Mary Elizabeth Rez

Interviewed by Milan Pavlovich, April 21, 1970   

This is a slightly edited transcription of an interview conducted for the Oral History Program, sponsored by California State University, Fullerton. The reader should be aware that an oral history document portrays information as recalled by the interviewee. Because of the spontaneous nature of this kind of document, it may contain statements and impressions which are not factual.

Scholars are welcome to utilize short excerpts from any of the transcriptions without obtaining permission as long as proper credit is given to the interviewee, the interviewer, and the University. Scholars must, however, obtain permission from California State University, Fullerton before making more extensive use of the transcription and related materials. None of these materials may be duplicated or reproduced by any party without permission from the Oral History Program, California State University, Fullerton, California, 92634.

Copyright ©1977

The Oral History Program

California State University, Fullerton [Intro]


Richard M. Nixon Project

Richard Nixon O.H. 936


Interviewed by Milan Pavlovich

on April 21, 1970 [Title]

O.H. 936


Richard M. Nixon Project


INTERVIEWER: Milan Pavlovich

SUBJECT: Richard Nixon

DATE: April 21, 1970

P:This is an interview for the Richard M. Nixon Oral History Project. The interviewee is Mrs. Rudolph Rez, formerly Miss Mary Elizabeth Guptill, Mrs. Nixon's friend, who worked at the Nixon's home when Richard Nixon was a small boy. The interviewer is Milan Pavlovich. The interview was held in Mrs. Rez's living room at 8951 McClure Avenue, Westminster, at 1:00 p.m., Monday, April 21, 1970.

Mrs. Rez, could you tell me a little about yourself and how you came to Yorba Linda and when?

R:My people pioneered in South Dakota, and at the time my father was ready to retire, he decided he would come out to California. That was about 1912, and I have lived here in this same area for many years. The pastor of our church had gone to Yorba Linda from here, and he came down to see if I would go up and stay with Mrs. Nixon. She needed someone to help her and that was the kind of time when neighbors helped neighbors, you know, (laughter) and people helped people. So I went up there and that's when I got acquainted with them, because our joint pastor (laughter) came down, drove down from Yorba Linda with his horse and buggy to see if I would go up and help them out, because I had kept house for my two brothers after coming from South Dakota and hadn't started back to school. I had two years of high school in South Dakota, and then I didn't go back to school; so I was naturally free to help people out when they needed help, (laughter) pretty nearly being an old maid aunt to most everybody. [1]

P:You say that your father wanted to come to California. Was there any specific reason for him wanting to come out here?

R:He liked the climate. He had come a year or so before, visiting relatives out here—an aunt that had been here for years and my mother's people. He thought the climate was quite an improvement (laughter) over South Dakota, so he decided to sell his property back there and move out here. He bought forty acres out in this area and divided it amongst his boys. They originally went to Los Angeles, and then he bought this down here in the country because as we say, you can't get the country out of people and it was really country then! Later, he bought another ten acres and my mother and he moved out.

P:Did he have groves or was it field?

R:Orange groves.

P:Was this in the Westminster area?

R:Well, it was in the Alamitos district. We were in Garden Grove, really, over on Lampson Street in Garden Grove. But it was in this general area—it was all one area at that time. In fact, the Post Office was in Anaheim (laughter), our bank was Garden Grove (laughter), and we lived in Alamitos.

P:So there was really nothing in the area but farms?

R:Farms, small dairies, deciduous fruits, walnuts, sugar beets, dry beans, food for livestock; also Japanese farmers were leasing many acres for raising chili peppers for drying. The orange industry hadn't really gotten going very strong then. It was young mostly groves. They had been doing various kinds of truck gardening and things like that, and just general farming.

P:Was this an altogether different life than your father had been accustomed to? He was from Dakota where it was so cold and a different type of farming. Could you tell me a little about it?

