Shaun Illingworth: This begins an interview with C. Stewart Hausmann in Manasquan, New Jersey, on September 25, 2009, with Shaun Illingworth and ...
Maria Juliano: ... Maria Juliano.
SI: Dr. Hausmann, thank you very much for having us here today; also, Mrs. Hausmann, thank you very much.
C. Stewart Hausmann: We can start at the beginning by dropping the "Doctor." I don't use it commonly, because it's an honorary degree.
CSH: I received it in 1985, and it's one of the great things in my life, having received an honorary doctorate. It's very significant and I'm very proud of it, but I don't have people calling me Doctor Hausmann all the time. I have two ... sons in the family, both of whom are doctors, and we call them doctor. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann received a Doctor of Humane Letters Degree from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science in 1985.]
SI: Okay. To begin, could you tell me where and when you were born?
CSH: Okay, I was born on October 18, 1922. I was born in Orange Memorial Hospital in the City of Orange in New Jersey.
SI: Could you tell us what your parents' names were?
CSH: My father's name was Charles, ... my grandfather was Charles; that's why I use the "C" as a first initial. My father was Charles and I was Charles; my C. Stewart, ... the "C" stands for Charles. So, anyhow, that's how I got to be Stewart, rather than Charles. My mother was Christina Becker, B-E-C-K-E-R.
SI: Beginning with your father's side of the family, can you tell me what you know about how that family came to the United States?
CSH: Yes, it's interesting. They came over pretty much for religious freedom. ... My great-grandfather, as far as we can determine, was German, but he was born in Alsace, which was, depending upon which war it was, ... either German or French, and I think, at that time, it was probably German. ... My great-grandmother was born in Germany, in a little town called Hanau. ... Both my great-grandparents migrated over to this country in about 1840.
MJ: What was your father's profession?
CSH: Well, first of all, he was in World War I. ... By training and profession, he's a funeral director and, as a result, an embalmer, and so, he was put in the Medical Corps. ... His biggest achievement during all of World War I was during the flu epidemic. Soldiers were stricken, many of them, in World War I, with the flu and they had to be, for the first time, able to be transported home. ... So, my father was involved ... in what they called Graves Registration, which had to do with identification, and so forth, and sending bodies back to their families. That was the big thing he did during World War I. Of course, your question was, he was a funeral director.
SI: How old was he when he went in the service?
CSH: He was about twenty, twenty-one, somewhere in there, when he went in, yes.
SI: He had been in the funeral home business for a little while already.
CSH: He had been trained, yes. He had just started, ... but he was licensed and he ... had started, yes.
SI: Had his father been in that profession?
CSH: No, no, started it himself, went to school in New York. ... I was born and lived in a funeral home. The funeral home was on the first floor and the second floor was where we lived. So, I was born into the business and stayed with it most of my life. In fact, my honorary doctorate is a result of activities that I did as a funeral director.
SI: When your father's family came over from Germany, did they settle directly in New Jersey or did they spend time somewhere else, such as New York?
CSH: Well, my grandmother's family and my mother's family came down from Rhode Island into New Jersey. They came first into Rhode Island, because ... I guess religious freedom was a big thing in Rhode Island, and they came down into New Jersey from Rhode Island. My father's family, as far as I know, they were jewelers. They came into Newark, and Newark, in those early days, was a big jewelry center. Krementz is the last remaining jeweler in the City of Newark, that I know of, still producing things. I think they are [still producing], but it was full of jewelry, particularly working in gold. ... That's what my grandfather's family had done and that's what they did when they came over here.
SI: Just to clarify, when you were describing your family in Germany earlier, was that both your mother and your father's side or just your father's side?
CSH: ... Both my mother and my father. ... My grandfather came over from Alsace, as I said, in Germany. My grandmother came over and her part of the family came over from Hanau, which is near Heidelberg, ... that section of Germany, back in the Black Forest area.
SI: That grandmother was your mother's mother.
CSH: Yes, yes.
SI: Do you have any idea how your parents met?
Lillian Hausmann: They were neighbors.
CSH: They were neighbors, really, yes. ... One lived in Irvington, one lived in Maplewood, but ... the street went from one town to the other. ... My grandfather owned a farm in Maplewood and the farm grew, at that time, strawberries. ... I wondered why they grew strawberries; I found out that that's what they grew in Germany, and so, when they came over here, they grew strawberries. ... There was an inventor and horticulturist in Newark named Seth Boyden, a very famous man in his day, but he developed a hybrid strawberry, which was very big and very luscious, and it became a treat to the New York market. So, the family, one of the things they did [was], they grew the strawberries. My father, who was young at the time, would take the horses and wagon and take the strawberries over to Jersey City, where they were put on boats and sent to the market in New York, because all the big hotels knew about the Hilton strawberry. ... That came out [being named] Hilton because that was the section of Maplewood, Hilton. That's where the farms were that grew this Hilton strawberry, and it became quite famous, and that's what that part of the family did. ... My father was right down the street and he drove the delivery wagon into Jersey City. I guess, in the beginning, it was a horse, and then, it became a truck, I guess, and he drove it into Jersey City and did the [selling to the retailer]. The boats there, they took [it] over into the market.
SI: I know that in some sections of Irvington there were sizable German-American communities.
CSH: Big German-American community in Irvington. That's what drew them there. The Germans, when they came over, first came into Newark, but the English were already there. ... They didn't like the Germans very much coming into the English community in Newark, because the Germans had their singerbunds, their singing societies, they had beer gardens and they liked to drink beer, and so, they didn't like them in Newark. They wouldn't let them sing ... their songs, wouldn't let them [express their culture]. So, they migrated out to [the] suburbs and started these farms up in Maplewood, Union, in that area. So, the Germans then were forced out of Newark into Irvington and, from Irvington, when Irvington began to become a city, they moved up further, but that was the story of the Hilton strawberry.
SI: Did your father ever mention if he faced any discrimination during World War I because he was German?
CSH: No, he never mentioned anything about discrimination, because ... the family had already come out of Newark at that time, into Maplewood, but he did say something interesting to me, ... because I looked German and I looked like a typical "brown shirt" German. ... Irvington had a theater called the Hindenburg, where they showed German movies. We had bunds there, bunds, German bunds, bund leaders, who were prosecuted during my [era], when I was a little kid. [Editor's Note: The German term "bund" means "association" and was used by a number of German-American political, social and cultural groups. The German-American Bund (based on the earlier Friends of New Germany) operated from 1936 until December 1941, when it was outlawed, as a pro-Nazi group.] Really, I knew very little about it, except that I knew they found guns in the basement of the old Hindenburg Theater. ... I just heard the stories about that. ... One day, I was in a bus, going over Grove Street in Irvington, and two rather Aryan-looking gentlemen came over and sat next to me in the bus. I was a little kid. I was going over there [because] I belonged to a club over in East Orange, and they started talking to me about, "Did I want to join the German Youth Society?" and talked to me about the Bund. ... I didn't know what they were talking about, because my father would never [encourage that]. You know, you didn't learn German, nobody spoke German, in our generation, just because of that feeling, I guess, ... because my mother knew how to speak German, but my father didn't, and they never taught me, never encouraged me in it. ... When he found out that these guys had approached me about being a member of the Bund, the "brown shirt boys;" ... he told me later that they marched down in one of the parks in Irvington and tried to become quite a club. Well, when he heard about it, because he was in World War I, he [was] a great member of the American Legion, he became furious, and that's when he turned the story over to the police in Irvington. ... That was the last I heard of it, but they never approached me again after that and I never heard anything more about it, but it was an interesting aside, that memory that I have [from my] childhood, between ... my father being a veteran of World War I and being a member of the American Legion and how he felt about that.
SI: Was your father, or your mother, very involved in the local community?
CSH: Yes, because my father was in business, and then, you got to know everybody. He belonged to all kinds of organizations and made lots of friends, and his business was successful.
SI: Was the business called Hausmann's Funeral Home?
CSH: Charles F. Hausmann Funeral Home, and, when I came into it, it became Charles F. Hausmann and Son Funeral Home, and it existed until I sold it.
MJ: Did you have any siblings?
CSH: I have one brother.
MJ: Is he older or younger than you?
CSH: Younger, three years younger.
MJ: What is his name?
CSH: Newton, N-E-W-T-O-N.
MJ: Was he in the service as well?
CSH: ... He was in the Navy, yes.
MJ: What did he do in the Navy?
CSH: ... He was an officer on a destroyer in the Pacific. He ... went in the service after I went in, because he was younger. ... Interestingly, they sent him up to Brown University, because they, at that time, ... didn't have training places available for all of them. The Army and Navy were growing so fast. ... The same thing happened to me, and that's where he went when he first went in, and then, he went into Navy training, and then, into the Pacific. That's my brother.
SI: Can you describe for us what your neighborhood was like? You said you lived in the same building as the business. What was that like?
CSH: Yes, yes. Well, we were out on the main street, ... because the funeral home had to be, at that time, on the main street, and it was in the neighborhood [of] pretty much all German people. Interesting, Irvington was an interesting town, because there's a German section, where I lived, ... and it was all middle-class. We had no great wealth in Irvington, ... no poverty, no minorities, other than German and the others as they were scattered around, because my wife is Italian. She came from a section of Irvington that was Italian. Then, there was the Jewish section, then, there was the Polish section, and they'd all come over from the foreign countries. Lillian's family came over almost a hundred years, eighty years, after the Germans had come in, because the Italians came in, they had the same problems. The Germans didn't ... like the Italians very much. ... The Jewish section, they moved out of the Weequahic Section of Newark into Irvington, had a small section of them, and the Polish just took over a section of Grove Street. They had their church down there and they centered around their church. The thing they didn't realize [was], we all came differently, but we all went to the same high school. So, we didn't know, we didn't recognize, the differences in people. So, we all intermarried. So, we get the "Rome-Berlin Axis," as we called it, between my wife and myself, [laughter] and that was typical of Irvington. It was ... a middle-class town, with its sections, but it became well-integrated and it was a great town to grow up in.
SI: How did the groups get along before the younger generations started melding together?
CSH: Yes. There was a little animosity. ... My mother didn't quite take to my going with an Italian girl, and she let Lillian know at the time, didn't she?
LH: Yes, she did.
CSH: And the Jewish people, we just put up with, because they had their own section of town, had their own school, pretty much, down there, and that's where Jerry Lewis went to school.
CSH: He's the only famous one that came out of that school, that I know of. ... The Polish section, they had their school up there, too, and we didn't have much interaction. There was some feeling, but it was more in Newark, because the Italians who came into Irvington were upward bound, too. They moved out of the sections of Newark which were the old Italian families. You've got to picture, you know, this is all going over a period of many years [that] all this occurred. ... Lillian's family, her father was in business in Newark and he was looking to improve things for their family. So, they moved out of the ... Italian sections of Newark into Irvington, but they gathered around together anyhow. It was a smaller Italian section, that was all, but they were people of upward mobility. I was the first one in my family to go to college, Lillian was the first one in her family to go to college, and that's the way, you know, things were growing. My father ... never went to college. It was a training school that he went to, ... at that time, where he became a funeral director, and my mother never went to college. My father, I don't know if he graduated from high school; I guess so. I didn't talk about it, but my mother was born [and] brought up in Hilton, in Maplewood, and they went to Columbia High School. ... All these things took a lot of time in one community to happen, but, now, interestingly enough, ... Irvington and Newark bordered, a big section of it bordered. ... When the riots occurred in Newark, in '68, the whites began to move out of Irvington, the blacks began to move in. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann is referring to the July 1967 riots in Newark and the ensuing demographic shift.] Today, it's almost a hundred percent black. That's when I sold the business in Irvington. I sold it to a doctor, who is a Haitian doctor, bought the funeral home and, anyhow, that's what happened there.
SI: Can you tell us a little bit about growing up in the funeral home business? I would imagine that, as a preteen or teenager, you helped out in the business.
