Saturday, February 20, 2010

Ben's 100th Birthday Anniversary

1947--Ben's 37th birthday

Benjamin Harrison Brackman's 100th birthday anniversary was February 17, 2010.

He was born in Brooklyn a century ago this month to immigrants from Russia, Harry and Lena Brachman.
Harry and Lena are on the left in the photograph below, which may be of the Brachmans in New York. Harry and Lena both came to America from Russia in 1905. I think they met here. The Brachmans spoke Yiddish at home and Ben learned English in grade school

Ben was always ambitious to succeed in business. He changed his name to Brackman when he was a teenager as he thought it sounded more American with a "k". At 17 he went to work for AT& T in Manhattan. In the 1930 census, at the beginning of the Great Depression, he was living with his family in Brooklyn, the only person listed with a job. That must have been tough for everyone.

Ben and brother Alec in 1927. Ben is about 17, Alec about 12. I imagine they both had red hair.

Ben in 1939 at Peggy and Biff's wedding. He's about 29.

Ben met Cele at the phone company. They married in 1937. Here they are 6 years later in 1943.

Ben had impaired vision in one eye from an injury so he could not get into the service during the War. He had Cele's Uncle Lew Valentine, New York's Police Commissioner, write a letter to President Roosevelt for him, but he remained 4-F.

Ben in 1945 at a baby shower for me. He's 35.
He ran an office of dozens of women during the War who threw the baby shower for him. He eventually became an accountant for the Long Lines Division, the long distance department.

Three kids, Jane, Bill and Barbara, in 1950 living on Long Island

The phone company transferred him to Cincinnati in 1950. He loved living in the suburbs. Gardening was one hobby, golf another, and photography the hobby we have to thank for the pictures on this blog.

Cele and Ben in 1959. She is 48; he 49.
He actually dressed like that for parties, despite our protests.

The phone company transferred him to Kansas City in 1959. We objected but, as Aunt Kay said, "He was a company man." In Kansas City he was an early computer programmer for the long distance department.

Cele died in 1965. He remarried twice.

Here he is about 1968 with a family of hippies. His wan look at 58 years old may be from losing Cele (she died at 54 years old), his recent surgery or the whole generation gap problem.
He moved to Florida when he married his last wife Louise.

He was born the year of Haley's Comet, which whizzed by in 1910. It's hard for us kids to believe he would be 100 years old.

1 comment:

  1. I always doubted that story about not being able to get into the service because of a vision problem.