R:Yes. He just figured on moving to Los Angeles. His son preceded him in the move out here and bought a bungalow out on 51st Place in Los Angeles. They had thought first to make their home there, but he didn't like city living. So he bought property out in the country, here after he looked around, considering land. He went down to Escondido and around various places, but he settled on this forty acres the Long family had [2] developed. We had Alamitos Friends Church near there. Of course, he thought with ten acres he was going to take it pretty easy, and have nothing much to do, but farming ten acres (laughter) in Orange County keeps you about as busy as farming acres and acres in the dry farming areas where you depend on rain and you have no irrigation or anything. You just depend on the weather; plant your crops and hope. (laughter)

P:He was used to dry farming then, before he came out here?

R:Yes, he depended on the rain. Sometimes it was dry farming and sometimes it wasn't. (laughter)

P:Where did they get their water for their irrigation of their grove?

R:Around here? We had deep wells. They had twenty, twenty-five horsepower motors, deep wells.

P:How old were you when you worked for the Nixons, and what year was this?

R:I think it must have been about 1917. Yes, it must been 1916 or 1917. I don't remember just exact I must have been in my early twenties, I guess.

P:And you say you got the job with the Nixons through your pastor?

R:Yes, he came down from Yorba Linda. At that time he was the pastor up there. He had been at our church down here, and then had gone to Yorba Linda; he had known me while he was down here. In fact, I had gone up and stayed with his youngsters a time or two when they wanted to go on a vacation or something, so when Mrs. Nixon wasn't well and needed someone to help her, he came down to see if I would. That's when I became associated with the Nixon family. (laughter)

P:Now this pastor was from the Friends church, then, in Yorba Linda?

R:Yes, he was C. N. Jones of the Friends church. He is the one that is mentioned in the book as having officiated at Jessamyn West's marriage. They were at Yorba Linda a number of years, then they came back down here again. Mrs. Jones lives over in Quaker Gardens now. She is past ninety—this pastor's wife. He passed away a number of years ago. [3]

P:As a young girl, going to the Nixon home, did they have any requirements for you?

R:No, I was just I expected to help home of my own, or like a guest, almost. Of course, and just worked like I would in a in my own folks home.

Mrs. Nixon was a gentle woman in every sense of the word. She was always quiet-spoken and thoughtful of people, and it was really a privilege to be with her and to know her.

P:Before you took the job, were you helping on your father's farm?

R:No, I was just living at home and I had kept house for my brothers until they both were married and gone into other homes. I was at home with my mother and dad and younger brother.

P:How long did you work for the Nixons?

R:Only a few months, more or less. I was there two separate times. The first time I went up, I think Harold had just gotten over a bad case of the measles, and Mrs. Nixon was all worn out. His health had never been very good anyway, I guess, and she needed someone to help her for a while, so that she could get away now and then and give herself a chance to get back on her feet. And then the second time, I went while she was pregnant before Arthur was born, and I stayed with her for several months then. I don't remember how long it was, but most of the summer, I guess.

P:Now Harold, that's the son ...

R:The one they lost with the tuberculosis.

P:Could you describe your duties in the home at the time you worked for them?

R:Well, just the ordinary duties that go with keeping up a home with youngsters. Mrs. Nixon worked along with me. We worked together. (laughter)

P:You had a joint effort. (laughter)

R:They had a simple home and I think, at the time, they were probably living on a rather tight budget and tried to keep expenses down as much as they could. Mr. Nixon was a very, very hard working man; he was up early in the morning and worked till late at night, working on [4] his lemon grove. I think neighbors or other people He was gone long days and he did tractor work, too, for That was a part of his work, came home tired at night.