CSH: Yes. Well, you know, ... as you grew up, you learned to be very quiet at times. You learned that, you know, there's just so much you could do downstairs and, when I had friends come in, my father had his preparation room, embalming room, down in the basement and the kids used to come in and, you know, make fun of that, you know. They'd come in the basement, ... but didn't stop them from [coming around]. I had lots of friends. The neighborhood was full of [them]. ... When I first started to help my father, I could lift things, carry chairs around and move equipment around, because a lot of the funerals at that time were out in private homes, too. You didn't all use the funeral home. In fact, when I was a kid, I guess maybe seventy percent of them were out in their private homes. You had only thirty percent use the funeral home. They were people who lived in apartments, and so forth. ... So, I pretty much grew up a part of what was happening. ... That was when the war started. I was still in college, but, ... during the time in-between, I just did everything my father asked me to do, worked around the funeral home, and I made money that way, too. There was a florist, because of the flowers in Irvington, too. When I got a license, I used to drive, deliver flowers for the florist, and so, I had a couple of jobs centered around the funeral home activity, one with the florist and the funeral home.
LH: You used to do pall bearing.
CSH: Yes, I used to do pall bearing, ... used to go down into Newark, into the older sections where the Catholic churches were large and the funeral directors down there would need pall bearers, professional pall bearers, and you wore striped pants and you wore a cutaway coat, wing collar and gray gloves, and you became a professional pall bearer, and we got paid pretty well for doing that; did that all before the war.
SI: For people who would have a funeral at their home, you and your father would still provide the service, the embalming.
CSH: Oh, yes, yes. Some of the embalming was still done in the home, ... and I learned by watching him how that was done. It was done as surgery in bed. ... That's something we don't have to go into detail, but it was nicely and neatly done and always done with great discretion and great concern for the families. My father was very, what's the word I'm looking for? very comforting.
CSH: Compassionate, that's the word, compassionate, and ... people loved him and we had families, mostly German families and mostly Protestant families. That was the business that we did. There were several big Protestant churches in Irvington and we did a lot of the funerals in those churches.
SI: Were there other funeral homes in town?
CSH: There were others.
SI: That serviced the other communities.
CSH: There was a Polish funeral home, there was an Italian funeral home. ... No Jewish; they went down into Vailsburg in Newark. There was an Irish funeral home.
LH: Yes, there was a lot of Irish in Irvington.
CSH: A lot of Irish moved into Irvington, too, yes. ... Everybody went to his own. We had some competition. ... There were two other funeral directors in other ends of the town doing essentially Protestant business, too, ... serving other churches in the community, mostly. It was a very closely aligned to the church activity, because we were both, all, very active in the church. I was born into it and I stayed active my whole life.
SI: Which church was it?
CSH: It was a Dutch church. ... You know, the Dutch settled a good part of New Jersey, including establishing Rutgers University as Queen's College. You're well aware of that. Well, the Dutch came in and they established a lot of churches in New Jersey. They settled, came into Newark. Two of the oldest churches in Newark are Dutch Reformed churches, had come out of New York with Peter Stuyvesant, you know, the whole progression with Peter Stuyvesant in New York, over to Newark, out to Raritan Valley, establishing the University. [Editor's Note: Peter Stuyvesant was the last Director-General of New Netherland and oversaw its transfer to British control in the 1660s after fifty years of Dutch rule. During the Dutch period, many aspects of Dutch culture, including the Dutch Reformed Church, spread throughout the territory, what is today the Mid-Atlantic States and Southern New England. Nearly a hundred years later, Dutch Reformed ministers in the region chartered Queen's College (now Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey) as a seminary.] ... That's how we got involved. We were German, but there was a Dutch church there, but there are almost no Dutchmen left in Irvington. They had all moved out, [laughter] with the Dutch migration out, but there was a Dutch church and I belonged to the Dutch Reformed Church, which was really an outgrowth of Presbyterianism. It was Calvinistic and strongly Presbyterian in background, governed the same way, different names for different things, but it was essentially Calvinistic and Presbyterian in form.
MJ: Although it was mostly middle-class where you lived, was your family affected by the Depression, or do you know of any neighbors or friends who were affected?
CSH: Yes, there was a lot of effect of the Depression. ... We didn't know that we ... didn't have money. In fact, ... even the ones who didn't have money, we didn't recognize it, no discrimination because of it, but Lillian, you can remember a girl in your class. ... What about her?
LH: Yes, it was a terrific story. She didn't have very many clothes, and, on wash day, when her best dress was being washed, she didn't come to school until the next day, until it was washed and ironed. She was one of the only ones I ever knew that was affected by the Depression. ...
CSH: Irvington was middle-class and most of the people had jobs.
LH: They were helped. They didn't depend on anything from the government. ...
CSH: No, not at all.
LH: The neighbors got together and helped them.
CSH: ... Lillian's father was in business, my father was in business, and they were businesses that [were necessary]. Her father was a hairdresser and the last thing women are going to do, no matter how little money they have, is not have their hair taken care of, and people had to die. So, we didn't feel the Depression, ... and I don't think too many people in Irvington felt [the Depression], but it was there and we knew it was there. We didn't see the bread lines and that kind of thing, no. That was not in Irvington, because, ... again, they were good, solid, middle-class people. Most of them had pretty decent jobs.
SI: Do you remember seeing things like transients coming through town looking for food or work, Hoovervilles, that sort of thing?
CSH: No, no, ... saw nothing of that. Irvington grew from a little village in 1920 to a good-sized town in 1930, ten years period. ... They were building houses faster than they could build streets and it grew up to almost full capacity. It went probably from a village of eight to ten thousand up [to] fifty thousand in ten years. That's how fast ... it had built, and we saw that happen. That was probably the biggest change we saw in our community, because I was born in '22, ... 1922, and the change occurred during my infancy and young childhood. So, I remember, oh, going down the streets that weren't paved and many new streets on [the grid], new houses being built, new friends moving in. We had plenty of kids and plenty of families, because, you know, it was the baby boom after World War I, just as the baby boom [took place] after World War II, and that's the way that went, anyhow.
SI: What would you do for fun? Were there organized activities?
CSH: There were very few organized activities. My father, as I was older, in my teenage [years], my father started the American Legion Drum and Bugle Corps, Sons of the American Legion Drum and Bugle Corps. That was the big activity back then, but we all played all kinds of games, ... whatever the season was. In the winter, we played basketball in the school gyms, in the spring, we played baseball and, in the fall, we played football. ... We had no organized teams, but we organized our own. ... We didn't have many parks. We had empty fields that hadn't been developed yet and we called one of them the "Cow Lots," because it had cattle up there at one time. We called it the Cow Lots. That's where we went to play and we had teams. In the football season, we would go up there and we'd gather and we'd have teams. ... The corner I'm looking at, our main street, the next corner were the Indians there and, on our little corner, we had the Condors, and we were intense rivals. ... We'd go up [to] the Cow Lots and we'd play whatever the ... sport was, whatever the season was, and we'd play up there. ... We organized them ourselves. We didn't have uniforms, but some of the teams, ... most of the members of the team would have a sweatshirt, some would have shoulder pads, some would have a helmet, some wouldn't have a helmet, some would have nothing, some would have pants and a shirt, but we'd try to make it as much a team as possible. ... We would ram up there and we'd play and we'd have our own officials. Some of the older kids would act as officials for us, and we'd play. We didn't have any fields marked out, but, ... in the summer, we'd put bases out there, in the spring, and, in the fall, we'd stretch it out into a football field. We had no goalposts or anything, but we played and we played regularly. ... In the dense winter, we had a pond where we went ice-skating, went ice-skating all winter long. It seems to me we had much more ice-skating than you have today, but [that is] part of the [climate] warming, I guess, but we ice-skated all winter long and, in the summer, we went to [the] pool, swimming. So, we were well cared for and, yet, we did it mostly all on our own. I'm not sure that wasn't pretty good, made us pretty self-reliant.
SI: What did you do with the drum and bugle corps?
CSH: I played the base drum. [laughter] I wasn't very talented, but I played the base drum. ... My big assignment was keeping the cadence, because we went into competitions and you had to maintain a certain cadence, and I had to maintain that number of beats per minute, so that we stayed within the cadence and stayed within our time as [we] did all our formations. College bands do that today. They do it just the way we used to do drum and bugle corps. We went all over the country, too, ... because we became a championship corps.
CSH: ... I was in that right up to the time I went in service.
SI: Would you compete against other Sons of the American Legion posts?
CSH: Some of them were Sons of the American Legion, ... some of them were open corps, to anybody in the town. We had plenty of SAL people in ours, but we also had another drum and bugle corps right in our own town that was made up by one of the politicians in town. ... They were all just general people from the town, kids from the town, but it was a great activity, great activity. ... We learned music and we learned marching, we learned discipline, and so, we were kept busy. We were kept busy all the way through, and we had a great school, elementary school, and we had a great high school. We had great teachers, had a lot of esprit de corps in the high school. We had a great life right up until the war. Right up until the war, we had a great time.
SI: Tell us about some of your early education, such as where you went to school and what interested you most.
CSH: I went to Florence Avenue School, which was the elementary school that served our area, diagonally across the street from ... our funeral home. I had to go up to the corner. There was a policeman there and he'd check [the street], because it was the main street, and go across the street with the policeman ... to school. Oh, I have so many memories of school. I was kind of a cutup kid, I guess. ... I remember, at one point, [the] teacher becoming so exasperated with me that she took me by the ear and marched me out of the school, across the street, into ... my home, ringing the bell. My mother came down, and then, she then reported to my mother what had happened. ... Well, when my father came home, I got it, with a strap, and I learned to be better in school after that one. I remember that teacher so well, Miss (McDermott?). [laughter] I loved her; brings tears to my eyes.
LH: You had other great teachers, too, your English teacher.
LH: Mrs. Kennard.
CSH: Mrs. Kennard. She recognized something in me. ... She wanted me to become a radio announcer. She thought I had the voice for it and the presence for it, and she was the first one that really got me captivated, because, really, ... I was not the student in grade school. It was Mrs. Kennard who, in our eighth grade [class], because we went to ninth grade high school, ... really captured my attention to education. Before that, I was quite a cutup, I guess, because of other experiences with some other teachers that weren't so happy, either. [laughter]
LH: Your deportment was bad.
CSH: My deportment. I got some "Us" in deportment, unsatisfactory, with "Us" on the report card, unsatisfactory deportment, and I reported to my father all the time for that. Anyhow, when I got to high school, I had an interesting experience. I really got frightened by high school and I decided, from [when] ... my eighth grade English teacher got me interested in education itself, [I would apply myself]. ... This was a big high school. We had three thousand students in that high school. ... [We] had morning and afternoon sessions, so, it was really divided. Eighth and ninth grade went ... . .
LH: Ninth and tenth went in the afternoon.
CSH: Ninth and tenth went in the afternoon, eleventh to twelfth went in the morning. ... I got there, and my father knew most of the people around town; everybody knew one another. [The] principal of the high school was in the Kiwanis Club with my father, and so, the first month, I had the highest average in the class. We had about, what, about five hundred in the class, I guess?
CSH: And this surprised the daylights out of me. ... My principal came down and he singled me out in the hallway and said, "You did a good job, Stew, Stewart. You'd better keep doing it," and, for four years, I worked like mad by just the encouragement the principal gave me then. I got it, I suppose, because he knew my dad [and] he had seen that I ... had the highest grade in the class. ... So, I went through all the way through high school and the principal was still principal there. He wanted me to go to Princeton, and my biggest disappointment in life is, I wasn't admitted to Princeton. They hadn't had anybody go from Irvington High School to Princeton. ... He thought he could get me in, but I didn't make it. So, instead of going to Princeton, ... because he thought [I would get admitted], I didn't apply any place. I thought that was going to be it. I had a good average for four years, it was great, and he encouraged me, but, when I didn't get admitted, for the many reasons that Princeton turns down people; who knows? I was fortunate. I had a son who went to Princeton, carried out my legacy anyhow. ... The principal immediately called Franklin and Marshall College, which was his college, out in Pennsylvania, and he had me admitted like that. So, within weeks, I was heading to Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Here I was, an Irvington boy, a reasonable city, you know, right outside of Newark, out in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and I thought they put me in the middle of nowhere, out there with the Amish. I didn't know who the Amish were, either, and here I am, like I said, I went out there just because the principal just called and had me admitted [Mr. Hausmann snaps his fingers] like that. So, I didn't like it. I came home and I said, "Yes, I can't take it out here." I spent about a month out there and I came back and went to Upsala College, which was in East Orange. It was close by, and I always regretted it, because I thought, "I'm going to transfer to Princeton. I'll get into Princeton yet," but I got to love Upsala so much, and [that was] the biggest disappointment in my life, because I'm very active in the alumni groups. [Editor's Note: Upsala College ceased operations in 1995.] I was very active in everything in Upsala, and I graduated salutatorian in my class ... from Upsala, too. So, it's a place I got to love and I never did want to transfer to anyplace else. So, that's ... my college life.
