We’ve been remiss and missed a few weeks, so here’s a bumper month of Peggy’s life to wrap up 1960. To kick off though, here’s what was going on in the world in December 1960.
- The African state of Mauritania became independent shortly after midnight, with Moktar Ould Daddah receiving the transfer of sovereignty from France’s Prime Minister, Michel Debre. Daddah declared that “Mauritania … will never forget what she owes the French people.”
- CIA Director Allen Dulles briefed President-elect John F. Kennedy on the agency’s plans to overthrow the Castro government. Kennedy told Dulles to continue with the project, which ultimately failed as the Bay of Pigs Invasion.
- Gary Lineker, English footballer and broadcaster was born in Leicester.
- The Most Rev. Geoffrey Francis Fisher, Archbishop of Canterbury and leader of the Anglican Church, talked with Pope John XXIII for about an hour at the Vatican, marking the first time since 1397 that England’s highest ranking religious leader had visited the Pope.
- Camelot, the most expensive theatrical production to that time, made its Broadway debut, at the Majestic Theatre, with Richard Burton as King Arthur and Julie Andrews as Lady Guinevere.
- The first episode of the ITV drama Coronation Street aired in the UK. It was originally planned to be a 16-part drama but became such a success that, running five times or more per week, it continued past its 10,000th episode in its 60th anniversary year.
- Entrepreneur Tom Monaghan and his brother James took over the operation of “DomiNick’s Pizza” store at 301 West Cross Street in Ypsilanti, Michigan. In 1965, after the original owner declined to allow the use of his name for other locations, the brothers renamed their restaurant Domino’s Pizza.
- The first “Tied Test” in the history of Test cricket took place at the end of the match in Brisbane between the West Indies and Australia. At the end of the First Innings on December 10, Australia had a 505–453 lead. In the Second Innings, however, the West Indies had outscored Australia 284 to 232. When Australia’s last batter, Lindsay Kline, came up for the 7th and final ball, the score had closed to 737 to 737. Kline hit the ball bowled by Wes Hall, and Ian Meckiff dashed toward the wicket for what would have been the winning run, but Joe Solomon fielded the ball and hit the stumps for the last out.
- John F. Kennedy was elected as the 35th President of the United States, as the 534 persons who had been selected (on November 8) to serve in the Electoral College, met in their respective states’ capitals. Democratic candidate Kennedy received 300 votes, 31 more than the 269 needed to win, and Republican challenger Richard M. Nixon had 219. U.S. Senator Harry F. Byrd received 15 votes, from all 8 of Mississippi’s slate of unpledged electors (a ticket which finished ahead of Kennedy and Nixon), six from Alabama pledged to Kennedy, and one from Oklahoma pledged to Nixon. Hawaii’s 3 electors had not been certified, pending a recount of the popular vote, but were awarded to Kennedy prior to the January 6, 1961, tabulation.
And here’s what was keeping Peggy busy:
Sunday 27th November 1960
Another filthy day – we haven’t been out – apart from a trip to Wilsons this am for ink. We were up early and G & I don’t feel so miserable today. Have done a lot of letter writing.
Monday 28th November 1960
A cold & frosty morning but dry & sunny. Dried all the wash & the children were out all morning & for a walk this afternoon. Philip has been very good & walks several steps now. Letter from Dad & Joan – Dad not too well.
Tuesday 29th November 1960
Wet today & its turned very cold this afternoon. We’ve been to the village and I’ve drawn the Family Allce . – & spent it . Was flat broke!! No letters. Philip walking a bit. Almost the length of the room.
Wednesday 30th November 1960
Wet & cold today – but Philip was able to sleep out and we’ve been for a short walk this afternoon. Haven’t done any knitting again tonight!! Written to Dad & Joan.
Thursday 1st December 1960
Dry but cold & windy – we’ve only been as far as the phone this afternoon but Gillian & Philip have been out all morning. No letters – no income tax refund!!!
Friday 2nd December 1960
Managed – with Gillian’s help! – Philip co operation to do the baking this morning! I’ve been vainly trying to get Philip to use his pot reckon I’ll still be trying when he’s 21!! – no idea – he’d rather put it on his head! No letters again.
