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Issue 1524
Post WWII Letters
January 9, 1946 (Thelma Terry)
April 17, 1946 (Thelma Terry)
October 15, 1946 (Thelma Terry)
December 2, 1946 (Thelma Terry)
February 3, 1947 (Thelma Terry)
May 6, 1947 (Thelma Terry)
March 3, 1949 (From Dr. B. H. Sprague to ERB)
March 31, 1953 (ERB discusses Burroughs Geneology) 


Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California

9 January 1946
Dear Terry:

Thanks for the cute holiday greeting card and the little note. Was glad to know that your brother had returned safely, and that all your old boy friends are coming back.

My son, Hulbert, who was a major in the Air Force came back on terminal leave just before I returned, and is now a civilian. With my three children, their spouses, and my four grandchildren all living within a few minutes drive of one another and me in the San Fernando Valley we are all very happy.

Had a Christmas card from Ham. He is back home, and, I suppose out of the Army, although the card bore the name Lt. Col. Hamner Freeman.

I have been a semi-invalid for some time. Had a heart attack while out in the Philippine Sea in July and then another quite bad one in September in Honolulu. Was horizontal for six weeks up to the time the Army flew me back to the Mainland. Yesterday X-rays revealed the fact that I had a badly abscessed tooth, which I had out immediately; and doggone if I don't feel a hundred per cent better today. Maybe that was the cause of all my trouble.

Am having fun fixing up a little house I bought not far from my office. Had to buy a place or sit on the curbstone, as there were no places to rent; and building was out of the question, what with material and labor shortages and the outrageous cost. Contractors are asking as high as $12.00 a square foot to build, and it takes forever to get anything done. Am having a one room servants' quarters built with a small storeroom, which will take three months to complete. Have a housekeeper ( who goes home nights), and when the servant's room is completed I shall try to get a combination butler-gardner.

The above must be highly entertaining to you, but it's about all I have to write about.

Good luck and a wonderful 1946.

Ed (sig)

Miss Thelma Terry
Central Ave.,
Sydney, N.S.W. Australia

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California

April 17, 1946
Dear Terry:

Was glad to have your letter of March 2 and was interested in the description of your new home. I can imagine what a beautiful location it is, overlooking Middle Harbour. It is interesting to know that housing conditions in Australia are the same as they are here. This must be true pretty much all over the world.

I think you would like San Fernando Valley; so I hope you win the lottery and can make the trip here.

Yes, indeed, I remember the lovely lobster thermador at Romano's and how we used to beat the ceiling price of 5/- by going out to the Oyster Cocktail Bar.

I suppose you read of the seismic wave that overwhelmed parts of the Hawaiian Islands. It did some damage to the hotel property where I lived for five years, and also demolished the homes of some of my friends along the beach.

I suppose you will be marrying your Royal Marine in the near future and, if so, I wish you every happiness.

Ed (sig)

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California
27 June 1946
Dear Thelma:

In answer to your question as to how I am getting on in my new home, I can only say that I have been unusually lucky. Shortly after my alterations in the house and the servants' quarters were completed it became practically impossible to get lumber or even nails.

We are supposed to be the richest country in t he world, and I guess we are; but for some time I have been trying to buy one sack of cement, and only today, after phoning several building supply concerns did I locate a sack.

And meat! There just isn't any. But I have some! A couple of months ago I bought a deep freeze unit, and filled it with beef and lamb, vegetables, fruit, etc; so now I live like a Russian Commisar (how many s's?). I should feel like a heel, but I don't. I am only sorry that I didn't stick a hog in my freezer. I ordered one, but neglected to follow it up.

And bread! We are feeding the world (for which we will get no thanks), and our house wives are standing in line to buy bread, and seldom getting any. And in America! America, the land of the free and the home of the naive!

It seems strange to me to realize that you are in the midst of winter, while here it is summer. Today is a little cooler than yesterday - 79 in the shade. My blackberries are heavy on the vines, my Golden Bantam corn is six or seven feet tall, my cucumbers are rioting - and probably will soon be rotting. I put in too many. I have peaches, pears, figs, grapes, oranges, lemons coming along. But when we are freezing, you will have summer.

No, I have never met Clark Gable; but I admire him as a man and like him on the screen. I also like Greer Garson. I hope that you enjoyed the picture. One of my actor friends killed himself the other day - Charlie Butterworth. He was unquestionably soused when he ran his car into a light pole, for he was usually soused. It was too bad, for he gave so much pleasure to so many people.

Never hear from Ham. I am off him. However, I have discovered that I hear from few of my men friends. Men, apparently, do not like to write letters. But I hear from the girls, God bless 'em.

I certainly hope that you marry a Yank. I think we make pretty good husbands - we are such suckers. Maybe that is a word with a different connotation in Australia. Here it means an easy mark.

Thanks for writing me. Lots of the best!

Ed (sig)

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California
15 October 1946
Dear Thelma:

Your house must be delightful, especially the verandah overlooking Middle Harbor (American spelling). Sydney indeed has some gorgeous views. I haven't any from my present home, other than my backyard. My first home out here was on a knoll in the mouth of a canyon. It overlooked the entire San Fernando valley and gave a view of several hundred miles of mountains surrounding - the Coast Range and the Sierra Nevada. But we soon discovered that we seldom viewed our view. Stupid, what?

Yes, I am well settled in  my home. My Nisei gardner is now gathering the last of our Golden Bantam corn and putting it in the deep freeze unit with a lot more that we put in before. So I expect to have green corn all winter. Mitzi, the gardner's wife, put up a lot a dill pickles with our cucumbers. Now that Truman has taken the ceilings off meats we should be getting more in a short time, but I have had it right along, thanks to the deep freezer - a great invention.

