synopsis:
Family History and Genealogical Research
Beginning in 1984, and primarily since my retirement in 1986,
genealogy and family history research has been my main interest and
it occupies much of my time. An explanation of my research, its
scope, and its publication can be found on
another web site.
My primary interest has been to acquire relevant documents and
pictures and my primary goal has been to preserve these and the
other results of my research in digital form and in books for my descendants; making any of
this material available to others, particularly on web sites, is only a
secondary by-product. This interest, by its very nature, involves
other interests I have had for a long time, including photography and
I have had an interest in photography since I began using my father's
Kodak No. 1 Junior at age 15 and I acquired my first camera (an
Argus C-3) and built a darkroom at the
age of 16. Over the intervening years I have used a wide variety
of equipment (mostly Rollei and Leica, and now Lumix with Leica lenses) and have a rather
large collection of images that I have taken all over the world - black
and white prints, Kodachrome color slides, color prints and
In the early 1950s, I successfully entered a couple of my images in
international competition; they were shown in color slide exhibitions in
ten cities - from New York to Hawaii.
My first exposure to computers was in the late 1950s in a graduate
independent research course - an early IBM machine
with no keyboard, no monitor, lots of blinking lights and programs that
had to be introduced into the machine with each use via decks of punched
cards. I wrote a program (two boxes full of punched-card decks)
that would handle the routine of recording passenger reservation
information for an airline - long before any airline had computers in
use for passenger handling functions. I subsequently used IBM 360s
and time-share terminals (including punched tape) in connection with my
employment and later did some NOMAD programming for use on my
employer's main frame computer.
When Hewlett Packard released their first programmable calculator,
David Packard (who at the time was also a director of my employer)
personally arranged delivery of mine - an HP-65 - for a project I was
working on in Europe. I used programs I had written on it for many
years and it is still in use.
When the first personal computers became available I began following
developments in the literature. In 1981, I finally acquired my
first one. It was the first of three Apple IIIs and the first
personal computer to incorporate features that I really wanted -
including a real-time clock that did not stop when you turned the
computer off. Although antiquated technology in today's world,
they were a huge advancements over my punched card experience.
I have wanted to travel from the time I first worked part-time
at a travel agency when I was in high school. In the
intervening sixty+ years I have been very fortunate to travel all
over the world, both in connection with my occupation and for
pleasure. I have records for much of my travel, but I have no
idea what it all adds up to; I do know that I circumnavigated the
globe on six trips. I was a loyal and frequent customer of Pan
American World Airways. During the 1970s and 1980s, I not only
had a lot of foreign travel (up to three months out of every year)
but I also was able to live in some locations for extended periods.
While I have by no means seen every part of the world, I've covered
the vast majority of it and by the time I retired in 1986, I had
been to most places I wanted to visit and done most of the things I
wanted to do. Nevertheless, in the last thirty-two years there has been more travel, although the frequency has
I am a life member of Pan American World Airways' Clipper Club (the
problem is, I've lived longer than Pan Am).
Cars and Their Restoration
I have been interested in cars and their restoration since 1968,
although not active in this hobby since 1994. For over forty
five years I owned cars that were
older than I was - all Model A Fords: a
disassembled 1929 Closed Cab Pickup (the picture is
of a 1928, however), a disassembled late 1931
Sport Coupe, and an
operating late 1931
Both of the latter had rumble seats; the Sport Coupe had a cloth top
that did not retract
- the Deluxe coupe had a roll-down rear window. A fair inventory
of "choice" extra parts augment these.
The car I drove for over twenty-nine years, until mid 2009, was a
1971 Mercedes-Benz 280SL
both a retractable cloth top and a removable hard top. It was
repainted in 2002, and had better
paint than when it left the
factory at Sindelfingen-Unterteurkheim (which my youngest son and I visited in the early 1980s).
It is now
considered a "classic" by Mercedes-Benz.
Its new owner took it to Australia and then moved it to Switzerland after giving it more tender, loving
attention. It is now at its new home, after completely circling the globe,
less 150 miles from where it was originally assembled.
Since childhood I have been fascinated by anything related to
trains. At one time a had an extensive collection of pre-1950 time
tables (both railroad and airline). I think my mother chucked them
after I went away to college and they moved. I have ridden trains
every opportunity I've had, both in this country and in my foreign
I built an HO train layout for my two sons and had a fair amount of
equipment to go with it. My youngest son has these now for his two
boys. I still have a very small train set (a German N gauge-9mm) that I get out and run
occasionally, though .
Philately, Numismatics etc.
I have collected stamps since 1942, based on a U.S. collection
my Dad had started for me in 1932. I also began collecting
United Nations stamps when they were first released in the early
1950s but I stopped adding to that collection about 1998 - too many
I have collected coins off and on over the years based on a very
small U.S. collection I inherited from my namesake (an uncle of my
mother's) and from my foreign travels.
I have a very small collection of paper money from around the world
and souvenir cards issued by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing.
None of these collections are even close to being complete or
comprehensive. Since items of any value are stored in a bank, I don't get to enjoy
them very often, but they have brought me a lot of pleasure over
the years and added to my education.