The children, as far as I could see, were just ordinary children. Some people thought Mrs. Nixon was too permissive with them, but I think that she managed them very well. They seemed to feel that they wouldn't do anything to hurt their mother, rather than that they were afraid of her. I think Harold was a little bit more inclined to be devious about getting his own way than the other youngsters were. Richard was a quiet, little round-faced boy, with large, dark eyes. He was kind of in between Donald, about a year and a half or two years old, and his older brother, Harold, who had been ill a great deal. So he wasn't in the limelight as much then as he is now by quite a bit. (laughter) I enjoyed all the children and I certainly have always been glad that I had known such a person as Mrs. Nixon. That little picture is one she gave me when I left after working for her.

P:Was their grove very big? Now, this was the grove that was right next to the house?

R:Yes. I don't think it was even producing to amount to anything then. He was just raising it. After we got married and tried raising a family and orange grove, I appreciated his difficulties. We raised our family in an orange grove, a ten acre orange grove, through the Depression, so we know what it means to have to make both ends meet. I know Mrs. Nixon used to make their clothes and the playsuits rather than buy overalls for them because it was cheaper. I used to think it meant lots more ironing, but she felt that it paid.

P:You say that Frank Nixon had a tractor, also?

R:Yes, It a tractor. He did work in other people's groves to me he had a partner that he worked with, I believe. They worked together. I think had a number of different groves that he took care of. I know that he was busy all the time.

P:That was his main source of income, then, the work with the tractor rather than the grove of his own?

R:Yes, I don't think that his grove was producing to amount to anything. I think that taking care of those other groves was his main source of income. He was determined that he would make a success of it. He just wanted to show people that he could, and what he could do. The [5] Milhous family was a well-established family and Mr. Nixon was more or less of a Johnny-come-lately in the area. And so, of course, he was very anxious to do well for his family. I think he drove himself really harder than he was able to. He was always on more or less of a diet, probably stomach ulcers. They didn't talk about it then so much, but that's probably what it was. In their eating habits, they didn't use starchy food or potatoes, and all of our bread we had to bake at home, whole wheat and bran. It was probably very healthful but it was not too palatable. (laughter) They never used the white bread at all; probably it was because they felt it was better for his health and possibly for Harold's. They may have realized—more than I knew— that Harold wasn't as well as he seemed. There was a history of tuberculosis in Mrs. Nixon's family and I presume that they were suspicious perhaps even then, when he had so many colds and so much cough and so forth. I don't know, I don't even know what age he was when he passed away.

P:I think it was twenty- three. [Harold Nixon, born June, 1909; died March 1933. Ed.]

R:Yes, he was about seven, I guess, seven or eight. I think he was just in the first grade in school the first time I was there.

P:He had contracted the T.B. then at an early age, and it continued?

R:I don't know that he had T.B. They were just afraid, I think the family was afraid of it; but he was having a lot of trouble with his tonsils too, and with his tendency toward having trouble with his chest, they probably were watching more closely than ordinary people would have. So I don't know when he contracted it first I lost touch with them after I left there. After Arthur was born I didn't see them again till after I was married. They were living down in East Whittier and I stopped by their little store there one day. Mrs. Nixon was real glad to see me--the children had pretty much forgotten me—and they were concerned as to whether we were happily married or not.

P:You had worked for her when the boy was sick. Was this the main reason? [6]

R:He had just recovered from a bad case of measles the first time I went to work for her, and then later she asked me to come back again before Arthur was born and I stayed with her then.

P:She needed help in handling all the boys then?

R:Yes, and everything that needed to be done. There was that miserable irrigation ditch, right out there near their house, and of course that kept us constantly on the alert to see that the youngsters didn't get into it. I've been told by good Democrats that we made a mistake by taking such good care of Richard. (laughter)

P:This ditch, I presume, supplied the water for each grove in the area?

R:Yes, it did for numerous groves. It was the main ditch that went near the house and they had the regular watchman who patrolled the ditch and would go by there every so often to see that they got their water; just each one would have to make a date for when they would get their water to be turned into their particular farms, or ranches, as they called them.

P:This water was running every day in this ditch?

R:Yes, the ditch going by their house.