SI: In high school, did you always feel that you would go on to attend college?
CSH: Yes, there was never any question in my family but [that] I was going to go to college. There was a question in Lillian's family, because ... her older sisters, ... who were ten, twelve years older than her ...
LH: Twelve and fourteen years older.
CSH: ... Older than she, they had no intentions of going to college, but they were convinced that she was going to college. Because they were brought up in Newark, in the old sections in Newark, college wasn't considered that much, but her father moved the family to Irvington and got a different outlook on life in Irvington. ... She knew, ... you were set to go to college from the time we went to high school.
LH: Yes. ...
CSH: There's no question in our minds about that.
LH: We knew we were going to go.
CSH: ... We didn't get to know one another until high school. We met in high school and I never noticed her until our senior year, and then, our senior year, we had two classes together. We were both taking fourth year Latin and it was a small class, because not many people took four years of Latin in Irvington High School. So, here we were, in the fourth year of Latin and we had the same ... teacher, we can remember her so well, and so, we were thrown together. [There] weren't more than a dozen in that class.
LH: No, it was small.
CSH: Because they weeded them out as they went along. ... I wanted to have four years of Latin, ... because that was going to get me to Princeton, too, I thought. ... Then, we also had solid geometry and trigonometry together and we used to do a lot of blackboard work, drawing, you know, all the things like this on the blackboard, triangles and rectangles and all those kinds of things. ... I used to notice her, because she had a nice, little figure, and I used to watch her up there at the blackboard. [laughter]
LH: This is being recorded. [laughter]
CSH: Well, you looked nice to me, dear, and that's what attracted me to her and we had our [courtship]. We can trace our first date, because, in the senior year, we had [it], and Lillian was a good student, too; I shouldn't let that go past. She was ... one of the stars in the senior play, which was held in December each year for the senior classes, and I was an usher at the night of the play and I asked her for a date. We went together to a party after the senior play. That was our first date and I can date it December 2, 1939, our first date. How many people can say when their first date was?
MJ: Not many. That is impressive. [laughter]
CSH: 1939, and that was our first date. ... That's another reason why I was anxious to get back from Franklin and Marshall and get back to Upsala, because she was going to Newark State Teachers College, which became Kean University today. ... She was going to Newark State, I was going to Upsala. ... I had a car and she went by bus out to North Newark, and I would go down, pick her up after school and we'd come home together, did a lot of studying together and we got to know one another pretty well. ... I got through my third year of college when the Air Force said they needed me. Well, the Air Force wanted to get me before the Army did, because I was fodder for [the] draft, and I said, "Well, I'm not going to go in the Army if I can help it. I'm going to get in the Air Force." ... I don't want to get ahead of the story here, though.
SI: You were in high school when Pearl Harbor was attacked.
CSH: Yes, yes.
LH: Yes, that was 19--
CSH: '41. ... Yes, in fact, the day of Pearl Harbor, I was ...
LH: We graduated; I was in college.
CSH: ... We were both in college.
LH: 1941, Pearl Harbor.
LH: We had graduated.
SI: That was your freshman year of college.
CSH: We graduated in 1940, yes, freshman year at college, yes.
LH: First year of college, yes.
CSH: ... I was a half a year ahead of Lillian, because we graduated in January and June, and so, she was a half year behind me in high school, but we got into college about the same time. Anyhow, that's the story of how we got to know one another. We didn't get married until I got my wings and commission in the Air Force.
MJ: Do you remember where you were when they attacked Pearl Harbor?
CSH: Yes, I was in the hospital with an appendicitis operation, in the Orange Memorial Hospital, when it happened. [laughter]
MJ: Did you hear about it over the radio or from someone in the hospital?
CSH: I guess I heard it over the radio. Yes, I was just recuperating.
LH: It was the buzz all over, of course.
CSH: Yes, everybody, nobody missed knowing about it, although we never heard of Pearl Harbor. We never knew where Pearl Harbor was.
LH: I didn't know where Pearl Harbor was.
CSH: No. It's like Lancaster, Pennsylvania. [laughter]
SI: Prior to that time, had you ever given any thought to the notion that the United States might get involved in the war or how that could affect your future?
CSH: You know, no. We were so busy enjoying life. I guess we were in our late teens and we were enjoying one another, enjoying college, and we didn't pay a heck of a lot of attention to what was going on. We knew that ... the Germans were kind of moving around all around Europe. We weren't very happy about the things they were doing over there. We didn't know much about the Japanese at all, except they brought these people into peace conferences. [Editor's Note: The United States and Japan held peace talks in Washington, DC, from November 20, 1941, to the day of the Pearl Harbor attack on December 7, 1941.] ... That wasn't our thing then. We were engaged in our own life, as late teenagers, a blooming love affair and college and all the activities, because, going to two colleges right so close by, we went to every dance, every party, every game. We went to, you know, everything together, and so, we were so busy with that, we really didn't notice. Pearl Harbor came as a shock. ... I didn't even know then what it was going to do as far as our lives were concerned, changed our whole lives. Everything about it changed, because, at that point, I was going to be a doctor. Originally, I was going to go to Princeton, study medicine. With Upsala, I was still going to study medicine. ... In college, I was majoring in sciences. I had a science major and an English minor.
MJ: Did you have professors that said anything about the war during classes?
CSH: No, no, very little attention was given to it at that point, because they didn't know what was going to happen either. ... You know, Upsala was a Swedish college and our professors, most of them were, a lot of them were, Swedish, because Uppsala University is the big university in Sweden and, when the Swedes came over, they established Upsala College. ... It was originally in Brooklyn, moved to Kenilworth, then, moved to East Orange. ... It was Swedish Lutheran. The reason why it closed, now, it doesn't exist anymore today, [was] because the Lutheran Church had to decide [which one to close], because they had two schools, Wagner and Upsala, close by, and Wagner was in a very good spot. Upsala was in East Orange and East Orange was changing very quickly and they wanted to get out of East Orange. ... They started a campus up in Sussex County, but it never really developed sufficiently before it became in financial trouble and the Lutheran Church decided to close it. So, it was, much to our chagrin, ... closed after the war, [in 1995], because I did come back, after the war, and finished up there, because I was taken out of college. I was in my junior year and was sent out, but, at that time; am I getting ahead of myself here?
SI: I want to ask a little bit more about Upsala.
SI: It sounds like there was a pretty rich student life and social life there.
CSH: Social life was great. I was [in] a fraternity, and I loved fraternities. ... We had a very active fraternity, very active life on campus, yes.
SI: Which fraternity did you join?
CSH: Well, it was called Kappa Beta Phi, the opposite of Phi Beta Kappa. It was a local fraternity. We didn't have any national fraternities at Upsala. Upsala was very conservative. We didn't, couldn't, have any smoking or dancing or drinking on campus, but there was plenty of it off campus, [laughter] but it was a very conservative school. It was. We had four years of religion, ... which affected my life, if we get to that. It affected my life, four years of religion. We had chapel five days a week. Four days a week, the president of the college spoke, he was a minister, and, on Friday, it was a compulsory chapel, but it was student operated. ... Anyhow, I learned a lot from the president of the college. He would have a twenty-minute sermon at chapel, every day, and he impressed me tremendously, got to know him, respect him, very much, and he had an influence on my life, too. As the principal of the high school did, so did the dean and the president of the college. It was a small college. We had about four hundred, three to four hundred students only, and we got to all know one another. The professors got to know [you] very well and, as I said, a lot of the professors were, some of them were German, ... well, there were some American ones, too, but Swedish. ... I said I learned biology with a Swedish accent, I learned chemistry with a German accent, because both of the professors spoke with accents. [laughter] So, that was an interesting anomaly at Upsala, but we had four years of religion and that influenced my life, too, which we'll get to that point later on.
SI: Who were the dean and the president that influenced you so?
CSH: ... Well, the president was Dr. Lawson and the dean was Dean (Erickson?), you'll recognize Swedish names, and the president was a minister. [Editor's Note: The Reverend Evald Benjamin Lawson was President of Upsala College from 1938 to 1965.] The Dean was an excellent theologian, as well as an administrator, and they were just tremendous people. They both were gone by the time the college disintegrated. It would not have disintegrated if they were still there, because they would have held it together and they would have developed this campus up in Sussex County and it would have gone well, but they were gone by that time. ... They had a profound influence on my life. ... The Dean was a great educator, took great interest. He knew every student, he knew what you were doing, and the President just had that [presence], because he was a big man, heavy man, too, had the composure, the stature, that made a president of a university stand out, and a very well-spoken man and very approachable. Doors were always open, ... and actually open, because the buildings there were all mostly old homes that had been taken over in East Orange on Prospect Street. ... You saw big, palatial homes, and I can remember, you go in ... [where] all the offices were, the Dean's door was always open and the President's door was always open. So, you could see them at work in there. ... In fact, the old house; no, it's been torn down. Kenbrook Hall was ... on the corner of Prospect. ... I forget the side street there, in East Orange; (Marne?) Avenue?
CSH: No. ...
LH: What difference does it make?
CSH: Yes, I don't know, but there was a big, big palatial house there. That was the main office building ... for the campus; okay.
SI: Did you live on campus or did you commute?
CSH: No, I commuted. Lillian commuted, too. That's why we [commuted together]. You know, I would run that course. If we'd both go to college, she would go the bus route, I'd drive my car over, I'd get out and pick her up and drive her home afterwards in the afternoon, after activities were over. ... She was very active in a sorority at Newark State, too, and still has lots and lots of friends from those days.
SI: After Pearl Harbor, did you start to see changes either in your neighborhood or at Upsala, or both? Did you notice how the war was impacting everyone?
CSH: Well, people, they were starting to leave campus. ... Down at Newark State, [it] became no men at all, and all the men left about the same time, didn't they?
CSH: You can tell them about that; tell them about that.
LH: It was a very small school, too. There were only about five hundred students.
CSH: Yes, but the men ...
LH: Huge place today, out in Union.
CSH: But, they all left about the same time, didn't they?
LH: Yes, they were all drafted or enlisted.
CSH: When she graduated, there were no men ...
LH: To carry the flag, right.
CSH: To carry the flags for the college. They had a little parade, usually, into the auditorium for the graduation, but there were no men left. They were all off campus and, at Upsala, we began to see them leaving, one by one.
LH: The people were being drafted. ...
