Monday, January 25, 2016

Aunt Betty Eicher A Single Woman in Lakeland - Travels and Connections - Lee Willis

 With the support of my cousin, William A "Billy" Eicher, I have been going through a box of his Aunt Betty's things this winter to discern what her life was like, first living as a closeted lesbian women in the late 1930's to 1947 in rural Ohio, having lived with Mary Parker Brown at that time.

Then the two of them moved to  Lakeland FL.  The first paper I found regarding, is  related to the death of Betty's father,  Charles A Eicher on August 5, 1951.   Prior to computers, this was  the quickest way to have written communication then was the Telegram Sent from Miamisburg by her younger brother Bill, sent to 817 Southern Blvd in Lakeland Fl

1951 Aug from Bill Eicher to his older sister Betty, Miamisburg OH  to Lakeland FL.
With some journals and accounting books along with her passports

Clipping that supports that Betty still was writing short stories for trade magazines...during the BC, before computers era.

I found no clippings describing Mary Parker Browns later years in Florida with Betty, from 1947  to her death in May of 1961.

Betty Eicher's Travels and House Mate Lee Willis -

Passport that shows Betty traveling to Europe and arriving London in May 1965, with a return through New York on Jun 17.......She took notes on her travels written in careful cursive.

Lee Willis Photo in Betty Eichers archives, now with her nephew Wm Billy A Eicher of Lakeland.

Trip Book - Travel Diary Of Elizabeth Eicher - Intro Monday May 3, 1965

"Lee and L.C. drove me to McCoy Airport at Orlando. A little nervous.  Left at 12:55 by Jet.  Arrived Kennedy International Airport at 4:00 NY time.  Bus to Clifton Ford Hotel where she stayed in London, side trips to Oxford, Stratford etc.

Entry on, below, likely on  June 17 (arrival back in US )  describing flight into New York and then to Florida. Lee (Willis) is mentioned to have "redone the bath and kitchen for me as a surprise".   I have worked to find a Lee Willis in Lakeland on line, and Ancestry as a Lee J Willis as a widow, having been married to Ernest Willis in the past.

1947 living at 817 South Blvd Apt 2, Lakeland Florida.

1985 Jan Tom Weaver, Betty Eicher and Bill Eicher (William H Eicher) in Florida near Nokomis, Bill and Jo Frame Eicher home.

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