P:So you were running in and out, I can imagine, (laughter) looking after the kids.

R:We watched to know where the kids were most of the time, that's for sure. We really didn't have any difficulty. I noticed in Jessamyn West's book she tells about Richard going swimming in the ditch after he was older and she was writing about him in Friendly Persuasion. I read that and was amused at her telling of how Richard used to go swimming in the ditch when he wasn't supposed to. (laughter)

P:Did the family have a certain pattern of life, a daily life, a certain time that they would wake up, and certain duties that they would do each day?

R:Mr. Nixon usually got up practically at the crack of dawn. They had a fireless cooker and we used to put his cereal in there the night before and it was ready for him when he got up the next morning. He would go to work before the rest of the family got up, and then I would get up. Of course, the children would get up, and Mrs. Nixon would get up when she felt like it, and we gave the [7] children food and fought that distillate stove in the kitchen. They had a miserable old distillate stove that you had to generate, and I never was really sure which of us was going to come out on top of that, but we managed. (laughter)

P:Could you describe this stove?


P:You say it was a distillate stove.

R:(Laughter) It burned distillate. At that time, we didn't have the electric stove. There was no gas out in the country or anything, and we had used a coal oil stove at home. This one burned distillate and you had to generate it in order to make the master burner light. It had definite ideas of whether it wanted to go or not. (laughter)

Mr. R:This is a low grade fuel that you used in factories and stuff like that. Gasoline was too darned expensive.

R:I think it was probably the same grade of distillate that we used in our heaters later. It's the same. I didn't know whether it was or not, but anyway, that was a bug bear. But we managed. The three boys slept in one room, a little back bedroom, and as I remember, it wasn't even completely finished at that time. I believe Mr. Nixon built the house and finished it as he could find time. I used to have to tuck them in at night and read Riley's poems to them as many times as they could get me to. Richard, especially, was fond of being read to, and they'd like the same ones read over and over as children always do; (laughter) they like the things they're familiar with. One of their favorites was about the hired girl. They liked that one very well and so they decided I was their hired girl. When their mother heard them calling me that, she spoke rather disapprovingly of it; she said I wasn't their hired girl, I was their friend that was helping them out. Of course, I didn't resent their calling me their hired girl because I knew where it came from, and where they got the idea, and this hired girl was quite a special person to them. (laughter) So I thought it wasn't necessary at all that she think that I would feel that they were belittling me by calling me "hired girl."

P:These poems were James Whitcomb Riley's poems?

R:Yes. [8]

P:Was there any special poem that Richard liked? You mentioned the "Hired Girl." Were there any others?

R:I don't remember the others, but she was one of the characters in it. I think it was the "Raggedy Man" poem. I've been trying to find the book that it was in. It was Riley's Songs of Cheer and I haven't been able to run across it to see just which ones the poems were that I used to read. He definitely liked poems, and I think he was always inclined to be probably more studious than the average youngster. At that age, it's kind of hard to tell.

P:You say you read the poems. Did you read any other things, like stories, to them?

R:That's all I remember particularly. They were fond of that particular book of poems and, of course, I wasn't there for too long; that's all I remember, particularly.

P:Whose idea was it to read the poems?

R:Oh, they were used to them. That was part of their bedtime ritual. And after their poems, they said their little prayers. I hope that Richard can still say his prayers with the same faith that he had when he was that age. He'd clasp his little hands and close his eyes, and you could just feel it. He was really praying instead of just saying his prayers.

P:This would come from a very religious background, then?

R:Oh, yes. Mrs. Nixon's family were Quakers from way back, and their life was based on the tenets of the Friends Church.

P:Was it a ritual each Sunday morning, getting in the buggy or anything, going to church?

R:No, not especially. Well, I really wasn't there; I usually came home Sundays at that time, I think that Mrs. Nixon didn't get out too much for a while because she wasn't well. The children, I think, used to go to church and Sunday school with Mr. Nixon. He was one of the officials in the Friends church there at that time.