CSH: ... There weren't many of us enlisting, except that that's what happened to me, because I wanted to get in the Air Force and the Air Force didn't want me to be drafted. ... We took written exams to see if we would qualify for the Air Force. You had to have a certain IQ and whatever else they measured, and so, they took us. I enlisted in May of 1942. Now, that was from December to May, but, in that period of time, they were drafting guys like mad and I didn't want to be drafted. So, I enlisted in the Air Force [US Army Air Forces at the time], ... but they left me in college, because, ... you know, the Air Force ... [was] growing so rapidly, they had no place for us. So, they gave us a set of wings to wear on our jackets, to identify us as having the Air Force [commitment], and they prevented us then from being drafted into the Army, although some of the early guys who were really gung ho did enlist right after Pearl Harbor. ... They left us out because they had no place for us, they had no training facilities, ... no training airplanes, no instructors, no officers set up, ... but, in May of 1942, or soon after that, they took me in, rather than let me stay in college any further. ... They [still] had no place for me, so, they sent us to Atlantic City, because they'd put us in the big hotels there, and we did, it's kind of basic training, in Atlantic City. Some went to Miami Beach. The Air Force took over all the big hotels in those two places. So, they sent us first to Atlantic City and we did basic training there. I got there in the winter and boys from all over the country [were] coming there and, you know, in the winter, ... it was cold there. [For] guys coming out of the South, being sent to Atlantic City was a real arduous experience for them. ... Any rate, we got through basic training there, we got our uniforms, we got our gas masks and did our marching and shooting, that kind of thing, calisthenics out on the beach, but they still had no place for us. So, they sent us to various college detachments. ... The Navy did the same thing with my brother, sending him to Brown. They had no place to put me, so, they sent us up to Syracuse University, and so, universities all over the country are acting as college training detachments. The one at Syracuse University was called the 65th College Training Detachment and I was put into a girls' dorm there. No girls in it anymore, but they took the girls out and put the soldiers in. It was a girls' dorm up in Syracuse University. They took us from Atlantic City to Syracuse, and then, they began to take us out in small groups as they could. Each month, they'd take some of us out. I was there three months; some of them were there five and six months, waiting for the Air Force to have some place to send us. They had to filter us in. ... While I was up there, there was the commanding officer who was like a Prussian. He had a German accent even, and he would continually say, "You're the cweam of the cwop," in that German accent, "the cweam of the cwop, and we expect this and this and this of you." [laughter] ... So, I got enough credits there, in three months, and Upsala gave me [credit for them], having been well in my [college career], going into my senior year, [that it] only took me one semester to graduate from Upsala when I came back out again. ... I don't want to get too far ahead of ourselves, because I'm at Syracuse and, three months later, they get room to send us. So, they sent us first from there to a classification center in Nashville, Tennessee. It's a big Air Force base there, and that's where they test you to find out whether you can really be a pilot or not, all kinds of things, you know, like this. ... We would have a thing to line up things like this, to make sure we could line them up. ...
SI: Like a depth perception test?
CSH: Perception, depth perception, and all kinds of things like that. ... They classified us there either into navigators, bombardiers or pilots. Well, some of those who were made bombardiers and navigators didn't end up being too happy, but some of them were afraid to fly, didn't really want to fly anyhow. They enlisted in the Air Force because we get that little deferment; you weren't being enlisted to go in the Army right away. The Navy was doing the same thing. ... The guys who made pilots were pretty happy and we were anxious to get going. Well, they really had no place to send us there, either, because they hadn't [any] training facilities, but they took over private airports, just like Monmouth Airport up here, a little, private airport. ... They'd get some barracks there and they would build some lean-tos, with the black covered paper.
CSH: Tarpaper, tarpaper covered barracks, and we'd all [live in the] big dormitory style in there, all in one room. ... They'd bring in a lot of these Stearman Airplanes, which were Boeing, bi-wing airplanes and we'd take our; well, no, I'm getting ahead of myself again. ... We went to preflight first, down at Maxwell Field, Alabama, preflight. I'm getting ahead of myself [again], [laughter] because we went from Syracuse to Nashville and the pilots went then to Montgomery, Alabama, where Maxwell Field was. This was a big, permanent Air Force field. Maxwell Field was to the Southeast what Randolph Field was in the central [zone], in San Antonio, Texas, and there was a similar one out on the West Coast, but Maxwell was the big field. We all ended up there and ... they made cadets out of us. ... We used a cadet hat and we had white gloves and ... we had nice barracks there. Everything was permanent there, and they were sending classes through there and you spent about almost three months there, two-and-a-half months, I guess, and they made cadets out of you, ... because we had no military academy, no Air Force Academy, back then. This was the cadet program. We were treated like cadets, we were called mister, we weren't called private, and it was a good, solid background. We had some of those who didn't have too long in college, who had to take some more courses there, in pre-navigation and calculus. ... They gave us courses there that I ultimately got some credit for, too, but, then, as they got these little, private airports, they could filter us out into primary training. ... I went from ... Maxwell Field to a little airfield called Orangeburg, South Carolina, and, there, we did our first training. A lot of guys washed out in the beginning, because they didn't want to fly. Really, they were scared of flying, or they had no aptitude for it, and so, many of the early washouts occurred in primary training. We had civilian pilots training us. We didn't have any military; there were no military to do this. ... They flew in a bunch of these little airplanes and we would fly with a civilian instructor pilot. ... I still have my book, where we wrote down everything that we did, each thing, and we got enough hours there to solo. We soloed after about eight to ten hours; some of them made it as far as twelve. You could tell the ones that soloed, because we wore parachutes in these little airplanes. ... Before you soloed, the parachute, instead of being up, had to hang down to your knees. So, you could see these guys walking around with their parachutes on, dangling against their back of their knees. As soon as you soloed, you lift your parachute up and it went against your back, and so, the day you soloed, you came back really proud. ... We then did aerobatics and we did, you know, all kinds of flying, and that weeded out some of the guys, because they didn't have the aptitude or didn't have the coordination to become pilots. So, they weeded out a lot of them there and we went, when it was ready, ... to Shaw Field, which was in Sumter, South Carolina, where we did what they called basic military training. There, we had military trainers, we had military pilots as our instructors, and, all the time, we were taking navigation courses and mechanical courses, to know what makes the airplanes run and the engines and all kinds of stuff like that. A lot of math went into navigation, celestial navigation; a lot of astronomy went into it. It was a good, solid training, and we learned to fly basic trainers. ... The first ones were single-engine with a canopy covering us, you know. ... They called it the Vultee "Vibrator." [Editor's Note: The Vultee BT-13 Valiant was nicknamed the "Vultee Vibrator" by pilots for its tendency to shake.] It was a Vultee built airplane, and we did, again, about two-and-a-half months to three months there, and then, they moved us to advanced training, where we went into twin-engine. ... Some of them went to fighters. So, there, again, they weeded us, but the bigger guys went to multi-engine, the littler guys, wiry guys, the guys who were going to be "hot" pilots [fighter pilots], they went into the ... single-engine. So, we went to a twin-engine school.
SI: Did you have a preference?
CSH: You didn't have any preference. They assigned you by basis of the recommendation of your instructors and by choice, as far as where they could send you, was some of it, too, because they had to have places open. The Air Force was building exponentially [fast], expanding all over the place. ... Sumter, it's a big Air Force base down there now, Shaw Field, and it's a permanent base and it's still down there. ... It's all fighters in there now, but, for us, it was our first twin-engine school, and it was being built at the time. ... We did twin-engine work there and we had our first experience flying bombers. We flew a B-25, ... in advanced training; I'm sorry, we're still in basic training. We finished our basic training and we went to Turner Field, down in Albany, Georgia, which is where we did advanced training. There, we had the more advanced single-engine planes to fly, and twin-engine planes, and that's where we got to fly a B-25 for the first time. ... It was from Turner Field where I got my wings and commission and they graduated us as pilots. It was into 1944 now. ... We got married then, right?
LH: Right after you got your wings.
CSH: Right after we got our wings, and a number of the fellows whom I knew all got married within three or four days of one another. I had to come back all the way to New Jersey, because I didn't know whether I was going to get leave. That's part of the story, too, interesting aside. We wanted to get married when we got our wings and commission, because we didn't know whether we were going to have any life after that at all, because these airplanes were being shot down over Europe and so many crews were lost in those early days. With the early guys who got over there, in the Eighth Air Force, the 15th Air Force, they were losing personnel like mad. So, we wanted to get married and we had other friends that did get married and we stayed pretty much friends with those same people. We all got married within, as I said, three or four days of one another and we came back.
LH: From all over the country.
CSH: From all over the country, yes, because they became good friends of ours. ... I can picture them. ... Only one of them's left, but the one who's in South Carolina is a close friend. He's the only one living. He's a dentist, retired. Another one, ... just to point out the quality of guys the Air Force did get, this fellow became a psychology major at Columbia. He went on to become dean at Boston University, Dean of General Studies. He went from there to become President of Quinnipiac. It was New Haven College of Commerce. He changed it to Quinnipiac College, was president there, and then, he went out to Long Island University to become president, another good friend. [Editor's Note: Located in New Haven, Connecticut, Quinnipiac College (now University), originally the Connecticut College of Commerce, then, the Junior College of Commerce, was renamed in 1951.] Another one was from Seattle, Washington, and he became the president of, I think it's KING, K-I-N-G, the ...
LH: Television station.
CSH: Television station, NBC or ABC, I forget which it was, in Seattle, became president of that. ... [Editor's Note: KING-TV has been an NBC affiliate since 1959.]
LH: We continued to get together. We'd get together every year, yes.
CSH: Another friend went to Harvard, was a Harvard graduate, and so, you know, it was interesting. They were great guys. ... We got to know all the wives and we began to share our lives together, because we traveled together then, because, from graduation, we all went, where'd we go next? back to Maxwell Field, where they had B-24s. ... From flying twin-engine [aircraft] in advanced, they moved us into B-24s, which is the one in the top picture there. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann points to a photograph on his wall.] ... So, I learned to fly one of those. So, it took me another two-and-a-half months to fly, learn to fly, one of those. ...
SI: Was it a difficult transition for you when you would step up to a larger aircraft?
CSH: ... Well, yes and no. It was quite a change, because ... that was the biggest airplane the Air Force had, at that time, and getting into that was really quite an experience. It was a heavy airplane. A lot of people were frightened of it, scared of it, but some of them washed out along the way. Not by that point; nobody was washed out anymore, though, some of them ended up in crashes, crashing them. Let me tell you a little about that a little later on. ...
LH: There were a lot of crashes in training, B-24s.
CSH: In training, a lot of crashes in training, because, again, we were flying this big airplane with probably, at that time, about four or five hundred hours only. ... That's not a heck of a lot to be trusted with the most expensive airplane the Air Force had and being trained in it. So, that was quite an experience, but each time we stepped up, some of the guys were washed out along the way in the training, you know, [when we] went from basic. A lot of them were washed out in basic, because basic training, that's what I did at Shaw Field, before we went to Turner Field. There, they did a lot of acrobatics and a lot of them couldn't do that. A lot of them couldn't take ... all this up and down, around again. They'd be getting sick, and they washed themselves out, some of them.
SI: Did you find any of that training particularly challenging or did it all come to you naturally?
CSH: Well, ... I don't think I was a natural pilot, but I did pretty well. I got the mechanics of it. ... When I got a crew, I became the old man of the crew and they had a lot of confidence in me, which I didn't have in myself, completely, but ... I put on a pretty good show for them, I guess. They were convinced I was the world's best pilot, and we were doing this with so few hours. Today, you know, ... guys who are flying [for] airlines, they can have ten, twelve, fifteen thousand hours, and we were flying these big airplanes with four and five hundred hours. ...
MJ: When you began to fly the B-24, did you like the plane, compared to others?
CSH: I liked it, but I didn't have any experience in anything else. The guys who flew the B-17, Flying Fortresses, they thought they were the best. Well, we thought the B-24 was the best. They said that the B-24 looks like the package that the B-17s were sent over in, [laughter] because the B-24 was bigger than the B-17, but they were boxy. You can see how boxy they are. [The] B-17 was much sleeker, but, at any rate, I liked it and I ... had no problems with it. I never lost an engine in all the years, the time I flew. ... I, by the time I was finished flying it, had been all over the world pretty well, but I stayed with it, and then, we went from Maxwell Field [forward]. Now, Maxwell Field had two [courses]. It was a big base down there. It had the pre-flight that we went to first, where we were made cadets, before we went into primary training, basic training and advanced training at Orangeburg, Shaw Field and Turner Field.
LH: Leave out some of the in-between part. [laughter]
CSH: All right. Then, where did we go? You were with me.
