Guide to the Helen Whit field Mac Peek Letters 1918 MG 1548
TABLE OF CONTENTS
The New Jersey Historical Society
Finding aid encoded by Julia Telonidis. April 2005. Production of the EAD 2002 version of this finding aid was made possible by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Finding aid written in English.
Helen Whitfield MacPeek (ca.1918) lived at 49 Elliot Street in Newark, New Jersey. She worked at Bamberger’s department store in Newark.
The collection contains two letters describing the celebrations that took place in Newark at the end of World War I. One letter is written on November 7, 1918 (“False Armistice Day”) when fictitious reports of a German surrender were circulated throughout the country. The second letter is written on November 12, 1918 and describes the second round of celebrations after a cease-fire agreement was signed with Germany. In her November 7 letter MacPeek writes, “Newark is going wild.” She reports that the streets were packed with people, American flags were flown from every house, and a large parade marched through the city. MacPeek also writes about a large celebration that is to take place in Military Park that evening.
The second letter describes Newark’s November 11 celebrations after peace was officially declared. MacPeek writes about the mobs of people in the streets and describes the parades that went on all day. She writes about the many signs she saw including “Cheese stinks so does the Kaiser.” MacPeek describes men carrying the Kaiser’s coffin through the streets and writes about the confetti and adding machine paper that was thrown from office windows. MacPeek also mentions that by evening the crowds had become rowdy and, “most of the fellows were half drunk and insulting.”
Vertical File: Newark — Celebrations
This collection should be cited as: Manuscript Group 1548, Helen Whitfield MacPeek Letters, The New Jersey Historical Society.
This collection was donated by Helen W. Bertholet in 1997.