P:I understand that Frank Nixon taught Sunday school. Is this correct?

R:I wouldn't be surprised. As I say, I didn't stay out there weekends too much, but I wouldn't be surprised. [9] He was rather an explosive type person, but he was a very genuine person and if he found out that he was wrong, he was quick to admit it and apologize for it. Probably, working as hard as he did and his health not being too good made him more inclined to have a very quick temper. I think Richard did, also.

P:He was explosive, then, in the sense that if he thought something was right, he wanted to show you it was right.

R:Yes, definite in his ideas. If something was wrong, he could show you it was wrong.

P:Now, many biographies of Richard Nixon say that the family was a matriarchal family, in other words, it was a mother-oriented family. Is this true, was she the head of the family, or was Frank Nixon the head of the family?

R:If she ruled the family, she ruled it by love. She didn't rule it with any iron hand. I think she probably had a decisive influence because he practically worshipped her. What she wanted, was what he wanted eventually, and she was not an overbearing type of person at all. She was a very conscientious person and if she thought an idea was worth fighting for, she'd fight for it, but not in any belligerent manner at all. She would just quietly stay by what she thought was right. As I said before, the Milhous family was a well-established family around Whittier and had been pretty important people, for quite a number of years. I know they've been associated with the Friends church there, and a street was named after the family. They had a very nice home up there. Mrs. Nixon went up there at one time while I was staying there and then Mr. Nixon took the children and me up to see her while she was there. That's the only time I ever had any connection with the Milhous family; we just went up for an evening.

P:Did she just go up to visit then, was that it?

R:Yes. She just spent a few days and rested a little bit. That was the first time I was up there when she was pretty well worn out from Harold having been sick. There was never any friction between she and Mr. Nixon as far as I could see.

P:You said that Frank really stuck to his ideals when he expressed them. Did he do this around the children also? Did he show this temper at times?

R:Yes. [10]

P:Did this affect any of the boys in any way, do you think?

R:Not as far as I know. I don't think they felt the same closeness to Frank that they did to Mrs. Nixon, because she was with them so much more than Frank for one thing, and I think they were somewhat in awe of his temper. We all were. (laughter) But he was not unjust; there was nothing unjust about him—perhaps the fact that he had more of a temper may have been a sort of a balancing influence in the family. I don't think that it was a matriarchal type home, at that time, at least; I don't think it would be a true picture.

P:Would you say that any of the boys looked up to or took after Frank Nixon? Followed him around or anything?

R:No, not especially. His work was such that it wouldn't be very practical to take them around with him, and as I said he worked very long hours and when he was home it was time for eating our meals and getting ready for bed, usually. They had their grace they said at meals, each of the children, but otherwise there were no definite religious services except the children's night-time prayers.

P:Did the boys have any chores to do?

R:No, as I remember there wasn't anything particular that they had to do. I tried to think and remember what they did to occupy their time, but I really can't. I suppose that they played together mostly. I think they had very little company as far as other children. I don't believe there were many in their close vicinity. The only time there were extra children there was when Harold invited himself a birthday party and didn't tell his mother. Someone happened to call her and ask about what kind of present she should bring for Harold and she didn't know anything about a birthday party. (laughter) So she promptly said, "No presents, please." We made a birthday cake and had a birthday party. Harold gave himself a surprise party. (laughter)

P:Did the boys usually come up with things like this?

R:That's about the only time I think anything like that happened while I was there. (laughter)

P:You say that the boys got along together very well.

R:Yes, I don't remember them quarreling. I grew up with a bunch of brothers, so I was used to boys. I was the next to the youngest with four brothers older than I. [11] So I was used to what to expect from boys. I don't think that they fought or quarreled in any great amount at all, as I remember. Donald was more the affectionate one of the youngsters. He was younger and he was very easy to enjoy and love.

P:At this time you had the three boys?