CSH: We went from Maxwell Field, ... the other component in Maxwell Field was training ... on B-24s, we went from there to Westover Field in Massachusetts.
LH: With your crew.
CSH: ... Got my crew there, and that's the crew, right there. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann points to a photograph.]
LH: At this time, the war was winding down.
CSH: Not yet, not yet.
CSH: ... This was in the middle, ... because we were up in Holyoke when the Battle of the Bulge was going on. [Editor's Note: The Battle of the Bulge, or Ardennes Offensive, began on December 16, 1944, and lasted into late January 1945.]
LH: That's right, Christmas.
CSH: Christmas, we spent up there, the Battle of the Bulge. Now, those [men], of our whole crew, [referring to the photograph of his crew] this was me, this is my copilot, this is my navigator, this is the bombardier and this was my armorer-gunner. He has a different hat on because I got him later. One of my crew members went up to make up some lost time with another crew and the crew crashed and I lost him, but this is my radio operator, the flight engineer and these were the three gunners. This guy was the belly gunner. He was the one that got down, he was the smallest one, you see? ... into the belly, with that turret that came out of the belly. ... Anyhow, we did our training. Then, we went from Westover, with our crew, to Charleston, South Carolina, and we were stationed at Charleston Air Force Base, which is, today, the international airport down there, and, there, we did all of our training with our crew. We went out into the ocean, bombing. We had bombing missions where we dropped our bombs in places in South Carolina. We had to go a long ways over the water, so, we flew from Charleston to Havana. ... We spent some interesting weekends in Havana, because we had an Air Force base in Havana at that time, and we landed there. ...
SI: Were you involved in any specialized training, such as for an antisubmarine role, or was your training just general?
CSH: Everything, no, everything, just general. We were really trained [for bombing], because the B-24 had one important use and that was, in Europe, putting the biggest bombs as close to the target as you could get, because we had the Norden bombsight, which they thought, at that time, was the best thing going ... for bombing. ... So, we were ... being trained, really, for that, and remember the Ploesti air raids? [Editor's Note: The oil fields at Ploesti, Romania, were a major target for the US Army Air Forces throughout the war. The heavy antiaircraft and fighter protection established by the enemy led to high casualties for the USAAF, such as during the August 1, 1943, Operation: TIDAL WAVE raid, in which over three hundred American airmen lost their lives, nearly two hundred became prisoners of war and many more were wounded.]
LH: You remember reading about it.
SI: Yes. [laughter]
CSH: ... We were reading about it, yes, but I thought you've interviewed a lot of people and some of them must have been people that ... were going into Ploesti. They came out of the 15th Air Force, and so, we were being trained for that. We did a lot of low-altitude stuff and we had the greatest time flying over South Carolina at treetop level, scaring the devil out of all the cows and all the farmers, you know, "Vroom," when we come across. ... So, we were being trained for that. ... That came on, the Battle of the Bulge, and the Ploesti [mission] was still in the development. So, they thought that that low-altitude bombing may solve the problem of all this "ack-ack" killing the guys up way up here. We come in low, surprise them, and they found that didn't work out too well, either, because Ploesti, we lost a lot of guys at Ploesti, but I was fortunate in that, then, ... we were sent to Mitchell Field, New York, where we were staging for overseas. That was the last place we went before we went overseas, and this was an interesting thing. We were heading for the Eighth Air Force and there were probably, oh, maybe a dozen crews of us, all together, with a dozen air[craft]. We were getting brand-new airplanes there, at Mitchell Field. We were going to fly them over to Europe. ... We were at Mitchell Field, New York, and we were in a hotel, the Garden City Hotel, in Garden City, New York. Lillian was there and all of our friends were there, too, and their wives. ... We said big good-byes this morning, with kisses good-bye, and we were going, heading for the Eighth Air Force. Well, we went out to the airbase and about six of the airplanes, "Whoosh," took off and the other six of us were called back. So, the next thing you know, we're back in the hotel again, after we had all these teary good-byes. We thought we were heading overseas. Instead, they said, "You guys are going to be transferred to the Air Transport Command," because, here, the war was beginning to wind [down]. It was in the Spring of '45, early spring, and they didn't need so many more crews over there, but they needed more airplanes that could fly day and night missions. So, [they said], "You're going to be in the ATC and you're going to be transporting new aircraft over that are specially equipped with special radar on them, that they're used for night and day bombing of Germany and very precise bombing." ... When we went out and looked at one of these airplanes, we had some big gizmo ... up in the cockpit of the airplane that was all covered up and sealed with sealing wax and sealed off, so [that] we couldn't look into it. So, we really didn't know what it was, but the airplane had a separate little, we called it an "ironing board." It was like a small wing underneath. This was early radar that they were going to be using, and [they said], "You're going to fly these airplanes over." Well, where did they come from? Well, the WACs, you know, the Women's Air Force? [Editor's Note: The Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) ferried aircraft from factories to military bases across the United States. They served as civilians during World War II, but were granted veteran status in 1977. The Women's Army Corps (WAC) was established in 1943. The women who enlisted in the Corps served as military personnel in a variety of non-combat roles.]
CSH: They were flying them from Willow Run, which was the big Ford plant out in Dearborn, [Michigan], where these B-24s were made. They had a big production line there and they would be turning them out. ... The women flew them to Mitchell Field, but the women couldn't fly them overseas. So, we got them there and we flew over to England with them, transporting them over. We'd get a "war weary" and come back, bring it back to the States. A "war weary" is an older airplane, coming back into the training command. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann points to a photograph.] So, that picture up in the upper left there is me, taken in Iceland. The one, I think, on the other side was taken in ...
CSH: Not Greenland; Labrador, because we would fly from Mitchell Field, New York, up to Grenier Field, New Hampshire, where we would get the equipment for going into dangerous areas, give us a sidearm and various kinds of special training. ... We would fly from there to Labrador, and then, in Labrador, we would be flying either to Greenland or to Iceland, and then, we'd fly from Iceland down to Valley, Wales. We had bought this airplane, on paper, from the Ford Motor Company, we had all kinds of sheets of paper, and we essentially sold it to the Eighth Air Force when we got over there. So, that was my biggest part of being over into ... where the Eighth Air Force was, but we were, in turn, flying over the Atlantic. ... It was quite an experience, because here we were, we did all of our training on the B-24 in the South and we get up here and we're flying in the middle of the winter, or early winter, the late winter, I mean, of '45 over the North Atlantic, where the weather is horrible. ... We did some, you know, interesting approaches, instrument approaches, to places we had never seen. I can remember flying into Iceland. ... Well, I can remember one time, we were on our way over and we had taken off from Labrador; [you] either went to Goose Bay in Labrador or Gander in Newfoundland. It so happened that I went to Goose Bay in Labrador, and we got up that morning, it was a blinding snowstorm, but they said, "You're going." ... We don't have any way to get the snow off the wings, but [there is a] different kind of snow in Labrador. It was dry snow. So, when we add the power, the snow all blew off. So, anyway, we're all standing in line, six airplanes, six crews, ... some of the people I had graduated with. ... We're standing in line, waiting to go, and I saw the guy go ahead of me and, "Poof," cloud of snow. ... We lined up, ready to go, "Whoosh," we're going into this cloud of snow. ... Interesting thing, we would have a flight indicator, was a compass, radio direction compass, RDF, radio direction finder, RDF, and you could tune in a radio station and it would hold on zero. ... You would fly, if you got off [course], we'd go this way or that way, you keep it on zero and it would take you right to that radio station. Now, the only thing is, when you get further [off], you know, get off course, ... the wind would blow you this way. You'd be flying it like a circular route. So, you had to learn ... to compensate for it, because you had to know which way the winds were blowing, but you go all across the North Atlantic. They didn't have anybody out there telling you what the weather was and which way to go. So, I remember, in Labrador, tuning that station in in Iceland, which was impossible, but, there, I tuned it in. It zeroed in. It must have been just good radio waves coming over at that time. I tuned in the radio station there. I thought, "It's like God telling us the way," and ... it looked like, you know, God out there and you just had to follow. ... We took off and we flew, got over [Greenland]. We were taking off at about fifteen-minute intervals. ... The weather improved over Greenland. I could see the southern tip of Greenland, and, yes, ... the weather cleared and the airplanes were crossing their paths like this. We're at different altitudes. About five hundred feet separated us. We'd only taken off, couldn't have been fifteen minutes, maybe five or ten minutes behind, and we were flying in different directions. Because we were all flying the same route, we all ended up there at the same time, in Iceland. Then, by the time we got to Iceland, it was raining, and we had never made an instrument approach to Iceland before. ... Flying instruments back in those days wasn't like doing it today, where the pilot can almost let the radio facilities, see, fly him right into the airport, but, back in those days, we had to fly over the airport. We knew we were over the airport when the direction finder would go from zero down. So, there's the airport, right down there. So, you'd fly over, we'd come down to an altitude, we'd fly out, then, take a procedure turnaround, out and come back into the airport. ... We'd be able to just judge our altitude and come right in on the edge of the runway. ... At that time, the only thing I didn't get is an altimeter setting, because the air pressure was different and our altimeter was reading incorrectly. So, when we went over Reykjavik, which is the nearby town, we were about a hundred feet over them. So, ... we rolled out to come in on the runway [and] we were looking at people, [laughter] but we didn't change our altimeter setting, which would have given us the proper altitude to come in at. So, instead of coming in, you know, coming down past three hundred, two hundred, one hundred, we made the turn over Reykjavik at about a hundred feet and I could see the runway ahead of me. We got down safely.
LH: Close enough.
CSH: But, going back to Charleston, when we did our training, B-24 training, one of the things you had trouble with was ... getting vertigo, flying at night, and we lost three of our crews. That's when the one guy on my crew was knocked off. They ... took off into the dark, out over the ocean, from Charleston, did a turn, could look lost, got vertigo, came right around, "Whoosh," went right in. In the swamps there, ... where the Santee River comes in, [we] lost thirty men in one weekend in training accidents. That was the biggest shocker in our lives, because we knew all of them. We were all training together. That was the biggest loss in my life.
SI: We have interviewed other people who, after losing a crew in training accidents, would have to go out and recover the aircrafts and the remains. Did you have to do anything like that?
CSH: No, we didn't have to do that, no. ... The War in Europe was winding down then and it was ready to finish, but we got the new airplanes over there. They didn't need us to do that anymore, so, they sent us to Hondo, Texas, where they were training flight engineers for B-29s. This is probably the most significant work that I did, because B-29s are the big ones that were flying with the atomic bomb, you know, from Saipan and Tinian over to Tokyo. ... At that time, they hadn't yet taken Iwo Jima, so, they had to make it all the way from Saipan and Tinian all the way over to Japan and back on the fuel that they had. [Editor's Note: The 20th Air Force began flying missions against Japan from the Marianas Islands in November 1944, braving a fifteen-hundred-mile journey as well as Japanese air defenses. The capture of Iwo Jima in February 1945 offered the B-29s an emergency stop along the route.] So, we were training flight engineers, flying B-24s. We had a B-24 and, really, almost nobody knows this, that we did this. Not that it was secret, but it was done at the end of the war and nobody gave a darn anyhow, I guess. ... We had, on the B-24, behind the flight deck, there was a panel setup like the one in the B-29. ... There was a cadet there, a flight engineer cadet, and an instructor, and then, back beyond the bomb bay, they had three more "slave" instrument panels which copied the one up front. ... They had three cadets back there, observing, really, more than anything. ... So, we would have to fly these long, long missions and we would fly at the prop settings and the manifold pressures that the flight engineer gave us. ... It was things we weren't used to flying, and so, we'd be staggering along, kind of, and, yet, we were getting greater at [extending the] distance on the amount of fuel that we had. So, what we were doing is trying to train these flight engineers so that they could make it from Saipan and Tinian all the way to Tokyo, all the way to Japan, not just Tokyo, ... and get back with enough fuel. So, that's what we were doing and they thought, you know, the war would never be over with the Japanese. They thought it would never finish, they'd never give up. ... We didn't know anything about any atomic bombs and, all of a sudden, atomic bombs were there. ... Whether [it was] one of the guys I trained or not, I don't know, [who] was the ... flight engineer on them, one of those airplanes. I had no way of knowing, because we were training them to go over and do that very thing. ... There were lots of B-29s over there, so, I'm sure none of mine were on the Enola Gay, but that's what we did. ...
