Memoirs of a Toledo Childhood: Hand-me-downs

"Memoirs of a Toledo Childhood" follows the recollections and reflections of Michael Murray, a Toledoan born in 1944 and raised in the South Side. These snippets of childhood from the previous generation, released as moments rather than a chronological timeline, remind us of what once was and the experiences and legacies that built our present. The excerpts are adapted from Murray's Memoir of a Toledoan and are released with permission of the author.

My parents’ house payment was $52 a month back in the ’50s. We had nothing, and there were no extras; we had one pair of shoes, and I wore my brother Jim’s hand-me-down clothes and shoes, and then my brother Terry wore my hand-me-downs. There were no after-school snacks, nothing to eat after supper, and you didn’t dare raid the refrigerator. However, we did have a very clean house and clean clothes; if you didn’t make your bed, there was no dessert with supper. To this day I make my bed daily.


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