R:Yes, the three, and then I stayed with her for a little while after she had Arthur. Then I went on home and we lost touch with them.

P:Did any of the boys try to be the leader of the group while they were playing or anything?

R:I don't remember, I really don't.

P:Could you describe any of Richard's activities, other than playing with his brothers? Did he play in the irrigation ditch or in the grove or things like this?

R:He didn't play in the irrigation ditch. No, I just can't remember anything special. It just seems to me that he was more quiet and played by himself more than the other children, but particular games they played or anything, I just don't remember. As I said, I don't think that they played with any youngsters other than their own family.

P:Would you say that he was a timid child, then?

R:No, not really timid. He was not as outreaching as many children are, I think. He lived more within himself. You know, some children you get to really know, and some you don't. I think that he lived more within himself than many children do. That's probably why I don't picture so many things that he may have done.

P:He would rather sit by himself and do something...

R:Yes, I think that that's as I remember.

P:... than be with a group of children doing it?

R:That's as I remember.

P:Did he have any special toy that he liked to play with that you remember?

R:I've tried to think, and I can't remember what they had in the line of toys at all. I don't think they had any pets; I don't remember that they had any pets of any kind. [12]

P:Were there any animals on the farm that they had?


P:What type of games did the boys like to play?

R:Well, I couldn't remember that, either.

P:You say that they didn't play with many of the neighbor children?

R:I don't believe there were many right in their area, and they weren't allowed to run around the country very much. In fact, that's the only time I ever nearly got into trouble with Mr. Nixon, was the time Harold conned me into letting him go over to one of the neighbors to play. When Mr. Nixon came home and found out he was over there, he said, "He's not supposed to go over there; he's not supposed to go out and play without permission from his folks and he should have asked me for the permission." He didn't blame me particularly for it, but he figured that Harold shouldn't have gone. I don't remember that they went and played with other children to amount to anything.

P:Mrs. Rez, did Richard get into any mischief when he was a boy?

R:I didn't catch him. (laughter)

P:You didn't catch him into any mischief.

R:No. (laughter)

P:Did his mother ever catch him doing anything he shouldn't?

R:No, not anything in an extraordinary line, at any rate.

P:If the boys did do something wrong, did the mother, Hannah, or Frank reprimand them, and how?

R:She never punished them, but she did explain and talk with them. I think that if Frank reprimanded them, he did it rather severely, but I don't think that any of them were ever spanked. She never left it to Frank to reprimand them. When they needed talking to, she talked to them, but some people thought that she was too permissive.

P:She would just use verbal punishment on the boys rather than ...[13]

R:Yes, or restriction, perhaps, but they didn't like to do things to hurt her because they were very fond of their mother. They were very close; but they were a close family.

P:Did Richard show any special interest in certain things like, oh, church, or games, or books or anything?

R:Well, he did like books, I think, but at that time, of course, he was too young. He didn't start being interested in the piano, as I understand, until later. They did have a piano at the home, but none of the children paid any particular attention to it. Mrs. Nixon was from a musical family and her brother was a Professor Milhous, I believe, from Whittier College.

P:So the mother wanted the boys to be musically inclined, if possible?


P:I imagine this is why they bought the piano and so forth.

R:Probably so. Yes, I imagine. I don't think Mrs. Nixon herself played. I don't remember that she did.

P:At this time, you say Richard was how old?

R:He was around four years old, something like that.

P:Was he able to read yet, at this age?


P:Did the other boys read to him, or were you the one that read to him most of the time?

R:Well, I read to them. Harold was only in first or second grade or something like that in school. I think he was possibly in the second grade. I remember Mrs. Nixon gave a dinner for his teachers while I lived there, but I can't remember what their names were.

P:Would this be Miss Anderson by chance?

R:I wouldn't have any idea.

P:Did Richard show any interest in his brother's school work?

R:Not particularly. Just an ordinary kid. [14]

P:Then you wouldn't say he was any different than his brothers?