LH: You were discharged from down there then.
CSH: We got discharged from Hondo, Texas. We came home to ...
LH: Start our life.
CSH: Start our life.
SI: In flying over to England, Greenland and Iceland, did you ever have problems with things like the fuel consumption rate?
CSH: No, no; we had plenty of fuel. It's only the ones going so far. ... Once they got Iwo Jima, then, we had an interim base where they could stop, if necessary, and refuel, ... because some of them didn't just stop at Tokyo, they went further into Japan, to other [targets], because they were bombing all over Japan at that time. I think the only other experience that I missed telling you about in our Air Force life was, ... we were talking about getting married. ... I didn't know whether I was going to get leave to get home or not until the last minute. So, we had a wedding planned in Irvington and, if not, well, Lillian was coming [and] we were going to get married down in Albany, Georgia, had plans made there, but, [at] the last minute, I found that we were going to be able to go to Irvington and we were going to get a week off. So, I went to Atlanta, ... hitched a ride. Back in those days, you could hitch a ride. Everybody would give a soldier a ride, got to Atlanta and, at that time, ... you couldn't take an airplane home, because there were no civilian airplanes flying, and you couldn't drive, because there was no gasoline. So, you had to take a train. So, the trains were jammed. So, I got on a train; I couldn't even get in a seat. I had to sit out in the vestibule between the cars, sat on my B-4 bag, which is an Air Force type military bag, like a suitcase, but it was all soft, sat on that. I sat on that from Atlanta to Washington, DC, before I could change trains up there in Washington and get on one coming to Newark. I got a seat, got home and, that afternoon, at four o'clock, we were married. [laughter]
SI: Was your wife able to accompany you to live in these different stations?
CSH: Yes, yes. That's how the wives got to know one another so well. ...
LH: After he got his wings, wives could travel together.
CSH: After we got our wings and we got married, and they spent a lot of time together, the girls did, because we were flying all the time.
LH: Yes, and we would spend our time in the officers' club, swimming.
CSH: Yes. That's the thing; you got very proficient at flying, because you flew every day. There were no days off. You flew every day and you did training, trained and trained and trained. ... It didn't matter which pilots you flew with, as your co-pilot, in training. You were both first trained to be first pilots, but ... they were almost carbon copies of one another. They stamped them out with the same training. You knew exactly what he was doing, he knew exactly what you were doing, when you were doing it, when to do it, and so, you get a lot of confidence in yourself, confidence in the Air Force, confidence in the airplane. ... Much of it was probably overdone, the confidence that you had, but we were sure of ourselves, very sure of ourselves. ... The crew, they sat back there and they were sure they had the best pilot in the world.
SI: Were there any close calls, such as losing an engine?
CSH: I never had an engine failure, no, in all the time. That's why I had such confidence in the B-24. I never had an engine failure. I had one ... back in training. ... We were flying twin-engines and I had an engine failure there, but it really didn't fail. We saw the oil leak and the oil coming out of it, and so, we shut it down and landed on one. ... That's the only time I ever lost an engine, but we flew every day and we flew with such confidence.
SI: Did you always have the same number of crew?
CSH: ... I had the ten-man crew when we were ready to go overseas. When they changed us to the Air Transport Command, they took the gunners away. We were a five-man crew, pilot, co-pilot, navigator and flight engineer, who was the other one? radio operator, five of us. ... All the others were gunners or bombardier-navigator and they went right overseas. ... Where they ever went, I lost track of most of them.
MJ: Were you always the head pilot?
CSH: Yes, ... trained as a first pilot and served my whole life as a first pilot.
MJ: Were the head pilots and co-pilots trained separately?
CSH: Well, we got separated and we were assigned, when we got our crews, ... either as pilot or co-pilot. ... The co-pilots didn't take the extra training at Maxwell Field, where we got trained in the B-24. My co-pilot happened to be an instructor pilot, P-51, a single-engine pilot. He was an instructor pilot, training in them. ... I think he was doing P-51s in the end, but probably more of a single-engine [fighter], maybe P-38s or something. No, they'd be twins.
SI: Could it be a P-47?
CSH: Well, could have been P-47s, or even back to [the] P-40 days, because he had a lot of time. He outranked me, ... but he got assigned as the co-pilot. He wasn't a very happy [person]. He wasn't a happy camper.
MJ: What was your rank?
CSH: ... Second lieutenant; I came out as a first lieutenant.
SI: Did you go into the Reserves?
CSH: I stayed in the Reserves for a limited amount of time. When Korea broke out, a lot of my friends, because we were kind of kept in the Reserves, a good many of my friends went back into the Air Force in Korea, but, by that time, we had a family and they didn't bother me. I didn't get called back. ... If they had needed us, I guess we would have [gone], but I guess they got enough of them other ways.
SI: Do you remember the day that the announcement was made that the war was over?
CSH: Well, do I. I won't even tell you about that.
LH: We were living in Hondo, Texas.
CSH: We were in Hondo, Texas.
LH: [There was] a big party that night.
CSH: And what a party, what a party.
MJ: I bet.
CSH: I tied one on that night. [laughter]
LH: Was that the night that Louis Armstrong was playing?
CSH: Louis Armstrong was playing at the officers' club.
CSH: Yes. Wow, that was a big night. You know, some of things that were interesting, you know, we had the Glenn Miller Band. It wasn't always Glenn Miller, but it was always his music. ...
CSH: ... Being an officer, (being off a lot?), was a lot of fun. We did a lot of interesting things together. We were given a lot of extra respect. We were very young and I think now, [looking] back, I was only twenty-one, twenty-two years old and I was one of the older ones. That's my grandson there. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann points to a photograph on his wall.] He got his [US Air Force] pilot's wings. He's been in over three years. He flies those C-17s, behind him there. That was the day he got his wings and I thought, "My gosh, he's just a kid." He was older than I was when I was flying over to the war days, but that's the airplane he flies, below it. He's stationed now at McGuire Air Force Base down in New Jersey. ... That was the day he graduated. They gave him my wings, the ones I had saved. ... He got my wings presented [to him]. That was kind of a thrill, too, probably one of the bigger thrills in life.
SI: Have you had any other children or grandchildren who went into the service?
CSH: No, ... none of my children. They were all postwar babies and they are all now into their, today, fifties and sixties. ... My oldest son is sixty-two, going to be sixty-three. ... If that's any indication there, you know, after we came out, I had big changes in life, because I went immediately and finished at Upsala, finished in one semester, and I went from there to embalming school, mortuary science college. ... I got my certificate there, work certificate, and I got my license. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann received his diploma and was class valedictorian at the New York College of Mortuary Science.]
SI: You mentioned earlier that you had wanted to get into medical school. That was when you were at Upsala, right?
CSH: ... Yes, but, by the time I get out, from flying, and [being] married, wanting to have kids, wanting to get a home, I did look into it, and I didn't have a heck of a lot of money to put into it. It wasn't that expensive back then, but they were just starting a medical school in Newark. It was just starting and I went down and looked into it, but [it] didn't seem to be [that] they had much there and [I] wasn't that interested in it anymore. So, I kind of avoided that idea. At that time, well, my father was building a new funeral home. That's when I had this experience. I had been very active in church work, I told you, from going back to the days at Upsala. I mentioned that I got very interested in church work. In a very short period of time, I was faced [with], my father wanted me to go into business with him, ... because he was building a new funeral home at the time; I had, really, a choice of staying in the [service], in flying, but I avoided that. ... [At] that point, I thought I had ... taken all the chances I needed to take in life, with a family, and I went into teaching. I went back and got an extra year of college and got a bachelor's of science in education. So, I had my AB and BS in education, and I started teaching school and I enjoyed that. ... Probably, within a couple years, they thought I would be good principal material. ... Really, in a lot of ways, I wish I had stayed in education, because I was kind of a natural teacher and I enjoyed it very much. I was teaching in Irvington High School, and then, I got a letter from the Rockefeller Brothers Foundation [Fund], offering me a scholarship, a fellowship, to go to seminary, to become a minister. I had been recommended for that. So, now, I faced a triple decision, "Am I going to go in business with my father? Am I going to ... stay in education, go into administration?" because I had, in the meantime, in that period of time, ... got my master's up at Montclair State, too, in education, "or am I going to go in the funeral business, or am I going to go into the ministry?" So, I had the triple choice, and a good friend of ours, who was a minister at the time, said, "I think you ought to stay with your dad, because ... you can do just as much good, of what you're interested in doing, being in the funeral business as you can in the ministry, and you're already prepared and licensed to do that." ... Even though I enjoyed education, [it] didn't pay very well. I was making about seventy-five dollars a week. In fact, I started teaching at fifty dollars a week and that didn't look very lucrative, and even principals weren't making much in those days, so that there's more money going in with my father. It offers some of the same feelings as getting into the ministry. I would have to go three more years to seminary. ... So, we decided to go into my father's business. I ... never regretted it, because [I] made out well financially. I spent twenty-five years in my father's business. He died and I became president of the corporation, stayed in until things began to change so much in Irvington that [we] decided, "Better get out," and I sold the business to my associate. ... I had been teaching over at a mortuary science school, too. I was very much interested in ... counseling, and funeral directors as counselors, and I became well-known to that effect. ... [When] I sold the funeral home, I became Executive Director of the [New Jersey] State Funeral Directors Association and, as such, I did a lot. I wrote, published their monthly newsletter, I published their monthly magazine, got into a lot of writing, which [was] because I was an English minor in college, and that was up my alley, too. So, putting all the things together, my interest in counseling, my interest in writing and my being the Executive Director, I got a nationwide reputation, because I spoke at a lot of the national conventions on funeral counseling, where there were people from all over the country, and then, I'd be invited to the state associations. So, I think ... I've been in most of the state associations, ... their state funeral directors association, and teaching a course or giving a lecture or something in funeral directors as counselors, and, in (Union?), developed a whole thing there with counseling. ... Anyhow, it was that that gave me the reputation that ultimately gave me my doctorate, which came for all the writing I did and all of the time I spent in other kinds of activities, as well as counseling a bit. So, I got the Doctor of ...
LH: Humane Letters.
CSH: Humane Letters in 1985, but we should get back to a big part of my life, too, [which] was when I took over my father's business, when I went into business with him. I was "Mr. Outside," he was "Mr. Inside." His natural abilities were in the embalming room. My natural abilities were out among people ...
CSH: What's that?
LH: Your natural ability is gabbing. [laughter]
CSH: Yes. [laughter] ...
LH: That was good, though, when you were in business.
CSH: ... I got out into many kinds of activities. That got me into politics. So, that's when I became president of the school board. I spent ten years as president of the school board in Irvington and, of course, ... I had been a teacher in Irvington High School, so, I became president of the school board. That was kind of a nice step in a nice direction. Then, from there, I was in ... local government, went into municipal government, and then, from there, I went into the county government. ... I was Director of the Board of Freeholders in 1968 when the riots occurred, and my office was in the Central Ward of Newark. In fact, I had a big window on the fifth floor of the Hall of Records [that] overlooked all of downtown Newark, where the fires occurred and all this unrest occurred. ... So, I don't know whether that's something to be proud of, but I was ... a main part of what went on in Newark, because I held the highest office. The Mayor of Newark and the Director of the Board of Freeholders were the two key governmental officials that were ... handed and handled this problem, not that I think we did a very good job of it, but we had to live through it. [Editor's Note: The Newark riots lasted from July 12 to July 17, 1967. They began after the police arrested an African-American cab driver and rumors spread that he had been killed in custody. The riots resulted in over two dozen deaths, over seven hundred injuries, fifteen hundred arrests and property damage exceeding ten million dollars.]