As you approach summer, we approach winter. It would be nice if one could have a home in Australia and another here and then fly back and forth from summer to summer. However, hating flying as I do, it wouldn't work out for me.

I did not see Gilda. As I see only pictures that I show at home every Saturday evening for my family I am confined to such films as we can get in 16 mm, and they are very old; but we enjoy them.

Things are really a mess here, thanks to the New Dealers and the Communists. There is a shortage of about everything but political oratory. But if we elect a Republican House and Senate next month things will be different - I hope. Fantastic as it may seem, I wouldn't be surprised if we ended up with a revolution.

My daughter just came for me, so I'll say

Ed (sig)

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California
December 2, 1946
Dear Thelma:

I appreciate your Christmas and New Year wishes, which I fully reciprocate. I hope that you have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

I wonder if  you will see 1946 out and 1947 in at Usher's Cocktail Lounge, as we did 1942 and 1943.

Again thanking you, I am,

Very sincerely yours,

Ed (sig)

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California
February 3, 1947
Dear Thelma:

Thanks for your letter of December 28.

While you are gathering your cucumbers and string beans, I have not yet started to plant mine. I enjoy the home-grown fruits and vegetables and flowers, but if I had to do the work my self I wouldn't have any of them.

I am fortunate in having a Neisi couple, the man learning to be an excellent gardner, although he doesn't know the the name of a single flower other than my roses. I have some beautiful camellias that are not starting to bloom, and recently I put in a number of gardenia plants. Am still eating berries and golden bantam corn from my last Summer's garden, as they have kept very nicely in my deep-freeze unit.

Am afraid that I don't remember Florence Giles; but that isn't strange, as I have a very poor memory of names.

I haven't heard from Ham more than once since I left New Caledonia.

Thanking you for your letter, I am,

Very sincerely yours,
Ed (sig)

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California
May 6, 1947
Dear Thelma:

Your letter, dated April 1, arrived yesterday. If I don't answer letters immediately, the chances are they will never be answered; so, therefore, I am writing you pronto.

I cannot understand how people vote for these so-called labor parties. It seems to me that they have been a failure wherever tried. Our Congress is trying to pass labor legislation that will prevent union leaders from running rough-shod over the people and even the Government.

My garden is coming along very nicely. I have a new gardener who spends most of his time killing bugs of various description. Our flowers are beautiful and vegetables are coming up nicely. However, if I had to do the work, there would be no flowers and no vegetables.

Thanking you for your letter, I am, with all good wishes,

Ed (sig)

click for full size

click for full size
Buell H. Sprague, M.D.
William H. Griffith, M.D.
Lawrence Adams, M.D.
6634 Sunset Boulevard
Hollywood 28, California
Gladstone 4615
March 14, 1949
Mr. Edgar Rice Burroughs
Tarzana, California
Dear Mr. Burroughs:

Herewith is a summary of our findings in your case. We could consider your general physical examination negative except for some evidence of cardiac enlargement, slight swelling of the legs, and the findings noted below. The urine and blood examinations were normal.

The electrocardiogram showed evidence of heart damage, which probably is the result of the attacks that you described. However, we believe that your principal difficulty is due to a condition called Parkinson's syndrome, or paralysis agitans. The weakness, muscle spasticity and the type of gait that you have are typical of it. Tremor or shaking of the arms and hands is usually more evident than it is in your case, which makes your case a little more difficult to recognize.

We know of no cure for this condition, but nearly every case can be greatly improved by medical treatment. The drug which

is most promising at the present time is Benedryl, the same drug that is used for various forms of allergy. We are enclosing a prescription for some, and we would suggest that you start with one capsule three times a day for two days. Then gradually increase if needed, to a maximum of eight capsules a day, never more than two every four hours. It can produce some drowsiness, but no other ill effects are to be expected. We would suggest that you give this a trial for a week or ten days, and then let us know how you are getting along.

We do not think that your heart condition requires any special treatment at the present time, but you should watch for any increase in the amount of swelling. Your heart and general condition would be benefited by some reduction in weight, to be accomplished gradually by moderate reduction of diet.

- 2 -

We know that it is difficult for you to make a trip here to the office, but we would like to see you again after you have taken this medicine for a short time, and we want to assure you of our desire to help you in any way possible.

Yours sincerely,
B. H. Sprague, M. D.

BHS: jw

1953 ~ From the Danton Burroughs Tarzana Archive
March 31, 1953
Mr. Rutherford Burroughs Campbell
General Delivery
Cathedral City

Dear Mr. Campbell:

Sorry about the delay in replying to your interesting letter of March 15, 1953.

My geneological data indicates that all our Burroughs  ancestors lived in Massachusetts; the most remote -- Jeremiah Burroughs of Scituate, first mentioned in 1647.

In 1922 Henry Burroughs of Aikan, Md. wrote to my father concerning Jeremiah:

I find that Jeremiah (Burroughs) was one of four of the name that emigrated to the Colonies during the 17th century. My descent is from John, born near Ipswich, County of Suffolk, England, in 1606, and he reached Salem, Mass., in 1634, and resided there until he and a few others founded a presbyterian Colony in 1653 at Newton, Long Island, N.Y.
In his replay to another letter requesting the information above, my father concluded with these words:
My data are rather vague, and there are many gaps. About all I am sure of is that most of my ancestors couldn't spell. John, who died about 1757, couldn't even write. When he signed his will he did it with an X.
Very sincerely yours,
(signed) Edgar Rice Burroughs
During my next trip to Desert Magazine Gallery, I shall try to visit you and we can compare the additional data that we each have in our possession in an attempt to see a little more clearly through the mists of time.


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