R:No, not especially except, that I think he was more quiet; he was more quiet and introspective, possibly, than they.

P:Did he ever mention to you, as little boys sometimes do, what he would like to be when he grew up?


P:I understand in Yorba Linda, at the time, they had a train going through, and Richard thought that he wanted to be an engineer on the train.

R:I never got in on that one. (laughter) I never little boy that didn't want to be an engineer on at some time or other in his life (laughter), or police man. (laughter)

P:Would you say that Richard took after his mother more than his father, then?

R:I think he has the characteristics of both of them.

P:How is that?

R:Well, he has his mother's dedication and conscientiousness and he has his father's ambition and quick temper; I think it's made a good combination.

P:It is said that whenever he has a problem he works on this problem till it's solved. Which one of the parents would that tend to lean toward following?

R:Probably Mrs. Nixon, I would imagine, because she thought things through pretty much. Frank was more impulsive.

P:Did you say that the Nixons took one trip while you were living with them?

R:No, just Mrs. Nixon went up and stayed with her mother and sister for a few days, just for a few days for a little rest, and she got homesick and came home.

P:And this was the only trip that they took while you were with them?

R:Yes. It was the Jones family that went away on a trip and I stayed with their youngsters. C. N. Jones was the pastor of the church there and I stayed with their youngsters when they went away on a trip. No, Mr. Nixon didn't go any place, he was just busy, busy, busy. [15]

P:Did you have any contacts with the Nixons after you left your job with them?

R:Just that one time when we stopped over at East Whittier. We stopped by and saw them a few minutes, but that's the only time. I think I did have a note from her after we left.

P:And how did the boys react when they saw you?

R:I think they'd forgotten me completely.

P:Poems and all, they forgot.

R:(laughter) Richard was busy, I know, puttering around the store there. Donald was very bashful at that time. He wouldn't even come out. I don't remember what Harold was doing, whether he was there right then or not, at the time we stopped by out there; but I remember Richard was helping in the store at that time, even. He couldn't have been over seven or eight years old, I guess.

P:Now that Richard Nixon is President, can you see any boyhood things that he did that show in him today as President? Such as stick-to-it-iveness and so forth?

(end of side one)

P:I realize it is awfully hard to think of things that would show now as him being President, but was a little boy you say that he liked to stick self. Was he thinking or just ...?

R:I imagine that he had more depth than a lot of youngsters.

P:Would you happen to know any of the neighbors that lived around the Nixon home at the time?

R:No, I didn't. I met some of the young folks at church there or something like that, but as far as getting acquainted with the neighbors, no.

P:Were there many houses in the surrounding area?

R:No, there weren't. We just drove up on that pesky old ditch and there was the Nixon's at the end of the road, I think, as I remember it. We went up there once afterwards and I tried to picture how it used to be. That was four or five years ago. They had already moved the Nixon home down by the school and so it wasn't there any more, anyway, but I couldn't even find where it was, that it used to be. (laughter) [16]

P:Could you suggest any other names of people who might have had contact with Richard when he was a boy in Yorba Linda?

R:Let's see. Most of those I knew would have been older than Richard, those that I had had any contact with. There's the Marshburn boys, but they were older than the Nixon boys. Mrs. Marshburn was Mr. Nixon's mother, and I don't think that they had any youngsters that weren't older than the Nixon boys.

P:He didn't have any special friend then or anything when he was that age?


P:That would come over?


P:Was anyone else working on the grove or anything while you were working there?

R:No, he worked his own grove, and then he worked other people's groves also. I just can't think of any names.

P:O.K. Thank you Mrs. Rez.

P:The noise in the background on this tape was from the traffic on Magnolia Street, in Westminister. The house is located right on the corner. Mr. Rez was present at the interview. He made only one comment and this was on the distillate stove that Mrs. Rez was trying to tell me about in the Nixon home.


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