SI: Could I ask you a few questions about that period? Before the riots occurred, were there any indications that something like that might happen?
CSH: There was a lot of unrest in town, yes, in the City of Newark, a lot of unrest. There was a lot of poverty. Newark was a poor city at that time and the minorities had moved into Newark. ... I'd say, [in] North Newark, you had a big Italian population. Anthony Imperiale was out there; I don't know if you know anything about him, but he was kind of their leader out there, and they were being kind of [oppressed], felt they were being oppressed, by the blacks. So, there was a conflict there in the city with the blacks and the blacks were pushing everybody else out, and there was a, well, Barack Obama; no, not Obama. ... Barack, Amir?
LH: I know who you mean, but I can't think of his name.
CSH: ... Yes, I can't think of his name, either.
SI: We can put it in the transcript.
CSH: Yes, Amila Barack, something, [Amiri Baraka]. I think that was his name. Anyhow, he was a leader in the city among the blacks, Anthony Imperiale was a leader out in North Newark of the Italians, and there was a lot of unrest in the city back then. [Editor's Note: The public discourse between Amiri Baraka and Anthony Imperiale came to epitomize the extremes of race relations in Newark during this period.] You could sense that it was coming; just took something to explode it, but, again, ... Newark was just a part of Essex County. Essex County went all the way out to Caldwell, all the way out to through Millburn, and then, you know, all the cities, starting from Irvington and East Orange and Belleville and Nutley, and then, the outer periphery ones, Montclair and Upper Montclair, and then, into the Caldwells and Roseland. Those were all Essex County, and we had a lot of great things in Essex County. We had the largest mental hospital, Overbrook Hospital, ... largest county-owned one in the county. ... The park system was probably the most outstanding park system in the country. Branch Brook Park, which is a beautiful park yet today, Weequahic Park in Newark and all of First [Watchung] Mountain in Essex County were all [there], and it still is. All of First Mountain has been preserved, all the way across from Washington Rock Park in Millburn, all the way into across Eagle Rock, over into the Caldwells. That's called the First Mountain; coming out of Newark and New York, that's the first mountain. Essex County owned all that county property up there. So, Essex County had been a very influential and important county. The City of Newark; we also had the airport, the seaport and we were right, like, a suburb of New York, really. So, you know, in the long run, it was an important county, one of the most important counties in the country.
SI: What were your main goals as a freeholder? What did you hope to accomplish in your tenure there? What do you think you did well?
CSH: Yes. Well, the main thing that went on during my term as director was to solve these problems in the city. That became my problem, ... but, before that, ... it had been a Democratic county and we came in as a new flush of [Republicans]. I should go back; historically, it was a Republican thing. "Clean Government Republicans" ran Essex County. The Democrats came in under Dennis Carey, who was, you know, "I Run Essex" Dennis Carey, and he ran it ... as the Democrats run things, and we were going to come in as Republicans and kick out the Democrats. That was our goal, and we did. We were the first Republicans to be elected after [Carey], from the "Good Government Republicans" to Dennis Carey Democrats to, now, we got in there. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann served as Director of Essex County Board of Chosen Freeholders from 1968 to 1969.] ... We were going to clean it all out, bring down taxes, get better government, clean government, again, back. Well, our [fate] ended up, we were no better than the Democrats were at it, and taxes continued to go up, problems continued to escalate. So, we really didn't accomplish any of the goals that we went in there hoping to accomplish. ... [When I] left, the riots were over, but things were not looking good. ... Things that we did back then, you'd be in jail for today. They were accepted practices. When, you know, we gave people jobs, where we were able to put [people in] jobs, we put Republicans in, and the places you could put them was the Park Commission, because that was an independent commission and they had their own powers. ... We could hide employees. They weren't considered county employees; they were Park Commission employees. We'd do the same thing to the vocational schools. You could pack it with people, and I'm not very proud of that, but that's where our people went. We hired them just like the Democrats did, which was not a very happy thought and not a very good thing to do, but, so, we only lasted [six years]. ... I was going to say, too, some of the things, the practices that went on, when somebody got a job, they had a brown bag with money in it from the first paycheck ... to the party, the political party, and then, there was the ten percent of [the] annual package that came back to the politicians and the party. Well, the Democrats did it for years. The Republicans came in, they did the same things, and I began to see what was going on and I felt I was ... with a black cloud over my head. I saw this corruption, which was rampant in the county, and I had no way of controlling it, no way of controlling it. It was controlled ... not by the county officials, but by the party. Well, the party was controlled by a different kind of people than the elected officials and it was a corrupt thing and I saw it. I saw it in the Democrats when Dennis Carey was there. They ran it like Mayor Hague did in Jersey City. [Editor's Note: Jersey City Mayor Frank Hague, a long-time Democratic Party boss, personified for many in Mr. Hausmann's generation the excesses of machine politics.] They ran it to the heights of corruption, until, finally, they were voted out, but, with the Republicans, we had the same kind of leadership in our party who were interested in themselves. So, I quit after six years. I said, ... "I am not going to do this anymore." So, I left and, at that time, I was talking about running for higher office. I was being talked about running for Congress, but Joe, I don't know if you know Joe Minish, he was the Congressman from our district back then and Joe was a wonderful guy. [Editor's Note: Congressman Joseph G. Minish served in the US House of Representatives from 1962 to 1984.] He was a Democrat and he had given my son the appointment to West Point; ... he decided to go to Princeton, but he'd given him an appointment to go to the Military Academy, and so, Joe was a good friend of mine. I was not about to run against him. Well, he was vulnerable, but he continued. He won, and I did not run for higher office after that. I got back involved with the association. ... You know, all these things run concurrently in some ways, and some branch off from the other, one from the other, but that brings us to ... the last thing that I have to tell you about is my family, that I'm proudest of my family. Our oldest son is the one there. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann points to a photograph on his office wall.] That's a picture of him in Carnegie Hall. He is a professor of music at the University of Houston, but he's also conductor of the Houston Symphony. ... That is when he conducted the symphony and the chorus in a production. That was taken there, and then, he brought them to Carnegie Hall and that's a picture of him there in Carnegie Hall.
MJ: Which instrument did he play?
CSH: He played every instrument.
MJ: He played everything.
CSH: But, mostly piano. ... Going way back to the time he was in elementary school, guess he started taking it [lessons] about ... fifth grade, maybe? ... This is a picture of him ... in the conductor's room in Carnegie Hall, and you see the picture in the background? That's Leonard Bernstein. That's the same ... place Leonard Bernstein had.
LH: Same dressing room.
CSH: Dressing room, and it was real fancy, he had it to himself, and it had a couch ... and a reception area, a little living room kind of area, and a little kitchenette, a bathroom, where he could shower and use the bathroom there. ... He's been in Carnegie Hall a number of times now. He's coming back again this year, in the fall, leading the New England Symphony Orchestra. The Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra, he's conducted in Carnegie Hall. Anyhow, we're pretty proud of him. ... Our second son, he's the one that went to Princeton. He's the one that fulfilled my wishes. ...
MJ: He is a surgeon, correct?
CSH: He's a surgeon now. He's up in Riverview Hospital in Red Bank, is where he works. ... There's kind of a recent picture of the two boys there together, the top one, and we have a daughter, too, and she's a nurse. ... She's still one of the head nurses down in Atlantic City Medical Center. ... My son, ... he went to Westminster Choir College [of Rider University] in Princeton for his undergraduate work, and then, went from there to Trenton State University. What's it called now?
SI: The College of New Jersey.
CSH: College of New Jersey, yes, and he went from there to the University of Missouri, Conservatory of Music in the University of Missouri, because, at that time, he was living in Colorado. ... It was either a case of going to Southern Cal or coming to Missouri, and Missouri was a lot less expensive for him, because he was married and [had a] family, and so, [he] came to the University of Missouri, got his doctorate there. ... He's head of the; Director of Choral Music, what's the correct title, Director of Choral Affairs?
LH: Where, at the university?
CSH: At the university?
LH: Director of ...
CSH: Choral Music?
LH: Yes, of Choral Music.
SI: Is his title Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities?
LH: That's it. ...
CSH: That's it, Director of Choral Activities, that's it, because his main interest, from Westminster Choir College, was choral and he's been involved with church music ever since, too. ... That pretty much brings the family up-to-date. Now, I've got eleven grandchildren and six [great-grandchildren] ...
LH: Six great-grandchildren and another one ... should be born any day.
CSH: Due momentarily, momentarily.
LH: We should be hearing any day.
CSH: ... Want to bring those two big pictures in from out ... there?
SI: We also want to state for the record that you just celebrated your sixty-fifth anniversary; congratulations.
LH: Yes, yes.
CSH: Yes, that's what I wanted to show you. We have pictures of that.
LH: ... He's going to show you a picture of the party.
CSH: But, there's my diploma from Upsala and my diploma from Montclair. ...
SI: Were you a journalism major at Upsala?
CSH: No. ...
SI: Or an English major?
SI: Science major; you said that.
CSH: Science and English, but this is the kind of thing that I published. This is one year's publication of the magazine that I edited, and, each year, we have this. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann holds up a bound periodical.] ...
CSH: Each one is the month and this is the magazine we published, and I wrote everything that was in here. ... I did it for thirteen years. ... I was Executive Director and ... a lot that's in here, I wrote, but this is two years, '79 and '80. ... For some reason, the printer made two of them this year, so, I got one of them. The rest of them ... are still in the association offices. ...
LH: Here's the picture of the party we had on our sixty-fifth wedding anniversary on the River Queen, you know, out of Brielle, Bogan's Boat [Basin], and this is the picture of our family that were on that boat; ... starts with Mr. Hausmann and myself and we did all that, started with just us. [laughter]
SI: That is great.
LH: How about that? [laughter]
CSH: We published that once a month. I had one secretary. ...
SI: Maria, do you have any more questions you would like to ask?
MJ: I wanted to ask you about your interest in flying. Before, you said you chose the Air Force because of the deferment opportunity.
MJ: Were you interested in flying during that time period?
CSH: I still fly. I still have my license. ...
MJ: You still fly.
CSH: Right now, I've had ... a broken leg and two new hips, so, I can't get in and out of the airplane very easily. So, I don't fly anymore, but I [have] a lifelong interest in flying. My son, the doctor up there, he has his own airplane. ... He's had a twin-engine Cessna, keeps it up here at the local airport, and I fly a lot with him. I'm his co-pilot pretty regularly, when I could get in and out of the airplane. [laughter]
LH: You can't do that anymore with your legs.
CSH: Can't do it anymore, but he has probably ten thousand hours [since] he's been flying. He got his ... license when he was a senior at Princeton. ...
CSH: He went over to the Princeton Airport and did his flying there and got his license there and he's been flying ever since. ... Being a doctor, he can afford to have his own airplane. [laughter] So, he has his own airplane, ... still keeps it up here at the airport, and so, I fly with him, and then, I have another grandson who has ... a private pilot's license. ... That's one of the sons of the people who live in Texas, are at the University of Houston, and he got his license down there. ... This is a grandson who's in the Air Force and he's a pilot.
MJ: Does he like to fly the C-17?
CSH: Not particularly, but it's huge. You know it? It's big.
MJ: It is big.
CSH: Oh, it is big. You could put the B-24 inside it. [laughter]
MJ: He does not like flying it.
CSH: He loves it. ... He's stationed at McGuire [Air Force Base], but, right now, ... he's been deployed. ...
LH: ... Dubai.
MJ: In the UAE [United Arab Emirates]?
CSH: ... It's not Dubai. Is it Dubai? No, no, it's not Dubai.
LH: ... Qatar.
CSH: Qatar. ...
LH: ... That's where he was the last time.
CSH: Yes, that's where he is, Qatar. ...
LH: I don't even know where those countries are.