Saturday 3rd December 1960
To Page’s to tea.
Cyril went to the village & to Esher this morning while I did the chores – we went off to Chertsey soon after 2.30 – stopped in Weybridge for a 1/2 hr & I bought some Christmas Cards & one or two everyday items! Gillian came with me while Cyril looked after Philip. The two were very good at Pages – we left about 6.20 – home 6.45.
Sunday 4th December 1960
Another wet Sunday so we haven’t been out. I put the Almond icing on the cake this afternoon. Had a fright in the early hours when I was up with Philip. I’m sure a mouse ran across the room.
Monday 5th December 1960
Fine but cold. Have dried all the wash – and quite a big one it is. I’ve been to the village with the children. Gillian in a very irritable frame of mind. Wonder if she’s sickening for anything?
Tuesday 6th December 1960
Wet morning, but it cleared up this afternoon & we’ve been to the village. Walked back with Mrs. Parker & Helen. Letter from Dick & Phyllis but nothing yet from Income Tax – or Insurance. Posted the Canadian & U.S. cards today.
Wednesday 7th December 1960
Jacqs T (birthday)
Damp & inclined to be foggy. Nothing much to report – the usual round of washing, cooking & cleaning & changing Philip. Letter from Joan – we haven’t been far this afternoon.
Thursday 8th December 1960
Eileen S. (birthday)
Got on well this morning – cleaned & defrosted ‘frig & had the wash out of the boiler by 9.30. The children played well together that’s why! Damp & foggy day. We had a quick walk as far as Weedons with the infants well wrapped up. Poor Cyril – car broke down at Putney he had to leave it behind.
Friday 9th December 1960
My day out
I got off to the dentist & from there to Kingston – had a tour round & began to get worried as time went on & I’d done no shopping. However I eventually bought nearly £3 presents & had a soup & roll for lunch – very quick!! Home about 4.45 – to find everything in order & the children in the middle of their tea : car ready for pick up tomorrow.
Saturday 10th December 1960
Cyril collected the car this morning while Gillian & I did some baking! & the chores. He was back by 11.30 – car in running order – for good I hope. It’s been a bitterly cold day – we thought it was going to snow. Had a run out to Epsom this afternoon, stopped in L’head for 1/2 hr on the return journey shampooed & bathed after the children.
Sunday 11th December 1960
We had an early lunch today – and set off on a flying visit to Frimley. Olive & Frank were out but we saw Valerie – then called at Greens – gave them a surprise, afterwards a few minutes at Jacksons. Home at 5.30 – I have had a gadding about weekend – very nice too.
Monday 12th December 1960
A miserable damp & dirty day – haven’t been able to put out any washing but it has dried inside round the fire. We haven’t been out but Phil has been very miserable this afternoon – teething? I’ve given him a dose of Benadryl this evening.
Tuesday 13th December 1960
Another miserable foggy day but we’ve had to brave it to go up to the village. Plenty of turkeys in the butchers – & Xmas trees in the greengrocer! Alas & Alack – our tax rebate claim form hasn’t come so I don’t think we’ll have that for Christmas.
Wednesday 14th December 1960
Wet & cold & it tried to now just before we went out – much to Gillian’s delight! Christmas cards have started coming already – & there’s me with the gifts yet to buy & the cake to ice!! Letter from Mrs. Creed. Cyril brought Philip’s present home Tuesday – a large polythene train. Finished one “Sooty” last night.
Thursday 15th December 1960
Well we can certainly kiss the tax rebate goodbye before Christmas – letter from them today saying they have no trace of Cyril’s ? so he has to get another certificate from Pay Office – & he’s not in tomorrow! Darn it! Had an early walk & have given Jill a bath & shampoo.
Friday 16th December 1960
Cyril went out early this am & phoned about a second hand dolls pram he later bought for £3. Have had another day out today lucky me! Have spent all day at Gamages & bought most of the presents T.G. Had a rushed lunch & then a rush to catch the 3.52 home. All well when I got in & Cyril had even put up some decorations. Am now going to sort out the presents & wrap up.