CSH: Well, they're in the Emirates down there, but he's done some interesting things. He's flown General [David] Petraeus in his airplane, picked him up and [Mr. Hausmann whistles]. When they were having the change of commands over in Afghanistan, General Petraeus was put in charge of the whole operation. ... He was at Andrews Air Force Base and the C-17 went down to Andrews Base to pick him up and they put a pod in there that has ... all of his offices. They put it right in the back of the airplane, has all of the General's offices in there. He can conduct all his business in there. It has desks and the whole operation. ... They flew him over to Baghdad and took it out, and the General has everything all set, ready to go. [Editor's Note: US Army General David Petraeus served as commanding general of Multinational Force Iraq from 2007 to 2008. On October 31, 2008, he became the commander of the United States Central Command, a position he held until June 30, 2010.]
MJ: Efficient, I guess.
CSH: Yes, so, never loses control, because he's got full operation radio to any place he wants to talk. ...
LH: He's not in charge anymore, is he, Petraeus? ...
CSH: Petraeus, he's higher up now. He's over the whole thing. He was in charge of Baghdad, Iraq, then, but, now, he's got Afghanistan and Iraq, I think, both of them.
SI: Are there any more questions?
MJ: No, just about the flying. I thought that was very interesting.
CSH: I think the most interesting part of my life was all the activities I had, all listed there, and got a lot of interesting awards. Did you see those?
MJ: You got an award in 1957 for the Outstanding Youth of the Year, correct?
CSH: Not Youth of the Year, Young Man of the Year, but that was given by the Jaycees [New Jersey Junior Chamber of Commerce]. ... That was in the height of my activity and that was before I became a freeholder, right. ... That was when I was in school work and all the organizations that I was involved in. ... At that time, too, I was also, at the municipal level, Chairman of the Committee for New Government in Irvington. We changed it ... from the commission form to the mayor-council form, and I was the head of that committee that did that.
SI: What made you want to do that?
CSH: Why did we want to change? Well, ... it was just the right time for it. It's the newer form. The commission form was an older form and each commissioner was a little czar in his own right. With the mayor-council form, the mayor has distinct responsibilities, but the others will act as a legislative body, and [that] kind of separates the powers. Where you have a commission form of government, the mayor and each one of the commissioners is in charge of a certain department, whether it be finance or public affairs or ... buildings and grounds, whatever it would be. They each have their own little fiefdom, where the council form is better integrated and the powers better equally divided, and I felt it was a better form for Irvington, which was having problems at that time.
SI: Did you meet any resistance?
CSH: No; ... well, some of the "ins" at that time weren't too happy about it, but most of the people in town supported it and it went through with flying colors, no problem. ... That Outstanding Young Man of the Year, that was [good], but some of the other ones there, too, were kind of [Mr. Hausmann whistles], some of those awards.
LH: ... We have all those plaques up in the attic.
CSH: Yes, they're all in the attic. I have a whole wall full of plaques, [laughter] but I think, of those, the one I got from the Essex County Education Association ...
SI: Was that the Distinguished Layman Award? [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann received the Distinguished Layman's Award from the Essex County Education Association in 1964.]
CSH: Distinguished Layman of the Year, that was for all of Essex. That was for Essex County. That was done at a big hotel thing with a thousand educators in it, because I had made a pretty good name for myself as President of the School Board in Irvington. We'd accomplished a lot of good things, and a couple other things that I did were interesting, too. I was the guest of the Secretary of the Navy. ... We went out on the Essex, the Carrier Essex,coming out of New York. I went out as a guest of the Secretary of the Navy. We went down, spent a week on the Essex, ... doing antisubmarine work. This was during the height of a lot of that type of training.
LH: While you were on the school board.
CSH: ... The Navy, at that time, was being accused of trying to keep people from going to college and [to] get them to enlist in the Navy, and the Navy was trying to say, "We want the best trained people we can get. Get them all the education they can possibly get, then, come into the Navy, if we can attract them." That's the message they were trying to get across, and that's why they had school board members go. ... There were five of us who went together on that, as a guest of the Secretary of the Navy. We were up on the bridge when the airplanes were taking off, ... with the Captain, and landing. We were up on the bridge while that was all [happening], that flight work was being done. Then, ... while I was a freeholder, Director of the Board of Freeholders, I was invited again by the Secretary of the Navy, a different one, to go to Pensacola, Florida. ... We went down to Lakehurst Airport, got on an airplane there, Navy airplane, flew to Pensacola. We got to Pensacola, why, we were guests. ... These were all politicians. There was a whole airplane full of us, all from New Jersey, and we spent a long weekend, I guess, in Pensacola, got red carpet treatment there and got a view of ... what the Navy was doing, and they took us out on the ...
LH: [USS] Enterprise? [Editor's Note: The USS Lexington (CVS-16/CVT-16) served as a training ship at NAS Pensacola from the early 1960s through 1991. The USS Enterprise (CV-6) was decommissioned in 1947 and scrapped in the late 1950s.]
CSH: It was the Enterprise, wasn't it? ... The first Enterprise was there, as a training ship, and [the Navy] took us out there on the Enterprise, out of Pensacola, but those were two exciting things I got, ... being a guest of the Secretary of the Navy, and the fact ... they gave me a nice book and this. [Editor's Note: Mr. Hausmann holds up a set of US Navy pilot's wings fixed on a plaque.]
SI: Those are US Navy pilot's wings.
CSH: Yes, the Navy pilot's wings, and it says there, "Guest of the Secretary of the Navy. Fly With the Fleet," and then, I got a lot of publications out of it, ... a booklet in there with pictures of everything.
LH: I think you know everything about him now. [laughter]
CSH: They covered everything.
SI: You have such a long résumé of accomplishments that it would probably take us two or three days to go through them all.
CSH: I think I've given you more than you need to know, as my wife keeps saying like this. [laughter]
LH: Well, I don't want you to get hoarse.
SI: Is there anything else you would like to add before we finish?
CSH: ... Anything, Lil, worth noting?
LH: I can't think of anything. You just about hit every highlight in our lives, in your life and, ultimately, mine, because we've been married for sixty-five years.
SI: You have had many accomplishments, civically, in business, your military career and, most importantly, your family.
CSH: Yes, and I've been retired, successfully retired, too.
CSH: And we're still doing things. ...
LH: ... He led the exercise class this morning. We have senior exercise. That's how he broke his leg last year, at our exercise class. [laughter]
CSH: ... I wasn't finished in politics when I retired, because I came down here and I was elected [to] the town council ... in Brielle, next town next-door here, and I was the town councilman there. ... During the time I was there, I said, "Well, there's no activities here for seniors in this town," and I was a senior citizen, so, I said, "I'm going to get it going." So, I started ... what we call "Riverview Seniors," because Brielle is on the river, the Manasquan River. So, the main street running through it is Riverview, so, we called it Riverview Seniors, [and we] got 270 members. ... We started providing all kinds of services and, today, I still pretty much run it, as a volunteer, and we have an exercise class, which I lead.
CSH: Partially, because ... I can't do it every time. ... We have about, oh, I guess thirty-five signed up for that. ... We do Bookworms, a kind of [book club]. Lillian's going to lead, on Monday, a discussion of Great Expectations. ...
LH: Bridge every Tuesdays.
CSH: Bridge; we have a poker club.
LH: We used to have a poker club.
CSH: Bridge, we have a bridge club and meet. A lot of women play bridge.
LH: Luncheon once a month
CSH: Luncheon once a month, and I'm still forgetting one. Oh, we have bingo.
LH: We play bingo. They play bingo on Thursdays.
CSH: Once a month, but these are all activities, and we have a house in Brielle. ... Even though I live here, and this is actually, you used the Manasquan address, that's because it's the post office, this is Wall Township here, and all my activities are almost a stone's throw over here in Brielle. ... When we moved out of Irvington, we spent over thirty years in Brielle.
LH: Yes, almost thirty-five.
CSH: ... After I retired from everything, I got into politics in Brielle. I served [on] a lot of things in Brielle before I got in the council, though.
CSH: I served as a lot of spots there. ... Ten years, I was chairman of the Planning Board in Brielle. ... [You] forget all these little things you do along the line. Ten years on a planning board is an experience unto itself. They have more problems with things that people want to build in town, other people don't want them to build it, nobody wants any changes, "not in my backyard." ... I was on the Environmental Commission, too. So, on and on you could go; that's enough talking about myself.
SI: There is one more question I would like to ask. You said that you went for some doctoral studies at Rutgers, correct?
CSH: Oh, yes. I was matriculated and, you know, teachers get paid on the basis of degrees. ... The last one, if you don't have an earned doctorate, ... you're at the six-year level and you had to have, I think, was it thirty or sixty credits beyond the master's?
LH: I can't remember.
CSH: I guess it's sixty beyond the master's to qualify, and I got that. ... Rutgers was opening in Newark and ... I did most of all the courses at the School of Education, but the courses were offered in Newark. [I] guess they still have a section of Rutgers there in Newark, don't they?
SI: Yes, a large campus.
CSH: Yes, but it was just starting there when I got involved with that, and Dr. [Rex B.] Cunliffe, do you remember him? he was head of the Education Department at Rutgers for a long while. He and I got [to be] pretty good friends, ... but I matriculated into the [school], because you had to pass an exam, qualifying [exam]. Is it [the] Graduate Record Exam, or whatever it is, to get into graduate school?
SI: Yes, the GREs.
CSH: To be accepted as a candidate, because I had ... several other friends who took the exam at the same time and did not get accepted into the ... degree program and they kind of dropped out along the way, but I continued on. ... They wanted me to take at least a year off to ... work [on the] thesis and that, but, at that time, I was involved in way too much to be spending time ... not having any income, because I was still teaching back then. I was in my last year or so of teaching, and I was considering leaving education at the time anyhow. ...
SI: Were you able to use the GI Bill for any of your postwar education?
CSH: Every bit of it. The best thing in the world that ever [was] accomplished. You can thank the American Legion for that, too. The World War I guys who came out and formed the American Legion, they got the GI Bill through. ... It took a whole generation and raised them up another level of education. It worked for the whole generation of us who were in service in World War II. Fortunately, the American Legion now, along with VFW [Veterans of Foreign Wars], I guess, is pushing to have a better GI Bill for the guys coming out of, you know, Iraq and Afghanistan, so [that] when they come back, they'd have somewhere near the same thing, except the costs have gone so far out of sight. I took some graduate work at Columbia, too; it was twenty-five dollars a credit when I took it. ... The last time I checked, it was 750 dollars a credit. I don't know what it could be now.
CSH: High. Now, you're a student at Rutgers?
LH: What year are you in?
MJ: I am a senior.
CSH: My brother graduated from Rutgers.
LH: ... What are you studying?
MJ: I am a history major.
LH: ... How about you? Are you still a student? ...
SI: No, I graduated in 2001 and I have been with this program as a staff member ever since.
LH: Oh, okay.
SI: Actually, Maria is the cadet colonel for the Air Force ROTC.
CSH: ROTC? Good for you, great for you. I knew that I liked you
LH: Well, his brother went to Rutgers, and your brother's kids went to Rutgers. ... They all love it. Of course, now, they've got this fabulous football team, that's not winning any games, [laughter] but they pay their coach too much money, I'll tell you that. [laughter]
CSH: All right, ROTC person, this just came in my email today. Wait until you hear this. ...
SI: Let me just pause the tape.
SI: You are a life member of the American Legion.
CSH: ... My father was in World War I, came out and joined the Legion. I was in the Sons of the American Legion until World War II. When I came out of World War II, the Irvington post made all of us who were members of the Sons of the Legion members of the post immediately, and so, I went in in 1945, I guess. They took me in and I've been a member of the Legion ever since, and I've been [there through] every office going, commander, chaplain. I'm still chaplain of an American Legion post we started here in the Four Seasons and I'm proud of the Legion, and I'm a pretty strong American. [laughter]
SI: Obviously you are. Thank you very much, we appreciate all your time, your hospitality and, of course, your service. This will conclude our interview.
--------------------------------------------END OF INTERVIEW--------------------------------------------
Reviewed by Sarah Thomson 9/24/10
Reviewed by Shaun Illingworth 10/5/10
Reviewed by C. Stewart Hausmann 10/8/10