Saturday 17th December 1960
We’ve had a very nice day. Cyril collected the tree, posted the parcels Went to Esher this morning We set off for Welling soon after one I found them all looking well. We waited to see Eileen & left for Fairwater Ave about 6.40. We came home via the West End to see the lights – Gillian was so excited – they really are lovely. Home at 8.20 & the two soon in bed. Busy week ahead for us catching up on all the jobs.
Sunday 18th December 1960
A nasty day. I’m glad we had our day out yesterday. We’ve been decorating much to Gillian’s delight. Celia & Barry & Mrs. G came over but didn’t stay long on account of the fog.
Monday 19th December 1960
Wet today – but not quite so cold. Have had to dry the wash indoors – moved some of it before going out for a short walk. Gillian fell this morning & gave herself a nasty lump on the forehead. Christmas cards are beginning to come in.
Tuesday 20th December 1960
Didn’t know whether I was coming or going this morning. Both Gillian & Philip had crying & bad temper sessions & here was I with the living room all upside down! A very cold wet day. Its been trying to snow. A few cards today & a couple of parcels. Iced the cake this evening – in half an hour! – snow scene!!
Wednesday 21st December 1960
We’ve actually had a dry day & some clear skies! But what a cold wind! We’ve been out for an hour this afternoon. Glad to get back to the fire though. More cards today & a parcel for the children.
Thursday 22nd December 1960
A fine sunny day & I’ve done a big wash – all ready for the iron tonight – & that’s the last “Boil-up” until after Xmas. I hope! I’m desperately hard up – Cyril is having to buy the groceries etc. out of his slender purse! How I’m hoping my insurance money will come tomorrow.
Friday 23rd December 1960
I could have wept with disappointment today when the insurance man said I couldn’t have any money on my policy for 12 months!! That means we are VERY hard up now. I went to Cullens this pm. & had a large order put on the account! – including 1/2bot rum & cigs for Dad!! Just going to bath & shampoo Gillian. CYRIL brought home TURKEY.
Saturday 24th December 1960
Well we’ve had a very pleasant Christmas Eve. Cyril went out this morning & then to meet Dad at 11.50. We had an early lunch Roast Pork & then went L’head – not too crowded – we were early. Home & early to bed with the nippers. Now we’re going to sort out gifts. Lovely Turkey 14. 7oz – 7 1/2 % discount.
Sunday 25th December 1960
We’ve had a lovely Christmas Day. Great excitement from the children – they have been very good – and so tired by six o’ clock. After they had gone down we sat down to high tea – Our turkey is lovely.
Monday 26th December 1960
Children awake very early – & now I’m very tired (8pm) – we went over to Clarke’s at Hinchley Wood for a drink this am – consequently we had a very late lunch. Cyril has washed & polished the car. I took the nips for a short walk. Very cold.
Tuesday 27th December 1960
A lovely morning – Cyril left at quarter to nine to fetch Mum, Doris & Will – they were back at 11.15 & Mum managed very well. I think they’ve enjoyed their day – Dad & I took the children for a walk this afternoon. Cyril set off to take them back to Welling at 6.15 – they were going via London to see the lights – have just seen a picture on the news of the crowds in the West End!!!
Wednesday 28th December 1960
A dirty morning – Dad & Cyril went to L’head. This afternoon the Jacksons came & stayed to tea. Very nice afternoon.
Thursday 29th December 1960
Have had a boil up this morning – late starting though as we had a lie-in until 8.10!! Been out to Frimley this afternoon to see Mrs Green – home just before six.
Friday 30th December 1960
Andrew S. (birthday)
Cyril went to Esher this morning – to the Bank while Gillian & I baked. This afternoon we’ve all been to Leatherhead- but unfortunately no sales on! or fortunately? Have made mince pies tonight.
Saturday 31st December 1960
Have had a pleasant last day of 1960. Joan, Fred, Eileen & Andrew arrived about quarter to twelve – after having a slow ride away to ice on roads. A letter from ___ saying _____ had had a miscarriage just as they were about to leave ___ – she is in Ripon Hospital & has lost the baby. I can’t help feeling a little sad about it – but at the same time feeling that in the end it will prove to have been the best thing that could have happened. What sort of future would the little one have had?